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Southern Counties Enduro Club

SCEC and the Future

Over the years all clubs develop their own style of event. We're extremely proud of ours and of the riders that enjoy them and we're committed to carry on for as long as there's demand.

Of course we're disappointed that the event planned for this weekend had to be cancelled but from the many calls and emails we've received it's clear that the demand is still there and that our events are as popular as ever, but as the recession hits home it's becoming more and more difficult. We've always known that our friends/members/riders are more likely to have real world responsibilities like families, businesses and mortgages and when times are tough like now, more than ever, these responsibilities must take priority over racing.

So have no fear, SCEC will continue to put forward top notch events. We will reduce the program next year to 4 events and try to spread them evenly throughout the year and we'll also look closely at possible ways of reducing event costs. One suggestion made by a number of riders is to use trials rear tyres at all events next year - as most riders start with a used tyre and it's likely to last all season this would be quite a saving so we'd appreciate the wider view on this, along with any other suggestions you might have.

Wishing you all the best

Gary and the team at SCEC


SCEC Pallington Forest

Report by SCEC

Images by Nick Guppy & Tim Brewer

The final event in the 2009 SCEC calendar took place at the end of the wettest November on record, and is if that wasn’t bad enough so much rain fell Saturday evening that the roads leading to the venue were flooded for the first time in human memory!

You can’t beat the weather but SCEC have been in this game a long time and had taken all the precautions they sensibly could to ensure that the rain wouldn’t spoil the day. The venue, parking arrangements and route were very carefully planned and rear Trials tyres were specified to reduce rutting to a minimum. That (together with a little luck!) resulted in a thoroughly ridable & enjoyable event, not an easy one maybe, but not crazy hard either and most of the competitors made it through to the end.

Regardless of the weather with several of the classes final series positions still undecided the racing would still be fast and furious. The headline Championship class went right to the wire Dave Nuttall & Mark Cornick battling for the title. Mark finished less than a minute ahead of Dave but that was enough to secure the title with the two finishing 5th & 6th respectively. The race win was taken by young Richard Tucker from the Xmoor club on 10 laps with MidWest’s Tyson Maytom-Jones and Front Row GB team man Stan Watt finishing 2 and 3rd respectively on 9 laps. Tyson also took the Expert class win ahead of Jerry Box in second (and 7th overall).

Vets class winner Gary McCoy once again proved that over 40 doesn’t mean over the hill by battling through to 4th place overall. Mik Hill came in second and left the event happy in the knowledge that he’d done enough to secure the Vets Championship.

Barry Mitchell has provided SCEC with some of their best photo opportunities this year. At Pallington he went for a smoother more conservative ride and was rewarded with a fine E2 Clubman class victory for his efforts. Barry couldn’t afford to relax too much though as Mark Woodfine was always close enough to take advantage of even the smallest error while in the E1 class Alan Stringer made a one-off appearance to snatch victory from of Sam Wilson

This years 2 ½ hour races have been dominated by Dan Price (Sportsman) and Graham Reid (Sportsman +40) and his race was no exception with the 2 coming in first and second respectively. Novice class winner Mathew Jones came in a highly credible 8th overall. Special mention must go to these classes as in spite of the conditions all the Novice, and all but 2 of the Sportsman class riders, completed the event - well done lads!

So that’s it for 2009, SCEC have a well earned break now till the spring when the new season commences on Valentines day (February 14th !!!) at the fabulous Inside Park near Blandford. Full results, championship positions and details about next seasons events can be found at www.enduro.org.uk 

Results

Championship:
1st Richard Tucker 10 Laps 02:43:12
2nd Stan Watt 9 Laps 02:38:26
3rd Mark Cornick 9 Laps 02:41:11
4th Dave Nuttall 9 Laps 02:41:58
5th Andy Scudamore 8 Laps 02:34:48

Experts:
1st Tyson Maytom-Jones 9 Laps 02:35:47
2nd Jerry Box 9 Laps 02:44:12
3rd Steve Harding 8 Laps 02:34:27
4th Toni Burrows 8 Laps 02:39:44
5th Chris Honeywell 8 Laps 02:40:54

Vets:
1st Gary Mccoy 9 Laps 02:39:42
2nd Mik Hill 9 Laps 02:44:36
3rd Craig Beattie 9 Laps 02:44:49
4th Jack Twentyman 9 Laps 02:46:17
5th Michael Brooks 9 Laps 02:46:31

Clubman E2
1st Barry Mitchell 8 Laps 02:35:44
2nd Mark Woodfine 8 Laps 02:38:04
3rd Andy Ball 8 Laps 02:43:22
4th Nicholas Tucker 8 Laps 02:45:08
5th Mark Goddard 7 Laps 02:40:02
 
Clubman E1:
1st Alan Stringer 8 Laps 02:43:54
2nd Sam Wilson 7 Laps 02:32:50
3rd Andrew Smith 7 Laps 02:33:43
4th Jacque Stevens 7 Laps 02:35:14
5th Dan Andrews 7 Laps 02:38:47

Sportsman:
1st Daniel Price 6 Laps 02:04:01
2nd Paul O'connell 6 Laps 02:18:18
3rd David Mears 5 Laps 02:03:22
4th Adam Smith 5 Laps 02:13:04
5th Daniel Summerfield 5 Laps 02:14:10

Sportsman Over 40:
1st Graham Reid 6 Laps 02:14:14
20th Mark Turner 2 Laps 02:57:24
2nd Neil Fripp 6 Laps 02:19:09
3rd Steve Davey 6 Laps 02:21:23
4th Garry Price 6 Laps 02:24:58
5th Gary Appleyard 5 Laps 02:13:59

Novice:
1st Matthew Jones 5 Laps 02:09:12
2nd Mark Coghlin 4 Laps 02:28:33
3rd Chris Jones 4 Laps 02:33:54
4th Kyle Ashton 3 Laps 02:53:23



Cowshall's amazing Maize Maze

Report: Lee Davey
Images: Nick Guppy 


It all began when we had the long-hot summer to end all long-hot summers - 1976 to be precise and I was 6.
Long story short, I was invited to a party at Hampton Court Maze but in the end I never made it due to bottling it at my tender age. You see, I'd decided that only those with a superhuman sense of direction would make it out alive whilst anyone like me who was still struggling with the concept of left and right would become worm food. I kid you not.

Anyhow, fast forward some 33 years and I've finally combined one of my greatest passions with one of my (still) greatest fears; an Enduro in a maze. It's not the first one that the Southern Counties Enduro Club have held but probably due to some previous subliminal inner turmoil it's the first one that I've ever had a bash at.

Thanks to the team at Bramblecombe Farm (Milton Abbas, Dorset) a 15ft wide or so snaking path had been cut in the Maize which passed through a field or two (I told you my sense of direction was bad) with a spot of woodland and field tracks dotted here and there.

The Championship class had a new slim-line look due to injured riders but that didn't mean that eventual winner Paul Cowshall had it all his own way.
Shortly before the start he told me he was a little concerned about his bike starting first kick as it's just undergone a full rebuild - and he wasn't wrong - he was still trying to get it to fire as the rest of the pack disappeared into the distance. He eventually caught and passed the riders in front before spluttering to a halt due to not being quick enough to turn the reserve tap. Again, it refused to go and he had to push it to a downhill bit where he bumped it back into life and took the chequered flag with a 4 minute lead. A deserving win? You bet. Fingers crossed Gary Wright and Dave Nuttall who finished second and third agree.

