With Yorkshire taking the worst of Britain’s wet weather in the past week, many people thought that the 5th round of the DEP 2-Stroke British championship would definitely not happen this weekend — but it did and it proved to be a goodie as well.
The DEP team worked wonders with a surface resembling Weston beach ten minutes after the tide going out – in other words it was wet and horrible looking.
A few diggers here and some extra pairs of hands their and the track was ready for race action come first thing Sunday morning — well done to all involved.
The 125’s went out for qualifying first, some of the less experienced riders struggled with the deep sandy surface but after three successful sessions the track was beginning to take shape which made for exciting racing from the expert class all the way down to the juniors.
David Willet proved once again that his two stroke skills are up there with the best and walked away with yet another overall podium position.
Race two for me was one of the best races I’ve witnessed this season at all levels, Stuart Edmonds took the lead followed by Willet, somewhere on the track Edmonds went down and Willet just went away and took an easy win.
The action went on behind as seven other riders battled it out for places, Steve Collins and Steve Bixby were swapping places like nobodies business closely followed by James Dodd, Stuart Edmonds, Jonathan Pettitt, Luke Kennett and Jim Davies who were all having their own personal battles between them. By the time the chequered flag went out only seconds separated the top six — it was two stroke racing at its best.
As I mentioned Willet was in dominate form and took two moto wins, Stuart Edmonds aboard the flying TM took moto one after battling with team mate Jonathan Pettitt for the entire race, again it was great race to watch.
Steve Bixby who produced his best performance of the season romped home for third overall, Pettitt fourth and James Dodd took fifth.
Adam Reynolds, Paul Shires, Jack Rowland, Sean Stevens and Steve Birkenshaw were the top five junior riders who all qualified for the expert race and finished in that order to top the junior section.
In the junior races we had some quality racing on show and it won’t be long before some of theses lads will take the next step to racing and qualifying in the main expert race.
Ryan Matthews took two race wins in the C class and Josh Chilvers took the other from Steven Sapsford.
In the Junior B class it was a similar story with Glen Bixby taking two race wins and Warren Field taking the other in some hard fought action on the tough sandy circuit.
It was good to see some real close racing in the 250 expert classes; Mark Eastwood didn’t quite have it all his own way this time.
That man Willet who must be one of the fittest riders in the UK, took a vital win in race one, the two battled for nearly the whole race, but on the final lap they both went down in the same spot, Willet managed to get back on first and went on to take his first 250cc victory of the year. When Eastwood did cross the line you could tell by his body language he wasn’t best pleased but as he passed Willet he gave him a tap on the back to say well done — great sportsmanship.
These two were quick so quick in fact that third place rider Stuart Flockhart came in one minute behind the flying Honda twosome.
In the overall positions Ryan Voase came in third and to be honest after qualifying I thought the conditions suited the LPE Kawasaki riders style but it wasn’t to be, Stuart Flockhart had the speed to finish in fourth and he did mention that he hasn’t really had time on the bike since his recent injury, when he is fit he could be challenging for a win and Oliver Moyce put in a real consistent performance for fifth.
In the junior races we had the same scenario as in the 125 class, with a whole host oof juniors qualifying in the main expert race — the riders who topped the junior section in those races were Alex Smith, Sam Beddows and Eddy Carr. Carr now leads the series by 26 points from Alex Smith with five more exciting rounds still to come.
James Hudson just missed out on a maximum in the junior 250 B class as Sam Whymark just beat him to the chequered flag in moto three.
So the DEP 2-Stroke British Championship has reached its halfway stage and there is still an awful lot racing to come. We’ve had sunshine for four out of the five rounds which isn’t too bad for the UK.
The series now heads for Marshfield near Bristol for the next round on Sunday July 1st – expect a bumper crowd down in the West Country as Marshfield is the hotbed of British motocross.
Full results and championship positions can be found at www.2strokebritishchampionship.co.uk where you will also find images from all events.