The Big Guns Return! Michelin MX Nationals Round 4 – Preview
Images courtesy of X-Cast Media
Injuries have played a big part in the Pro ranks of British Motocross this year, but this weekend’s Pro MX1 sees the return of a number of big hitters to the race track including last year’s champ Jake Nicholls who has been out of action since the tail end of last season. The Geartec Husqvarna duo of Elliott-Banks-Browne and Luke Burton also return to the fold after recent injuries.
On the other side of the coin title contender, Gert Krestinov has broken his arm so he will not be in action.
Talking of title contenders, series leader Harri Kullas has had his own problems but has vowed to return to the track this weekend after a few weeks lay off, and although he will be riding in pain, he will be looking to keep his six long race win streak going.
Lewis Tombs is the next in line on points but he is also out with injury, so that gives a huge opportunity for the inform Jake Shipton, Mel Pocock, Nathan Dixon and Jake Millward to grab some points and start to make a title challenge.
The MX2 Pro class hasn’t been hit so hard by the injury plague that has blighted MX1, and as it stands it’s a 2 way shoot out for the title between the Veteran Martin Barr and the Young Charger Josh Gilbert with just 3 points separating the two. The battle for third is anyone’s at this moment with Glenn McCormick leading the charge from Ben Franklin, Michael Ellis and Ashton Dickinson. Throw in the flying Taylor Hammal, 2 strokes racers Todd Kellett and Brad Anderson the battle for the number 3 spot is going to go down to the wire.
The Expert MX1 class has been blasted wide open with series leader Jason Meara stepping up into the Pro class for Phoenix Tools Kawasaki in the place of Krestinov. This gives Gavin Stevenson the space he needs to pull clear in the championship but the likes of Richard Bird and George Sim-Mutch will be out to ensure he will have it anything but easy.
Ben Clark has been having an epic season in the Expert MX2 group and will look to continue that form, but he has some super talented racers on his tail including Aaron-Lee Hanson, and Jordan Keogh.
The MXY1 class has been serving up some super intense racing and it’s Ryan Mawhinney who holds the Red plate at this stage of the series with his closest challengers being Louie Kessell, James Smith and Oliver Beamish. Kessell is in Italy though with Team GB so will be leaving it for the others to fight it out in his absence.
As good as Ike Carter has been in the MXY2 class he still only holds a 31 point lead in the series, and that’s because Kyle McNicol has been behind him every step of the way and bagging big points. Carter won’t be able to relax or make a mistake as McNichol will be there ready to take advantage. Kacey Hird and Ryan Thompson are also not too far behind.
Sam Atkinson has been one of the stand out performers of the series so far and tops the Big Wheel 85 standings by 35 points over Bailey Johnston. Johnston did steal a race win from Atkinson last time out but is on World Junior champs duty this weekend.
Results have been all over the place in the Small Wheel 85’s with Tyla Hooley being the most consistent and holding a 54 point lead over Harrison Greenough in second. Greenough won’t be on track this weekend though as he crashed out while practising yesterday. The race for second in the series can come from anywhere with the likes of Keelen Hope, Beau Brown, Billy Askew, McKenzie Marshall, Warren Clarke and Finlay Boxall all looking to take up the mantle.
Stephen Kelly is the MX1 Clubman pacesetter, but he has Harry Foster and Luke Oldfield breathing down his neck, while in the MX2 Clubman Harry Fletcher and Brad Thornhill are battling it out for the title.
With two days of fantastic action to be served up, spectators are in for a real treat. An adult pass for the weekend is just £15 with kids under 12 going free. Camping is available for £10 for the weekend. Discounted advance tickets are available via www.mxnationals.co.uk