A good workout - for the water blasters too.

School MX

maddix park mx

In mid-March, Rotorua hosted their annual two day school motocross event. 

Day One: High Schools

Day one, the Friday, saw a really good turnout with full gates and qualifying in some classes.  Secondary school racing was on the programme and riders of all levels converged from schools as far away as Palmerston North and Gisborne. Unfortunately bad weather also converged and the event was run under the banner of boggy, slushy, and slippery.  Yes, the rain had begun the night before and didn’t ease until the start of race 1.  Yes, there were kids who had to get off and push.  Yes, there were some bikes that gave up the ghost because of over-revving.  Yes, the programme got a bit behind schedule because of all this.  BUT, if you survived the practice, the day did get better. It wasn’t as bad as expected and you could have a heap of fun. We have caught up with a few riders as follows: 

Chris Merriman (Rotorua) enjoyed himself and yet he hates mud. His Pirelli paddle tyres worked well with the throttle hard out but, in spite of falling off 3 times in one of his races, he finished the day 7th in the 15-18 years 125cc class.

Kydd Cately rode in the same class for Katikati College. He has just stepped up to the 125 so it was a big challenge in the conditions of the day.  He was rapt to qualify 26th, then move up the field with a 19th in race 1, 14th in race 2 and a 9th in race 3 for 15th overall.

His sister Shelby was also competing for Katikati College but in the Women’s Race. “It was hard work, especially in the practice.” says Shelby. “Only about 3 of us finished any laps. It was really sloppy. In one race I crashed, got up and then went over the handlebars. There was just one main rut”.  Shelby’s 4th place overall is, as usual, particularly creditable because her 150 is much less powerful than the mostly 125 and 250 bikes she’s competing against.

Unfortunately the Catley family points were not eligible for the School team prize as 3 riders from a school are required.

Tauranga Boys’ College fielded a team of about 20 riders but were missing a couple of their key riders who were scheduled to compete at the Nationals in Taupo on the weekend.

Adam and Daniel Molloy were part of the group. “It was tough to start with”, says Daniel, “but it got better”. He finished 18th in the 15-18 250 class.

“The practice was really muddy and hard,” adds Adam, “but the last 2 races were good”.  Adam was 8th overall in the Novice 85cc class.

There were two categories of classes, one for riders who are used to racing and the other for novices. Some of the more recreational riders initially felt a little out of their depth but they adapted well and with enthusiasm, going all out for points for their schools.

The day was a major workout for all riders but the biggest workout was for the post-race water blasters.

Day 2: Primary & Intermediates

Saturday was the turn of the primary and intermediate school riders. Once again there was a huge turnout but, fortunately the rain had gone and the track had been tidied up "awesome" after the Friday hammering. Tauranga produced some podium performances.

Jakob Bourne representing Bethlehem Primary won the 9-11 65cc class with 2/1/2 results.  This class was on the big track which rutted up quite massively as the day wore on and had its fair share of crashes. It was challenging but enjoyable.  Jakob used his brain and rode to the conditions and did the job. He has the speed and, with size on his side, he has good control. 

For Bethlehem Primary’s second rider, Seton Davis, it was his first time on a big track. He did really well and finished 20th but Seton and Jakob were one rider short  for a team.

Stella Edwards and St Thomas Moore didn't have a team either but rode brilliantly against the boys in the 7-8 years 65cc class for 10th place.

Aidan Roberts and Dominic Williams rode the same class for Oropi School.  They found the big track good at the beginning but it cut up quick so got harder to ride on. Dominic wasn't too keen on the ruts up to his knees and wished the 65s could have raced before rather than after the bigger bikes but was happy with the day, in general.  Aidan had an off day. He came 5th in the first race but “biffed off” in the second so was real slow in the third finishing 11th overall.  Today, he’s aching. 

Tauranga Intermediate School took along its largest team ever – 13 riders including one girl. Georgia Waterhouse finished 13th in the 85cc support class. Most of the TIS riders were in the huge 85 cc class which had to be split into two.  “It was rutty. I fell off all the time (10 times in one race according to an observer),”Georgia reports. “I had to pick up the bike and keep going. It was hard but really fun.  I’ve got heaps of bruises,” she laughs.

Kristain Crane qualified 10th on only his 3rd race on an 85. The racing was tougher but his results improved with the weather. A slow gate and an off out the back left him 21st in race 1, another fall in the second corner of race 2 meant 18th, but a good start in race 3 helped him finish 12th for 18th overall.

Sam Meredith qualified 5th and was 2nd in race 1 behind the "man they'd all like to beat", Brodie Connelly. However, in races 2 and 3, Sam fell off and had his work cut out to get back up through the field, gaining a 5th and 6th respectively for a just off the podium place of 4th overall.

Madoc Dixon made the  second step of the podium with his consistent 3/3/3 results pipping Kyan Loomans (4/2/4), riding for Whakatane Intermediate, in 3rd.

For Wade Meredith, riding in the lower 8-10 age group, it was his first event on an 85.  In the top 10 with 8th place was fantastic.

It was Simon Holding's first ever event.  He had such a cool time and he finished 7th in the Trail bike class. Quin Loomans, who is home schooled, rode to 3rd place in the same class.

There were individual trophies back to 5th place but with 5 spot prizes for each class as well.

Tauranga Intermediate came fourth in the school team stakes but the points were extremely close - only 2 points separated 1st from 4th.  There were individual trophies back to 5th place

On the mini track the 50cc mini classes were equally competitive. Travis Crane, Arama Te Whetu and Seadon White finished  10th, 11th and 5th respectively.  Travis was particularly pleased to qualify in the A group against the big 50s.

Go to MX Timing for full results  

Go to Lauran's page for some photos from day 1

Go to Debbie Looman's page for some photos from day 2 main track

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