In his first ever International event, reigning British B Class champ Billy Green took on riders two years ahead of him in the ‘Youth Champ’ class, and came away with a stunning third place on just 22 marks lost. Ahead of him was title favourite and fellow Brit Jack Peace on 18. Jack had a disastrous start, with a five on section 2. It was a very challenging section with much of the entry taking fives, but Jack had a slip before the worst part… setting up a challenging day trying to recover. Eventual winner, Italian Lore Gandola, was one of only a handful of cleans. Other Brits on this top line were Oliver Smith and Joe Faunthorpe. They both started with a few nerves on section one. Oliver then aced the hard number two, with one point on the hardest part, then a slack dab at the end gates. Just as they were getting into their strides there was a big delay at a section where a ‘cheat line’ had developed. Jack and Billy managed to negotiate their way through the zigging back and forth between the cards, while Oliver and Joe didn’t really want to go the easier way and ended up lost in the section and taking fives. This started a downward spiral for those two, while Jack and Billy continued their consistent runs.
Billy took his turn at a disaster on section 12, a relatively straightforward arena section. All was looking good until he stalled his engine in a section he would have certainly cleaned. All improved on the second laps, with Gandola going round for a single point, while Jack took 7 and Billy 8. These scores belie the difficulty of the sections and are truly commendable rides. Billy was rightly chuffed with the result, while Mum Louise was close to tears with pride.
The secondary ‘Youth International’ class included Brits Jake Ely, Jacob Snowden and Brett Harbud. Jacob came away with a great podium position in third, with Jake in 11th and young Brett 15th. Good performances all round, and good experience for events in the future.
The top ‘Womans Champ’ class saw Victoria Payne step up as the only Brit, and took a fine 13th, while in the ‘Womans International’ class, Gabby Whitham had a great day, losing a total of only 4 points on her way to the top step of the podium. Alicia Robinson finished 4th on 13 points – a mere 2 points off the podium. She had an unfortunate 5 on her second lap that made all the difference. Charlotte Kimber, on 21 points, finished 6th, while Jen Stephen took 8th on 32 points.
All in all, a decent day for the Brits, with proof that Billy Green has arrived on the international stage!
Ian Smith …
President & Founder, OSET Corp