Photo Courtesy Of Abi Taylor:

After the not so long drive down this year, it seems the traffic was nicer than usual, we were greeted with sunshine and a lovely Friday evening practice. The same cannot be said for Saturday morning when we hit with a bit of wild weather. The rain stopped for the afternoon but the wind remained. The wind played a big part in the event with the pro section being closed on the Sunday which was even windier.
Despite the weather there was some great riding and results on Saturday but Sunday turned out to be a tough one for MBMX with many fallers and riders narrowly missing out. Big big shout out to Matty Gilston who was the first rider to take a trip to A&E after a spectacular crash on Sunday. Reports are nothing too serious but in plaster for a week. Second rider to sample the southern casualty department was Jamie Duffy who was an innocent victim in a crash and has a serious wrist injury. The injury is so bad he is still darn sarf!! Big thanks to the Doublecross folks for helping Ethan get home and friend of the club Ria Goodman who was willing to sacrifice racing to take Jamie’s van home. That’s what makes it such a great sport.

So to the action and block one racing. Cruisers first, and after sitting out Saturday Charlie Yates was into the thick of it taking four 3rd places in the motos and the grand prix. A tough weekend for Harrison Drelincourt who rode well in tough and large class, missing out on the semis on both days but creditable finishes in 20th and 21st. Starting to look really good on the cruiser Harrison. Semis are not far away. In the 30-39 cruisers Sean Piatt had a great day making the A final and picking up 8th on Saturday but couldn’t repeat this on the Sunday, missing out on the final.

Jamie Duffy was looking in full race mode in the 40-44s and narrowly missed out on the A final and had to settle for 3rd in the B pulling off some great moves on the way. Despite looking set for another good result in the B final on the Sunday it wasn’t to be. In the 45+ Jason Bennett was right in the mix and just missed out on the semis both days and picked up a 19th and 21st. Meanwhile Karl Sanderson was on fire charging to 3rd place on both days.

So to 30 females and it was normal service all the way as the incredible Louise Abbott took the win in every lap on both days. Absolutely brilliant to watch.

To the young guns then, and not the weekend Flyin Flynn Drelincourt had planned. Despite looking great all day the semi didn’t go to plan leaving Flynn to prove his class by taking the win in the B final. Sunday was worse with Flynn not making it through the quarters. Don’t worry Flynn, sure will bounce back and looking forward to seeing you do it. Meanwhile Gabe Simpson was mixing it well and took a very nice 4th place in the B final on the Saturday and then smashed it on his way to the main event and a7th place on the Sunday. Great weekend for Gabe. Jack Bennett was getting stuck into the action but narrowly missed out on the semis on Saturday finishing 23rd and then moved up on Sunday finally finishing 19th. James Criddle got some great moto results and narrowly missed out on the Semis on Saturday. Definitely one of the highlights of the weekend was seeing the smile on James’ face when he rolled over the line on Sunday knowing he had made it to the semis. Brilliant and that is what BMX is all about.

In the 8s it was a mixed weekend for the MBMX riders with Sam Tucker being motoed on both days in a large and tough class. Keep going Sam, you have come on so much lately I am sure this is a temporary setback. At the other end Harry Tanner was absolutely on fire and went so close on the Saturday with a 2nd place. Not content with this he then went one better and took 1st place on the Sunday. Congratulations Harry and a nice early birthday present.

A tough weekend for the 9s with 49 riders in the class. Saturday saw James Jackson, Aaron Davy and Liam Doyle miss out on the quarters and Curtis Sveikutis make it through but missing out on the semis. On Sunday it was great to see them all improve with Aaron narrowly missing out on the quarters, while James, Curtis and Liam all made it through and were all in contention for the semis but just missing out. This is a tough class with some surprisingly experienced riders for the age so these guys are all catching up fast.

With no riders in the 10s for MBMX (have we really got no national riders in this age group?) it was onto the 11s. Nice to see Ethan Duffy being joined by Adam Tattersall in the class and it was a good weekend for Adam with some good moto results and making the quarters on Saturday picking up 23rd but Adam was unable to repeat this and missed out on the quarters on the Sunday. Safe to say cyclopark is not Ethan’s favourite venue but he was looking impressive throughout the weekend and picked up 2nd spot on the Saturday and in amongst seeing his Dad injured made 4th place on the Sunday. Brilliant Ethan.

Another big turn out in the 12s and Saturday saw some great riding from all the MBMX riders with Matt Gilston looking strong and going all the way to 3rd spot on the podium, Will Blevins making it to the Semis and picking up 6th place in the B final. Sam Bennett made it through safely to the quarters but that was it for Sam on the day. Matt Gilston’s spectacular off on Sunday brought his day to an end and meant he couldn’t repeat the success of the day before. Will Blevins again made the quarters but this time was squeezed out of the semis. Sam Bennett improved on Sunday but still could not quite find a way to get through to the semis. Unlucky Sam and heal fast Matt.

Only Lewis Holmes in the 13s but he represented the club in style looking super fast and handling the conditions and picking up some excellent moto results on his way to the quarters on both days, making the semis on Saturday but narrowly missed out on the semis on Sunday but still finished with a very creditable 17th to follow up his 7th place in the B final from the day before.

