The second round of the Maxxis ACU British Motocross Championship moved to Lyng in Norfolk for the Easter weekend. With the Wilvo Forkrent KTM team back to full strength with the return of Jake Nicholls, all three riders were looking for strong results.
The day started with the practice and qualifying sessions and in the MX2 class Adam Sterry continued his current run of good form and posted a great lap time to claim his first ever Maxxis pole position. In the MX1 class, Steven Frossard qualified in 17th place with the returning Jake Nicholls in 14th.
Following the short lunch break it was time for the opening MX2 race of the day and as the gate dropped, Sterry made another cracking start to take the lead going into the first corner.
Once at the head of the pack, Sterry tried to break away from the chasing Max Anstie and Steven Lenior, but just at mid-race distance he just lost the lead to Anstie but continued to push hard and finished a strong second place just two seconds behind the winner.
In the second MX2 race Anstie took the holeshot with Sterry in second. Sterry pushed hard and stayed right with the leader until the halfway mark when he suffered a heavy crash that dropped him down to third behind Lenoir. Despite damage to the bike he still had a big enough gap on the chasing Watson to secure third place at the flag.
The final MX2 race would see another holeshot from Sterry ahead of Anstie and Lenoir but Anstie managed to make an early pass for the lead.
The three riders broke away from the rest of the field and had their own personal battle for most of the race. A couple of mistakes from Sterry allowed Anstie to break away for the win but the youngster stuck to the task at hand and fought off a late charge from Lenoir to take second in the race, also giving him second overall on the day. Despite his DNF at the first round at Hilton Park, the result was enough to move him up to third in the championship behind joint leaders Watson and Lenoir.
The opening MX1 race of the day saw both Frossard and Nicholls start inside the top 10 and work their way up. During the early laps Frossard moved himself into third place and with the leading pair already a long distance ahead, the Frenchman settled for a comfortable and safe finish. Nicholls making his way to 10th and then up to eighth place early on, settled into a good rhythm and kept position until the flag.
The second MX1 race saw Nicholls and Frossard both start around the top 10, but unfortunately Frossard crashed on the opening lap and hurt his hand and retired to regroup for the last race. With Frossard out, Nicholls continued to push forwards and moved his way up to take another eighth place finish.
The last MX1 race of the day would see Frossard make a good start but Nicholls would suffer drama on the start line when his engine cut out and wouldn’t restart.
Once the gate dropped Nicholls managed to get the bike back to life and rejoined the race dead last and over half a lap down. As the race progressed Frossard moved forward into fifth place and where he finally finished while Nicholls battled his way towards the front of the field to finish a credible 12th. At the end of the day Frossard’s two finishes were enough to earn him seventh place overall and move him to 11th in the championship, with Nicholl’s finishing 8th overall and moving him to 12th in the championship.
Commenting on the day, Adam Sterry said: “Qualifying went great for me today. I took my first ever British Championship pole position and felt good coming back to Lyng after winning my first British race here last year.
“The first race I got the holeshot and then Max passed me with seven minutes to go and I took a solid second. Then in the second race Max and I pulled away quickly but then I had a heavy crash and bent the bars, although I still managed to finish third. In the last race I followed Max home for another second place. Overall I had the fastest lap in three of the four sessions and felt really happy with my riding today.”
“Today has been a difficult day as my starts were OK but not great,” said Steven Frossard. “In the first race I moved into third but the leaders were gone so I just rode steady and finished in third place. Then in the second race I made a good start but crashed on the first lap and hurt my thumb so I pulled up. The last race was OK and I was riding better but got a bit of arm pump and finished in fifth place.”
On his return to racing Jake Nicholls commented: “Today was OK for me as I’ve only been on the bike six times since my arm injury. Qualifying was steady and I finished in 14th which is OK bearing in mind I haven’t done any qualifying laps since Whitby last year.
“The first race I got a good start but rode really badly and finished in eighth. Then in the second race I rode better but struggled to pass a couple of people and finished in eighth again. In the final race the bike wouldn’t restart on the line and I came from dead last and miles back to finish in 12th; which I am pleased with how I rode in that race.”
Team Manager Steve Turner summed up the weekend for Wilvo Forkrent KTM: “It was a bit of a mixed bag today. Adam was great again and he took two more holeshots and wasn’t far off Anstie all day, which is very encouraging.
“It was really good to see Jake back on a bike. He’s got a massive heart and battled hard to get the most out of the day. When his bike wouldn’t start on the line and he was half a lap down by the time he got going, lesser men would have pulled in but he just got his head down and scrapped for every place until the end.
“Steven struggled with the track a little bit today and wasn’t helped when he had a big crash in the second heat. Coming off the back of his no score at Hilton Park and with this weekend it has left him with a bit of a mountain to climb.”