Graeme Irwin missed out on the Lyng MX1 overall victory by just a single point at round two of the Maxxis ACU British Motocross Championship supported by Pro Clean at Cadders Hill in Norfolk.
In the MX2 class his injured Buildbase Honda teammate Martin Barr raced through the pain barrier to finish joint third on points but ended the day fourth overall on a tie-break.
After qualifying fifth Graeme came out fighting in both motos on his CRF450R, recording a pair of second-placed finishes on the sandy Norfolk circuit where passing opportunities were limited. His overall result matches his finish at the opening round in March and he now sits a clear second in the standings, 13 points off the lead.
“To be honest I’m a little disappointed,” Graeme Irwin said. “I should have won both races but I still need to say a big thanks to the team – everything was fantastic.
“It was a tough track to pass on but I’ve only lost one point in the championship. It’s been a slow start to the season for me after coming back from injury but I think I’m getting better and better.”
Martin Barr came into round two carrying a bad shoulder injury sustained the previous weekend but he amazed his team by qualifying second and then put together two strong rides, running 3-4 on his CRF250R despite being in obvious discomfort.
“I knew it was going to be tough today after injuring my shoulder when I crashed last week,” said Martin Barr. “I was second quickest in qualifying so I was happy with that and I got a good start in race one and felt comfortable but on the fourth or fifth lap in one of the tight right-handers in a deep rut I caught the front brake lever and went down. Once I picked myself up I kept my head to finish third so it wasn’t so bad.
“I got an okay start in race two and tried to make some quick moves. Mel Pocock passed me and we had a battle the whole way to the end.
“With my injury it wasn’t so bad a day – it could have been better but it could have been a lot worse. There are plenty of races still to go and I’ve got a couple of weeks to rest up and hopefully come back stronger at round three.”
Team owner Dave Thorpe paid tribute to Martin’s fortitude and professional approach to racing.
“Martin has got quite a serious injury with his AC joint in his shoulder,” he said. “He’s had treatment every day this week and not been able to ride the bike so his qualifying time and his subsequent race results were really impressive and really unexpected.
“He’s a tough lad and he doesn’t make a fuss, he just gets on with the job. He’s a very, very good pro.
“Graeme rode well. The club prepared an immaculate venue but I think maybe because of the dry weather passing opportunities were few and far between with the top riders and the blue flag system, especially in the first race, left a lot to be desired.
“Graeme had the pace of Jake [Nicholls] in the first race and Gert [Krestinov] in the second but he had to keep dropping back a bit in both because of the roost. Still, I’m not going to moan because two seconds is still a great result and we’re second in the MX1 championship. Graeme’s in good shape and we’re looking forward to Canada Heights.”
Completing a successful day in MX1 for Honda, Gert – whose bikes are tuned by Ryan Thorpe’s 4P Power company – won the second moto to secure third overall.