Motocross

Pit hot!

Pit hot!

Beirer doubles up at Matchams as round one of the KWS MX series gets off to a flyer… PIT BEIRER blasts to a pair of Open class wins and Stevie Sword and Wayne Smith share the honours in the Pro 125cc division as the KWS Masters MX series kicks off at Matchams Park. The sandy Hampshire track’s super-tough and quickly sorts out the men from the boys. Spectators are left in no doubt who’s been busy over the off-season and who’s not – and KTM’s new German signing Beirer clearly has been working hard. An 18-second winning margin in the opening Open class moto – re-run after it’s red-flagged at the first attempt when Jason Rennie crashes hard and breaks his leg – and a half-a-minute advantage in race two underlines Beirer’s commitment to his new team. Red Bull KTM team-mate Jamie Dobb chases him hard in the opener but a flying rock to the foot slows his charge – and counts him out of the second moto. “I came out of a corner and went to pass someone but there was a rock in the middle of the track,” says Dobby. “I thought I’d missed it but it flicked up and whacked me on my foot. I could hardly put any weight on it but I went out for the restart and it was getting worse and worse.” With JD sitting out race two it’s left to Mark Hucklebridge to follow Beirer home. Armed with a big-bore Chambers KTM thumper, Huck – third in moto one – produces the kind of brutish performance expected from him as he muscles his way to second. “I’ve had a real good day today,” grins the Monster. “I got some good starts and managed to pull away from the pack. In the last one Marko Kovalainen was hanging on for a bit but I managed to break him halfway through the race. “Hopefully this is an indication of the way my season’s going to go and the KTM’s great – she’s awesome. We’ve been testing in Spain and have put a lot of work in which is starting to pay off.” Third on the day is new MJ Church Kawasaki signing Carl Nunn who looks right at home on the KX250. “To be honest, I didn’t really exert myself too much today,” reckons Nunny. “The track wasn’t that easy to ride – I saw a lot of people making mistakes and I made a few myself and I didn’t want to wipe myself out. “To finish on the podium is good enough, especially on my first ride on the Kawasaki. I’m really enjoying myself – the team’s really good and the bike’s really good. We’ve put a lot of work into it and it’s coming together.” In the Pro 125cc class the eagerly anticipated battle between defending champ Sword and Billy MacKenzie fails to materialise when Billy goes down at the start of both motos. Racing a stock Albion KTM machine, Swordy looks in complete control as he takes the moto one win by just over three seconds from Y-Bike KTM’s Wayne Smith and team-mate Tom Church. But the second moto is a different story when he’s taken out by a back-marker – handing the lead to Smith. Swordy gets back on and catches the leader, only to crash again when he tangles with Smith after trying an ambitious line up the inside of his rival. Smith stays upright for a comfortable win from Swordy with TC taking another third ahead of Billy Mack who comes from almost dead last to fourth on the four-stroke 250F. “I felt a bit tight in the first race and didn’t ride as well as I should have done but it was enough to stay in front of Wayne,” admits Stevie. “In the second I had a good start and pulled out an eight-second lead but when I was picking my way through the back-markers one came across me and there was nowhere to go but straight into him. “I was really frustrated at that point and the front end was bent but I caught back up to Wayne. I tried to go up the inside of him but I don’t think he realised I was there and he cut across, taking my front wheel away.” After tying on points with Swordy, Smith’s delighted with his early season form. “I’ve had a mega day, I can hardly believe it, everything just fell into place,” says the Cumbrian. “I holeshot the first race but made a little mistake and Stephen got past me. I had a bit of a bad start in the second race – I think I was about 10th out of the gate – but I came through behind Stephen and when he tangled with a back-marker I got past. He caught me back up, then we had a bit of a tangle and he ended up crashing.” And TC’s all smiles as well after completing the KTM 1-2-3. “It’s the first race of the season so I’m pretty happy with that. I feel strong and my conditioning is good – I know where I want to be and I don’t think it will take a lot of work to get there. The track is rough today but it’s awesome.” The AMCA 125 class sees Scott Mathia make up for a disastrous race one 26th with wins in motos two and three while Wayne Ainsworth, with a 2-1-1 card, is the man to beat in the AMCA Open category. Words by Sean Lawless