The hard-working members of the Michelin MX Nationals, powered by Milwaukee, team travelled to the famous Cadders Hill racetrack at Lyng in Norfolk for round three of their prestigious motocross championship.
Three days of work made the historic ex-GP track look like the championship venue it should be, and the riders and loads of spectators turned up to two days of close racing action. On day one of racing, the sun shone from a clear blue sky. But come Sunday, when the pro riders turned up, it turned cloudy and rather cold on the top of Cadders Hill.
With the circuit looking in great condition, as always the anticipation started to build for the ‘Lyfelinez Fastest 40’ opening moto. Harri Kullas (Cab Screens Crescent Yamaha) got the holeshot and led the race and the Leatt MX1 class over the finishing line on the opening lap from John Adamson (ASA United Gas Gas), Tommy Searle (Crendon Fastrack Honda) and Brad Todd (Gabriel KTM). The race order of the top four stayed the same as Kullas, in his smooth, seemingly effortless style pulled further and further ahead. Searle made a mistake under pressure from Todd, allowing Brad through to third place, but two laps later he took the place back and set off after second-place man Adamson.
In the Apico Factory racing MX2 class riders were always going to struggle against the bigger MX1 machines up the long sandy uphill start straight. On the opening lap it was John Meara stepping in to replace the injured Carlton Husband on the Phoenix Evenstrokes Kawasaki, who was leading the MX2 riders over the line in 11th. He was followed by Jamie Carpenter (GRT Impact KTM) in 15th and the on-form Jamie Law (Apico Husqvarna) and the hard charging Lewis Hall (LHR KTM), both on 2-stroke 250’s.
Stuart Edmonds (Apico Husqvarna) was moving up the field fast after an average start and was in twelfth place until he landed on the fallen John Meara who went out of the lead in the MX2 after crashing hard over a steep uphill jump. Both riders were injured but it was Edmonds who came off worse with a wrist injury that would see him sit out the rest of the day.
Searle finally caught and passed Adamson with three laps to go, but by the time he snatched second place Kullas had long gone and with him all hope of the race win. Adamson hung on for third, with Todd in a lonely fourth place. Jake Millward (Verde Shiloh KTM) had passed the Jason Meara, the younger of the Meara brother on his Phoenix Evenstrokes Kawasaki, Glen McCormick (Chambers Husqvarna) and Gavin Stevenson on his way to fifth, with Martin Barr (Apico Husqvarna) sixth.
Carpenter crossed the finish line in twelfth place, but first of the MX2 riders. Hall was second from Law, Calum Mitchell (Fabrican Race Team KTM), and Ton Grimshaw (Chambers Husqvarna), with the fast-starting Meara remounting and coming home in sixth after his crash but in obvious pain.
At the start of race two, Kullas and Searle were side by side going into the first turn. Searle turned his head to look over at Kullas, and he moved over towards him, squeezing Kullas against the trackside bank and securing the lead in the race. But Kullas as always kept his cool, took his time and followed Searle for five laps until he found a way past with a calculated move at the top of the hill and then made no mistakes to take race win and the overall. Searle on the other had did a make a mistake and had a small tip over on the tight corner coming back on to the start straight and had to settle for second again,
Adamson and Todd had gated third and fourth and were in close company for most of the race until three laps to go when Todd slipped past Adamson and started closing in on Searle, taking Adamson with him, as all three finished less than two seconds apart. Petar Petrov (Phoenix Evenstrokes Kawasaki) had a solid, steady ride to come home a distant fifth.
Hall, Mitchell and Grimshaw were the first of the MX2 riders at the start of the race ending lap one in 11th, 12th and 13th place. Hall was charging and worked his way into ninth place in the race as the leading MX2 rider and was looking good for the overall win but then picked up a front wheel puncture pushing him all the way down to 24th in the race and off the podium.