The guys in the Expert line-up had even less to fear from me than normal (!) due to a customary poor start and a ground-sky-ground-sky moment on the very first maize-maze corner. Those childhood fears are hard to shake-off.
The top-runners, who managed a good start and stayed upright, kept it close throughout but it was Jerry Box who took the top-spot with Tyson Mayton-Jones in second and Steve Harding in third.
Tyson is due to represent our country in the ISDE (International Six Days Enduro) next month - good luck fella.

The top two in the Vets class kept pretty close but due to a small 30 second lead (after 3 hours) Mik Hill snuck through for his 17th lap leaving Gary McCoy in second on 16 laps. Craig Beattie bought up the rear in third.

The Clubman class was, as usual, jam packed and remained up close and personal for the duration.
The E1's final formation was Daniel Fiddler, Stephen Mulliner and Jacque Stevens with the E2's finishing with Barry Mitchell at the top with Andy Claxton and Paul Oughton underneath.
A special mention to Mark Goddard who was lying in third until a broken clutch hose meant he had to negotiate the final lap without one but still claimed a creditable sixth.

The Ladies class was a particularly small one with lone entrant Clare Taylor. She took the lead fairly early in the race and remained there for the entire 3 hours, taking the top step of the podium without much trouble. On a more serious note, she finished 55th overall in an event that had over 150 starters.

There was also a race within a race with the Sportsman, Sportsman Vets and Novice classes bar-bashing for 2 ½ hours instead of 3.
The Sportsman title was to be Daniel Price's on the day with Rob Smith in second and Paul Gillespie in third.
Showing the rest of the field that youth is no substitute for experience Graham Reid topped the Sportsman Vets table and had a comfortable 11 minute lead over Gary Price and Neil Fripp. Maybe Graham's secret is a packet of Werthers Originals dipped in Red Bull…..?
Novice Matthew Jones proved that he's now a sportsman rider with a lap lead over Chris Jones who in turn had Russell Matthews nipping at his ankles for 150 minutes.

Confronting your fears may be a well known approach when dealing with anxieties and for me combining it with something I enjoy certainly helped. Plus the maize maze marker arrows helped things along nicely. If Gary and the rest of the SCEC team can add a few clowns to the next event, I'll be well on the way for a clean bill of health.

SCEC Maize Maze Enduro 13-9-2009:

Championship: 1st Paul Cowshall, 2nd Gary Wright, 3rd Dave Nuttall.
Expert: 1st Jerry Box, 2nd Tyson Mayton-Jones, 3rd Steve Harding.
Vets: 1st Mik Hill, 2nd Gary McCoy, 3rd Craig Beattie.
Clubman E1: 1st Daniel Fiddler, 2nd Stephen Mulliner, 3rd Jacque Stevens.
Clubman E2: 1st Barry Mitchell, 2nd Andy Claxton, 3rd Paul Oughton.
Ladies: 1st Clare Taylor.
Sportsman: 1st Daniel Price, 2nd Rob Smith 3 rd Paul Gillespie
Sportsman Vets: 1st Graham Reid, 2nd Gary Price, 3rd Neil Fripp.

Full Results


SCEC/Rogershill Raceway summer evening series. Final Round.

With series leader Mark Cornick still injured and out of action the series was wide open. In Chains TM rider Ben Milward grabbed the holeshot and rode the wheels off his little TM for the full 2 hours of the fast and flowing course to victory. Future Racing’s Paul Cowshall followed him in for 2nd and Midwest Husaberg’s Tyson Maytom-Jones came in with a good solid 3rd place, which was enough for him to clinch the overall for the series and carry the number 1 plate into the 2010 series.

Andy Claxton made it 3 out of 3 wins to take the Clubman Class while 2nd place behind Dave Coles was enough to give Pete Archer the Vets overall and 4th place was enough to give Ian Harvey the Sportsman overall. Simon Dunning took the Moto-X class overall with an 8th place on the day. A good number of the MX riders new to cross-country racing found they had given too much too soon but that could not be said of Lewis Abbot and Mark Young who not only took 1st and 2nd respectively in the MX class, they also mixed it up big time with the best of the Pro enduro racers. Both riders finished inside the top 4 overall. Full Results www.enduro.org.uk/results

It has been a particularly sociable and pleasant series this year and the team at Rogershill, keen to give riders something special to remember it by, decided to put together an extreme event to entertain both riders and spectators into the evening of the final round. To the smell of steak and sausages cooking on the huge BBQs the bravest riders from the series fought through a series of 3 lap heats of the 4-minute extreme circuit to qualify for the main final. Hats off to all who braved the course and gave it a go – brave lads one and all!

Extreme Event Grand Final Results: 1st Tyson Maytom-Jones, 2nd Richard Tucker, 3rd Danny Hall, 4th Dinger Bell, 5th Sam Gardiner, 6th Jake Forward .

Full report to follow. Next SCEC event 'Maze in the Maize' hare & hounds at Milton Abbas, Dorset 13th September. Entries and info www.enduro.org.uk 


Rogershill Evening Enduro Series

This popular evening enduro series is back for 2009, the MX tracks have undergone some improvements together with the enduro tracks. The course will include many natural features such as the river crossings, extreme climbs etc, and some man made hazards to suit all abilities from clubman to championship.

The championship class will again attract top local, national and international riders Si Wakely, Bradley King, Stan Watt and Mark Cornick to name a few.

Regs will be available via SCEC at www.enduro.org.uk  or from the sign on at Rogershill on practice days. 

Evening Enduro Series dates:
Wednesday June 3rd 6-8pm 
Wednesday July 15th 6-8pm 
Saturday Sept 5th 3-5pm


Inside Park - Sunday 1st March 2009
Woodland win for Wakely at Inside Park
Report: Lee Davey Images: Nick Guppy

Some things baffle me. Just before we ground to a halt under some of the heaviest snow we've seen for years some Government advisor was telling us how the effects of global warming would be wetter, warmer winters and hey presto, it's magically a cold one. Now, those of a cynical nature might be thinking our hard-earned tax-payers cash is being squandered on Gucci suits and designer side-partings, but fear-not, the very same advisor tells us that when he said wetter and warmer, he simply meant it as an example of an extreme of weather which is, apparently, what we've just experienced - just the exact opposite of the example he gave. Simple Whether it was a carbon-induced phenomenon, or simply the type of good old-fashioned winter we had when I were a lad back in the, ahem, 80's, I was more than happy to be given an excuse to my Enduro bike to work when all others seemed to be marooned on their driveway.

Fast forward a couple of weeks or so to the very first round of the Southern Counties Enduro Club's 2009 series and all that cold weather seems a dim and distant memory. The sun's out, track conditions look great and there's even a few riders rooting around in the bottom of their kit-bags in search of tinted lenses that have long since been discarded. The venue at Inside Park near Blandford, Dorset is always a cracker and even though I got my van stuck some years ago, breaking various tow-ropes and a starter-motor in the removal process, it still holds nothing but fond memories for me as there's a good mix of thought-provoking woodland and faster if-in-doubt-flat-out sections to keep all entertained

Simon Wakely (above) eventually took the Championship class win from a very determined Phil McLaughlin who hounded Simon lap after lap and occasionally snuck past, but at the chequered flag Wakely had built almost a 1 minute lead. Behind McLaughlin was Bradley King who took the third spot.

