This past weekend the seventh round of the Maxxis ACU British Motocross Championship headed to the famous Hawkstone Park circuit in Shropshire. With the sun shining, the track was in good condition for an exciting day’s worth of Championship action.
The day started with the first of the MX2 races and it was Ryan Houghton on the Monster Energy Yamaha that stormed into an early race lead ahead of Pendrich Kawasaki rider Bryan Mackenzie who made a mistake and slipped back down the field. Frenchman Steven Lenoir quickly worked his way into the lead on his Evotech Steven KTM and took the race win. The main story of the race came just behind Lenoir as young HM Plant KTM UK rider Nathan Watson charged from 12th on the opening lap to take a well-deserved second place. Third place went to Championship leader Elliott Banks Browne with Neville Bradshaw and Jordon Booker rounding out the top 5.
The first MX1 race of the day saw Matiss Karro storm to the front of the field and run away with the race win, while Kristian Whatley pushed the Latvian rider hard at the end of the moto. Karro’s Team STR team mate rode a solid race to finish in third place with Scott Elderfield and Gert Krestinov making up the top 5.
The second of the MX2 race saw drama on the first corner as Elliott Banks Browne, Neville Bradshaw and Graeme Irwin were all caught up in a first turn crash. At the front it was Nathan Watson who quickly work his way up to the front and took his first Maxxis race win of his career, some 11 seconds ahead of Bryan Mackenzie and Steven Lenoir in third. Fourth and fifth places went to Steven Clarke and Adam Sterry as Bradshaw recovered to finish in 7th.
Karro again stormed to the front of the field along with team mate Jonathan Barragan as the pairing put on a great display of sand riding for the fans. Newly signed Brad Anderson took his Buildbase Honda to third place after benefitting from a mistake by Nez Parker. Fourth and fifth places went to the hard working Gert Krestinov and Kristian Whatley who were unable to get around Anderson in the closing stages.
The final MX2 race of the day saw Steven Lenoir and Bryan Mackenzie battle for the early race lead before both were passed by Nathan Watson. Mackenzie suffered a bike problem later in the race, allowing Lenoir to charge after Watson. At the end of the race it was Watson who took the win ahead of Lenoir, Bradshaw, Banks Browne and Sterry.
At the end of the day, Nathan Watson claimed his first ever Maxxis overall victory while team mate Elliott Banks Browne was unable to make the podium after a difficult day at and now goes to the final round at Farleigh Castle in October with his lead reduced to 30 points. Evotech Stevens KTM rider Steven Lenoir now sits in second position in the series by one point over Neville Bradshaw who took the lower step of the podium.
The final MX1 race of the day saw Matiss Karro take another race win during a shorter race due to a Red Flag. Barrangan would go on to finish in second place with Whatley in third and Anderson and Carless rounding out the top 5.
Kristian Whatley now heads to the final round with a 22 point lead over Barragan and further 40 points over Karro.
Also taking place at the weekend was the second round of the Veterans Championship and it was reigning Champion Phil Mercer who continued to show his domination of the Veterans Class. Mercer took two straight wins ahead of Ed Bradley in second overall and headed a three way tie for second position by virtue of his last race results, whilst Gary Hoptrough claimed third.
The final round for all three classes takes place at Farleigh Castle on October 6th.