The NETT Club hosted the second round of the ACU British Sidecarcross championships of 2022 at the Dean Moor track in Cumbria. It was part of the Annual Connor Smith Memorial event run across two days, incorporating the NETT Championship and the Sidecar and Quad British Championships.
The track was in great condition, and regular watering during the day kept the dust to a manageable level. The weather was sunny, but a cold wind blew across the exposed landscape making it feel much colder.
With round two seeing a very closely fought battle for the championship lead, at the start of the day Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain and Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard were on the same points. The leading pairs battled hard again and at this round it was Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard who took the one-point advantage at the end of a great days racing.
The day started with a problem during qualifying, not all transponders were registering as they passed the timing loop, so not all fast laps were registered, the club were quick to act and replaced the faulty loop, but there was not time for another qualifying session, so the current championship positions were used as qualifying places.
Racing got underway with an early lead for Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray with from Dan Foden / Nathan Cooper holding second. Behind the battle was on with Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain and Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard fighting for third, but quickly battled forward to chase for the lead. Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain moved into second and chased Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray, but they were on top form and it took a while to find a way past before taking the lead, going on to take the win. This left Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard chasing Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray for second, this was a great challenge in the final laps of the race, but it was Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray who held the advantage. Behind Dan Foden / Nathan Cooper had a brilliant race taking fourth, with a close race between George Kinge / Dan Phelps and Neil Campbell / Ross Graham for fifth, with Michael Hodges/ Jack Wilkinson just behind.
In Race two it was Gary Moulds/ Lewis Gray who took another holeshot with Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain holding second, and Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard in third. We were ready for a three-way battle, but there were problems for Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain, the bike stopped track side and their rivals blasted past, they quickly going again but were back in sixth and going like a rocket. Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard chased Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray for the lead, with a close fight until they found a way past, Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard moved into the lead, but they were not safe as Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain were fighting forward, it took them most of the race to fight through to second and close on the leaders, and in the final few laps they started to challenge but back markers made the battle difficult. Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard were determined and held the lead with Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain a close second. Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray held on for another great third place, with Dan Foden / Nathan Cooper not far behind. George Kinge / Dan Phelps took fifth just ahead of Michael Hodges/ Jack Wilkinson.
In the last championship race of the day Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray flew down the long start straight and into the long left hander to take their third hold-shot, but the challenges from behind came quickly. Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain tucked into second with Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard third. On lap one the racing got so close the leading two team touched which slowed them enough to let Brett Wilkinson / Joe Millard come past and blast off into the lead. They soon recovered and gave chase and it was a battle to the flag, Stuart Brown / Josh Chamberlain moved into second and closed the gap fighting with the back-markers, but they didn’t find a way past and took second. Gary Moulds / Lewis Gray took a safe third with Dan Foden / Nathan Cooper keeping them in sight, and George Kinge / Dan Phelps just one bend behind. Michael Hodges/ Jack Wilkinson took sixth with Tony Grahame/ Ryan Henderson close behind.
At the end of another eventful day Wilkinson / Millard hold a one-point advantage from current champions Brown / Chamberlain. Moulds / Gray move up into third in the championship, and they are just one point ahead of Foden / Cooper, with Kinge / Phelps still in fifth. Unfortunately, Jake Brown/ Paul Horton dropped out of the championship top three as they missed the event due to injury, Jake is scheduled for shoulder surgery this week, and we hope to see the team back on the track soon.
Don’t miss round three on Saturday 18 June at Tandragee in Ireland, where the race to become champion continues.