Round five of the Red Bull Pro National championship held at the infamous Hawkstone Park in Shropshire, proved to be a tough weekend for title challenger, Mel Pocock, as the Relentless Suzuki by TAS MX rider suffered a turbulent race day, just when he was looking to take advantage.
With the track in good condition and a difficult qualifying session out of the way, Pocock went into race one, looking to take the advantage from series rival Elliott Banks-Browne, but after a red flag, a crash early on in the restarted race left the RM-Z250 rider fighting for an eventual seventh place finish, with the only consolation of Banks-Browne suffering a similar fate too.
Set to put things straight in race two, Pocock went into the race with good speed yet again, but another crash while running mid-pack forced the Suzuki rider back down the order, eventually managing to pull back to another seventh at the flag.
Mel Pocock: “Just not how I’d planned this in my head. We knew this was our chance to take the fight back to Elliott, but it just didn’t happen. The only consolation is that he had a weekend much like mine, so we’re not too far apart on the points. Next stop is the team’s home round, and I’ve spent a bit of time at Desertmartin so should go well. Fingers crossed.”
Returning to the venue that very nearly cost him his life in 2009, Gordon Crockard went into the Hawkstone round with understandable reservations. Not feeling entirely comfortable with his set-up, Crockard eventually opted to pull-out of the opening race and take no further part in the days racing.
Team manager, Adam Lyons: “Not the day we’d hoped for to be honest. Mel needed to make an impact on Elliott’s lead in the series this weekend, and while our rivals didn’t have the best of luck either today, it certainly feels like an opportunity missed. As ever, Mel showed great maturity as a rider, and competing on one of the world’s toughest tracks can take it out of anyone when dogged with misfortune like that. Having said all of this, anything is still possible, but realistically now, I think we have to concentrate on strengthening runner-up spot in the series standings. As for Gordon, we had no expectations this weekend and put no pressure on him. To return to a track that nearly cost you your life is brave enough in itself. I suffered a very similar accident to Gordon in 2002 at Hawkstone, so can sympathise entirely and understand. I’m sure he’ll come back stronger at Desertmartin and put on a good show for the local fans.”