Great track, great racing and a large crowd, round 2 of the AMCA British Motocross Championship powered by Datatag and supported by Dunlop had it all and so much more!
And following a day of top-class, spectacular action on the hillside circuit of Nympsfield, the end result was that Luke Burton(Rikki Priest Frasier Husqvarna UK) and Josh Waterman(JD Racing/IDS Transport KTM) have both extended their respective MX1 and MX2 Championship advantages.
With a 3/1/2 scorecard, Burton also topped the MX1 podium joined on the box by reigning Champion Luke Dean and hard charging young gun, Curtis Blamey in a great 3rd. Over in MX2, Waterman had to settle for 2nd overall as the smooth FUS Moto4 Fro Husqvarna pilot Luke Mellows took a richly deserved win with Jansen Day in 3rd. Whilst the MX1 and MX2 standings show the same leaders, in the 2T and Veterans title chases though it’s all change. James Lane(AJP Passion Racing KTM) now tops the 2T charge after taking Sunday’s overall win from Ben Saunders and Jamie Powell whilst James brother Simon Lane(LRT Honda) as relieved Matt Gordon of the number one position in the Veterans. Both Simon and Matt were also on the Nympsfield podium but taking the win with a super unbeaten performance was Terry House.
So on a track superbly prepared by the organising Dursley MXC, Lewis King posted the fastest MX2 Qualifying time before it was time to go racing. And when the gate dropped, FUS Moto4 Husqvarna boss Mike Keenan must have been delighted as Chris Povey grabbed the moto one holeshot with teammate Luke Mellows in tow. By the completion of a very frantic opening circuit though, Mellows, Jansen Day, Paul Neale and Cory McShane had all pushed Povey back to 5th. Using all of his Nympsfield track knowledge, local favourite Neale was a man on a mission getting up to 2nd by lap four before eventually surging past leader Mellows on lap seven. From here onwards the immaculate Neale controlled all the way to the flag and thus take the win from Mellows, Day, McShane and Adam Wells. MX2 series leader Josh Waterman certainly had to work hard for his points in this clash. After the start gate bounced and caught his KTM’s front wheel, it forced Josh badly off line and left him down in 20th place. Working very hard he then got back to a fine 6th spot, just ahead of King with Bradley Tranter 8th after initially starting in 14th.
What a stunning clash MX2 moto two proved to be as Cory McShane got the initial jump only to be quickly passed by Mellows. For the opening few laps, Mellows and McShane locked horns in a great scrap but all eyes were on Waterman who after gating 6th was again on a serious charge, getting up to 2nd by lap five. For the remainder of the contest it then became Mellows v Waterman for the win and McShane v Neale for 3rd. At the flag victory belonged to Mellows by the very narrowest of margins from Waterman, McShane, Neale, Day, Tranter who had moved up from 13th, Zac Stealey, Brandon Benjamin, Adam Cook and King.
So going into the final MX2 moto of the day, Mellows and Neale led the race for the overall verdict, both riders proudly boasting a 1-2 scorecard. When the gate dropped though both riders did not quite get the quick getaway they were hoping for with Mellows in 10th and Neale right down in 26th! At the front, Waterman showed just why he is the current MX2 boss leading from gate to flag chased hard by the very fast Tranter. In the early stages of moto three Josh Broadway had held 3rd before crashing so now it was all about a fierce battle for that number three spot featuring Cook and Day. That tussle raged right until the very last turn when the unfortunate Cook suffered a big off after getting cross-rutted! With Cook out, King filled that vacant 4th spot as Mellows got back to 5th, enough to earn the overall win whilst Neale had to settle for a very hard-earned 11th. Having his best ride of the day, Jack Timms bagged a solid 7th in this clash. Afterwards a delighted winner Mellows said “This overall win was perfect for myself and team FUS. Since coming over to race in the AMCA, I have always had good results at Nympsfield. After making a switch of teams and classes for 2016 it’s obviously all taken time to adapt. I really enjoy riding the MX2 bike and my speed is getting better each meeting. My home club Dursley MXC put on a great event on a well prepared track and now I am certainly looking forward to round three at Frocester.Finally I would like to say get well soon to my FUS teammate Jack Cox who suffered an unfortunate injury today.”
Showing true grit and determination to keep a firm grip on the AMCA MX1 title, reigning Champion Luke Dean despite feeling a little unwell started the day by posting the fastest qualifying time then produced a superb moto one ride at Nympsfield to lead the clash from start to finish. In the early stages, two-stroke King Adam Harris had brilliantly held 2nd before eventually dropping down to 10th. Chasing winner Dean home was the very impressive Curtis Blamey despite coming under some late pressure from MX1 series pace setter Luke Burton. Gating in 8th, Burton was on a serious charge but had to settle for that eventual 3rd from Gary Gibson, Ryan Crowder, James Dodd, John May, Richard Cannings and Clinton Barrs. Unfortunately this moto was to be slightly soured by news of an injury to Jack Cox who suffered a fractured fibula and tibula after jarring his leg in a Nympsfield rut, get well soon Jack!
