Following the cancellation of the last round of the Red Bull Pro National series at Canada Heights, the Maxxis Henderson LPE Kawasaki team loaded up and prepared for the trip north to the Scottish Borders. After weeks of wet weather it made for a pleasant change to be arriving at a dry meeting and perfect track conditions.
The Sunday morning started with strong winds as the riders went out for the free practice session. After quickly getting dialed in with the circuit, both Ray Rowson and Connor Walkley were able to post some good times with 9th in MX1 and 17th in MX2.
Following a short break it was time for the both Ray and Connor to return to the track for the Timed Qualification session. During the session Ray was able to post 11th fastest in MX1, while Connor was also 11th in the MX2 class.
Next up was the opening moto of the day, and both Ray and Connor made good jumps of the gate, but suffered with being pushed wide on the opening corners losing ground on the front runners. As the race settled down in the opening laps, Ray was able to push forward and make progress, but struggled during the middle part of the race with rhythm and dropped a couple of places, eventually finishing in 8th place in the MX1 class. Connor rode a steady race picking riders off as he worked his way forward to finish 9th in the MX2 class.
In the second and final race of the day Ray and Connor were both hoping to produce better results. From the start Ray made a good start around the outside, avoiding a crash on the inside, only to lose the back end and crash. After remounting at the back of the field, Ray produced some fantastic laps early on to close in on the front runners. Meanwhile Connor made an ok start, avoiding the chaos on the inside and rode well to finish 10th in MX2. Ray continued to battle hard and would eventually charge back to 8th in MX1 for 8th overall.
Following three rounds of the Red Bull Pro Nationals, Ray currently sits 11th in the MX1 Championship after swapping classes from round two onwards. In the MX2 class Connor currently sits 14th in the championship.
“Today didn’t start off too great as I hurt my back in free practice. But I’ve really enjoy riding the track at Duns and scored some decent results for 9th overall. I’m now looking forward to the next round of the Championship at Canada Heights.”
“First race rode great for the first few laps moving forward, but then got really out of rhythm and lost 3 places in the last 3 laps. Then in the last race I crashed on the start and came from nearly last place to 6th place. I then made a meal of passing Cottrell and lost 2 places so finished 8th.”
“Today’s results weren’t what I had hoped for but it wasn’t for the lack of trying, I was happy with both Connor’s and Ray’s riding on track. They had good speed but they both need to improve their starts as with these mixed MX1 / MX2 races if you don’t get away with the front five it is very hard to pass and come through because everyone has good pace so you have to pass as soon as you get to the next rider otherwise you can end up spending so much time stuck behind people and then the front guys have gone and it’s very hard to catch up. We ended up coming away with some good solid points but we definitely need to step things up for the next round.”