Although they are now the perennial late starters in the AMCA MX season,riders in the North Avon/South Glos group displayed no signs of rustiness at the old Ford circuit on Sunday in a meeting hosted by the Chipping Sodbury MXC.Indeed proving that they are instead very much on the race-pace,there was to be an abundance of exciting action producing plenty of close finishes and ultimately unbeaten performances from Owen Hillman,Paul Neale and Lee Dunham in the respective Inter-Juniors,MX2 Experts and MX1 Experts classes.
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Preparing for his ‘double’ IMBA and AMCA Championship title quest,Lee Dunham comfortably won all three MX1 Experts motos at Ford chased home on each occasion by Adam Harris.Such was Dunham’s dominance and speed at Ford that amazingly his winning margin in each race was always by a minimum of at least 32 seconds and he already appears to have made an absolute seamless switch from his title winning 250F mounts to the bigger 450F machines!!. Taking 3rd overall in this class was Sam Nicholls ahead of James Faulkner and Darren Marklove whilst Craig Martin making a return to race action following a serious leg injury took 6th.
Over in MX2 Experts,Championship rider Paul Neale has also started the new campaign in very impressive form.Whilst Neale controlled all three clashes from the front with his immaculate riding style,Tom Guilding was to chase him home in the opening two contests before it was all change for the final encounter of the day.Runner-up on this occasion was to be Robert Clark ahead of Bradley Bird,Kristofer Ayres,Luke Smith and Joe Russell whilst Guilding had to settle for 7th .In the overall stangings,Guilding in 2nd and Clark 3rd were to join Neale in the winners enclosure.
Eventual MX1 Seniors overall winner John Hawkins was first past the post in the opening two clashes as Paul Smith then Richard Collins followed him home.In the final clash,victory went to Smith from Matthew Ricketts,Hawkins, Christopher Pritchett and Chris Stone.Indeed aboard his old 465cc two-stroke mono-shock Yamaha,Stone was to prove to be a very gallant performer in MX1 Seniors,even leading moto two for the first couple of circuits!!.
Curtis Mears and Luke Webb were certainly the dominant performers in MX2 Seniors,filling the top two positions in all three moto’s.With Mears defeating Webb 2-1 in the race win count he was to also earn the overall verdict on the day.Next best in this class were Simon Aldridge,Scott Thompson,Dave Tilling and Aaron Isaacs.
So what about the Juniors then?,well Welsh youngster Cameron Evans aboard his tiny Suzuki machine was to brilliantly build the foundations for his eventual overall Unlimited class success by winning the opening two moto’s at Ford.In the last clash of the day,Evans settled for 2nd spot behind eventual overall runner-up John Annely.Completing the top six in this group was Ian Griffiths,Liam Woolford,Ben Vaughan and James Baldrey.
In the opening two contests of MX2 Juniors,Benjamin Newman was to be first past the post ahead of Joshua Smith. However Newman’s hopes of taking home the overall winners trophy was to then disappear in the final clash of the day.Whilst rival Smith finished 3rd behind Jonathon Hoppner and Dean Partridge,Newman had to fight his way through the pack from a lowly 21st place in the early stages to earn 9th at the chequered flag.That result meant that overall victory instead was to go to Smith from Newman and Partridge.But for a disastrous opening moto in which he only scored 7 points,that final top three could well have even been invaded by Hoppner!!.
As already mentioned,Inter-Juniors Owen Hillman was to score maximum points at Ford.But,what a super contest this was to prove to be as a fantastic 22 strong entry of eager,young riders were to come under starter orders!!.After the stylish Hillman had won the opener from start to finish,he then was forced to pass both George Lovell and Aaron Hardiman for his moto two success.Blasting to another gate to flag win,Hillman was again victorious in the final clash, leading home Lovell,Samuel Bye,Hardiman,Elliot Woodward and Elliot Dowell.Well done to all the Inter-Juniors at Ford,the future of the AMCA!!.
Mike Wood (www.moto-action.co.uk)
Full results can be found HERE