The Expert class was topped by Kalem Hicks (left) who managed to sandwich an Over 40's rider between himself and second placed Steve Harding, giving him a comfortable lead at the end. Harding however didn't have such a comfortable gap and finished the race with Tyson Mayton-Jones (right) perilously close in third.

Tony Williamson had it all his own way during the closing stages of the Clubman E1 class with a minute between himself and second placed Simon Noble. Third placed Ryan Grover was a lap behind Williamson and Noble, giving Noble a worry-free finish to the day.

Andy Claxton topped the Clubman E2 class and was the only E2 rider to complete 9 laps. Robbie Rule and Barry Mitchell took second and third places respectively with 8 laps.

The Sportsman class was split into two with the under 40's and the over 40's. Daniel Price took victory in the youngsters section with Daniel Summerfield second and Jake Forward third. The Vet's were circling like a pack with Glen Woodland the eventual winner with Garry Price in second and Graham Reid in Third.

Mik Hill was a clear winner in the Expert 40+ class with a minute lead over Gary McCoy in second, who in turn had a whole 3 minute advantage over third placed Alastair Bramwell.

The Ladies were out in force too. Well, when I say in force, there were 2 of them but they did all you ladies out there proud. What's more, my daughter Poppy who's 6 was cheering them on. Tamsin Jones led Helen Spiers for the duration of the event, but Helen hung on in there for 3 hours completing 7 laps to Tamsin's 8.

And if you've always fancied having a go, but are waiting for the perfect moment, there's a Novice class too. Matthew Jones and Chris Jones took first and second both completing 6 laps with Russell Matthews in third on 5 laps.

From a full-factory championship rider to a newbie novice - it's all here if you feel like having a go. We can't promise you'll get the same sunny spring-like day that we enjoyed at Inside Park, but with weather extremes predicted, at least you'll be guaranteed a memorable outing.

Results

SCEC Enduro Inside Park 1-3-2009:

Championship: 1st Simon Wakely, 2nd Phil McLaughlin, 3rd Bradley King. 
Expert: 1st Kalem Hicks, 2nd Steve Harding, 3rd Tyson Mayton-Jones. 
Clubman E1: 1st Tony Williamson, 2nd Simon Noble, 3rd Ryan Grover. 
Clubman E2: 1st Andy Claxton, 2nd Robbie Rule, 3rd Barry Mitchell. 
Expert 40+: 1st Mik Hill, 2nd Gary McCoy, 3rd Alastair Bramwell. 
Sportsman: 1st Daniel Price, 2nd Daniel Summerfield, 3rd Jake Forward. 
Sportsman 40+: 1st Glen Woodland, 2nd Garry Price, 3rd Graham Reid. 
Ladies: 1st Tamsin Jones, 2nd Helen Spiers. 
Novice: 1st Matthew Jones, 2nd Chris Jones, 3rd Russell Matthews.

Simon Wakely's report
Photo by Tim Brewer 

Sunday last saw MPS Husqvarna rider Simon Wakely take his TE450 to the Dorset venue of "Inside Park" for the first event of the year for SCEC.

Good weather greeted the 200+ riders who attended this 3 hour Hare & Hounds race held over a tight difficult course. Simon was delighted to come away with a win for his team again, and reported " My bike ran perfectly all day, thanks to the efforts put in by my mechanic (father) Alan Wakely. I very much enjoyed the run out and it was very good training for this coming weekend for the 1st event in the GBXC series. Passing riders was somewhat difficult due to the tight course layout but I was happy with my condition and speed against some of the country's top enduro riders. Many thanks to my team and sponsors for another good weekend."

Bradley King's report
Photo: Kwacker Snapper

SCEC hosted their 1st 3 hour hare scramble race of the year today at Inside Park.There was a strong Championship class including British enduro champions riders Si Wakely, Jamie Paget, Phillip Mclaughlin, Tim Lewis, Rich Warner plus local legends Mark Cornick & Stan Watt. 

I got a good start and quickly slotted into second behind Si until he had a small off &I led for the remainder of lap 1. Into lap 2 we quickly caught up with the back of the sportsman class. Si & Phillip managed to squeeze past me in the traffic and I then had a collision with a lapped rider losing valuable time. Struggling to get to grips with the track I was caught and overtaken by Jamie on lap 3 but managed to tag on to him and started to feel more comfortable. Me & Jamie had an ace battle all the through to the two hour mark when Jamie unfortunately had to stop having injured his hand. I was then in what i thought was a comfortable 3rd place. I had to make a quick stop for fuel with 45 min's left. I then decided to settle for a "safe" 3rd having had many uncomfortable moments trying to overtake on what was a very fast narrow track. unknown to me Mark Cornick and Rich Warner who were "one stopping" were catching me and as i looked over my shoulder on the last lap i saw them right behind me. so i had to pin it for the rest of the lap to make sure of 3rd place. I'm really pleased with how me and my bike rode on a track that would normally not suit me and I'm feeling confident for the future especially as I felt fit and fresh at the end of the race. Once again thanks to everyone who has helped me this week and all of my sponsor's Brad king - enduro and hare scrambles on GAS GAS UK EC250 - www.freewebs.com/bradking25  - supported by K4OFFROAD, TALON, STEVE PLAIN M/CS, MICHELIN, GAERNE, NAU, RENTHAL, MOTUL, KRIEGA, ROGERSHILL RACEWAY, SCEC AND RUSH RACING.

Good Return for Stan

Stan Watt had a good return to 'competition' this weekend at round 1 of the Southern Counties Enduro Championship.

Just 9 days after knee surgery Stan set about getting back into some riding fitness at the 3hr Hare and Hounds event at Inside Park, Dorset. The choice of weapon would not be to everyone's preference as he put the new KTM690 Enduro R on the start line.

With a strong field of championship and expert riders, the intention was for Stan to put in a steady 3 hours, check out the capability of the 690R, preserve his left knee and not let the red mist take control.

Stan was well impressed with the KTM690 R and with some further minor modifications, believes it is a bike with some excellent potential for a varity of riding. The course was around a 20 minute lap with a good variation of terrain. Although primarily flat, the loop was relentless with no areas to ease off or rest, ranging from fast sweeping corners to tight tree lined tracks. The lap was flowing yet contained enough technical areas to keep everyone concentrating. Good effort to Gary Warr of SCEC and all those that helped him put the event together.

Stan's knee held up well and this would appear he will be contining to get back into returning some riding fitness with the next excursion at Rogershill Raceway on 4th March.

Stan finished 32nd overall from over 200 starters and 13th in the championship class. Hopefully Stan will be getting back to full fitness by the Snow Run in Wales on 12th April.

Photos


New classes for SCEC 2009

The long established annual SCEC series has 2 new classes and a new name for 2009. This year it will be known as the S.C.O.R.E series and will take place over 6 rounds at various superb new and old favourite venues around Dorset and Hampshire. The new ladies class has attracted considerable interest from some of the country's top lady racers while the new youth class will give lads and lasses from 15 to 17 the chance to mix it with the oldies! Subject to individual approval experienced 14 year olds can also join in the fun. Already one of the most hotly contested and highly regarded series in the country, the new classes together the new scoring system and the various other little tweaks introduced for 2009 should help maintain it's popularity and keep it right up there with the best of the rest!

