ANDO IS BACK ON THE MAXXIS PODIUM
A fantastic weekend was had at a superb track over in Northern Ireland, at a great sand track, Dessert Martin. This Irish track is one of the best tracks in Britain and some would say, in Europe. It is a track that some riders can only dream of ever riding on, it flows well, it is wide, it has hills, big drop offs, sweeping berms, triple, double and single jumps. It also has a hard standing paddock, wash bay facilities, it drains well and is easily accessible via motorway and road. The views from the top of the track are stunning and it attracts one of the biggest crowds of the year. And to top it all the weather was extremely hot and sunny and the Verde Team made the Podium. Top weekend!
The track was in mint condition. The weather was sunny and hot. There was a pretty stacked class of riders, despite injuries, although the MX2 class was probably wide open with over 15 riders in with a chance of a podium.
This qualification was a pretty close call. Only 1.50 seconds between all top 10 riders, with riders like Mel Pocock, Harri Kullas, Liam Knight, Lewis Tombs, Josh Gilbert and Jordan Divall not even making that top 10! There was a big crash early on in the qualification causing a red flag delay but once that was over and done with Jake got a clear lap in his 4th lap and came home 8th fastest rider in qualification.
Brad took his time to learn the track, came in for a couple of mechanical changes and then got a good run in his 6th lap, giving him 7th gate pick. It was again a close quali, with Gert, Harrison and Edmonds being only 0.20 of a second apart.
Jake got a terrible start coming up the start straight in 12th. But he was on it and determined that today was going to be his day. He managed to pull through to 6th pretty quickly, passing Tombs, Norris and Todd in one pass. Pocock and Gilbert were his next challenge and once Jake picked them off he moved in to 5th place. But Ben Watson had also had a terrible start and he too was now charging through the pack. It didn’t take long for Ben to catch Jake and not only pass him but move into 3rd position. This pushed Jake back a spot to finish 6th in Moto 2.
Brad got a cracking start coming down the start straight in 4th place but moved into a clear 3rd straight away. Irwin got out front and was being cheered on by his home crowd. Elliot kept close behind, challenging him for the lead. By half way through the race, Brad started to close on Elliot and looked likely to move into 3rd place. But a couple of small, scary moments put an end to that. Grestinov had by then charged through the pack and took advantage of Brad’s mistakes and started to give him the run for his money. Mixing it up with back markers made it even more challenging and Gert made his move 2 laps from the end, pushing Brad back into 4th place. So an unhappy Brad finished 4th in Moto 1.
Jake once again got a terrible start. He sat in 13th place for nearly 2 laps and then made a mistake on a wide sweeping bend and stuck his front end straight into the berm, which pushed him back to 16th place. The pace was fast today and it took him a few laps to get past Lewis Tombs into 9th place. Once through he soon passed Kullas and was closing on the pack of three ahead. He managed to pick off Gilbert but ran out of time to pass Spinks and Todd. So Jake finished 8th in Moto 2.
Brad got an excellent start, 2nd out the gate behind Irwin. Shipton was on his tail for the first few laps until Krestinov pushed through into 3rd. The gap between Irwin and Brad got slightly wider as did the gap between Brad and Krestinov. But it was now a battle for the 2nd place podium between Brad and Gert. Whoever finished behind Irwin in this race would get the 2nd step and the other would get the 3rd. So the battle was began. They were neck and neck at times but Brad was determined not to let him past. He saw that podium in site and so held off Gert to the end. So it was Irwin from Brad and then Brad from Gert. So Brad Anderson finished 2nd MX1 in moto 2 and secured his first podium of the year in the Maxxis.
Jake ended up with a 6-8 to give him 7th overall. Two consistent races in a stacked class of riders. He showed he could pull through from the back and keep chasing until the end in both races. Jake managed to move up into 11th place in the championship, another 6 points and he will be back in the top 10. Good starts at the next round will hopefully make life a lot easier.
So Brad got a 4 – 2 to give him 2nd overall and a Maxxis Podium. He is still sitting in 4th place in the championship. The gap between Brad and 5th place Elliot is now larger, which gives Brad a much better chance of securing a top 3 championship title.
Quote from Jake Millward:
A good weekend at Dessert Martin. I came away with joint 6th overall. My riding was good today, but I just made it hard work by getting rubbish starts and having to pull my way through. A big thankyou to all the team for the effort they put in this weekend.
Quote form Brad Anderson:
Had a good weekend at the British Championship. Got a 4th and 2nd and had some good battles with Gert in the last moto for 2nd. Thanks again to all my sponsors. I couldn’t do what I love so much which is turning two wheels. The track was the best so far this season, but the near misses I had today were pretty scary moments.
Quote from Team Manager, Adrian Kirk:
We had a good weekend. A fantastic track, a podium in the Maxxis for Brad and two good solid ride from Jake. It feels like we are back to where we should be.
19 June 2017