Another solo rider in the 14s and with 32 riders it was about as tough as it gets but Ben Cotton was on top form and got some great moto results. Incredibly Ben missed out on the Semis despite tying on points with the rider in 16th. Couldn’t get any closer. Sunday was a different story with Ben making it through to the semis and a 6th place in the B final to complete a great weekend for Ben.

Only Mason Chidley in the 15s and it proved to be a very mixed weekend for Mason. Storming his way to the A final and 2nd spot on the Saturday and in fine form on Sunday until an off in the quarters saw him miss out on the semis and finish in 17th. About as different as you can get there Mason, unlucky for the Sunday.
A tough weekend for the 16s with the three guys getting the track dialled in practice but the wind caused havoc and there were falls a plenty. Fortunately they all avoided the carnage except for a small slide out for Tom Garner. Some good moto results but neither Tom, Joe Cotton or Charlie Yates could make it out of the motos on either day.

Now for the little ladies. One girl who always seem to have a smile on her face and despite an off track tumble (stay off the roller boots) and being in the lower end of the age group Millie took to the track in determined style but missed out on the A final on both days. Keep training Millie, getting better all the time.

A tough class in the 11-12 girls with some very talented riders. It proved tough for the three girls from MBMX but Emily Clinch and Katy Cosgrove battled well to make the semis on both days. On the Saturday both missed out on the main but made up for it with Emily taking the B final win and Katy taking 2nd spot. A tough weekend for Sophie Piatt who missed out on the semis on both days but improved on the Sunday and finished two places higher than on the Saturday. Well done Sophie. Meanwhile Emily went one better and made it to the main final and an 8th place finish on Sunday and Katy who narrowly missed out on the A final claimed another B final 2nd place.

After a fall in practice Leanne Henshall was suffering with a sore wrist but took to the track alongside Hannah Baker and both girls did themselves proud, but another fall in the first moto for Leanne meant it was going to be tough to make it through to the final and so it proved. Leanne eventually finished 11th and despite some great motos Hannah missed out narrowly finishing 9th. Sunday saw roles reversed with Hannah taking a heavy fall in the first moto but recovering well in the next motos and finishing 10th, while Leanne went so close finishing 9th. Only going to get better for these two riding with each other.

Another 3 girls did battle in the 15-16 girls which is great to see. In a strong class Olivia Blevins did herself proud making the semis and finishing 4th in the B final while giving away a lot in terms of experience to the others. Kerri Turner and Leah Clinch made it through the semis and into the A final and in a very tight race Kerri found a way through to finish 4th but Leah was stuck in the traffic and finished 7th. Sunday saw Olivia miss out through illness and Kerri again make it through to the A final and claim 6th place to finish a good weekends work for Kerri. Leah didn’t have the day she had planned and missed out on the A final and finished 16th on the day.

So 17-24 next and a tough class. None other than Coach Rob Hawker took to the track looking all shiny and clean and was in the thick of all weekend. Not to be outdone Nathan Turner was in the mix and amidst all the chaos made but a good show but missed out on the quarters on both days. Coach Rob was proving he knows his stuff on the way to the quarters but missed out on the semis picking up 17th and 18th places.
In the 30+ it was Sean Piatt who followed up from his cruiser with some good rides but missed out on the final on both days but Paul Bakewell made it through and picked up 6th spot on the Saturday and 7th on the Sunday.

Saturday saw Phil Crithclow and Andy Drelincourt take to the track in the 40+ and Andy took his OS20 into the semis but missed out on the final and came home in a very determined 2nd spot in the B final. No such luck for Phil who missed out on the semis. Sunday went better with Phil making through to the semis and picking up 6th spot in the B final while Andy went all the way to the main and a 3rd place finish.

6 Riders in the Championship men, mixed in with the elite it was set to be a tough weekend. All of them made it through to the quarters on both days but Ricardo Addeymellor, Matt Saunders, Jack Critchlow and Jacob Roberts all missed out on the semis on Saturday while Mike Hawker made it through and took 3rd in the B final. In the main final Cal Strickland stormed his way to 2nd spot on the podium. With the pro section closed on Sunday the racing bunched up and was even closer, Matt and Ricardo both improved but missed the semis again as did Mike Hawker but Jack made it through and claimed 6th spot in the B final. Jacob Roberts put Saturdays disappointment behind him to make it into the main final and made 6th while Cal just missed the podium with a 4th place to bring a great weekend to a close.

So that was cyclopark and it was windy. I have to say I saw some very upset kids and angry parents but am proud of the behaviour and atmosphere of everyone at MBMX. Aaron Davy and Leanne Henshall in particular did a great job of cheering people on. Plenty of great performances – Louise Abbott (again), Cal Strickland and plenty of riders going better than they had before. For me the three stand-out performances were Harry Tanner for his 2nd and 1st places, Ben Cotton who really stepped up his performance and a guy who is pretty new to racing and had the biggest smile on the day, well apart from Mille Tanner, James Criddle. Well done all and thanks as always to Cyclopark, the greycoats, the medical team and the commentators. Healin vibes to the fallers and there were many.
See you at the next one, North of the border.