The first outdoor national on the season went down in Birmingham this weekend with some very changable weather! The track which was in perfect condition held up really well despite all the on and off rain and hail showers. The Birmingham club put a lot of hard work in too making everything in and around the track look very “PRO” and it definitely had that event feel to it when you rolled into Perry Park. Things have definitely stepped up in the UK in the last couple of seasons, big team areas and more teams with branded pit areas are all helping to make the events look good.
Here’s a recap of some of the older classes over the weekend:
Elite Men: Liam Phillips took two wins over the weekend keeping his run and form going into the big races coming up very soon. Cal strickland had a great race on Saturday getting himself on the second step of the podium. Tre Whyte looked fast all weekend and took home the second place on Sunday and looks to have a new sponsor, Identiti? Chuck Manaton also put in good laps taking the third podium spot of Sunday for Ultimate Pro BMX. Kyle Evans couldn’t quite put it together in the mains taking 4th both days with good track speed especially on the second half of the track. Coach B was still in the mix with a couple of 5th’s over the weekend and seemed happy enough considering his lack of race prep recently. The Elite racing does look like training laps at the NCC as they all live and ride together but the squad are definately bringing each other on for the International racing where the real action is for these guys.
Junior Men was great to watch this weekend especially with Jordan Perry keeping Quillan Isadore honest on the Saturday. There was some bonus money up for Junior hitting the Pro section challenge. Perry took the money in the final and rode a great lap to an almost photo finish win but was edged out by Quillan who hand on for the win on Saturday who came back on Day 2 with a solid final lap and convincing win. Dan Pullen took second and Perry third.
Dylan Clayton and Alex Dick were consistent all weekend in Masters again. Swapping out wins, Clayton won Saturday by a whisker and Alex finally took his first win on Sunday passing Dylan going into the last turn. Gareth Bates managed to put it together for a third place finish on Sunday. These guy are all focussing on the big one next month in Birmingham. Alex Dick and Bates are contenders for the 30+ main event and title while Dylan has his sights set on Elite Masters…
25-29 had some “comeback kids” doing battle this weekend. It looks like Shaun Fry and Warren Bancroft’s return has spurred on both Lawrence and Chris Mapp to get back on the track and Superfly Ryan Dick was back up their too. Great to see these guys enjoying racing again…On Twitter Lawrence says he’s got the bug again so we could see him going for the wildcard spot for the Worlds… Sean Fry’s going fast this season and good battles with Warren on Saturday. But Sunday was all Kieron Mc Avoy who took it from the gate with a strong first straight. It was good to see Kieron take a well deserved win for CGR. 25-29 is definately becoming one of the better classes to watch these days. The Mapps were a little loose on the Sunday but still rode out second and third. Big props to these guys for also raising a massive £550 in donations for Lawrence shaving his “lumberjack” beard off for Stephen Murray. Thanks to all you guys who threw money into the bucket for the cause.
17-24 Ex: Profile’s Billy Luckhurst took the win on Saturday but Sunday was all Jason Fay. Ash Davey rounded out the podium for Clark and Kent Contractors on Sunday.
Paddy Sharrock didn’t have it all his own way this weekend, in a competitive 16 boys class. This will no doubt light his fire for the Euro’s in two weeks time. Congrats to Michael Njuguna “Ninja” for the big win on Sunday and some solid laps for Love not Money.
So with no more national racing until June, it’s time to tune in for the last 3-4 weeks of World Championship preperation.. Good luck to all the GB riders heading out to France for the Euros’s. See everyone back in Birmingham at the NIA ay 21st for the biggest show on earth : www.bmxworldchamps.co.uk