The first round of 2009 takes place at the awesome 'Inside Park' venue near Blandford in Dorset of the 1st March. As we go to press there are still a few places left - Full Info 


 

Simon succeeds at Somerley
Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk

Sundays spent at home this time of year can be difficult at best.

The kids are busy studying TV adverts for anything new to be added to Santa's list. Preparations are being made with military precision so that everyone knows who's spending Christmas with whom, and don't forget Boxing Day as that usually involves a change of venue. The credit-card is already maxed-out but the list of things left to buy seems to be growing instead of shrinking, making me wonder whether it's possible to single handedly change the fortunes of a global economic slow-down.

Thank heavens for Enduros.

Sunday morning escapism on the 7th December was provided by the Southern Counties Enduro Club at their forestry based Somerley Park venue near Ringwood, Dorset. The day was bright and crisp after a very frost start - a true picture-postcard morning, a thought which was shared by many as various snappers were see en route photographing the winter scene. The council must have promised to keep the scenery as picturesque as possible due to the pure white roads and lack of road salt, but providing the amateur photographers had Photoshop on their PC, the wheels of the upturned car could be removed from an otherwise perfect picture.

The course however didn't need further preparation and with such a variety of tracks and obstacles made sure that everyone finished the 2008 season with a true thinking-man's (or woman's) event. Even with a relatively dry spell of weather surrounding the race, the track still had its fair share of bogs to catch-out the unwary, lines that had to be chosen with care and obstacles that altered their level of difficulty lap to lap. But what an event to end the season on.

With me still dragging-out my recovery from Glandular Fever I decided to be a travelling marshal for the day so I didn't miss all the fun. Even though I only managed a couple of laps before the burger van beckoned, it gave me a bird eye view of the race:

Simon Wakely took the Championship class win and although he eventually had an 11 minute lead over second placed James Jackman he didn't have it all his own way in the early stages. Jackman took the lead for the first lap before Mark Cornick passed him, leaving Jackman in second and Wakely in third, but sadly for the leading two, Simon passed them both on the second lap and never relinquished his position, even with Cornick clinging to him for a few more laps. Jackman kept pushing throughout and passed Cornick in the closing stages taking second spot and pushing Cornick into third.

The Expert class was topped by Daniel Beaven on the day who managed to sandwich 3 other riders between himself and second placed Steve Harding, giving him a comfortable lead at the end. Harding however didn't have such a comfortable gap and finished the race with Dave Nuttall perilously close in third.

As comfortable leads go, Tony Williamson had it all his own way during the closing stages of the Clubman E1 class with a whopping 12 riders between himself and second placed Brendan Reese. I had to scroll further still down the screen to pick out third placed William Richards who was a further 7 places overall behind Reese. But, with conditions as they were, the E1 top-three were probably glad to have some space to work with.

Tyson Mayton-Jones topped the Clubman E2 class with a time that placed him amongst the Championship guys and fifth overall on the day. Andy Ball claimed second spot with 10 laps, 1 lap behind Mayton-Jones which left Barry Mitchell in third spot, again with 10 laps.

The Sportsman class ran for 2 ½ hours instead of the usual 3 and was split into two with the under 40's and the over 40's. Jacque Stevens took victory in the youngsters section with Daniel Price and James Penfold taking second and third respectively. The Vet's were circling like a pack with Phil Jones the eventual winner with Peter Extance in second and Garry Price in Third.

Gary McCoy was a clear winner in the Expert 40+ class with a five minute lead over Mick Extance in second, who in turn had a whole lap advantage over third placed Martin Brown. Normally, I only mention third and above, but usual podium-position holder, Peter Archer finished in an out of character fourth spot.

So, that's it for another year with just Christmas, New Year and a credit-card statement or two between now and the start of the 2009 season in March, something which I'm sure the rider who buried his bike up to the fuel tank will be glad of. The last time I saw it, the marshals were trying to free it with a selection of tie-downs, logs and a scaffold pole - a sure sign that the rider in question didn't do things by halves.

Have a great festive period and we'll see you next year.

For full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk 

SCEC Enduro Somerley Park 7-12-2008:

  • Championship: 1st Simon Wakely, 2nd James Jackman, 3rd Mark Cornick. 
  • Expert: 1st Daniel Beaven, 2nd Steve Harding, 3rd Dave Nuttall. 
  • Clubman E1: 1st Tony Williamson, 2nd Brendan Reese, 3rd William Richards. 
  • Clubman E2: 1st Tyson Mayton-Jones, 2nd Andy Ball, 3rd Barry Mitchell. 
  • Expert 40+: 1st Gary McCoy, 2nd Mick Extance, 3rd Martin Brown. 
  • Sportsman: 1st Jacque Stevens, 2nd Daniel Price, 3rd James Penfold. 
  • Sportsman 40+: 1st Phil Jones, 2nd Peter Extance, 3rd Garry Price.

Cornick goes all-out at Stonedown.

Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk

With the wet summer that we've enjoyed this year, a dry-days racing really is something to savour. The SCEC venue at Stonedown Forest near Sixpenny Handley really is a cracker and is obviously helped in the exclusivity stakes by only being allowed to run one event every two years; and sadly for me, I missed the last one. Should you be sad enough (like me) to fantasise about courses to ride, then this Forestry Commission beauty is one not to be missed. Flowing forest tracks with enough obstacles in the way to give you a reality check. Tight bits, slow bits and nothing serious enough to bunch 29 Sportsman riders together into an impregnable shield. There were hills too, but again, nothing to induce a premature bail-out; just challenging in an enjoyable way. Sightseeing isn't recommended at an Enduro as tress can be unforgiving when hit at speed, but if there was ever a venue that deserves a second-look, this is it.

The Championship class looked to be Mark Cornick's (above) from the start. Always entertaining to watch with his definitive taps-open riding-style, his lap-times for the majority of the race were untouchable plus they gave him enough time (11 seconds before the finish) to nip round for a sixteenth lap - the only rider who achieved this on the day. Gary Wright finished in second with just a 30 second buffer over Paul Cowshall who finished in third.

It was a little closer in the Expert class, but the leading three had breathing space in the final moments. Freddie Broadway claimed the top-spot (and second overall) with Dave Nuttall in second, who had a 50 second gap between himself and third-placed Steve Harding.

The E1 Clubman class was won convincingly by Daniel Beaven who must have been very lonely at the front as the remainder of the E1 field were far behind. David Parker was in second place and following Daniel's example, had built a lead over third placed William Richards.

Tyson Mayton-Jones was the only E2 Clubman class entrant to claim 15 laps as well as the E2 win. Barry Mitchell wasn't close enough to challenge Tyson's lead but managed to secure his own position at the chequered flag with a 3 minute lead over third placed Tony Primmer.

The Sportsman class was not only fit to burst with all the entrants, but also gave some of the closest racing on the day. Ian Hughes may have gapped a few of the chasing pack, but the rest were squeezed in like sardines and could be seen circulating in various packs, occasionally shuffling the order of things. Tim Hewlett grabbed second spot at the 3-hour re-shuffle with Brad Williams just 20 seconds behind in third. Looking at the times from the remaining 26 riders, it's amazing just how close the times are for the whole bunch. Feeler gauges anyone?

Close-racing isn't just the preserve on the Sportsman riders; the Expert 40+ riders usually have a bash as well. This time it was to be different though as each rider pulled clear of the other to bring a more relaxed(!) finish to the event. Martin Brown definitely didn't want the rest of the class catching him and finished with a 3 minute barrier between himself and second placed Paul Tossell, which Tossell mirrored with a 3 minute gap between himself and third-placed Peter Archer. If I were a betting-man, I'd put money on a closer finish at the next Expert 40+ race.

