1 February 2009 WRMX Club - Stamford Bridge Junior 65 class - Round 2 Winter Series Race 1 - 12th Race 2 - 14th Race 3 - 13th Overall - 12th
First race of the year and it was good to meet up with my MX friends again after the Winter break.
It was so cold today, there were blizzards in some of the races! The club did a good job in building an all-weather track in this flat field after the planned race at Terrington was cancelled due to the wet weather. The sandy soil was really good, but I just found it too flat and fast compared to what I've been practicing on lately. I didn't have the speed for a good result today and I crashed in every race.
I was really nervous as it was the first race of the year and I didn't ride very confidently. It's still only early in the season so there's plenty of time to get my speed up and I scored a few points towards the Winter Championship. I'm now 7th in the points with the final round next week. Top 10 get trophies, so I'll be trying really hard.
8 February 2009 WRMX Club - Stamford Bridge Junior 65 class - Round 3 Winter Series Race 1 - 14th Race 2 - 10th Race 3 - 16th Overall - 12th
After a week of heavy snow we had to return to Stamford Bridge's all-weather track, as Dalton was flooded. At least I knew what to expect, but wasn't really looking forward to another day on such a fast track. When we arrived the track was frozen solid so the tractor had to re-grade it. The track turned out OK, but it was still covered in big lumps of frozen soil which made it very tricky.
There were a lot of big crashes in the races today and quite a few injuries. My races started off badly when my bike just died at the start of the first race, my Dad managed to get it going again, but I set-off in last position. We still don't know what was wrong with it. I rode fairly well all-day, but got caught up behind a first corner pile-up in the last race and again had to battle back from last position. I was making up quite a few places until I had a high speed crash with another rider on the last lap. I landed face first on the ground, breaking my helmet peak and burst my nose and lip. The bike was pretty smashed up with bent bars and levers and the side panel hanging off. My Dad managed to get it re-started and I slowly rode to the finish line. I was really happy to score enough points for 7th place overall in the Winter Championship.
This has definately been the hardest trophy to win so far, roll on Summer!
1 March 2009 WRMX Club - Little Terrington Junior 65 Championship Round 1 Race 1 - 6th Race 2 - 5th Race 3 - 9th Overall - 7th
Awesome track with some big hills and loads of really fun jumps and drop-offs, it felt like riding a mini Grand Prix track! The ground was quite soft and I had a few crashes in the long deep ruts that formed in the corners, which lost me a lot of time. The sun was so bright and low in the last race I could hardly see where to go in the corners, I crashed and it took ages to get the bike re-started. I'm not riding very confidently at the moment and feel really nervous before the races, this is affecting my speed, but I know things will improve as the season gets going...
8 March 2009 KKMX Club - Topcliffe Junior 65 class Race 1 - 16th Race 2 - 19th Race 3 - 17th Overall - 17th
The club had totally rebuilt the track from last year, lots of really good table top jumps and big banked corners and we rode it in the opposite direction. I rode quite well today and didn't have any crashes, but I kept getting bad starts and pushed towards the back round the first corner. There was a big entry with a lot of fast riders so I struggled to make up many places. All good experience though, especially at riding the rutted take-offs on the jumps. Sorry no photos from today, everyone busy trying to keep warm!
15 March 2009 WRMX Club - Beilby Junior 65 Championship Round 2 Race 1 - 8th Race 2 - 12th Race 3 - 9th Overall - 10th
I love this track. It starts off as flat as a pancake, then gets rougher and rougher after every race. Riding good today, but got caught in a first lap pile-up in the second race which lost me a lot of time. First warm day of the season, and it was my Mum's birthday too!
29 March 2009 KKMX Club - Topcliffe Junior 65 class Race 1 - 12th Race 2 - 14th Race 3 - 15th Overall - 14th
The early morning frost soon turned to hot sun and thawed out the frozen track turning it into the fastest track of the season so far. I really enjoyed the races today, my speed was good and I didn't crash all day, I just need to get round the first corner faster as this is where I am losing all my positions in the races.
Congratulations to my good friend Declan Ryan who got a great holeshot and led the second race for a long time, he's found some awesome speed this season. Well done Dec!
12 April 2009 NYMX Club - Sand Hutton Junior 65 Championship Round 3 Race 1 - 9th Race 2 - 4th Race 3 - 4th Overall - 5th
With the improving weather and school holidays I've finally had chance to ride my new practice track and I've ridden loads of hours and laps. I'm riding much more confidently now, but I still had a bad first race at Sand Hutton. It took me a while to get used to the high speeds on the long straights and I crashed twice on the same corner on the first and last laps. Things went better in the next 2 races and I managed to claw back some points. The event was sponsored by Relentless so we all got free energy drinks all day, don't think I'll sleep tonight!
