Loket, 3 – 4 August 2013. The 14th round of the World Championship was held at the modified Loket circuit in the Czech Republic. With a relocated start straight on the top of the circuit rather than in its customary central position, it proved to be much more difficult than before to get good starts and with temperatures again in the mid-thirties it was a challenging weekend. It should have been a full line-up for the team with Adam Sterry in action once again for the sixth round of the EMX250 Championship but Barragan was ill and had to sit out Sunday’s races.
Qualifying Race MX1
Karro rounded the first turn in 16th but managed to squeeze through to 13th on the next couple of corners. Barragan was a couple of places further back but was suddenly t-boned by another rider and the two of them hit the deck, damaging the unlucky Spaniard’s gear lever and forcing him to make an early exit. Karro was riding well and soon made a great pass on Potisek to move into 12th and after passing the Rinaldi rider’s teammate, Roelants for 11th, he started to close on the group in front. However he developed a problem with his front brake which hampered his progress and eventually cost him a couple of places to finish in 13th.
Race 1 – MX1
With Barragan suffering with sickness and sitting it out, it was down to Karro to deliver the goods for the team. He was in the thick of it from the off and completed the first lap in 13th and soon progressed to 12th but after initially staying with the leading pack, he lost his tow and rode a lonely race in 12th all the way to the flag.
Race 2 – MX1
Karro rounded the first turn in 16th and soon moved through to 13th and after falls by Potisek and Cairoli, he was briefly promoted to 11th. He was in contention with the main pack and held off Cairoli for three laps but after finally giving ground to the Championship leader, he struggled to maintain in his pace and in a repeat of the first race he spent the remaining laps holding onto 12th place to take 12th overall.
Qualifying Race – EMX250
Sterry made a decent start forcing his way through to 13th, but as usual in this class the action was intense and the racing fierce, forcing him to fight from gate to flag. He eventually finished in 14th.
Final – EMX250
Sterry had a good jump but got squeezed out on the first turn and was just inside the top twenty but he wasn’t aggressive enough and lost places in the early laps pushing him back to 25th. On the fourth lap he crashed whilst trying to make a pass leaving him down in 39th but he fought hard to the end of the race to finish in 28th.
Mattis Karro said: “I found the track really hard and very sketchy. I fought hard in both races early on but I’ve learned from some of my previous mistakes and decided to back off and protect what I had rather than push too hard and risk crashing.”
Adam Sterry, “I liked this track last year but it was much harder this year. I did okay in the qualifying race taking 14th and in the final I made a good jump but the first corner kinks back on itself and I had nowhere to go leaving me in mid-pack. I wasn’t aggressive enough in the first few laps and then crashed leaving me at the back of the field. I came back to 28th but I am disappointed with my result. I need to improve my qualifying so I can give myself a better chance at the starts.”
Team Manager, Steve Turner concluded: “It was a tough weekend all round, Jonathan felt ill and didn’t ride and Matiss found it really hard to find traction on the sketchy track. I think he made the right decision to back-off on a track that caught out a lot of riders and saw a lot of them hit the deck.
“Adam struggled in his race and showed that he still hasn’t come to terms with the early intensity of racing at this level, but people forget he’s only 16. He’s a quick learner and this is definitely where he needs to be in order to improve. You just don’t get racing like this in a domestic championship, where you might have six or seven fast guys to battle with. Here you have thirty guys who are all fast and all want it badly and that level of competition takes some getting used to.”