Now Reading
Double British podium at IMBA European Motocross Championship Opener – Race Report!

Double British podium at IMBA European Motocross Championship Opener – Race Report!

Five riders representing AMCA Team Great Britain travelled to Northern France on Sunday to contest the first round of the 2023 IMBA European Open class championship. And on a tight, technical, narrow track on which passing was extremely difficult, the Brits will be relatively pleased with their results achieved!

Words and Picture by Mike Wood

For Henry Williams and James Dodd it was fantastic podium places in 2nd and 3rd places respectively. With Jake Preston taking 10th and being the top 250cc two-stroke rider home, Will Hughes was 13th and Aaron Collins 21st.
In moto one whilst Belgian Matteo Puffet was taking the win, the Brits were right on the pace and giving it their all with both Williams in 2nd and Dodd 3rd scoring some very big, early Championship points. On his IMBA debut, Hughes was also flying high, taking a great 8th with Preston 11th and Collins 21st.

With Puffet again taking the win in moto two, fast Brits Dodd and Williams were split this time by Belgian Jonas Salaets. So it was 2nd and 4th places for the AMCA lads whilst the consistent Hughes and Preston copied their opening race places in 8th and 11th respectively. Collins in this one kept plugging away for 22nd.

Making it a hat-trick, Puffet was first past the chequered flag in the last clash of the day. Rounding off a superb full IMBA debut, Apex GasGas UK star Williams got home in 2nd, a position he was also to confirm on the podium. Just like moto two, Salaets proved serious opposition to the Bris passing Dodd in the closing stages and thus relegate the FUS Marsh Geartec Husqvarna pilot back to 4th. Unfortunately for SRH Racing pilot Hughes the day did not finish to plan, suffering mechanical issues which dropped him from an early 6th. On the FUS 250cc 2T Husky, Preston completed the meeting with a solid 12th as Collins recorded his best finish of the day in 18th.

So with round one done, the final word goes to defending IMBA Champion Dodd who said, “After picking the last peg for gate selection in moto one I managed 3rd off the start. I then crashed twice and dropped back to 6th but charged hard to recover for a top three finish. In race two I was leading but then made a few mistakes so had to settle for 2nd. In the last moto I was holding 3rd for the whole race until the very last corner when I was passed by the Belgian rider. Overall though it was a good weekend and a solid start to the Championship.”


Overall Top 10 1 Matteo Puffet (Belgium) 180 points 2 Henry Williams (GB) 155 3 James Dodd (GB) 151 4 Jonas Salaets (Belgium) 145 5 Lija Rutten (Netherlands) 121 6 Kristof van Vaerenberg (Belgium) 117 7 Anthony Thomas (France) 117 8 Kimi Isler (Switzerland) 113 9 Maxime Quentin (France) 101 10 Jake Preston (GB) 97. Other AMCA GB placings 13th Will Hughes 93 21st Aaron Collins 62.