Business resumed as normal in day 2 with Chloe in 17+ and Haydon in 17-24. This being Caen though the fields were huge and the standard high. Haydon stormed to victory in the first moto with a dominant first straight. He followed up with two thirds from the outside lates.
Chloe discovered that the Europeans play rough, particularly on a tight track and where there is a lot of jostling for position. She learned fast and after a shock 5th from the inside took the 4th and 3rd she needed to progress the quarters.
140 riders in 17-24 meant 1/16th finals for Haydon. He didn’t make it easy for himself with a bad gate meaning he had to come through from last place into turn 1. Great track speed and a smooth pass through turn 2 saw him take 3rd and progress to the 1/8th final. His 1/8th final was text book, a fast start from lane 6 and aggressive cut across to the inside saw a trouble free ride into the quarter final with fellow Brit Brynley Savage. A lane 4 draw in the quarter looked promising for Haydon to utilise his fast start and excellent track speed to progress. Shut down by a rider from the outside meant plan A went out the window and he had to go the long way round to take fourth and make the semifinals.
Chloe saved her best gate of the day for the quarter final. Third to the first jump from gate seven she later regretted not cutting across earlier as was pushed to the outside through turn one. Losing the advantage and taking the wider line through turns one and two she got along side the qualifying rider but never regained the fourth she needed. Her day ended there with fifth. Disappointed yes, but a lot positives to take to the start of the National season and a significant improvement over this time last season.
Haydon's semifinal was stacked and coming from Gate 8 he we was going to need an exceptional start and a bit of luck on track to make the final. His start was great and he was in contention all the way down the first straight but with less than half a wheel advantage he couldn't make it stick. Pushed wide in turns one and two he needed a stellar third straight to make up the ground and pass into turn 3, he nearly did it but eventually missed out by 1/10th of a second in the lunge for the line. He was obviously disappointed not to make his first European final of the year, but on reflection was really happy with a top 10 finish in such a large and high quality field.