International MX star Shaun Simpson made short work of the 7.5 mile hare and hound track set up by newly formed club Ecosse XC. This was the second round of the winter championship series held by the club who are sponsored by Rockoil and Wulfsport.
The course consisted of a short sandy MX section, leading into tight wooded areas and open fern land. Riders had to navigate their way through concrete bollards, over fallen trees and deep ruts whilst trying to avoid hidden tree stumps, which some failed to do! The Scottish weather was kind so the track was in peak condition for the start.
The day kicked off with the youth race. Cristina Palmer, Sam Boyd and Thomas Caruthers battled bar to bar for the entire race in the junior class. Sam was leading the race with one lap to go. Cristina took a tumble towards the end of the race but managed to pick herself up, pull a small gap between her and Sam as she tore through the woods and got to the finish line just seconds ahead of Sam and Thomas. In the youth class, Owen Hendry was out in front from the off, taking to the track like duck to water. Hendry had a small incident in the ferns during the race, having to run alongside the bike and hop back on after the backend kicked out. Luckily only one person saw him. Seth Moir came in second closely hunted by Angus Bruce who fought hard to keep up with the two bigger bikes in front. Also taking a few tumbles, Angus caught up with Seth and was able to join him at the finishing flag only 3 minutes apart. All three riders managed to complete 10 laps. There was also success in the girls’ class with Ciara Robertson leading the way in front of Lottie Hume who came in second. The girls’ class is a newly introduced feature for Ecosse XC, trying to encourage more female riders into the sport.
With a successful youth race over, the adults were raring to start their engines. As the flag was lifted, front wheels were in the air and off they went into the woods with speedy Shaun Simpson leading the way. The event ran without too many incidents. A couple of tree huggers were spotted and the odd rider admiring the forest floor. Managing to avoid these incidents were Richy ‘the hawk’ Hawes who came in first place for Sportsmen, completing 10 laps, followed by Grant Gillender in second and Marcus Jefferson in third. Ryan Jones took gold in Clubman B, chased by Shaun Sangster who got second place. This was only Shaun’s second hare and hound race in the adult class. A very talented young rider to watch out for. Behind him was Andy Jones in third.
Another new class introduced, which proved to be quite popular, was the over 50’s. A class where the ‘more experienced’ riders could battle it out. Andrew Maben came in first, Andy Dean in second and Robbie Allan in third. These guys are not afraid to prove that you are never too old to twist throttles. Hero of the day was Stuart Mowbray in the over 40’s class. Stuart had a nasty crash an hour into the race, puncturing his lung and dislocating his shoulder. Despite his injuries he carried on to win his class before taking a short trip to hospital. Kyle Deswert took second place closely followed by Steven Currie Snr. Completing 11 laps in Clubman was Ross Hamilton, only 1 minute behind was Carl Hollis. Skilled trials rider Stuart Mack took third place. In the experts, Stuart Ross had a bit of a disaster. After going strong during the race, a bolt came loose from his sprocket, ripping it off, taking a chunk of bike with it, and leaving Stuart pushing his bike back to the pits with just ten minutes to go. For the other riders, however, it was a rather exciting race, getting to race alongside Shaun Simpson, who unsurprisingly got first place. Managing to keep up with him (just) was Jason Martin in second and Conor Scott in third.
Speaking to Shaun Simpson after the race he said, “I had a great day! Great track layout. It was a well organised and slickly ran event. Everything ran on time and it was such a nice laid back atmosphere with everyone having so much fun. I loved riding the track and would come back again.” He also stated that “it was great training for me at this time of the year”. The track will now be regraded, thanks to Haddington Hire Centre, ready for the third round on the 5th of February with a reversed course.
Results 1-6 and machines Junior 1st – Cristina Palmer -KTM 65 2nd – Sam Boyd- KTM 85sw 3rd – Thomas Caruthers -KTM 65 4th – Ryan Gerard -KTM 85sw 5th – Charlie Campbell -Honda 150 Youth 1st – Owen Hendry- Yamaha 250 2nd – Seth Moir -KTM 125 3rd – Angus Bruce -KTM 85bw 4th – Dominic Stevenson -Yamaha 85bw 5th – Andrew Harkins -Kawasaki 85bw 6th – Tom Hume -KTM 85bw Girls 1st – Ciara Robertson -KTM 125 2nd – Lottie Hume -Husaberg 85bw Expert 1st – Shaun Simpson -Yamaha 450 2nd – Jason Martin -Yamaha 250 3rd – Conor Scott -KTM 250 4th – Steven Currie Jnr -Husqvarna 450 5th – Scott Murray -Honda 450 6th – Johnny Stewart -KTM 250