The ARW Yamaha team returned to full strength at the second round of the CCM British MMX Championship at Whiteway Barton in Devon this past weekend. Clouds and a brief spattering of rain interrupted the otherwise perfect weather at the picturesque mile-long track.
In the MMX Fourstroke Championship, Glen Phillips qualified in fourth, just over two seconds off Brad Anderson in the front spot, while in the MMX Under 21 Championship, Lewis Rose and Aaron Smith qualified in seventeenth and twenty-fourth respectively.
Glen’s first race started off bad after being wiped out on the slick first turn. However, Glen recovered very quickly, leaping to sixteenth a lap
later. He made solid progress throughout the race, gaining a position nearly very lap to fifth place. With a mere three laps to go, Mark
Hucklebridge mounted an attack and forced Glen back to sixth.
His second race was virtually identical. The berm around the start corner had been flattened and the surface was very loose and slippery. Starting in second-last position after picking himself off the ground, he returned to the teens in the fifth lap and the top ten with a mere four laps to go. Glen declared himself satisfied with his qualifying and his racing, but voiced his discontent over his starts that had set him back severely. He ended eighth overall for the day and is now ninth in the championship.
Both Lewis and Aaron suffered multiple mishaps in their races. Crashes in the first races meant DNFs for both. Lewis started mid-pack in fifteenth, but he slid out and struggled to get the bike started, leaving him in the back of the pack. After restarting, he rode hard to regain lost positions, retaking five places in the next five laps. However, he slipped on the hard-baked surface on approach of an off-camber turn, injuring his right arm and prompting medical attention.
Aaron was crowded out after going around the first corner in twelfth. Like Lewis, Aaron put everything into regaining positions, which earned him twentieth in the third lap. After battle with Ross Hill for several laps he moved to eighteenth, only to crash again and struggle to restart the bike. All efforts to restart were in vain and Aaron had to sit out the remainder.
Lewis’ second race start put him well inside the top ten. Once again the hard-pack track under the sand cost him dearly as he slid out again. He struggled to restart the bike and had to chase after the entire pack again. He was able to regain two positions from Chris Bastick and Stuart Houlston before the chequered flag waved.
Aaron was crowded out in the start and made an immediate move on his competitors ahead of him. In the next lap Aaron was in the high twenties and eighteenth by mid-race. A stint in seventeenth was cut short by Kristjan Ratsep, and a front wheel puncture in the last lap dropped Aaron to twenty-fourth. Neither rider collected points and subsequently have lost several places. Aaron retains a place in the top twenty, while Lewis remains in the low thirties.
The next round of the CCM British MMX Championship will be held at the Blaxhall Pits track in Suffolk in a fortnight. The youth squad of the team will participate in the next round of the BYMX Championship at Culham in Oxfordshire this coming weekend.