So, that's it with regard to Stonedown Forest for another couple of years, but what an event. Fear not though, there's more to come on the SCEC Enduro scene with the next event only a few weeks away and guess what, it's the final round of the AMCA Enduro championship. For further details (and full results of this race) visit www.enduro.org.uk

SCEC Stonedown Enduro results 19-10-2009:

Championship: 1st Mark Cornick, 2nd Gary Wright, 3rd Paul Cowshall. 
Expert: 1st Freddie Broadway, 2nd Dave Nuttall, 3rd Steve Harding. 
E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Daniel Beaven, 2nd David Parker, 3rd William Richards. 
E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Tyson Mayton-Jones, 2nd Barry Mitchell, 3rd Tony Primmer. 
Over 40: 1st Martin Brown, 2nd Paul Tossell, 3rd Peter Archer.
Sportsman: 1st Ian Hughes, 2nd Tim Hewlett, 3rd Brad Williams.


ENDUROTEXT 

Could you also put this in somewhere apart from the above - this ENDUROTEXT system is amazing - we're really chuffed with it! "You don't have to wait long at SCEC for the results (their system displays your position when it scans your transponder at the end of each lap and the results are confirmed immediately the last rider crosses the line) but with many riders travelling such huge distances to get to the SCEC events even that is too long to wait for some - so the organisers have introduced a new "ENDUROTEXT" system which sends a text to the riders' mobile just after the finish confirming their finishing position! What will they think of next!"


Wednesday Evening Series - Final Round

Cornick knows what's Watt Report: Lee Davey Images: Nick Guppy.

With the credit-crunch seemingly upon us, increased prices at the pumps and check-outs, plus the ever increasing risk of further economic slowdown, a Wednesday evening Enduro broke the working-week into easy to manage bite-sized pieces. The not so good news was that the SCEC event on the 3rd September was the final round of the 2008 Wednesday evening series and as with all final rounds, from all sporting disciplines, there were championship places to be claimed.

With the abundance of summer-sunshine that we've been blessed with this year(!) it won't come as too much of a shock to learn that the SCEC team had to plan-around the loss of light at the 8pm finish with a short-ish 10 to 12 minute lap and the removal of the more enclosed wooded sections. From the start-line, the course kinked left up a hill where it joined the first of the two Motocross tracks before snaking it's way around the perimeter, joining the second track somewhat briefly and then into a small, but light (compared to the now defunct tree-lined part) section of woodland. Turn, turn, turn and then onto the remainder of track two before shooting through a gap in the hedgerow and into some fast, flowing MX-style turns and then onto the junior course. Over the "dunes", more MX sweepers, a little more woodland and then the mother of all straights before crossing the drainage-ditches (my personal favourite), traversing the stream, zip-zagging along the hedgerow, crossing whoops, ruts and then a JCB-made pit before beginning another lap. Try saying that with one breath.

With imminent darkness in mind, the flag fell at 6pm and from here Mark Cornick and Stan Watt, both riding in the Championship class began leading the rest of the 90ish riders around the course. Watt had built a slim lead over second placed Cornick and held this for some 75 minutes before Cornick nipped past to claim the lead for a couple of laps. Watt regained his position for the next couple of laps before Cornick passed him once again to take the win after 2 hours, leaving Watt in second and Stephen Elford in third. The Expert class was completely different with none of the top three coming closer than 30 or so seconds to each other, a figure which increased steadily as the race progressed. Steve Harding was the eventual winner and seemed unchallenged throughout. Ian Pratt enjoyed a somewhat lonely second place with Mark Lewis finishing third. Ian Shuttleworth lead the E1 Clubman class initially but was passed by Daniel Beaven on the second lap and then by Dan Heelas on the third. Beaven built upon his lead and was untouchable, leaving Heelas and Shuttleworth to take second and third paces respectively. The E2 Clubman class was an even lonelier affair than the Experts as Tyson Mayton-Jones stormed ahead to leave David Bell and Barry Mitchell to fight over the remaining podium positions, but sadly for Mitchell, Bell followed Mayton-Jones lead and cleared off into the distance to leave Mitchell in third. The Over 40 Expert class winner Ben Saville wasn't taking any chances as he grabbed the lead and ran away with it. Second place looked to be Simon Dobinson's, but with just 30 minutes to go, Dave Coles passed him and gradually built a solid buffer, relegating Dobinson into third. It looked to be Lee Welch's day in the Sportsman class but from nowhere Brent Williams stormed past and remained unchallenged for the remainder of the race. It may be slim consolation for Welch, but he had a cast-iron second spot for the remaining minutes over third placed Phil Jones.

So, that's another Wednesday evening series finished. If you missed out - either as a competitor or spectator - fear not, as a few SCEC Sunday races remain, one being the final round of the AMCA's Enduro championship. For further details and full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk 

SCEC Wednesday evening Enduro results 3-9-08:

Championship: 1st Mark Cornick, 2nd Stan Watt, 3rd Stephen Elford. Expert: 1st Steve Harding, 2nd Ian Pratt, 3rd Mark Lewis. Over 40 Expert: 1st Ben Saville, 2nd Dave Coles, 3rd Simon Dobinson. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Daniel Beaven, 2nd Dan Heelas, 3rd Ian Shuttleworth. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Tyson Mayton-Jones, 2nd David Bell, 3rd Barry Mitchell. Sportsman: 1st Brent Williams, 2nd Lee Welch, 3rd Phil Jones.

2008 SCEC Wednesday Evening Championship final standings:

Championship: 1st Mark Cornick, 2nd Stan Watt, 3rd Jonathan Hayman. Expert: 1st Steve Harding, 2nd Mark Lewis, 3rd Neil Hawker. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st William Richards, 2nd Daniel Beaven, 3rd Gareth Pearce. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Barry Mitchell, 2nd Tyson Mayton-Jones, 3rd Neil Berry. Over 40: 1st Dave Coles, 2nd Michael Brooks, 3rd Ben Saville. Sportsman: 1st Lee Welch, 2nd Phil Jones, 3rd Daniel Summerfield.

Frontrow GB report


Wednesday Evening Series - 3rd July 2008

STAN WATT NARROWLY MISSES OUT ON A WIN AT SCEC

Round 2 of the Southern Counties Evening Enduro Championship took place at Rogershill Raceway, Dorset, UK on 2ND July ’08. The 2 hour Hare and Hound event would see the usual suspects of Mark Cornick; who has had a roll of good results on his KTM530, Danny Hall on his CR250 Honda and Gary Wright on his Yamaha 250; both of who could easily take victory.

The course would be approximately 6 miles in length with a number of changes to the previous evening events, making the majority of the track fast and flowing linking technical sections mainly consisting of woodland and motocross circuits, not to mention the inevitable manmade obstacles, ever changing; due to the consistent imagination and maintenance of Danny Hall.

The flag dropped to signal the start just after 6pm and as per normal in recent events, Mark Cornick would exit the first turn leading the pack. Something more surprisingly, Stan Watt from Front Row GB got away well initially in 4th, by the second corner moved into third and by the time the championship class exited the first motocross section Stan was on the tail of Mark Cornick and pushing to take the lead.

