09 August 2011

By Laren van der Westhuizen

The penultimate round of the Full throttle National Motocross Championships was hosted in East London this weekend. A massive storm followed the motocross fraternity into town and everyone feared the worst! On arriving at the track, conditions looked like they would not let up, but slowly but surely; the rain became just a light sprinkle now and then. By lunch time, the rain was gone and we were left with perfect track conditions.

As per usual, the 50cc class had to brave the conditions first and whilst practice was a mess, the track was almost perfect by the first race. Grant Hutton grabbed the holeshot in heat 1 and very soon had his championship rival, Cameron Durow on his tail. The pressure told on Grant Hutton and he made a series of mistakes, which would drop him back to 3rd. That left Cameron Durow well in the lead ahead of the new 50cc sensation from Cape Town, Justin Sangster. Grant Hutton limped his way home in 3rd!
Heat 2 saw another holeshot from the PE boy, Grant Hutton. This time Cameron Durow had a bad start, but quickly moved his way up to 2nd. Cameron Durow, would be the one to feel the pressure this time and dropped it. He was able to remount in 2nd, but could not close back up on Grant Hutton, who would win heat 2. Cameron Durow secured the overall though, with a 1st and 2nd result. Justin Sangster finished 3rd overall with a 2nd and 3rd result.

The 65cc class saw a dominant performance from another PE boy, Seth Van Den Abeele. Seth won the first heat convincingly and whilst heat 2 was made to work a bit harder, he still came through 1st, making him a double win victor! The man heading to the junior world championships for South Africa, Keegan Hickson Mahoney, finished a solid 2nd overall with championship leader, Ethan Boshi, not enjoying his best day out, with a 3rd overall.

The junior 85cc class saw another dominant performance by 1 rider, namely Dirco Van Der Westhuizen. His lap times were really fast and despite not having the best starts, came to the front quickly and cruised home with a substantial lead. Bevin Potgieter had a really solid day, with two 2nd places and reclaiming that spot as the man to beat in 2012. Dean Godfrey is a rider that has been improving in leaps and bounds. He rode to great races to finish 3rd overall.

The Pro-mini class was dominated by PS BadBoy Honda rider, Tristan Purdon. Living only 1.5 hours from the track, it can be considered home ground advantage. Tristan was pressured in race 1 for a while, by Race Nation, Pelotrain Honda rider, Zane Farquharson. Zane made a mistake early though and the gap was too big to close down. Bradley Cox finished 3rd. In heat 2, Tristan Purdon was in the lead comfortably after Zane Farquharson and Bradley Cox crashed together in a tight turn. Knowing the championship lead was slipping away from him, Zane Farquharson pushed hard to make amends, but only resulted in falling another 2 times. Dylan Stokes of Orbis racing, finished 2nd, for his best result of the season. Reid Sinnicks finished in 3rd, with Brad Cox in 4th and Brandon Brydges in 5th.

The high school class witnessed another great performance from a man heading to the world junior champs. Justin Mittens showed that his hard training has paid off, by winning both heats on the day. He was pressured by Brendon Flemming, who has just returned home from a trip to the USA and Bradley Fenton who is fighting fit again. Dillian Juul showed great speed to run up front in both heats for a while, but the JHB based man will have to work on maintaining that pace if he wishes to challenge the front runners at his home national in September.

The MX1 class was a tight affair with Wyatt Avis and Richard van Der Westhuizen swapping heat wins. Richard would take the win though, courtesy of a better 2nd heat performance. Wyatt Avis placed 2nd, ahead of a large list of great riders, lead by Sacha Naude in 3rd, Anthony Reynard in 4th, Lloyd Vercuiel in 5th and Ross Branch in 6th.

Wyatt Avis was one of the riders of the day and whilst just missed out on the MX1 overall for the day, made sure he went 1st and 1st for 1st overall in the MX2 class. Kerim Fitzgerald has been the man to beat in this class, but had to settle for 2nd as the ex GP star, Wyatt Avis found his form on the day. Richard Van Der Westhuizen rode hard as usual, but could only muster up 3rd overall. Ross Branch has shown great speed in the MX2 class of late and set one of the fastest times in the 2nd heat. Bad starts let him down though and could only manage 4th. The ever consistent, Anthony Reynard finished 5th overall ahead of Wesley DeJager and Merik Sparg.

The MX3 class has been shaken up lately and the early championship leader, Roger Bergstrom found himself in 3rd, after a DNF at the last national. The multiple SA champ, Wayne Smith was leading going into the round, but a bad first heat saw him lose the lead. The 2nd place man, Crag Kruger has just quietly put his PS BadBoy Honda into the championship lead. Roger dominated the day’s proceedings, but with Craig Kruger finishing 2 solid 2nds, its going to be a tight affair at the final round in Krugersdorp.

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