The weekend just gone at the Red Bull Pro Nationals and Elite Youth Cup was a car crash for Twisted 7 Kawasaki, with enough damage to call it a write off! I should’ve known really as the Twisted 7 rig pulled into Fleet services to pick up the stranded Kellett boys a solitary Magpie flew and landed in the road in front then seemed to deliberately flaunt it right up to the point where we nearly ran it over. I wish we had. I’m not superstitious at all but this weekend made me think they may be some truth in it.
This is going to be a long report so buckle up, but if you can’t be bothered to read on, I’ll give you the short version in one sentence. No podiums, just pain and distress as Lady Luck jumped two footed on our groin in her best, long heeled stilettos when we were hoping she was wearing them to do the loving slow dance with us.
We were picking up Todd and Ty because the brake disc on their motorhome had broken off, that turned out just to be the start of our troublesome weekend. So we had to get ‘Cinderella’ – Toddy, to the ball. Ty will be out for sometime with a shoulder injury that, while was being diagnosed they also found an injury from his infamous Weston Beach race crash that was never picked up first time around!
Qualifying was a mixed bag but then the wheels really started to fall off, a little like the Kellett motorhome! First up was James Harrison in the Rookie class. Seconds before the start of his first race he had a problem with the throttle that seemed to come from nowhere and he had to bail off the startine. He rushed back on the track but missed the ‘official’ start and although he got through half the pack by the finish he was classed with a no start result.
Next up was Todd Kellett, who was in a lot of pain after twisting his knee in qualifying. The incident meant he qualified way down in 34th after failing to get in a quick lap. Todd’s character comes to life when his back is against the wall though and he toughed it out for a solid 9th place from his terrible starting position way out on the right of the start.
Harry Kimber was next up and after qualifying third he too got an awful start, romped up to fourth but pushing too hard to get to the front took a dirt digger and found himself back out of the top ten. He got back on and up to 8th in that moto. He rode smart in the next two motos after more poor starts to bag a couple of thirds but that was as good as it got. H had a nightmare two motos on Sunday. Another awful start saw him buried midpack on the opening lap of moto #4 and then unsighted by another rider he hit a huge braking bump, flew through the air and buried himself in the ground like an Ostrich right in front of the Twisted 7 team. He was knocked silly and after the pack went through I jumped out on the track to help him. Once he got his senses back and stopped staggering around like a punch drunk boxer in the final rounds he got back on his KX65 but he couldn’t get it started, so yours truly kicked it into life and set him on his way almost a lap down. He pushed on in pain and got into the latter points but to no avail because he was disqualified for outside assistance from moi! A fair cop, rules are rules I guess, although I do think these kids needs help like that sometimes and I would do the same for any other rider in that position. He wouldn’t have been in the points if I hadn’t of started his bike anyway, so we’ll take it on the chin and learn from that. It then got worse after that though. The final moto of the day Harry was still a bit sore and sheepish but wanted to salvage some points but the tough, fast Canada Heights track bit him again and he bailed out hard and whacked his head. Game over for the weekend.
By this time, Todd had a chain split pin break on his way to the startline for his second moto and he too had a no start!! Naturally, it’s such a common occurrence! He rode awesome and through pain in the next two motos as he knee continued to balloon up and bagged another 9th and an 8th before picking up a front wheel puncture right on the take off of the big drop down and losing the front end in the final moto. It was a huge off and like Harry, that was it – game over. The only luck there is that somehow he didn’t get landed on by the riders behind as they launched off the blind summit.
James’ weekend didn’t get any better either. He still has no feeling in his fingers at all following his bad wrist break and it appears to have shattered his confidence. So we’re going to give it a bit more time in the hope he can come back feeling it – literally!
If there was a ray of sunshine for Twisted 7 Kawasaki this weekend it was Lewis Trickett in the MX2 Pro class. He qualified with much more of the verve that we saw from him in the Rookie class last year. Then rode, in his own words “bloody rubbish” – okay, not exactly his own words, but ones we can put down here at least. He then went off and had a quiet moment to himself and came out swinging in moto #2 to post a 11-9 score for 9th overall. His first top 10 overall as a pro racer. So we’ll cling to that and take it as the main positive from the weekend.
David Keet was racing elsewhere at the GT Cup as he’s running top three in that championship and wants to push on and go for the championship win. He nailed down 5th and lost points in the title chase but he still sits in third. So an okay weekend for him if not a spectacular one.
This weekend is definitely a ‘scratcher’ – one to cross off the list, forget and move on from. Everyone gets them and I hope this was our worst weekend of the year. It certainly required a nice glass of red for me to reflect on it when I got home from Canade Heights that’s for sure. Anyway I hope everyone has a better week than we had a weekend.
Catch up soon,