The scene was set between Mark and Stan as the position swapping would continue for the next hour as the pair pulled away from the rest of the championship riders and made for their own intensive and exciting race. As Stan put together a flawless first hour on his Edmondson Racing KTM 250 EXC he eventually started to put some distance between himself and Mark Cornick settling into a pace that was more than enough to continue pulling away at the front.

With a lead of 2 minutes and only 40 minutes to the finish line, Stan’s KTM went onto reserve without any warning and refused to start, allowing Mark to move back into the lead. With his machine eventually firing into life, Stan was now over 3 minutes down on the leader, which would be impossible to make up unless mistakes were made.

Stan refueled and pushed hard to catch Mark but could only manage to recover 2 minutes and Mark Cornick continued his run of victories with Stan coming in 2nd.

Stan was using an Edmondson Racing supported 2009 KTM250 EXC, one of the new range of bikes due to be released to the public at the end of July. The 250cc enduro version has had some substantial improvements especially with an engine producing more useable torque and the new suspension being the single biggest and effective improvement to the new range of enduro motorcycles from KTM. Stan is extremely impressed with the ’09 KTM250 EXC and anyone looking at the new range should contact Derrick Edmondson on 01543 450150 for information.

A big thank you to;

- Derrick Edmondson from Edmondson Racing for the supply of the NEW 2009 KTM 250EXC

- Talon Engineering for the wheels; keep an eye out for some new trick foot pegs from Talon, which Stan has been able to try for the first time

- Gary Warr and the gang from SCEC for another great course and event

- Danny Hall for allowing Front Row GB to use the area and for maintaining such an excellent facility


SCEC National Hare & Hounds Series Rnd 3 Report: Mike Watson Images: Nick Guppy

Round 3 of the Southern Counties Enduro Championship took place on Sunday 22nd at the Rogershill Raceway complex in Dorset. The event was dedicated to Lee Wheatley who tragically lost his life in a recent motorcycle accident. Lee was an avid supporter and competitor at the SCEC events and his many racing friends contributed towards the purchase of a magnificent trophy in his memory, which would be awarded to the best expert.

The 3 hour Hare and Hounds event boasted a 7 mile loop consisting of fast cross-country sections linking a mixture of small woods, stream crossings, two motocross tracks, a supercross style section, sand dunes(!) and various enduro style obstacles including an extreme climb for expert riders. Heavy overnight rain followed by a beautiful sunny morning presented the course in perfect condition. Race director Gary Warr warned the riders at the briefing to take care on the first lap as the circuit would be slippery in places before going on to promise Velcro like grip as the race wore on – and he was as good as his word!

The championship riders set off at 11am sharp with the uphill start leading into the first of the two moto-x tracks. Mark Cornick grabbed the holeshot on his 530 Sideways KTM followed closely by Gary Wright on the 250 Yamaha and Frontrow GB’s Stan Watt on his 250 Honda. Gary and Stan battled hard with each other from the very first corner while, the obviously back on form, Mark Cornick started to slowly but surely build his lead.

Midway through lap 1 Stan moved into 2nd place in an attempt to close down the leader; this only made the encounter with Gary more interesting as the pair consistently made do-or-die maneuvers on each other in an attempt to take control of 2nd place and settle their own race speed.

The pair continued to swap back and forth until lap 5 when Gary opted out of the extreme section and Stan decided it was an opportunity to establish an additional few seconds. Although Stan had cleared the extreme section on the preceding laps this time he made a mistake, dropping his 250 Honda at the top of the sheer climb and handing the advantage to Gary.

Stan pushed hard on Lap 6 pulling back 40 seconds but again on lap 7 made the exact same mistake on the extreme section dropping off 2nd place by a further 2 minutes.

Over the next two laps Stan was unable to make any impact on Gary Wright’s 2nd place, only being capable of closing the gap by 30 seconds. Unaware of the intensity of the battle behind him Mark Cornick got his head down and rattled off 11 blazingly fast laps to take a comfortable win from Gary of 3mins 17secs, with Stan securing 3rd place a further 3mins 50secs behind.

The expert class is always hotly contested and, with the Lee Wheatley Trophy to fight for, this race was sure to be hotter than most. It was clear from the first corner that two riders in particular were really on fire as Dave Nuttall and Steve Harding were riding like we’ve never seen them go before. In spite of battling with each other for the full 3 hours they just got faster and smoother as the race progressed, so much so that they ended up 4th and 5th in the overall standings! As Lee’s mother presented the trophy to Dave he said that both he and Lee had dreamed of winning the expert class, and that today, they had done it.

In the Expert Vets class Peter Archer took another strong victory but 2nd placed Michael Brooks is getting closer each event and no doubt will be challenging Peter soon. Paul Tossell too is showing ever increasing pace and stormed to an impressive 3rd place.

Dan Beaven, Ross Harvey and Mark Postle made up the top three in the E1 class, all completing 10 laps. Ross and Mark both put in flawless rides and both must be wondering what they will have to do catch Dan next time as he built up his lead to over 10 minutes by the time the flag came out.

Tyson Mayton Jones was equally dominant in the E2 class managing 11 laps to Gary Webb’s and Tony Borrows’ 10. Tyson’s performance was good enough to place him 7th in the overall standings and an upgrade to expert status cannot be far away!

The Sportsman, Sportsman Vets and Novice classes had a shorter two and a half hour race but Ian Hughes, Phil Jones and Neil Fripp each manged 8 laps to win their respective classes.

As the riders gathered around at the end for the awards presentation and to collect their Pro-Clean product prizes the overwhelming consensus was clear – classic SCEC; slick organisation + superb track = awesome race. As Patsy Quick excitedly said to one of the organisation team at the end “Wow that was absolutely fantastic, it’s inspired me to start racing again – I LOVED IT!”

Not much you can add to that, except the next SCEC event is the July 2nd evening race also at Rogershill Raceway – get the gen at www.enduro.org.uk 

Results

Championship 1st C3 CORNICK-MARK 03:02:13 mins 11 laps 2nd C2 WRIGHT-GARY 03:05:30 mins 11 laps 3rd C62 WATT-STANLEY 03:09:20 mins 11 laps 4th C21 HALL-DANNY 03:13:11 mins 11 laps 5th C5 HOLLAND-GARY 03:15:59 mins 11 laps

Expert 1st X2 NUTTALL-DAVE 03:09:52 mins 11 laps 2nd X7 HARDING-STEVE 03:11:44 mins 11 laps3rd X16 BOX-JERRY 03:16:17 mins 11 laps 4th X33 LAWRY-DAN 03:00:28 mins 10 laps 5th X8 HILL-MIK 03:00:45 mins 10 laps

Expert Vets 1st V1 ARCHER-PETER 03:17:29 mins 11 laps 2nd V44 BROOKS-MICHAEL 03:01:51 mins 10 laps 3rd V16 TOSSELL-PAUL 03:06:40 mins 10 laps 4th V35 YOUNG-PETER 03:07:14 mins 10 laps 5th V9 COOK-STEVE 03:10:11 mins 10 laps

Clubman E1 1st 123 BEAVEN-DANIEL 03:02:49 mins 10 laps 2nd 160 HARVEY-ROSS 03:13:36 mins 10 laps 3rd 150 POSTLE-MARK 03:16:43 mins 10 laps 4th 108 PEARCE-GARETH 03:18:17 mins 10 laps 5th 111 RENVOIZE-SEAN 03:02:08 mins 9 laps

