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Stat Sheet: Lyng

MX1

Holeshot (Moto One)

Steven Lenoir

Best Times (Moto One)

Tommy Searle

2:05.110

Shaun Simpson

2:05.505

Tanel Leok

2:07.301

Graeme Irwin

2:08.116

Elliott Banks-Browne

2:08.338

Laps Led (Moto One)

Tommy Searle

11

Shaun Simpson

2

Tanel Leok

1

Holeshot (Moto Two)

Tommy Searle

Best Times (Moto Two)

Tommy Searle

2:08.892

Shaun Simpson

2:09.035

Jake Nicholls

2:11.176

Graeme Irwin

2:11.413

Brad Anderson

2:11.519

Laps Led (Moto Two)

Tommy Searle

14

  • Aside from the three laps he failed to lead in moto one, Tommy Searle was perfect all day and, truthfully, on another level. Already in qualifying ‘100’ set a time that was two seconds faster than the competition, and he thinks he went even faster in the free practice part of the session! The last time that Searle raced at Lyng was 2013 – he went 2-1-1 on that day.
  • Tommy put the hammer down once he passed Shaun, with a fairly aggressive move, in moto one and set a lap time four seconds faster than the defending champ. On the two laps after that he was just under two seconds faster, before going three seconds faster again on lap six. That should give you an idea of how quickly he built a gap, if you weren’t present, and just how superior he was.
  • The gap between the two in that first moto was at its largest on lap nine, but after that Searle backed it down considerably – that is why the difference at the end was just nine seconds. The second MX1 encounter followed a similar pattern, as Searle was faster than Simpson on ten of the fourteen laps. Nine seconds was again his advantage at the end.
  • Capturing a brace of seconds at round one is a brilliant way to start a season, but most will look at Simpson’s scorecard as a disappointment. Why? The way that he lost will come into play, of course, but the fact that he has been so dominant in the past means that expectations are extremely high. The last time that he didn’t win the overall at a British round was at Foxhill in 2014 – that was also the last time he didn’t finish in the top two in a moto. The last time that he didn’t win a moto at a round was at the fifth event that year; Tommy Searle defeated him as a wildcard.
  • Everyone has off days and, hey, going 2-2 on a day when you are seemingly out of sorts is pretty good. The title fight is going to come down to Searle and Simpson, I’d say that’s a fact, and making up points won’t be easy for either one of them as the chances of other riders getting in between them frequently are quite slim. Limiting the damage is a quality that champions possess, and Simpson did just that.
  • At the age of thirty, you would be forgiven for thinking that Tanel Leok may start to drop off the pace ever so slightly. However, his third overall at Lyng signalled his intent to chase that elusive British crown. Tanel’s pace was great in qualifying and moto one, but he only had the ninth fastest time in race two. Some extremely consistent times aided him in that one, however, as he still finished fourth. The Estonian was slated to pick up a 24MX Lucas Oil Honda fill-in ride in MXGP, but the deal fell through.
  • Jake Nicholls’ fourth overall was perhaps underrated, but he deserves props for his performance. It is a step in the right direction and means he is getting close to one hundred percent. His third in moto two was his best result since the second moto at round five in 2014.
  • Hopes were high for Graeme Irwin entering Lyng, and the speed was seemingly there, but in the end the result wasn’t what most had anticipated. Bad starts and crashes cost him dearly; he fell twice whilst on his way to fourth in moto one. All things considered, getting fifth on a bad day bodes well for the Irishman.
  • Ashley Wilde, in one of his first races with the Geartec Yamaha team, had a mediocre day that was made much worse thanks to a penalty in moto two. Wilde’s scorecard was originally 11-11, but he was docked five spots in moto two after failing the post-race sound test.
  • Dan Thornhill’s 17-19 scorecard may not seem like much on paper, but he shouldn’t even be riding right now. The Cab Screens Husqvarna rider separated his shoulder just last week and was advised to take six weeks off; he’s powering through though! With six valuable points to his name, it was clearly worthwhile making the trip. You’d think that he’ll be much better at round two.
  • Jake Shipton, like Thornhill, wasn’t quite at full fitness this past weekend. Jake had minor keyhole surgery not too long ago, after damaging his MCL, but still went 12-14 for thirteenth overall.

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Graeme Irwin has been tipped as one to watch by many this year.

ConwayMX

MX2

Holeshot (Moto Two)

Max Anstie

Best Times (Moto One)

Conrad Mewse

2:03.662

Max Anstie

2:03.843

Martin Barr

2:06.115

Steven Clarke

2:06.410

James Dunn

2:08.537

Laps Led (Moto One)

Max Anstie

14

Holeshot (Moto Two)

Max Anstie

Best Times (Moto Two)

Conrad Mewse

2:08.743

Max Anstie

2:10.109

Steven Clarke

2:12.610

James Cottrell

2:13.193

Ben Watson

2:13.598

Laps Led (Moto Two)

Max Anstie

14

  • Max Anstie was dominant this past weekend, which was not surprising at all. The last time that Max lost a Maxxis British Championship moto was at FatCat in 2014, and that was because of a bike issue! ‘99’ isn’t contesting the full series, unfortunately, as he is committed to the Dutch Masters.
  • Anstie was great at Lyng, sure, but Conrad Mewse may have been the most impressive. Mewse ran a comfortable second and stayed with his more experienced teammate in each moto. In the first MX2 encounter, he closed up around the halfway mark with a lap time that was a second and a half faster. He, of course, had the fastest time in each race also! When you compare this to how he performed at Preston Docks and FatCat last year, it is incredible how much he has improved.
  • James Dunn climbed up onto the overall podium for the first time in his career this past weekend, but I don’t think his results should have come as such a surprise. ‘200’ finished fourth in the final moto last year, in what was probably a deeper field, and has had a solid off-season to build on that momentum. Why wouldn’t he have achieved the same on a similar surface this past weekend? With Anstie and Mewse not contesting the full series, Dunn is the provisional series leader.
  • Martin Barr was perhaps the fastest MX2 regular, but a rear-wheel puncture hindered him in the final moto. Barr crashed before that, so was already at a disadvantage, then had to salvage what he could. The points acquired with a twelfth place finish will prove to be valuable in the title chase, however, as a handful of contenders are in a worse position. Barr wasn’t the only rider to have to overcome a puncture, as that was why Bradshaw dropped back in moto one.
  • Steven Clarke was robbed of a podium finish in moto one when he dropped out with an unspecified bike issue, but rebounded nicely with a third in moto two. Ben Watson was also dealt a bad hand, as his engine let go in qualifying and then in moto one too. Watson managed to go the full distance in moto two, despite the fact that he was riding his standard practice bike.
  • James Cottrell’s twelfth overall really doesn’t tell the full story, as he was on for the best day of his career. James was duking it out with Clarke for third in moto two when his day ended prematurely with a bike issue. Although the result wasn’t quite what he was looking for in the end, he can take comfort in the fact that the speed is there!
  • It seems that only a few riders managed to string together two good finishes, as Lewis Trickett also had one good moto and one bad. The Buildbase Honda rider was forced to withdraw from moto one, because a stone was wedged between the frame and back brake. Lewis rebounded to finish eighth in moto two.
  • Nathan Dixon was running up front in moto one, but a big crash towards the end left him sixteenth. That fall left him a little rattled, as he only managed a twentieth next time out. Dixon took to social media post-race to state that “what doesn’t kill makes you stronger”.

Words: Lewis Phillips | Image: ConwayMX

MX Vice Editor || 25

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