19 April 2009 WRMX Club - Rowley Junior 65 Championship Round 4 Race 1 - 12th Race 2 - 14th Race 3 - 13th Overall - 13th
The furthest North I've raced so far, had to get up at 5am this morning and got back home at 9:30pm - a long day, but really enjoyable.
The track was really nice, set on a grassy hillside with lots of great jumps, a bit like a French Grand Prix track. The club watered the track in the morning to keep the dust down and the morning practice session went well. I hoped the ground would stay soft and get really rough, but it soon dried out and became very hard, fast and dusty.
I struggled to get a good start on the steep uphill start straight and found it difficult to make up many places on the flat-out straights. High speed straights are not my strong point at the moment, but I'm jumping and cornering really well. No crashes again today, which keeps my family happy, but Dad had a busy day changing dusty air filters!
We return to Rowley in October, so I'll be hoping for rain, mud and bumps!
26 April 2009 KKMX Club - Topcliffe Junior 65 class Race 1 - 13th Race 2 - 13th Race 3 - 15th Overall - 15th
There were 37 riders in the 65 class today, which is the biggest line-up I've raced against. I was a little nervous about battling with that many riders, but I was pleased with my riding and my results. The track was very dry and hard and it was watered just before our first race which made it very slippy causing a lot of crashes. I had a small crash, but managed to keep the engine running and soon got back on. It was nice to beat a few riders who have been beating me all year, so all the mid-week practice seems to be paying off. I was very disappointed to lose a few positions in the 3rd race when I slid off in one of the very last corners of the race!
10 May 2009 NYMX Club - Sand Hutton Junior 65 Championship Round 5 Race 1 - 21st Race 2 - 15th Race 3 - 12th Overall - 18th
Bit of a disaster today... due to illness & gale force winds I hadn't ridden the bike for 2 weeks and didn't feel very good in morning practice. Things got worse just before the first race when we suffered our first mechanical failure of the season. The bike started misfiring when I was sat on the start line, we decided to still do the race to salvage a few points for the championship, but the bike wouldn't rev, it had no power and kept nearly stalling. All I could do was cruise round in last place which was really annoying, but the few points I scored might be important at the end of the year. The problem was traced to a faulty spark plug, I was going to sack my mechanic, but gave him another chance when I realised the bike needed washing!
My 2nd and 3rd races were slightly better, but I had pretty much lost my enthusiasm for the racing by then. Just one of those days, hopefully things will get better.
On a brighter note I have never laughed so much as I did with my mate Joe Thompson, we had a really fun time, plus he was really flying in the races, he's found a load of speed from somewhere! He's turning into a good rider and a threat to my championship position, check out his website:..... www.joethompsonracing.co.uk
17 May 2009 WRMX Club - Bielby Junior 65 Championship Round 6 Race 1 - 22nd Race 2 - 14th Race 3 - cancelled Overall - 19th
Had another disastrous first race, my front wheel washed out on a corner at the far side of the track on the first lap and I crashed. My leg was stuck under the bike and I couldn't get up. By the time my Dad got to me to help, the leaders had already lapped me. Race 2 went better, but I didn't have a very good start and found it difficult to get past the riders in front. I enjoyed the track especially when it rained and got really rough later in the day, but the event got cancelled before our last race due to an injury in one of the adult races.
7 June 2009 White Rose MX Club - Dalton Junior 65 Championship Round 7 Race 1 - 12th Race 2 - 14th Race 3 - 15th Overall - 14th
Started off riding well in morning practice, but then I had a big crash over a jump at the end of the session. I was a pretty shook-up and hurt my leg. I didn't ride confidently for the rest of the day and wasn't really attacking the track like I should.
21 June 2009 WRMX Club - Bielby Junior 65 Championship Round 8 Race 1 - 5th Race 2 - 9th Race 3 - 9th Overall - 7th
The Bielby track was dryer and harder today so it didn't get as rough as usual. The races were pretty fast, but I had problems with my starts in the 2nd & 3rd races.
28 June 2009 KKMX Club - Topcliffe Junior 65 class Race 1 - 9th Race 2 - 9th Race 3 - 9th Overall - 8th
A very hot day, track was dry, hard and fast. I rode OK, quite smooth and in control. Just need to get faster round the first few corners in the races and also brake later and carry more speed into the corners. That's what I'm working on in practice now. When that's sorted I'm sure we'll find something else...!
