IMBA Preview June: Lower Drayton

This Sunday it’s the first home round of the IMBA European Championship, as the ladies and sidecars go into battle at Lower Drayton (near Penkridge in Staffordshire). Promoted by the Cannock MXC, this event will be event number three in the series for the girls having already visited Holland and Belgium. It’s just round two for the Sidecar’s after their opener at the superb Wohlen circuit in Switzerland.

In the ladies IMBA, Bethany Farmer is currently the top Brit holding a fantastic sixth place with Gabrielle Hamlet also in great form and sitting in eighth. Indeed in the two completed rounds, Farmer has been really mixing it with the leading Euro aces and has already carded a hat-trick of top six moto placings. Also doing their bit in style for Team GB are Georgia Ithell in a solid seventeenth place and Vicky Marriott, hampered by a nasty early season arm injury, in twenty-third.

The regular IMBA starters will be joined on Sunday by Chelsea Gowland, the current leader of the British WMX series, Wiltshire-based sisters Catherine and Camilla King, Leonni Tighe, Rhianne Barker and youngsters Ciara Robertson (16), Charlotte Hall (15) and Eleanor Calby (15). Currently leading the IMBA ladies contest is Dutch girl Gwenda Haans from Belgian, Brenda Wagemans and German Fionna Hoppe. Also don’t forget to keep an eye on former FIM WMX champion Steffi Laier of Germany and possibly young Australian Emma Milesevic. Both riders missed the opener in Holland, but these two ladies starred in Belgium and produced three outstandingly fast tussles.

Over in the Sidecars, at the time of going to press, Sam Osbaldiston and Nathan Cooper are the sole GB representatives, although there is sure to be more names added before the event. In round one at Wohlen, home Swiss crew Andy Burgler and Martin Betschart took all three moto wins ahead of Dutch lads Jarno van den Boomen and Dennis van den Berg. It looks like neither will be present at Lower Drayton though!

For Osbaldiston, well, he started with sixteenth overall and seventy-seven points. There’s also solo support action on the programme for Sunday making it a full day of great racing. If you fancy supporting the British lads and lasses then get along to the circuit, postcode ST19 5RE, which will be signposted from Penkridge town centre and junction thirteen of the M6. Admission charges for the event are just £7 for adults, children under sixteen and OAPs are £2. Children under five get in for free.

Words: Press Release | Lead Image: AMCA Events

MX Vice Editor || 25