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Spotlight on: The Most Improved

It is always intriguing to look back and see who improved the most from one year to the next. So, we thought we would do just that by looking at the MX2 Maxxis British Championship series standings from the last two seasons. I was honestly surprised to see that most riders failed to better their result from 2012. Perhaps this shows just how much harder the class was this year?

Nathan Watson – 2012 Finish: 12th > 2013 Finish: 6th

When you look at all of the riders that completed most of the two seasons, Nathan Watson is the guy that made the biggest improvement. It is undoubted that Nathan was the greatest revelation to come out of the Maxxis British Championship this year – I am sure that no one expected him to be as strong as he was. Now, Watson is a recognised title contender, which is going to change the way that he enters next year; it will be interesting to see if this affects him in any way.

In 2012, his best moto finish was a sixth – he finished in that position twice. So, he seemingly stepped it up this year, as he managed to win the penultimate round. Nathan did miss a few rounds in 2012, which restricted him to twelfth in the standings. Of course, he jumped up to sixth by the end of this year. So, the improvement is there for everyone to see. But, I would argue that he could have finished even better than that!

Adam Sterry – 2012 Finish: 14th > 2013 Finish: 7th

Like Watson, the improvement that Adam Sterry made this year was quite clear to everyone that attended a round or two. In a way, we expected him to run up front, as he finished fourth in the penultimate moto of the 2012 season. So, it was clear that the potential was there. Adam ended this year with a third in a moto at the final round, which indicates that he could step it up another level next year. Judging by the speed that Sterry showcased this year, 2014 could be great for him. In 2012, he finished in the top ten six times, whereas in comparison, he did this twelve times this year! Like I said, he really broke through.

Jake Millward – 2012 Finish: 33rd > 2013 Finish: 20th

Honestly, I was a bit surprised to see that Jake Millward ended the 2013 season in twentieth. I was present at most of the rounds this year, and it seemed like he was battling closer to the front of the pack than that in a lot of the races. But nonetheless that was where he ended. In comparison to how last year went for him, it was still a huge improvement – he moved up an impressive thirteen spots. Evidently, my feelings that he had the potential to finish higher up are well justified, as he finished just outside of the top ten in all three motos at Milton Park. I am sure that he will be expecting to do this more frequently next year. In comparison, Jake’s best finish in 2012 was a fifteenth. So, once again, the improvement is clear.

Neville Bradshaw – 2012 Finish: 5th > 2013 Finish: 3rd

Although the jump that Neville Bradshaw made from one year to the next was not as large as the riders above, it is a lot harder to move forward in the points standings when you get this close to the front. However, this was clearly a better year for the Putoline Honda rider, and not just in the Maxxis British Championship – he won the MX2 class at the Red Bull Pro Masters and British Masters, also. In 2012, Neville finished on the moto podium four times in the Maxxis British Championship. In comparison, he did this seven times this year, and he won the overall at Foxhills also, which is one of the most memorable moments from the season, of course!

Steven Lenoir: 2012 Finish: 6th > 2013 Finish: 2nd

Steven Lenoir really improved this year, as he proved that he is a legitimate title contender. In fact, he is going to head into the new season as one of the favourites for the title! Steven was undoubtedly helped by the experience that he gained in 2012, which was his first year in the Maxxis British Championship. Overall, he doubled his total moto podiums this year, and he also won a race at Milton Park. So, there is no questioning the fact that he was a much-improved rider all-round.

Luke Norris: 2012 Finish: 35th > 2013 Finish: 18th

Luke Norris made a huge jump up this year, as he scored points consistently at each round. In total, Luke scored twenty-three points in 2012, and seventy-five this year. So, the jump up is clear for everyone to see; he more than tripled his overall points haul! On three occasions, he came close to finishing in the top ten in a moto, as he had two elevenths and a thirteenth earlier this year. In comparison his best moto finish in 2012 was a fourteenth, which he achieved on just one occasion. Judging by his progress over the last two years, you have to presume that he will be finishing right around the top ten consistently in 2014.

Words by Lewis Phillips

Image courtesy of Elliot Spencer

MX Vice Editor || 25

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