This past weekend was a return home for JAR Honda by IFS as the Maxxis British Motocross Championship travelled across the Irish Sea for its sixth round. Unfortunately the weather conditions on Sunday morning were short of terrible, but towards the afternoon, the rain stopped and racing was not just an ordeal to survive.
Qualifying on Sunday morning saw Lewis Tombs qualify tenth-fastest in the MX2 class, a position he was not able to improve on in the super-pole session immediately afterwards. For Wayne Garrett, MX1 qualifying put him right in the middle of the field, in sixteenth.
For both riders, the day’s results would be consistent. Tombs ended his first race in the same position he started in after losing some ground early on. He recovered his positions throughout the race, putting pressure on the front whilst preventing strong competition from passing him. The second race was virtually identical to the first, although here he found himself giving up some early gains after making a mistake in the closing portion of the race to end in seventh. For Tombs, the final race was a battle against orange bikes. Surrounded by them on all sides, Tombs kept a cool head, ending the race ninth for a ninth overall on the day.
Garrett’s first race was a bumpy run around tenth, in which early gains were offset by losses against the class leaders coming through the pack. With the chequered flag out, he steered the bike to an eleventh place. The second race got off to a mid-pack start, and here Garrett found himself recovering some of his early losses in the second half of the race. After a small crash, he brought home sixteenth place. In the final race, Garrett started just outside the top ten; some early losses were undone in the second half of the race before he settled into fourteenth to the end. With a twelfth overall on the day, it is the best result so far in the championship.
Lewis Tombs – MX2:
“Overall it’s been one of the most consistent days I’ve had all year. Qualifying went pretty good, I knew I had good pace, but during super-pole I made stupid little mistakes and ended up tenth. First race I didn’t have the best of starts but went wide and through into eighth and stayed there pretty much all race, which was a good way to start the day off. In the second race I had another eighth at the start, was riding good and people went down and I moved into fifth, but two laps from the end I made a stupid mistake and washed the front end out on the face of a jump and went back to seventh, which is still another good result. Last race I had a good start, but I just didn’t get into the groove and had to settle for ninth. Overall it was a decent day, so quite pleased.”
Wayne Garrett – MX1:
“Today the track started off very wet and technical, very different to what it is here normally, but I still had more confidence here knowing that it was Desertmartin. Qualifying went OK, I just didn’t get a good lap in qualifying. My best lap could’ve put me in the top ten where I ideally want to be. First race I got a bad start and was lying in ninth for most of the race, but a few guys got me and I ended up eleventh, which is the best result I’ve had so far this year. In the second race I struggled a wee bit at the start, and a few laps in the bike was starting to feel like it was losing power so I tried to preserve it to bring it home rather than not finishing, and I ended up sixteenth. The third race was on the practice bike, I just didn’t feel 100% comfortable on it, and I brought her home for fourteenth in the end, so all in all, a solid point-scoring day which for me is a bonus from what it has been. Hopefully I can use this for some momentum and finish the season strong.”
Jonathan Rea – Team principal:
“For me it’s very nice to be here to watch the guys in progress and in action. Lewis had a really solid weekend, he should be really happy with himself; he put a string of consistent top tens together and had a great ninth overall. He has good speed but maybe needs to work harder in the second half of the race. On Wayne’s side, it’s great to come back to the British championship and score some good points, but we still have a lot of work to do, especially on the bike side where we’re floating between suspension settings too much. We need to sort that out. Hopefully for Wayne this will be a more regular occurrence, but all in all I’m very happy with the weekend, especially since it’s our home race”