Clubman E2 1st 201 MAYTON-JONES-TYSON 03:13:40 mins 11 laps 2nd 232 WEBB-GARY 03:06:22 mins 10 laps 3rd 248 BURROWS-TONI 03:13:35 mins 10 laps 4th 218 WILLS-CHRIS 03:14:39 mins 10 laps 5th 210 HACKER-CHRISTOPHER 03:18:25 mins 10 laps

Sportsman 1st 321 HUGHES-IAN 02:43:19 mins 8 laps 2nd 379 WALKEY-SAM 02:47:16 mins 8 laps 3rd 320 BUDGE-SIMON 02:47:47 mins 8 laps 4th 377 STEVENS-JACQUE 02:30:09 mins 7 laps 5th 319 OUGHTON-PAUL 02:31:07 mins 7 laps

Sportsman Vets 1st 424 JONES-PHIL 02:43:11 mins 8 laps 2nd 439 BUTT-KEVIN 02:36:10 mins 7 laps 3rd 441 JONES-LEN 02:36:32 mins 7 laps 4th 423 GUPPY-CHRIS 02:45:20 mins 7 laps 5th 427 PADDY-COLIN 02:50:03 mins 7 laps

Novice 1st 539 FRIPP-NEIL 02:47:47 mins 8 laps 2nd 516 HOWELLS-ANDY 02:35:21 mins 7 laps 3rd 533 SUMMERFIELD-DANIEL 02:37:58 mins 7 laps 4th 527 FALL-PHILIP 02:38:21 mins 7 laps 5th 537 WILKINS-STEVE 02:38:30 mins 7 laps


SCEC/Rogershill Raceway Wednesday Evening series
Wakely wanted the win on Wednesday
Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk/Brewbs

It seems I'm not the only one who likes to break-up a working week with a Wednesday evening Enduro. Just two years ago the Southern Counties Enduro Club held their very first evening event which attracted 66 riders, but the 2008 evening series opener was full to bursting with over 150! Plus, it had an impressive line-up. The MPS Husqvarna team was represented by Si Wakely and Daryl Bolter plus Paul and Derek Edmondson promised be on hand to make sure the MPS team didn't have it all their own way. Unfortunately Paul Edmondson had a couple of last minute glitches which meant that he was unable to attend leaving Derek to try and spoil the Husqvarna party alone. The theme for this seasons evening races is one of change. Each round will feature a new course layout and having ridden at the Rogershill venue many times myself, it was the first time I'd ever seen so many choices of easy and hard routes - five on a six mile course with a host of new obstacles. With two Motocross tracks at their disposal these obviously play a strong part, but the rest of the course featured small-scale sand dunes, mini-bike whoops, river crossings either by bridge or by air and an almost sheer 12ft (ish) drop which was immediately followed by a tight turn, a spot of log up 'n' over before climbing back up into the trees. Now, I've never seen a club event section cause such a stir; there was a constant line of riders walking this particular section and drawing a builder-esque breath whenever the drop was mentioned. With this being one of the easy/hard routes an alternative route was available, but the drop would save 20 seconds or so. Picking your bike back up could cost much more time than that though…..

The Championship class proved to be a 1-2 for the MPS Husqvarna team. Derek Edmondson was hampered by a late arrival which effectively ruled him out from the very start which left Wakely and Bolter (pictured right) to fly the MPS flag with Mark Cornick (left) sandwiching himself in between the team-mates during the early stages. The win was eventually taken by Si Wakely, so who better to tell the story. "The race started well for me with a third place around the first corner and then pushing my way into the lead past Daryl and Mark, but a small crash put me back down into 3rd before passing Mark for 2nd. At the end of the first lap Daryl made a small mistake giving me the lead until the second lap when it was my turn to make a mistake! We continued to swap positions for the first half of the 2 hour race until we both stopped for fuel. After this Daryl had approximately a 40 second lead, so I pushed as hard as I could, trying not to make any more time-consuming mistakes. I was told by my head mechanic (Dad!) that I was catching Daryl so I got my head down and eventually caught him up. He then crashed with just two and a half laps left, leaving me with a small lead. Dust was becoming an issue, so I knew that a couple of smooth, fast laps would make a return pass difficult for Daryl and I eventually finished with just a 7 second lead over him. I would just like to thank my team, MPS Husky Sport Husqvarna, my Mum, Dad, Sis, Grandad, the SCEC team and everyone that was watching who helped to make this event exciting to ride!"

The Expert class was one of all-change throughout the race. Neil Hawker, Nick Abbott and Tommy Layzell constantly swapped places until Hawker made a break in the closing stages. Abbot pushed hard in an attempt to catch Hawker but had to settle for second place and an increased lead over third placed Layzell.

As with so many other events, the Over 40's class proved that youth is no substitute for experience. Michael Brooks took the eventual class win which also placed him 29th overall out of 150+ riders. Second placed Ben Saville was just 5 overall places behind with Dave Coles finishing off the top three.

It was a case of role-reversal for the E2 Clubman riders. Barry Mitchell took the early lead with Daniel Hartley in second and Tyson Mayton-Jones in third. Mayton-Jones then lead from the second lap and remained unchallenged throughout. Mitchell held onto second position for 1 ½ hours but was eventually passed by Hartley who took Mitchell's long-standing second spot at the chequered flag relegating Mitchell into third.

The E1 Clubman race was too close to call in the early stages with places being frantically swapped from lap to lap. Richard Walters eventually made a break, leaving the rest to fight it out between themselves. Brendan Reese emerged from the pack in second with Neil Franks just 25 seconds behind him after 2 hours of riding.

There was little in the way of cut and thrust amongst the top three Sportsman riders. Clearly deciding that intimacy amongst Enduro riders isn't his thing, Joe Dyke cleared off into the distance never to be seen again by second placed Karl Phillips. Poor Karl must have wondered whether it was something he'd said as third placed Oliver Davis didn't get up close 'n' personal either. In the end the trio placed a lonely first, second and third.

For me, it was a vast improvement over the last event. Under the guidance of Fitness by Design I've had 3 short weeks of training since the Hardy's event which I failed to finish due to having the fitness levels of Johnny Vegas. I know that half a dozen trips to the gym isn't likely to prepare me for the 2012 Olympics, but I can tell - even in these early stages - that things are moving in the right direction. And with 150+ riders entering a Wednesday evening event, let's hope it starts to pay off soon.

For further details and full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk 

SCEC Wednesday evening Enduro results 21-5-08:

Championship: 1st Simon Wakely, 2nd Daryl Bolter, 3rd Mark Cornick. 
Expert: 1st Neil Hawker, 2nd Nick Abbott, 3rd Tommy Layzell. 
Over 40 Expert: 1st Michael Brooks, 2nd Ben Saville, 3rd Dave Coles. 
E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Richard Walters, 2nd Brendan Reese, 3rd Neil Franks. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Tyson Mayton-Jones, 2nd Daniel Hartley, 3rd Barry Mitchell. Sportsman: 1st Joe Dyke, 2nd Karl Phillips, 3rd Oliver Davis.



