The gate dropped on the opening round of the much-anticipated MX Nationals British Championship over the weekend of 7th and 8th April 2018.
Despite the best efforts of the unseasonal springtime weather, racing did get underway, albeit a shortened set. Saturday afternoon’s racing was stopped after just one race per group – rather than the scheduled two – as, with the weather closing in and a barrage of the wet stuff, saving the track for the main race day was considered a priority.
Sunday was the polar opposite to Saturday. Preston Docks track manager Lee McGarry and the MX Nationals track crew worked through the night to rework and grade the track. With bright and dry conditions and the odd ray of sunshine poking through, MX National organisers were eventually gifted with the tools to put on a full programme of top-notch British motocross racing at its very best. Full gates, a great turn out of spectators and cracking racing were the order of the day.
A number of AX riders featured in several MXN classes and fared well in the challenging conditions. Pro MX1 rider Elliott Banks-Browne (EBB) took a third overall and said; “All-in-all it was a okay day. We salvaged what we could and are in the championship hunt.” Jake Millward finished 10th overall in the MX2 Pro class, and Jason Meara leads the British Expert MX2, having enjoyed two wins on Sunday. Reflecting on his weekend, the likeable Irishman said; “This weekend was a success for me. I’ve entered this season with little preparation and have had only two races under my belt, but we've slowly been getting better. Yesterday's race was just a battle to survival after a terrible start and a small crash, I managed third. Today was much better although my starts weren’t great, the riding was a lot better and I got two wins!”
It was in the youth ranks that AX riders really excelled. 2018 AX Supermini runner-up Buster Hart is third overall in the Open 85 big-wheel class, and a quartet of former Youth 65cc riders were placed in the top five in the small-wheel category. Bailey Johnston, who won the first-ever AX electric-bike two-round series back in 2016, won two of the three races and now leads the championship. 2016 Youth 65cc championship runner-up, Ollie Colmer, took a win and two seconds and is only three points behind Johnston in second, whilst two other 2016 AX competitors, namely, Ben Mustoe and Arai Elcock are respectively sitting in third and fifth.
CLICK HERE for the full report and results.
Pictured; Jason Meara (centre) leads the MX Nationals British Expert MX2 championship. Image credit; Elliot Spencer.