With Gary Gibson recovering in hospital after an injury this week, the Heads and All Threads Suzuki team headed to Preston Docks for round one of the Michelin MX Nationals with Graeme Irwin and Harri Kullas both aboard the RM-Z450 in MX1.

The Michelin MX Nationals is a mixed class fastest 40 event with MX1 and MX2 scored separately, so getting a good gate pick is important and Irwin showed great speed to take fourth with Kullas a respectable 10th.

In race one Irwin made a good start and was within the top five, but at around the halfway point of the 30 minute moto the track became much rougher than the conditions seen in qualifying. This led to Irwin struggling with his stiff fork setting from qualifying, and as it drained his energy he dropped positions and crossed the line eighth – sixth in MX1.


Kullas’ start left him with a lot of work to do from 12th, but he stormed through the field to cross the line in fifth – fourth in MX1.

Both Suzuki riders rounded the first corner in great positions in the second race, with Irwin in third and Kullas in fifth. Irwin moved into second and was pushing, but a mistake in lap eight cost him, and the Irishman dropped to his finishing position of sixth (fifth in MX1), and sixth MX1 overall.

Kullas rode a consistent race from the start and was battling to take second from Brad Anderson, but couldn’t quite do enough and crossed the line in third, narrowly missing out on the MX1 podium with fourth MX1 overall.

“Qualifying was good, but I struggled to ride in the first race and sapped a lot of my energy,” says Graeme Irwin. “The second race started well, and I was second with about 10 minutes to go, but I made a mistake and went over the berm. It took a couple of laps to get into the rhythm again, but then it was too late to make any more progress.”

“I got a bad start in the first, but I think I recovered well to get fourth,” said Harri Kullas. “It was a better start in the second and I was really happy to get third. I’m happy with the Suzuki and how I rode, but it would be better to get on the podium overall.”

Neil prince, Team Manager for Heads and All Threads Suzuki commented: “It was a good day really. Graeme had some problems and a mistake. He rode well, but it’s hard to come back from in the mixed races.

“Harri rode brilliantly in the first, he came through the pack like a steam train, it’s just a shame he missed out on the podium overall.

“Now we’re just looking forward to the next British round at Lyng in two weeks.”