12 July 2009 WRMX Club - Dalton Junior 65 Championship Round 9 Race 1 - 10th Race 2 - 4th Race 3 - 3rd Overall - 4th
Today went quite well, I've been practicing on a fast track at Armthorpe and it seems to have helped my speed. Had a few problems in the first race though, when I crashed 4 times on the muddy uphill jumps, which dropped me to 10th place. Between the races my dad told me how to get them right and I had no more problems. Still trying to catch my mate Joe Thompson in the championship points, but it's getting closer, I'm about 3 points behind him now.
Next race is my first ever supercross, so I'll be practicing my jumps and whoop riding this week, can't wait...
18 July 2009 Dirt 3-2-1 Festival Supercross Junior 65 class Heat 1 - 7th Heat 2 - 7th Heat 3 - 8th Final - 7th
Really enjoyed my first ever supercross event. There had been a lot of rain the day before making the track very technical and challenging and I had a few small crashes, but nothing serious. Had a great day, but now I need to do some pretty serious motocross practice as I'm doing my first ever national race next weekend at the famous Skelder Bank British championship track.
25-26 July 2009 YMSA UK Supernational Skelder Bank, Whitby Junior 65 class Race 1 - 19th Race 2 - 18th Race 3 - 22nd Race 4 - 17th Race 5 - 21st Overall - 20th
This was the biggest event I've raced so far and I was up against some really fast riders from all over the UK on one of the most spectacular British championship tracks in the country. I loved the track, especially the massive jumps and whoop sections. It was my aim to get into the top 20 and I rode really hard all weekend to achieve this. My clutch lever jammed in the 4th race which meant I couldn't use it, this slowed me down as I slip the clutch coming out of the corners and up the steep hills. We had some more drama just before going onto the start line for my last race when we realised I had a front puncture. My dad had to race back to the pits to put the spare wheel on, but just made it back in time. I only had one crash all weekend, this happened in the last race when a rider crashed in front of me and I hit him with my handlebar which brought me off. I soon got going again, but I lost quite a few places.
9 August 2009 WRMX Club - Dalton Junior 65 Championship Round 10 Race 1 - 15th Race 2 - 14th Race 3 - 11th Overall - 14th
The weather was very hot and dry and parts of the track were very dusty, but other parts were holding a lot of water from recent wet weather and were really soft and boggy. 2 tractors had sunk in the mud the day before the event, so the ruts on race day were mega deep! I loved racing on such a technical track and it was really important to pick some good lines. I started to clear the uphill double jump for the first time. I rode more agressively and had some great battles in the races, but I never got a good start all day. My mate Joe Thompson got injured when he crashed and another rider rode over his leg. Get well soon Joe!
22 August 2009 KKMX Club - Topcliffe Junior 65 class Race 1 - 7th Race 2 - 8th Race 3 - 8th Overall - 6th
The track builders had put an extra 200 tonnes of sand on the track and it made a big difference. There were some really nice berms in the corners and a lot more lines to choose from.
I had some great battles with my good friend James Hindhaugh in all the races today. In the first race I got a decent start , but James caught me up and stuck with me all around the track. On the last lap I just couldn't hold him off any longer and he passed me 2 corners before the finish line. In the second race he caught up to me again, but I was chasing hard after the riders in front of me and eventually pulled a bit of a gap over James. In the last race James was right behind me from the start and riding fast. On about the 3rd lap he managed to pass me on the same corner he got me in the first race, but this time I quickly passed him back. He was right in my wheel tracks until the last lap, when he went for another pass on his "special" corner. He got the power on a bit too fast and his bike spun round and he crashed. It was real bad luck for him as he lost loads of places just metres from the finish line. Hard luck James, can't wait for our next exciting race...
6 September 2009 WRMX Club - Grange Moor Junior 65 Championship Round 11 Race 1 - 10th Race 2 - 7th Race 3 - 9th Overall - 9th
My first time at this track, but it was great fun to ride. Very dry, hard-pack surface with long, fast straights and some nice big jumps. I started the first race in 8th place and quickly moved into 6th. I tried to make a move for 5th going into a tight corner, but the rider in front crashed which forced me into a deep rut and I went down! I eventually got back to 10th place. I had some great battles in my other races aswell and scored some valuable championship points. It was a bad day for Jamie Mowatt who crashed at the start of the first race and had to go home with a leg injury. This moved me up to 3rd place in the championship with one round remaining. So I'm spending the next few weeks practicing as anything can happen at the last round. Hard luck Jamie, that was so unlucky as you've ridden really well all season, hope you're OK mate!