In MX1 moto two, Burton was back to his very best by quickly overhauling fast starting John May to then lead the contest. For five laps though, May was right in there and fighting hard, holding a menacing 2nd spot and refusing to concede defeat until he unfortunately suffered a big off! With the bike looking decidedly second-hand, the KTM rider initially dropped right back to 14th, eventually going further down the leaderboard to 21st. At the front whilst Burton controlled the man on a mission was Cannings. Passing Blamey for 2nd, he then rapidly reeled in Burton to finish less than a second down on completion! Taking 4th this time was Dodd from Dean, Barrs, Mark Young, Crowder and Gibson who had to recover from an early 16th spot.
With both Blamey and Dean well down the leaderboard, it was Dodd who led the final MX1 moto charge before being passed by Gibson just one lap in. It was certainly getting hot at the front end of this clash as Cannings, Burton and May joined the mix, the race for glory was now well and truly on! For Dodd though there was to be late heartache, crashing and dropping down to 4th. In the closing stages, Burton then moved up to 2nd and lap by lap was rapidly closing in on leader Gibson. But despite a big, valiant last lap effort by Burton though it was to be a maiden AMCA Championship moto win for Gibson on the DK Offroad Kawasaki as a very determined Cannings took 3rd from Dodd, May, Dean and Blamey. Although satisfied to take another overall win and thus extend his early Championship lead, it was not all plain sailing for Burton explaining “After a very long, sleepless night with my poorly little boy I wasn’t feeling ready for racing and up for it on Sunday morning! I really struggled to keep any kind of concentration so was very happy with my results for the day.”
Matthew Bath led the first 2T Championship battle of the day but by the end of lap one had dropped down to 5th behind James Lane, Jamie Powell, Ben Saunders and Kristofer Ayres. Five laps in and super Saunders was in control only to then be repassed by his very determined rival Lane with just two circuits remaining. Also in the mix during this opening 2T clash were Richard Lloyd, Tony Griffiths, Rian Warren, Aston Illsley and Matthew Nash.
In a super entertaining 2T moto two, Nash, Illsley, Saunders and finally Lane led the way. Once in-front, Lane certainly turned on the gas to finish over 12 seconds clear of Saunders. After Ayres had briefly controlled the opening lap of the final 2T moto, it was all to be about that dynamic duo of Lane and Saunders again. And ultimately this clash was to be decided by a moment just two laps from home when the fast leaders approached a group of four stranded backmarkers! Whilst Lane cleverly found an immediate route through, Saunders frustratingly got held up and lost valuable ground! So on completion of the contest it was victory to Lane from Saunders, Powell, Illsley, Ayres, Lloyd and Bath. That win for Lane also meant that he had took the overall victory on the day and thus move to the top of the 2T series standings, 12 points clear of Saunders. Going into Sunday’s event, Tony Griffiths had held 3rd in the early table but now drops to 11th after mustering just 43 points at Nympsfield.
After only managing to complete two moto’s during the opening round of the AMCA Veterans after breaking a finger, Terry House bounced back in superb style on Sunday by bagging a brilliant maximum points score. House though certainly had to work hard for his glory as Simon Lane led all three moto’s. In race one, House gated 9th before taking control of proceedings on lap six and earn glory with Matt Gordon 3rd, Martin Atherton 4th, Darren Bennett 5th and Stephen Elford 6th.
Race two and House took just three laps to hit pole position with the usual suspects of Gordon, Lane, Atherton, Gary Jones and Bennett in the frame. After a fairly routine second moto, there was to be drama in the final Vets clash as Gordon crashed heavily when about to pass leader Lane. Dropping right back to 14th spot, Matt had it all to do as that man House after gating 5th was moving smoothly up to take control after just four laps. From here onwards, Terry glided to another great win with Lane 2nd, Jones 3rd and Atherton 4th. After his earlier tumble, Gordon displayed great character to fight back in style, passing Danny Blakeley for 5th on the run-in to the chequered flag.
Completing the programme was the Championship Non-Qualifiers races which saw Mitchell Benjamin take top honours in the MX1/MX2 class and Paul Jones prove victorious in 2T/Vets. Well done again to Dursley MXC and many thanks to the meeting sponsors LDR Racing, Con-Form Ltd and Berkeley Heath Motors.
TO VIEW ALL OF THE IMAGES FROM THIS EVENT GO TO
Mike Wood http://www.offroad-action.co.uk/
The results of the event are below.