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Preview: Newcastle AX

After an incendiary afternoon of full-contact racing in Liverpool the 2014 Garmin Arenacross Tour heads North East to the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle for round five on Sunday (February 9).

It’s Frenchman Fabien Izoird (Apico LPE Racing Kawasaki) who holds the red series leader’s plate and along with Aussie Daniel McCoy (MBO Sport ASA Yamaha) the pair are starting to gap the field – although as we saw in Liverpool there’s no such thing as a done deal in a sport as crazy as Arenacross!

The Liverpool Main Event is a strong contender for race of the season with Izoird and Elliott Banks-Browne (Buildbase Honda) trading passes – and scraping plastics – until the two-time European champ crashed back to 10th, allowing McCoy to close to within six points of him.

EBB’s back in sixth but if he rocks up in Newcastle for the afternoon show with the same fire in his belly as he did in Liverpool you can’t count him out and the prospect of another showdown with Izoird is a mouth-watering one.

“I had an awesome race with Fabien,” says Elliott. “We came together at the end but I don’t really know what happened. He didn’t look too happy with me but I don’t know if I did anything too wrong – we were just racing hard. When he passed me we hit each other and he clipped my shoulder but I managed to keep on and pass him back.

“I’m really looking forward to Newcastle now – let’s see if we can do the same again.”

Unsurprisingly, Fabien sees the incident slightly differently…

“I tried a pass on Banks-Browne and found a way past and in the corner after he came to kill me and touched my front wheel – I didn’t crash but it was very close,” he says. “When I went wide to find another solution at the end of a corner he changed line at the last moment so I needed to change also. The take off was soft and my footpeg dug into the ground and I went over the bars.

“It’s very bad for the points, for the team and for the championship after we’ve worked so hard but I’m very excited to be in Newcastle next weekend.”

This will be the first time the Garmin Arenacross Tour has been held in Newcastle and the Toon is expected to go crazy for the mental mix of top-flight Pro and Youth racing and world-class Freestyle Motocross…

Doors open at 1.30pm with the show kicking off at 3pm.

Tickets are still available from the Box Office on 0844 493 6666 or online at www.metroradioarena.co.uk

Image: Elliot Spencer

MX Vice Editor || 25

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