4 October 2009 WRMX Club - Rowley Junior 65 Championship - Final Round Race 1 - 13th Race 2 - 11th Race 3 - 12th Overall - 12th
Bit of a strange event this one, I was lying 3rd in the championship with a good lead over 4th place, so my Dad instructed me to ride careful, not get in any battles and just stay on the bike to finish every race in the top 15. Things started off badly when someone rammed into my back wheel and I crashed at the first corner of practice! The team were looking pretty nervous! The races went OK, I got great starts every time, but was very careful round the first corner as I didn't want to get knocked off again. The track was very dry with deep dusty berms and loads of round rocks everywhere. It was a bit like riding on marbles at times! Anyway, I am really pleased to finish 3rd in my first ever full championship and I'm still one of the youngest in the 65 class. Can't wait for the presentation night in a couple of weeks as Brad Anderson, the 2009 British Motocross Champion is presenting the trophies.
25 October 2009 Pickering & DMC - Haygate Open Youth class Race 1 - 6th Race 2 - DNF Race 3, 4, 5 - DNS
I always look forward to the end of season Pickering races, they're only 10 mins from home and are really good fun. There is only 1 youth class so I get to race against the 85s & 125s. It was a brand new track and started off very grassy and slippy, but it soon roughened up. First race went OK, I was battling with Shane Scarth on a Suzuki 85. Second race, my bike died at the end of the start straight. We couldn't get it going again so had to call it a day. Dad stripped the engine and found the carbon fibre reed valves had broken loose and smashed into the piston. He got everything fixed with a couple of long nights in the workshop, so we're ready to go again. At least it was only a fun race and nothing too serious. We were going to have a break before next season starts, but we've been missing the fun of racing in recent weeks. So we've decided to do the White Rose Winter Championship before Christmas.
22 November 2009 Pickering & DMC - Haygate Open Youth class Race 1 - 2nd Race 2 - 2nd Race 3 - 2nd Race 4 - 2nd Race 5 - 2nd Overall - 2nd
It seems ages since I last rode my bike, the past 3 meetings have all been cancelled due to bad weather and I've had a little break from practicing. I was the only 65 rider in the races today, everyone else was on 85s, but me and the bike seemed to be performing quite well. I was getting great starts, but Dan Holliday passed me everytime with a fast outside line round the first corner. He went on to win all the races on his Big Wheel Honda 85. I managed to keep second place in each race, although there was a lot of pressure from Joe Thompson who was going well on his new bike, probably the last time we'll race each other for a while as we're in different classes for the next 2 seasons, but at least we'll be able watch each others races now.
13 December 2009 WRMX Club - North Newbald Winter Championship - Round 1 Race 1 - 5th Race 2 - 8th Race 3 - 8th Overall - 6th
Well there's a couple of great bits of news this month, firstly I got a new bike for my birthday, a 2010 KTM SX65. I've only ridden it once so far, we spent a day running it in and it's absolutely awesome. Loads more power than my old bike with great suspension. Dad's been busy tuning it up with some trick parts since I rode it, so I can't wait to try it again.
The next bit of news is that I will be sponsored for the 2010 season. Ryedale Garages in Kirkbymoorside, North Yorkshire are main dealers for Vauxhall and Kia Cars, I will be displaying the North Yorkshire Kia logos on my riding gear and will be running some awesome custom plastics and graphics on my new race bike. They are helping us out with the expensive job of racing, so huge thanks for their generous offer. Check out their website at www.ryedalegarages.co.uk , better still, pay them a visit when you're looking for your next car or service!
Back to racing... The first round of the WRMX Winter Championship finally got underway after several cancellations due to dodgy weather. The track at North Newbald handled the rain well, the soil was very stony and the steep hills helped it drain. It wasn't the easiest surface to ride though and finding grip on the slippery stones was a problem at times. We decided not to race the new bike as I needed more practice on it, so we wheeled out my trusty old bike for one last time.
In the first race I continued my recent run of good starts, I led the race out of the gate, just getting passed by Adam Burgoyne round the first corner, I lost a few more places in the early part of the first lap, but soon settled into my pace and finished 5th. Adam went on to win all 3 races in his dominant Geordie style!
In the 2nd race I got another good start and held onto 3rd place for a while before losing my front end round a corner and crashing. A marshall had to help me get my bike started and I re-joined the race in last place. I eventually started catching the riders in front and made some good passes to finally finish 8th. Not bad really as I also finished the race with a front wheel puncture!
My start in the last race wasn't so good. Dad had made a small mound of mud in front of my front wheel to stop me rolling into the gate on the downhill start. This worked fine in the first 2 races, but this time it lauched me into a big wheelie out of the gate. I had to shut off the throttle to avoid flipping the bike, while the others powered off into the distance. I managed to get back into 8th place by the finish. Which gave me 6th place overall.