WOR Events kicked off 2019 last Sunday at Carrog Isa, a classic hare and hounds venue with 4.5miles per lap of a mountain course which challenged every rider. Carrog has a bit of everything including stunning views over the tops of the Llangollen to Corwen Valley, bogs, climbs, long descents, open mountain fields, tricky single-track wooded sections and a big bumpy motocross feel to lots of the scramble sections.
The event was round 3 of the WULFSPORT supported winter series and catered for an early morning 1.5hr Kids race followed by a two-hour adult race. Sean Eckersley was top man on the day despite a few shaky moments early on and a battle with some of the early Expert front runners.
The flying Eckersley took the lead around the hour-mark and never looked back although the two riders running very closely behind kept him honest. Runner-up Steve Hughes was just 12 seconds down at the chequered flag and getting faster as the race went on, while a further 28 seconds back was Ryan Shacklady. All three riders completed 13 laps at the front and Lincoln Brewster matched that to top the Expert Vets from Darren Skillin on 12 laps.
Chris Neesam was in fine form and stormed to the win in the Clubman A group, with a one minute and 53-second advantage over runner-up Sion Jones. The Husky-mounted pair were on an expert level 13 laps, with third-placed Paul Engerlen slightly off his usual pace after too many Christmas mince pies.
Clubman B victory belonged to Carl Thomas as he and Sion Hughes were the only two riders to complete 12 laps in the class. Luke Evans came home third. Titus Blackwell made the long journey from Sussex worthwhile as he topped the Over 40 class by the width of a front tyre from Anthony Foulkes after both completed 11 laps.
Third-placed Rob Parry also completed 11 laps but was around eight minutes down on the leading pair. Colin Griffiths led the Over 50s from start to finish and was eventually six-and-a-half minutes ahead of Simon Nutter, with both riders on 11 laps each and putting in very determined and gritty rider shifts. Third place went Gareth Jones on 10 laps.
Top Sportsman honours went to Nate Parsons, with Ryan Cahill in the runner-up spot and Hayden Rainford a solid bronze, all three finishing on 11 laps. Annabelle Brewster completed eight laps to beat Izzy Skillin to the title of best lady rider on the day with Skillin a lap down, both doing superbly in the challenging conditions especially on the big killer hill section that demanded big revs and commitment.
Novice winner spoils went to Jason Howarth on 11 laps, a result that sees him move straight to the Sportsman class for his next event, Runner-up was Simon Davies with Neil Strong in third place both going well on ten laps each.
The youngsters lined up for their 1.5hr race across the mountain on a much smaller but still challenging lap of enduro terrain over a small one-mile loop on the mountain that was rideable for all skill levels.
Sam Hughes on his 85 KTM once again proved the one to beat as he shook off the challenge of his rivals in class and overall to complete 47 laps and take the win in the 13/14s from Lewis Taylor and Tom Evans. Taylor improves with every race and Evans did brilliantly in his first ever bike race.
Lewis Hurdsman was in great form and blasted to the win in the 11/12s and was also Hughes’ main challenger overall. Hurdsman was smooth and quick to notch 46 laps and take the win from Jake Willis and William Graff Baker.
The little 65cc Yamaha of Will Barnett was out in front as he won the 9/10s and he was trailed in by Aled Owen and Rhys Williams. Jack Brooks topped the 7/8s from his mates, twins Luke and Sonny Ireland.