Awakaponga gets underway

Whakatane Series

maddix park mx

What’s with these wet Sundays ?

The 2016  Awakaponga series got underway on Sunday 17th April. The day was drizzly in the main but the tracks weren’t too treacherous until the rain really hosed down for the last race round. Then the going got tough. There were more riders than the results indicate as some opted to not hire a transponder. As usual, there was a strong family element to the line ups.

Dylan Tredinnick was very pleased with his start to the racing season in the Junior 125B class.  “I  holeshot the  first race and  led all the way to a win.  In race 2, I slid out sideways on the gate – it was pretty slippery – and was 4th round the corner. I passed them all on the back straight but then the 250 got past me so I was 2nd.  I got the holeshot again in the last race and led for a couple of laps.  It was really ,really wet.  I slowed down to wipe my glasses and the 250 passed me and I couldn’t get the lead back”.  Dylan finished the round in 2nd place, one point behind “the 250” in the person of Ezra Brabant.

Brother, Josh Tredinnick, did some successful class hopping at the Junior level but was only  pointed in the Senior A 250. All good practice for the upcoming Junior Nationals.

Issha Phillip, 5th overall in the Junior 125 B class, has come out of “retirement’’ once again and despite a couple of offs is still enthusiastic.

Her brother, Jovhann, riding at the senior level, had the second fastest lap time of the day but missed the last race because of girl-friend obligations – “welcome to the real world” says his dad.

Sam Middleton leads the Junior 250 open class and the Junior 125 A class. “I love the mud” he reports “and the track was mean as”. “But”, he adds, “my bike needed a real clean afterwards. It was totally white.”   Sam had the 6th fastest lap time.  Dad, Leddy, was a lot lower down the list. “It was inevitable, it’s been happening for a couple of years now”, says Leddy, a lot more proud than he is humiliated, “ he’s faster than me but at least  I’m still doing it ! Leddy lies second in the Vets 45 plus class behind  fellow Whakatane-ite Darren Capill.

Alex Cameron ended the first round in 5th place in the Junior 125 A class.  Last year he was exhausted after a 30 minute practice round at the Nationals; this week at Awakaponga, he demonstrated a new level of stamina and performance and competitiveness. In the last race, when the weather was at its worst, he had to stop with goggle problems in the second lap but nevertheless managed to stay with the top 5. On the very last lap he picked his moment, charged and rode from 5th to 3rd.

There were no new trick bits on his bike; he owes this new fitness, strength, motivation and competitive edge to his sister Christina. Christina is a personal trainer who is specializing in helping MX riders. She rides as well finishing 4th overall in the Women’s class.

Leading the Women’s class and lying 2nd and 4th respectively in the Senior B 250 class are sisters Jessie and Casey Waterhouse. “It was an awesome day but wet at the end, “says Jessie who has stepped up in the world to an RMZ250 (no pressure from Luke). She and Casey are planning on doing the Taupo Series and the Women’s Nationals this year and seem well on track for success.

Chris Merriman had an erratic day in the Junior 125 A class with results ranging from 9th to 3rd and an overall 4th place. His big brother Danny had the 3rd fastest lap time and is in 4th place on the points table.

There is strong family support for the younger MX riders, even those without a sibling in the sport.

Madoc Dixon, with some helpful advice from Scotty Canham, is finding the new section round the sawdust area (the double-tabletop-double-single) a lot more comfortable and smoother; in fact, he’s loving it. Madoc also likes the wet.  There was once again some serious battling between Madoc and Kyan Loomans  in the Junior 85cc A class with the last race deciding in Kyan’s favour.

More points leaders from the Tauranga area include Jakob Bourne in the Pro 65 cc class, Nick Heyblom in the Senior A250 class, Robby Stewart in the 35-44 Years vet class, Stella Edwards in the 7-8 Years 65cc class and Arama Te Whetu in the  4-7 Years 50cc class.

Stella Edwards loves her MX and has been working on clutching and braking with lots of bike time. She has certainly upped her skills and stands up a lot more. She is hoping to do the Tokoroa and the Taupo series this year.

 Arama Te Whetu continues battling with his “brother in arms” Travis Crane.  This time it was Arama who came through, helped by the fact it was really wet -a weather condition he adores.

Jacob  Bourne had a good day in the tricky conditions  where it was important just to stay on.  He enjoyed competing against the novice 85 riders in their “shared” races.

However, this is just the start - there are six more rounds to go.

The full results for round 1 are up for both the minis and for the main track.

Roll on round 2.

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