Luckless Thai GP for HM Plant KTM UK

Si Racha hosted the first ever motocross Grand Prix of Thailand yesterday for the second round of eighteen in the FIM Motocross World Championship and HM Plant KTM UK were unlucky to emerge from the long trip east and the extreme heat and humidity without much to show for their efforts.
The jumpy and undulating track welcomed a fresh audience of 17,000 at the venue close to the large town of Pattaya. One week after the championship curtain-raiser at Losail in Qatar the team were able to use a few days to acclimatise to the higher temperatures and also take-in the new layout. It was clear the flowing course would be difficult for the 250cc MX2 machines against the larger 450cc bikes for the second running of the polemic and experimental Super Final event that mixes the classes (and only in place for the non-European events on the 2013 calendar; Thailand representing the second of four).
Elliott Banks Browne and James Dunn would ultimately not get the chance to take-on the MX1 elite and would count mechanical malaise for both race bikes as the reason for their absence from the points listing.  “It was a terrible day,” reflected British Champion EBB. “In the first race I had a good start, like 12th I think and then I felt good on the track and then the bike lost all power and the water came out of the engine for some reason and we are not sure what the problem is. I had to pull-in, which was really disappointing and then for the Last Chance heat race we found that the bike was fine but after ten minutes we had the same problem again and I could not finish. Overall it has been really disappointing.”
Dunn was at least able to post some laps and progress slightly with his Grand Prix apprenticeship in his rookie MX2 term. “In one way I had quite a good weekend here in Thailand,” he commented. “The qualifying race was OK for me and I finished 24th.  On Sunday I had a very good start in the first race, I was riding around 10th and I dropped down to 13th. I’m was very happy with that but unfortunately I had some problems with my bike and then I had to pull out. I learned a lot here and I hope that in Valkenswaard I make a good race.”
Better fortune was found closer to home. Nathan Watson swept the MX1 class of the Wulfsport British Masters Championship at the Preston Docks circuit and scored third place in the MX2 category (walking both podiums) while fifteen year old brother Ben was fifth overall in MX2. The siblings’ speed bodes well for the opening round of the Maxxis British Championship at the Fatcat circuit in Doncaster next week where Elliott Banks Browne will open the defence of his national crown.

MX Vice Editor || 25

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