The question on everyone’s mind was the great British Bank Holiday weather!!!
The track had been softened for the Cancelled meeting two weeks previous, but even so, Foxhill took a few prisoners over the weekend, the club wishes them well…. ‘Respect this venue’ was the ‘call of the day’, the opportunity to ride this terrific world class venue, with 143 riders signed on, as a rescheduled round 3 this was a bumper entry with an international feel, which included Latvian pro class rider Demantis Vassny and Belgian Club Regular Davino Bruneel in Clubman Elite having a brilliant day, Not forgetting our Guest riders who travelled from Scotland too!! Also the return of an ‘on form’ pro, Stef Murphy after a year out with injuries!!
With the unfortunate impending weather blowing in at the start of block 3, which forced abandonment of the meeting on the grounds of safety. With the 3 race drop rule this will assist those riders who were unable to make the meet @ short notice as most groups only managed to complete 2 races.
Round 3 of the Nora-MX 2016 Championship and to the highly demanding and popular track of Foxhill! Many of the Expert Riders had travelled overnight on Saturday from the British Championship at Desertmartin in Ireland showing their total commitment to both Championships. So would Mark Mclernon continue where he left off from his homeland track? Later……
First to the titanic tussle in the 250cc Hybrid class between Harry Carmichael, Ayrton Knowles and Dean Dillon. Harry was the rider on form in beating Ayrton in the recent Nett meeting and both Dean and Ayrton in Scotland last weekend. However his fortunes were to change in dramatic style with a nasty off in race 1 when he was trying to get level with Ayrton.
Harry’s misfortune paved the way for a sparkling performance from Ayrton with two wins and a 2nd to take the overall. Fastest lap times both in qualifying (1.588) and the first race (1.561) also went Ayrton’s way. Closely followed by Dean Dillon with two 2nds and a first to take 2nd overall. The smallest winning margin was race 2 which was by 1.9 seconds. The podium was completed by Oli Martin following his 4th, 4th and 3rd.
Other 250 group class winners were ---150cc Marcus Sprason, 250 Mods Scott Irons and 250cc Standards Shanice Mott.
The 250cc group were the only group that managed 3 races as rain stopped play after their 3rd race.
On to the 100cc/150cc Group and the continuation of the unbeaten Alfie Walker? That came to an end in race 1 as Alfie came in 11th to be the last member in the club to lose their 100% record.
Luke Berlyn took full advantage topping off the fastest qualifying lap of 1.22 minutes with a win in race 1 by 26.8 seconds and a 2nd in race 2 to take the overall. Alfie took 2nd overall after winning the 2nd race. Dylan McKenna took 3rd overall with a 5th and a 3rd. Lewis Humphries took the 125cc sub class (7th and 6th overall). Frank Marston 50cc sub class winner (8th and 11th overall). The 100cc auto sub class went to Kieran Marriott (9th and 8th overall)
The Clubman Elite battle moved to its next stage with early season front runners Tom Chell, Jack Norris and Davino Bruneel all going for the win. Jack set the early pace with the fastest lap in qualifying of 1.573 and again the fastest lap in race 1 of 1.561. Race 1 went to Jack, albeit by just 0.5 seconds after a very spirited comeback from the Dazzling Belgium Davino who came through the field from 15th in lap 1.
Race 2 looked to be a change around as Tom set the early pace with Radford Chugg hot on his heals (fastest lap by Radford 1.599). This was short lived when they had a coming together over a jump which injured both riders and ended their race day. No invitation needed for Davino to take the win by 12.5 seconds. The podium went 1st Davino (2nd and a 1st), 2nd Jack (1st and 3rd) and 3rd George Miles (4th and 2nd). The Clubman sub class again went to Lestyn Rowlands with two good 5ths in the overall class.
Now on to the Masters Class and a return from injury of a semi fit Ed Davies, so a potential upset on the cards here? In short “No” as the welsh wizard dominated proceedings with the fastest laps in qualifying + race 1 + race 2 and with 2 comfortable race wins (smallest winning margin 31 seconds) a clear winner on the day. The podium was completed by 2nd to Ant Barrett (2nd + 3rd) and Gary Adlington (5th + 2nd).
The Experts Class was as strong as ever, albeit with some weary riders following the battles in Desertmartin just 48 hours earlier! George Callaway set down the marker with the fastest qualifying lap of 2.02 minutes and started off race 1 at pace with only Luke Cooper and Carl Bunce able to keep him in sight. The latter stages changed all of that with Luke running out the eventual winner by 3.2 seconds over Carl. Carl set the fastest lap in that race of 2.04 minutes. George had to settle for 3rd.
As for the on form Mclernon a tangle up early on put him down to 20th and the end of his day.
On to race 2 and Luke this time set the fastest lap of 2.04 minutes. But as in race 1 the fastest lap did not go to the race winner as Carl took 1st by 5 seconds over Luke 2nd and George 3rd.
So the well deserving podium of Carl 1st, Luke 2nd and George 3rd. Stefan Murphy showed a consistent return with 4th overall following two 5th place finishes. Dafyyd Davies took the Pro-am sub class with a credible 7th and 6th place finish in the overall.
Last and by no means least the Master Support Class which is made up of the sub classes of the “out of box”, “Master support” and “Evo”. As in previous rounds the very popular “out of box” class provided the 3 top riders here with Jack Holmes taking the overall with 2 wins. His smallest winning margin was 14.9 seconds in race 2 and he also had the fastest lap of the day in race 1 –1.599 minutes. Matt Burroughs took 2nd with 2 seconds and Ben Richmond 3rd with two thirds. In the Evo sub class Geoff Otway took the win (5th and 4th overall) Trevor Humphris took the Master support sub class (4th and 5th overall)
Time for bodies to rest and bikes be prepped ready for round 4 at yet another cracking track in Grittenham on Sunday 15th May!!!!
Entries are now open for Grittenham via the ACU website!!!
Words by Pete Chell