Windle smashes it! Raw Enduro BallBreaker Extreme Enduro – Race Report and Results
Its UK Extreme season and RAW Enduro have been the first to get the ball rolling with their BallBreaker Extreme Race. Running at the very versatile Hapton venue, which RAW have sole use of, the weekend was very cold as winter showers hit many parts of the UK.
Report by Raw Media – Images courtesy of Matthew Rudd Photography
Not deterred by the weather, the hardened army of Extreme enthusiasts started arriving in the paddock from 7am Sunday morning.
A revised race duration was set at 2.5 hours, with a maximum total event time of 4 hours. The fastest lap of the race went to Pro Class rider Jack Spencer, Spencer’s 26 minute lap just goes to illustrate how demanding the BallBreaker course was. In Contrast some regular Sportsman and clubman riders were taking anything up to an hour to complete a lap. The course was just perfect for the day, 4 long demanding stream sections needed a good line choice and a flowing rhythm. Then some super steep drops and an awesome natural Rock Garden were the areas where riders could make time on their rivals.
Chris Windle was the local lad on form in the Pro Class, Windle ran a good pace all day to take the win. It was far from easy for him having Jack Spencer hunting him down all race, going into the final lap just 20 seconds separated the pair. Keelan Hancock is an extreme race addict, the harder the better usually, Hancock struggled to find his recent pace to stay with the lead pair, third on the day was the best the tall lad from the south-west could do.
Stuart Mack made the journey from Scotland to take a fine Expert Class win by just over 9 minutes. Local ace Nathan Ball placed runner up, and Matthew Thompson was made up with his third place finish. The Pro and Expert class riders also had 3 addition “X Loops” to negotiate around the course, these extra parts of the course were set to test the better ability riders, and they did just that.
In the Clubman Class Robert Allen and Danny Calkin proved they were on the pace, Allen took the win from his mate Calkin by over 12 minutes. Both riders confirming their pace is absolutely on Expert level times, so next year they’ll be up with the experts smashing the X Loops too. Craig Thompson has the build for extreme enduro and man handling of the bike. He was over the moon with P3 in the super-competitive clubman class completing 4 laps.
In the old lad’s Vets class, Chris Green was on fire, taking the win by a clear lap on the day. Ashley Jones was runner up after refusing to do another lap although he could have got one in. Stephen Boyle was delighted with his third place finish, a self-confessed lover of tough events, Boyle showed the whites of his teeth as he battled hard a well-deserved finish.
Mike Taylor was the top Sportsman rider completing 4 laps in just under three hours, a target which Wayne Braybrook had previously estimated for the winner of the class. William Woolforth just missed staying on the lead lap, the chequered flag had gone out just 30 seconds before he arrived at the Finish Arch. Ben Tennent battled hard on his Beta to take a hard earned final podium place, at what proved to be a real extreme race.
Ladies and gentlemen, HUGE respect to Ian O’Brien the winner of the Hobby Class at the Ballbreaker, now if anyone moans about it being a tough event, please keep quiet, Ian O’Brien is 68 Years old and he completed 2 full laps to take the hobby class win. Enough said folks! James Hart did exactly what he had planned, and took runner up in the class after a monumental effort on his part. John Hooley said after the race it was just “Awesome”, despite struggling round Hooley loved every minute of the event.
In the Youth Class, Brandon Burns smashed out 3 laps in just under 3 hours, at his toughest race to date. Watch out for this kid in the future he’s got all the skills needed for Extreme racing. Elliott Woodall has come a long way in just over 1 year, relatively new to Enduro, the lad from Scarborough earned his stripes at the Ballbreaker by placing second behind Burns. Cynan Jones made the journey from South Wales to have a crack at this race, only mechanical problems stopped him pushing for a Youth Class win on the day.
In summing up, the foundations for the BallBreaker Extreme are well and truly set. Riders travelled from all parts of the UK to come to this “real” extreme race. Wayne Braybrook has more experience than anyone when it comes to planning an extreme course. The subtle blend of tough sections, plus relentless trails, (but crucially) ride-able terrain, is something that only an ex extreme rider can plan.
Massive thanks goes out to all the regular, and extra RAW Marshals who assisted in the running of this event under the guidance of Mr Braybrook.
When will the next BallBreaker be? Stay Tuned folks…..It’s already in the planning.
>Head here for the full results>>BB-2020-Result