Like the previous round at Landrake Carpenter was involved in a first turn pileup but fought his way forward to finish in 17th in the race, but the fifth MX2. After leading most of the opening MX2 race John Meara eventually pulled out of the second and returned to the paddock, too bruised and battered to continue. Grimshaw was the fastest of the MX2’s and rode a consistent race staying out of trouble and any bad luck to cross the finish line in ninth,well within the 450’s as the winner of the MX2 class. Mitchell was just over seven seconds behind him in second from Law, Sam Nunn (Cab Screens Crescent Yamaha) and Carpenter who fought his way back to fifth.
Overall in the Leatt MX1class it was Kullas with a two-race win maximum from Searle and Todd, with Adamson fourth losing out on the tie break to Todd. The Apico Factory Racing MX2 class went to Grimshaw on the tie break over Carpenter by virtue of his higher place result in race two. Michell was third, just a single point behind the two leaders, with Law just missing out on the podium as Mitchell finished higher in race two.
With two wins and two-second place, Shaun Southgate (Herts MX Honda) won the closely fought expert RFX MX1 class from wildcard rider Max Broadbelt. Although winning race two and four Jayden Ashwell (AJP Racing Gas Gas) finished third overall after a big crash in the second moto.
The RFX MX2 class was all about wildcard rider Shane Carless (FUS Husqvarna), as he had four wins from his four starts for a maximum score. Sam Atkinson (Phoenix Evenstrokes Kawasaki) did all he could to stay with Carless and chased him over the finish line in the last two races. Louie Kessell (Honda) was third, just three points behind Atkinson, with Jack Lindsay (Apico Husqvarna) fourth and missing out on the podium position.
Harry Bradley (Kawasaki), with three wins and a second-place took the MX1 class and stretched out his championship lead. Callum Gordon (MX Revive KTM) took his first ever MX Nationals race win for second place just edging out Joshua McCorkell (Husqvarna) on a tie break. Shaun Springer (Gas Gas) won three out of the four MX2 races, but a poor start put pay to his chances of a maximum score for his overall win. Race four winner Dan Brough (Rutzz.co.uk Husqvarna) was second with Luca Pegg (Yamaha) third but on equal points with Brough.
Worx Sports Insurance Clubman MX1
Two wins and two-second place each for Connor Baldry (KTM) and Adam Reeve (Kawasaki) made it yet another tie but it was Baldry who claimed the top step by virtue of his last race win, taking his first ever MX Nationals race wins along the way too. Billy Saunders (WMS Honda) was a distant third, with Grant Martin (Yamaha) fourth.
Moto Connection Clubman MX2
Ben Wainwright (Wainwright Plant Honda), with two wins and two-second place took the overall win to extend his championship lead. George Boyce (Design Scaffolding Gas Gas) was a close second, an scoring the two other moto wins and a second and a third. Toby Lightbown (RFX Whites KTM) was solid coming home third for his first podium of the year.
Seven Youth 125/250
Bayliss Utting (Husqvarna) took his first overall in the MX Nationals with a couple of race wins and two seconds and was obviously chuffed with it. As like some of the other classes, Tyler Westcott (HJA Motorcycles KTM) finished with the same results for yet another tie on points but had to settle for second this time. 14 year old Mckenzie Marshall (DK Offroad Kawasaki) had his best result of the year coming home third. Charlie Hayman (SJP Moto KTM) remains unbeaten in the Seven Youth 125 class with another four wins from four starts. Ben Mustoe (Matt Gardiner MX KTM) followed Heyman over the finish line in three out of four races, with Tyla Hooley (ASA United Gas Gas) showing improvement in third.
Syntol Lubricants Open 85
Billy Askew (GRT KTM) romped to victory in the big wheel class with an immaculate four races wins. Jake Walker (Gas Gas) pushed hard for second and had some good battles with the fast improving Josh Vail (SJP Moto Husqvarna) who completed the podium line up in third. Alfie Geddes-Green (Matt Pope Gas Gas), with three wins and a second took the small wheel 85s overall win with race one winner Blake Ward-Clarke (JMR KTM) second. Sonny Rooney (Husqvarna) making his MX Nationals debut in 2022 impressed finishing third.