Coming into round 1 of the prestigious Pro Nationals after the previous weekends high of Maxxis glory Roy Embersons Samsung Yamaha’s squad where in good spirits even after the long haul up to the re-vamped Doncaster circuit. The RBPN’s foremat see’s 2 days racing with the team only riding the second day in the combined Pro class. The sandy man made circuit left rough from the previous days racing was going to be a tough challange where only the fittest would survive!
With both MX1 and MX2 both out together (but scored separately) it would be a foregone conclusion that the bigger bore machines would do all the running. So as the gate dropped for moto 1 it was quite a surprise to see Elliot Banks-Browne put his 250 to the fore, soon demoted down the order as reigning champ Anderson took to the front. It was Ando’s aggressive style that took him to the eventual win. Samsung Yamaha’s 450 challenger Kristian Whatley was in the mix with a good start while as expected the two 250 riders, Ray Rowson and Jackson Evans had to deal with 450 roost stuck in the pack.
Whatley had good pace as he worked the soft sand hard for the initial laps, the lead trio had pulled away as qualifying times suggested they would and Whatley found a good rhythm that’s so needed to ride the deep sand effectively, as the time ticked by the field settled down with any real action being the top 3 as they swapped places. Kristian crossed the line in 6th 10 seconds down on 5th but 10 seconds up on 7th with only GP riders in front of him a good result!
Samsung Yamaha’s MX2 contingent of Rowson and Evans had to work doubly hard to try to stay upright with normally having machines that are the quickest in the class to now having bikes twice the capacity racing against them! So in at the deep end and swamped by 450′s the duo pushed forward in what was never going to be an easy start to the championship bid. However before the flag would drop the pair would both feature in the points, Rowson fought hard, battling with the championship hopefuls and pushing till the end to take a worthy 6th place. Evans fought hard not only with the track but his physical being as the youngster had been ill all week fighting with an infection but still managed to take the last point on offer.
So with moto 1 over and all 3 riders scoring the continued Samsung success was looking good for moto 2. However the tide turned with all 3 riders suffering their worst seasons results so far with both MX 2 riders not getting across the line to finish, a big blow as the lack of finishers would of given points just for completing the moto!!! Evans couldn’t physically finish due to the weeks illness sapping him of enough energy to continue but more worryingly Rowson picked up an old injury that caused him to pull out in too much pain to finish. As yet unconfirmed as to his condition so fingers crossed he will be able to continue to train in the coming weeks ready to be on the line for the next round.
Whatley had managed to get the big 450 off the line in good company and again battled hard with the elements and calibre of rider he’s pitted against, unfortunately as many others had he went down early on and then had to contend with the roost being thrown up as he battled to come back up through the field to an eventual 9th at the chequered flag. A respectful result but not one he was happy with as the disappointment on his face showed post race. Still the 6-9 moto’s still stood him in at 7th in the standings a mere 7 points off 4th place as they head to Landrake for round 2
So with all the riders capable of better scores there will be a lot of ‘ketchup’ being used in the coming weeks and one things for sure…..Roy Embersons Samsung Yamaha team will be coming back at the next round stronger and faster.