We're back at Peckham BMX for the HSBC National BMX Series after a a two year lay off. One of our favourite stops on the calendar where the London club always put on an awesome event. The timing couldn't have been much better for this year's races with home favourite Kye Whyte making an appearance fresh from his success at the World Cup.
The Gate 8 team have been beset by injury in recent weeks and the team were down 40% as 3 riders (Joanna, Adie and Chloe) were out injured and Izzy would miss the opening round with other commitments. Despite the setbacks, the competing team had high hopes for the weekend after success at the South Regional round earlier in the month and a special coaching clinic with local pro Dean Reeves, where he shared a little local knowledge that would prove very useful!
With Katie departing the team we were able to offer a spot to a rider we've been watching closely this season. We're delighted that Colombia's Jey Rojas will be racing with us for the rest of the season, watch out for his profile in the coming weeks.
After the wettest June in 7 years, we were pleasantly surprised to be greeted by blue skies and temperatures as warm as the Peckham welcome. First to show was our youngest rider Zara who has been targeting Peckham as one of her key races. She got off to a good start with a third and fifth in the opening rounds and was sitting in a qualifying spot before round three. It didn't go as planned unfortunately and she missed out on the main. Jey and Miguel were doubling up on cruiser and were joined by Chris on the 20" in Masters. All three riders lined up together for the 20" A Final which had the makings of a great race. Chris set the early pace leading into turn 2 before an inside swoop from Miguel saw him take the lead. That's how it finished with another 1-2 for the duo. Jey was close behind in sixth. On the cruiser Miguel crashed out whilst Jey took 3rd overall.
Haydon was looking extremely focussed all day and produced composed rides though the motos, quarters and semis. A good gate in the final was compromised by a first jump collision that shuffled him to the back of the pack. A great inside dive in turn 2 moved him up two places but still left him too much ground to make up. He had to settle for sixth with thoughts of what could have been. George has been training more this week than he'd planned and perhaps he was a little tireder than he'd hoped. After a poor first 20" moto, followed by a crash in the second, he produced an amazing final lap to qualify for the semi-final by a single point, but in an outside gate he had too much to do and went out. He took a consolation 5th in the A final on the cruiser and goes again tomorrow with the rest of the team.
The weather forecast was off the mark on Sunday and the warm-up and opening qualification rounds were a wet and windy affair. The rain didn't stop Zara though, as she produced three excellent rides to power to her first A final of the season and get that monkey off her back. Izzy didn't have such good luck and in a merged class faced two stacked motos that put an end to her run of good results. George was looking fresher today and keeping it rubber side down, he stormed to another cruiser main taking 4th. On the 20" his last corner move didn't come off and he exited in the semi-final.
Chris had the snap out of the gate and first straight pull he needed to take a clutch of holeshots. Close behind him Jey was also strong on the first straight, but it was Miguel who came out on top with third and fourth straight passes that gave him another national win ahead of Chris in second and Jey in 4th. Jey and Miguel battled hard in the combined cruiser class where Jey took his maiden National class win. Miguel also scored a season best 4th on the cruiser, narrowly missing the podium. Also gunning for the podium was Haydon who looked to be holding something in reserve after a quarter final victory. With the long and flat first straight Peckham suits the power riders, Haydon found himself behind Adam Brazil and a Josh Butson but wasn't able to use his track speed to overturn their power advantage, improving one place from Saturday to take fifth.
The team have a lot of positives to take forward to the next rounds in Glasgow having moved up to fourth in the standings and closed the gap on Elite team promotion.
Rider Rating: 7.5/10
I pushed through this weekend after not being well the past few weeks, two consistent finals picking up a 5th and a 6th.
Rider Rating: 9/10
Mint weekend! Never been down to Peckham to race, loved the atmosphere with the whole team doing well! Happy to take two seconds at the weekend as a bit emotional for myself with it being Father’s Day and thinking of my Dad passing but it gave me the drive to do better on Sunday.
Rider Rating: 7/10
I felt that this weekend went up a step in my journey. I'll give myself a 7 and go back to work for more and better!
Rider Rating: 6/10
Under par. After the success of Birmingham was disappointed and felt I should have done better and the track felt really hard work.
Rider Rating: 6/10
I had a great weekend with a new team feeling the support of everyone and looking forward for better results!
Rider Rating: 4/10
A weekend to forget. Never felt comfortable on the bike and couldn't find the speed I know is there.
Rider Rating: 10/10
I'm so happy because I managed to make the A final on Sunday, my first one of the season. I still did well on Saturday, but Sunday was great!
Photo Credit: Headfones Productionz