British International Super X
I am sat at home, in my 'office', on a mellow Sunday evening with the PC fans wirring, trying to work out how on earth to write down the experiences from last night. The times, laps, places and competitors are all recorded and will be broadcast for all to see. That bit is not the problem.
The problem is trying to convey the excitement, sheer noise, smell, adrenaline and terror of being trackside at the UK's premier SuperCross event. I tried coming up with various analogies involving things like playing in the central reservation of a motorway made from dirt but they just didn't work! It's definately a case of 'You had to be there'. And I was...
For those that don't know, SuperCross is probalby the MotoCross equivalent to BMX racing. Set indoors on purpose built tracks, riders blast round a set number of laps to take the flag. It's a multi-man start with a falling forwards gate that you don't want to jump. And boy, is it fast!
First up, lets come clean. It's pretty damn confusing for a mere downhiller like me. OK, years ago I used to do the lap thing with cross country but it wall all a bit mellower and you had time to work out who was leading. Then I shifted to DH and it's one man at once. Plenty easy to see how pimp someone looks as they come past and only one rider to watch/clap/jeer at at any one time. Simple. Then there is dual, quad and BMX racing. All multi-rider discipline but as in DH, the course is straight forward. One lap/run and it's the guy at the front that's winning.
So this is where you need to be on the ball. Once the SuperCross riders leave the gate and start on their 10 laps or so, everyone is flying. It's no good sitting there slack jawed, numbed by the noise and smell of 2 stroke oil burning, smoke making your eyes run. You gotta be pinned to the fast guy as he stretches the lead. Pretty soon he's gonna lap someone and then you are in trouble! Riders blend together with their motors screaming (and the odd throbbing 4 stroke booming away). But one guy is at the front and he's the reason everyone is pinning it, risking life and limb and throwing up roost like you have never seen.
Sheffield Arena was fully converted into a mad track (see pic below) featuring berms, whoops, doulbes, triples and a huge 'wall' step-up. Pack this place with mad fans, air horns, riders and pumping tunes and you get the idea.
Sound wicked? Hope so, but that's not half of it. The sound of screaming revs, roaring engines and the smell of burnt fuel oil is amazing. You can't fail but be excited by this event so check it out and I'll see you there next year.
In the meantime, I'll leave it to a man who knows to give you the lowdown:
British freestyle motocross king Jamie Squibb once again showed why he is a national champion and is fast making a name for himself in the sport. The Devon rider wowed the crowd at the second round of the fifth British International Supercross Series at Sheffield Arena with a polished half-time show.
Squibb's array of tricks drew the biggest cheers of the night and he was backed up by fellow British rider Danny Veal, and Canadian import Regan Seig who once more received the backing of Wildmoor KTM.
Squibb will be back at Sheffield on April 13 2002 to defend his British title against all comers and also take on the likes of Brian Deegan in the international final of Air War Two. Tickets are already on sale for Air War 2 at Sheffield Arena on: 0114 256 5656.
These guys were mind blowing. A huge launch ramp was placed well in-front of the step-up triple, leaving the large downslope as a landing. Running up from the finish tabletop these guys went sooo high and for soo long they were able to pull a stack of tricks like lazy-boys (lying flat back on the saddle!), candy bars, supermen, superman fendergrab and a full, double handed fender grab by Squibb. Indian Airs, you name it! My personal favourite mad trick is the Cordova - ankles tucked under bars, arched back, hips to the sky and head on the saddle looking backwards, kinda like the 'crab' your little sister did at gym class, but 40 feet up! Seig pulled the sickest one of these I have ever seen!
These guys flat out rule - make Air Wars 2 the one to visit!
Mike Craig won the British International Supercross Series with a shock victory over title holder Mike Brown at Sheffield Arena. Craig took the title which Brown won last year after adding a race win to his third-placed finish in the opening round at Birmingham's NEC Arena. Brown had finished runner-up at Birmingham to Ernesto Fonseca but his title hopes were hit at Sheffield when he allowed Craig to pull away on the CAS Bake n Bite Honda.
Brown suffered from a bogging motor during the race and dramatically fell back into the clutches of Australian Kim Ashkenazi. Brown just managed to keep his MJ Church Kawasaki in second place as he crossed the finish line just ahead of the Moto Vision Yamaha of Ashkenazi.
Third place in the overall standings went to another American, Michael Brandes, thanks to fourth place behind his countrymen and Ashkenazi at Sheffield.
Neil Prince made it a successful night for Honda as the CAS team member took the 450cc four-stroke to its maiden win in this country in the 250cc British final. Prince rode a faultless race to take victory following his fifth-placed finish at Brimingham. But whereas the Welshman had fallen while leading on the last lap at Brimingham he made no mistake this time around and took the win ahead of Paul Teasdale and Jason Higgs. Teasdale was making his return off a long injury lay-off and showed great determination to hold off the attempts of Higgs to take the second place that would have earned him the British 250cc title on his own return after a long time on the sidelines.
