Close fought races start sea­son

Whangarei Report - - BOOKS - By Colin Smith

The open­ing bat­tles of a new sum­mer of mo­tocross were fought dur­ing Taupo’s tra­di­tional sea­son opener at Labour Week­end.

The Huka Honda MX Ex­trav­a­ganza at Dig­ger Mcewen MX Park is the first new sea­son hit out for top rid­ers and chance to watch those step­ping into new classes and switch­ing bike brands over the win­ter.

First blood in the se­nior rac­ing went to Yamaha rid­ers with MX1 race wins for Kayne La­mont (Man­gakino) and new Yamaha re­cruit Rhys Carter (Mt Maun­ganui) who fin­ished 1-2 in the big bike class.

Carter held the ini­tial ad­van­tage by win­ning the first two mo­tos but a spill in the third moto with only one cor­ner re­main­ing al­lowed La­mont to close the gap to three points. The de­cider was the Huka Honda Shoot-out with its unique for­mat en­sur­ing plenty of fi­nal race in­ten­sity.

The lead­ing rid­ers across the three se­nior classes are el­i­gi­ble for the shoot-out which is staged in a se­ries of elim­i­na­tion sprints.

When Carter crashed out in the Tau­ranga teenager Brodie Con­nolly made a win­ning de­but as a se­nior racer with vic­tory in the 125cc Na­tional class.

top-10 phase and La­mont raced through to win ahead of MX1 ri­vals Ben Town­ley (Tau­ranga) and Co­hen Chase (Ro­torua) was the de­cid­ing move of the day and pushed La­mont nine points clear of Carter.

The MX2 rac­ing was close­fought with three mo­tos pro­duc­ing three dif­feent win­ners.

Ro­torua’s Wy­att Chase (Honda) won the open­ing race and Opa­rau’s James Scott (KTM) was the race two win­ner be­fore Man­gakino’s Max­imus Purvis (Yamaha) made the win­ning moves in the third moto.

Purvis was the lead­ing MX2 rider in the shoot-out drop­ping out in the penul­ti­mate stage and took the over­all win by a sin­gle point from Chase. Taupo’s Brad Groom­bridge (Suzuki) re­cov­ered from an 11th in the open­ing moto to gain a sec­ond and third and fin­ished third over­all while Scott’s chances of a podium were dashed when he was elim­i­nated in the first phase of the shoot-out.

An­other star of the sea­son

RE­SULTS

— 1 Brodie Con­nolly (Tau­ranga) Husq­varna, 76pts; 2 Joshua Bourke-palmer (Ro­torua) Yamaha, 60pts; 3 Ethan Wa­ters (Nel­son) Yamaha, 58pts; 4 Tommy Watts (Wairoa) Husq­varna, 51pts; 5 James Roun­tree (Whanganui) Yamaha, 48pts.

— 1 Max­imus Purvis (Man­gakino) Yamaha, 79pts; 2 Wy­att Chase (Ro­torua) Honda, 78pts; 3 Brad Groom­bridge (Taupo) Suzuki, 66pts; 4 Ethan Martens (Auck­land) Kawasaki, 65pts; 5 James Scott (Opa­rau) KTM, 64pts.

— 1 Kayne La­mont (Man­gakino) Yamaha, 92pts; 2 Rhys Carter (Mt Maun­ganui) Yamaha, 83pts; 3 Co­hen Chase (Ro­torua) Kawasaki, 80pts; 4 Ben Town­ley (Tau­ranga) KTM, 78pts; 5 Tyler Steiner (Te Puke) Kawasaki, 52pts.

Huka Honda Shoot-out

—1 La­mont; 2 Town­ley; 3 Co­hen Chase; 4 Purvis; 5 Martens. 6 Wy­att Chase.

opener was Tau­ranga’s Brodie Con­nolly who was mak­ing his de­but in se­nior rac­ing and hav­ing his first race since mov­ing to LMC Husq­varna Rac­ing.

Con­nolly had dom­i­nated Satur­day’s Ju­nior 15-16 years 125cc rac­ing and re­tained the mo­men­tum on Sun­day win­ning all three of the Na­tional 125cc races to win the class by 16 points from Ro­torua’s Joshua Bourke-palmer.

Ro­torua’s Cam Ne­gus (Yamaha) dou­bled-up win­ning the 35-44 Years vet­er­ans class and the MX3 sup­port races while Taupo’s Jake Tomblin rode his Honda CR 250 to vic­tory in the Vin­tage MX Class. Hamil­ton’s Dar­ryll King (Husq­varna) won the 44+ Vet­er­ans class and fin­ished run­ner-up to Ne­gus in the MX3 rac­ing.

The next early sea­son event for top rac­ers is the Waikato Champs hosted by the North King Coun­try Mo­tor­cy­cle Club at its Man­garino Rd track near Te Kuiti on Novem­ber 3-4.

125cc na­tional MX 2 (250cc) MX 1 (450cc)

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