The weekend of 9th and 10th September saw the NORA Motorsport Team Event head to Culham in Oxfordshire. With the extreme weather conditions it was a testament to the organisers, clubs and particularly the riders that the event was staged and contested to such a high level!
The weekend began with teams congregating at the start to have their photo taken before heading to the line for qualifying. The event was offering up awards to individual riders as well as the six teams competing in the event; Corsham SSC, Cotswold Youth and AMX, Dursley MX, Ringwood MXC, Severn Valley MXC and Southerly MXC.
There was a lot at stake for the clubs with a total prize purse worth over £7500 spread across all of the clubs attending. After the first block of 8 motos running from Auto’s through to Vets it was Southerly MX that had set out their stall and taken an early lead over Ringwood with Severn Valley and Cotswold close behind. Corsham and Dursley, although with some good riders , the depth of the teams saw both Corsham and Dursley a little way adrift. By the end of block two Southerly had built on there early lead over Ringwood and Cotswold had taken over third by the narrowest of margins. Going in to day two it was Southerly stretching their lead up to 250 points following the third block and Cotswold managing to open up a gap over Severn Valley following injuries sustained to some good point scorers. Going on to the final block it looked like Southerly had built an unassailable lead over Ringwood in second but it was still all to play for third and fourth with a gap of just over 100 points with the clubs scoring around 800 points per block. During the final Motos the thrid and fourth positions got tighter and the positions were swapped across the classes but with Cotswold being strong in the last Open Moto they managed to hang on to third place with Ringwood in second and Southerly taking the overall win.
Each team could field up to six riders in each of the eight groups with the best 5 points scores counting towards their overall tally. With different clubs strong in different classes it took a while for the order to settle down and third and fourth was hotly contested to the end, with the position changing twice over the last two heats of the weekend. The youth riders were out first and it was Cotswold Y&AMX that topped the final group table just 4 points clear of Southerly. It was NORA CRS Development rider Lewis Bethell for Cotswold that took the overall win in the class with five wins from five, finishing ahead of three Southerly riders Kenzie Cole, Ashton Coleman and Ben Sullivan.
It was Southerly that were strong in the 85cc Big Wheel class picking up a whopping 1008 points ahead of nearest rivals Ringwood MXC on 844. Southerly rider Danny Flude took the overall victory with four wins and a second. Cotswolds Archie Stapley came home second whilst Severn Valleys Reegan Rodgers took the final Big Wheel moto win of the weekend.
It was a reversal in the Small Wheel 85cc group with Ringwood topping the table from Southerly with a gap of 18 points. It was Cotswold however that dominated the top overall rider positions with Olly Waters taking a maximum point haul ahead of Charlie Mitchell. Ringwoods Charlie Bond missed out on a podium spot with a dnf in the final Moto demoting him to 5th spot. Southerlys William Dennis took the third step on the podium after 5 consistent rides on the gruelling weather and track conditions.
Corsham SSC came strong in the Auto group with a whopping 64 point advantage over nearest rivals Severn Valley amassing a total of 916 points. Corsham riders Blake Marks Bracey and Jenson King stood on the second and third podium boxes respectfully whilst it was Cotswolds Mason Foreman who dominated all five motos to take the overall individual victory.
The 65cc class saw a fifth club take top spot in the class scores with Severn Valley amassing the most points with 902, 60 ahead of Southerly just 3 ahead of Cotswold. It was Ringwood rider Jamie Currie, however, that took the top step of the individual podium with three wins from five, finishing ahead of Logan Lewis representing Severn Valley and Cotswolds Jayden Kaye. Southerly rider Finley Rundle missed out on the podium by just one point.
The first of the adult groups to hit the track was the MX2 class where Southerly came out the strongest with a total score of 996 points. Second place was hotly contested between Ringwood and Severn Valley. The individual honours were fought over by Southerlys George Hopkins and Corsham rider Dominic Newbury. Each of the five motos saw the pair battling at the front with Hopkins taking the honours. A final moto win got Leon Williams on to the third step of the podium ahead of Harvey James.
The vets group followed the MX2 class out and the track was starting to take its toll on the riders by the fifth moto of the weekend. Severn Valley took advantage of being strong in the group and scoring 931 points to move up to third spot in the team points standings, battling for the position with Cotswold. Rob Lewis was Severn Valleys top scorer and topped the individual podium over the weekend by just one point form Cotswolds Sam Callow taking the runner up spot. Ringwood manage to get a rider on the third step of the podium in the form of Darren Banwell keeping the pressure on Southerly who were heading the team scores at this point.
The final group out on track was the Adult Open class and Severn Valley were suffering in the points finishing 309 behind Cotswold in the battle for second in the standings. Southerly topped the class to consolidate the lead they had built up in the team points. It was Southerly rider Jake Curtis Stevens on the 2 stroke Yamaha that took three wins from five to take the overall victory ahead of Cotswold rider Charlie Griffiths. Leighton Holmes, also representing Southerly had a consistent weekend netting him the third place on the podium.