Higgs crashed a total of four times in a spectacular race which kept the crowd, inclduing animated father and mechanic Roy, entertained throughout. With Prince's team-mate and round one winner Jussi Vehvilainen missing following an operation on his knee the way had been left open for MJ Church's Mark Hucklebridge to win the British 250cc title.
Hucklebridge was T-boned early in the final and had to retire as a radiator hose had been torn from his bike, leaving it with no coolant. Former British 250 SX champion Rob herring also saw his chances wrecked by a crash and a smashed crankcase.
Fifth place at Sheffield elevated Rob Cherry to third place in the championship standings. Ashkenazi had finished runner-up to the Albion KTM of Glen Phillips in round one of the British 125cc championship after a last to second ride but the `Ashcan' made no mistakes at Sheffield.
Phillips had to settle for second in the championship after finishing fourth at Sheffield behind Yamaha UK's Billy Mackenzie and the Awai Yamaha of South African Lee La Reservee. Mark Millward took the AMCA title after a knockdown race with rival Jason Rennie. The roles had been reversed at the NEC where Rennie executed the killer pass on Millward but this time it was Millward's take-out that put Rennie on the floor. Although Rennie got up to close right in on Millward he could not get near enough to put in a pass to retake the lead and with it the title.
Dale Traylor took the Youth 125cc championship title after heading John Francis, who had won the first round in Birmingham, in the overall standings. CAS Honda's Jim Murro made up for only finishing third in the Big Wheel 85cc final at Birmingham by taking the race win at Sheffield to make it three titles on the night for Harry Ainsworth's team.
The only maximum of the series went to Chad Yarrington who followed up his win in Birmingham with a victory at Sheffield with Bradley Turner once again finishing runner-up.
The 65cc final saw a famous name from British motocross once again to the fore. Max Anstie, son of 500cc Grand Prix winner Mervyn, showed he has his father's talent for getting out of the start gate. But a fall saw Anstie drop to ninth as William Worden took the win ahead of Luke Remmer and Scott Elderfield.
- Mike Craig (Honda)
- Mike Brown (Kawasaki)
- Kim Ashkenazi (Yamaha)
- Michael Brandes (Honda)
- Doug De Haan (Honda)
- Neil Prince (Honda)
- Mark Hucklebridge (Kawasaki)
- Ernesto Fonseca (Honda)
- Neil Prince (Honda)
- Paul Teasdale (Honda)
- Jason Higgs (Kawasaki)
- Charlie Hollis (Suzuki)
- Rob Cherry (Honda)
- Finnbarr Kneafsey (Honda)
- Jussi Vehvilainen (Honda)
- Billy Mackenzie (Yamaha)
- Leigh La Reservee (Yamaha)
- Glen Phillips (KTM)
- Jody Smyth (Yamaha)
- Danny Tollett (Yamaha
- La Reservee
- Matt Winstanley (KTM )
- Mark Millward (Yamaha)
- Jason Rennie (Yamaha)
- Michael Abbott (Honda)
- Simon Lea (Honda)
- Lee Cunningham (Honda)
- Paul Keates (Honda)
- Dale Traylor (Honda)
- Wayne Ainsworth (Yamaha)
- Steve Mackenzie (Yamaha)
- John Francis (KTM)
- Anthony James (Yamaha)
- Chris Peppin (Kawasaki)
Big Wheel 85cc
- Jim Murro (Honda)
- Adam Chatfield (Honda)
- Scott Probert (Honda)
- David Connor (Yamaha)
- Ryan Mason (Kawasaki)
- Martin Barr (Kawasaki)
Small Wheel 85cc
- Chad Yarrington (Honda)
- Bradley Turner (Honda
- uke Copping (Honda)
- Alex Snow (Honda)
- James Lassu (Honda)
- Jack Brunell (Yamaha)
- William Worden (KTM)
- Luke Remmer (Kawasaki)
- Scott Elderfield (Kawasaki)
- Peter Kelly (Kawasaki)
- Dale Evans (KTM)
- Carl Andrews (Kawasaki)
|Rate this article||Tell a friend||Printer Friendly|
|Only users can rate an article. Please login or register.||Only users can tell a friend. Please login or register.||Want to print this article out? View the printer friendly version!|
[ Bolehills Halloween Jam ] - posted on 28th October 2010 by Phil.
[ Follow Me mountain bike film tour of UK and Ireland ] - posted on 9th May 2010 by Sanny.
[ Peaty hosts 10th Battle Royal ] - posted on 9th October 2009 by Phil.
[ Pumptrack pursuit enduro - Round 2 ] - posted on 5th November 2008 by Phil.
[ Bolehills Pumptrack Pursuit Enduro ] - posted on 10th August 2008 by Phil.
Click here to view all 'scene | events' articles.
Looking for more? Click here to list 'scene' articles or here for ALL articles!