27th April

A hard, Hardy's Enduro Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk

An Enduro is generally tough - not just for the bike, which gets a hard time soaking up the various obstacles - but as you'd expect with a name like Enduro, stamina plays a huge part. Plus, the Southern Counties Enduro Club billed this event as a hard Enduro which gave the impression that the Hardy's Monument circuit near Dorchester, Dorset could be a bit of a toughie. Not only that, there would be a morning and afternoon race with the first away being Championship, Expert and Clubman riders with the Sportsman entrants riding in the afternoon under the scrutuiny of the few top level riders who still had enough energy left to give a spot of tuition.

From the start-line the course wound around a disused pit before entering the forest, which is where all the fun began . . . Apart from a couple of short forest tracks, there was little in the way of rest to be had. Each part of the 5 mile lap was technical and each and every line had to be chosen with care to ensure that the maximum distance was covered for the minimum amount of energy exerted. Some parts involved steep descents, some traversed along loamy, rutted paths but most tested the riders skill and stamina over roots, tree stumps and discarded brash and it's here that I began to find things a little on the difficult side. Whilst my energy and concentration levels were high(ish), it was incredibly rewarding to be up on the pegs, picking my way through the many obstacles that the course had to offer, but having neglected my fitness levels for way, way too long, it wasn't too long before my composure unravelled and I began to bounce from obstacle to obstacle in the most undignified fashion imaginable. Each lurch added to my frustration which instantly dissolved my concentration. With my concentration at an all-time low, I made more and more mistakes which only added to my tiredness; and so the cycle continued until I had to take a break, regroup and begin again. With a (relatively) short rest under my belt, normal service was resumed and I was picking my around the course and past other riders until my energy levels took yet another dip and I could only watch as all the riders that I'd passed, regained their positions in front of me. As the saying goes, perfect planning prevents poor performance, something which I'd neglected to adhere to in the previous months, but intend to remedy as I eventually failed to finish. Thankfully, there were a few riders who, unlike me, had avoided the buffet table.

Bradley King took the initial lead in the Championship class but Husqvarna mounted Simon Wakely (top left) passed King on the second lap which left Bradley to fend off Jamie Paget in third. Paget's unwanted attention then spurred King to re-pass Wakely for the lead but sadly for King, Wakely regained his position shortly after and then proceeded to gap King and Paget by around a minute a lap which secured his position until the end of the race. Paget however didn't have the same breaks as Wakely and his race was effectively over at half distance which not only gave King some breathing space, but also handed Rich Warner third spot at the finish.

Gareth Hopkins enjoyed a convincing win in the Expert class. At the end of the first lap he had a 2 minute lead and used the remainder of the 3 hours to build on this. Unsurprisingly, his lead remained unchallenged throughout. Second placed Tony King never let third placed Jerry Box get within a minute of his position and kept a safe distance until the chequered flag dropped.

The E1 Clubman class was won by Daniel Beaven who's lap-times resembled some of the Championship and Expert riders (an upgrade to the Expert class next time maybe?) and he streaked ahead, never to be seen again by second placed Martin Brown who finished a lap behind Beaven. Even with a seemingly safe second place, Brown still pushed hard to finish over 10 minutes ahead of Dean Reed who took third spot.

Toni Burrows looked to be in a steady 5th or 6th during the early stages but steadily closed the gap on the riders in front to eventually take the E2 Clubman win in the closing stages. Chris Wills was relegated to second and Barry Mitchell (left) to third. Neil Deakin looked to be a serious contender but was sidelined at the one hour mark.

With the race being divided into two, the Veteran, or over 40's class was split between Veteran Expert and Veteran Sportsman. The over 40's class leaders always place well and with their times mimicking all but the fastest riders, this was no exception. Michael Brooks was ahead at the end of the first lap and never relinquished his lead. Peter Archer was in second spot for the first 2 hours but was passed by Paul Tossell with an hour to go, pushing him to third.

The afternoon's race was shortened from 3 hours to 2 and was split between Sportsman and Vereran Sportsman. Not only did Veteran Phil Jones take the class win after early challenges from second placed Steve Edgington, but he also claimed the overall win in the second race of the day. KTM mounted Graham Reid claimed the final podium position and was a lap behind Edgington who in turn was a lap behind Jones.

The Sportsman class had a convincing winner in the shape of Peter Cullingford who managed to put an entire lap between himself and second placed Simon Budge. Budge however had luck on his side as a disasterous fifth lap from Darren Studley handed Budge second whilst Studley had to settle for third.

For me however, it just goes to show that the proof of the pudding really is in the eating. Mmm, pudding; just one of the many things that I need to sort in preparation for the next event. Thankfully, help is at hand as Colin Fricker at Fitness by Design in Gillingham will be helping me prepare for the forthcoming events by tailoring a fitness programme to suit. Let's hope he can work miracles.

SCEC Enduro results 27-4-08:

Championship: 1st Simon Wakely, 2nd Bradley King, 3rd Rich Warner. Expert: 1st Gareth Hopkins, 2nd Tony King, 3rd Jerry Box. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Daniel Beaven, 2nd Martin Brown, 3rd Dean Reed. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Toni Burrows, 2nd Chris Wills, 3rd Barry Mitchell. Over 40 Expert: 1st Michael Brooks, 2nd Paul Tossell, 3rd Peter Archer. Over 40 Sportsman: 1st Phil Jones, 2nd Steve Edgington, 3rd Graham Reid. Sportsman: 1st Peter Cullingford, 2nd Simon Budge, 3rd Darren Studley.

For further details and full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk 


2nd March

Andy Frost is off to build a new life in Australia in a few weeks but couldn't resist having one last SCEC race before leaving. Andy's been a regular at SCEC events for as long as many of us can remember and he'll be missed - we all wish him well in his new life.

Enduro riding in Oz will be quite different to the UK, and if you had to show an Ozzy a perfect UK woodland Hare Scramble venue you could do no better than show him SCEC's 'Inside Park' venue near Blandford in Dorset. The 6 & half miles of beautiful English woodland paths and trails somehow manages to be flowing yet technical at the same time, and is somehow equally popular with those from moto-x, enduro or trials backgrounds. It's a special place and the perfect venue to kick-off the 2008 SCEC season.

The day started with the presentation of awards for the 2007 series with the top finishers in each class leaving with the highly prized SCEC awards, as well as product prizes from Bel-Ray, Pro-Grip and Pro-Clean. And for the Sportsman class a special treat, with the top 10 finishers in the 2007 series each being presented with a full days Enduro training courtesy of the highly regarded In-Chains Enduro School, demonstrating once again that while SCEC maybe the club of choice for many of the top boys, they also go that extra mile to welcome and encourage new blood into the sport too.

So Andy's off to Oz but he'll be taking happy memories of the SCEC and the magnificent Inside Park venue with him. Displaying the style that claimed him 2007 SCEC Championship he notched up convincing victory there on his borrowed DMC KTM300 and only K4's Bradley King (right) was able match his 12 laps. Sideways KTM rider Mark Cornick looked like he might be a threat during the early stages but damaging his clutch perch and having to stop to make repairs put him out of the running. He made a valiant attempt to make up the lost time but in this company you can't afford to lose seconds, let alone minutes, and he had to settle for 3rd place.

The experts got away cleanly with Freddie Broadway establishing an early lead. Freddie is going to a force to be reckoned with - he was fast and smooth around the flowing woodland paths and trails and built up to a comfortable 4 minute cushion over 2nd place man Dave Nuttall by the end of the day. One of the favourites at this venue had to be Steve Harding but right from the start he seemed strangely off the pace. His pit crew got word that Steve was struggling with the handling of his KTM and as he pulled into the pits it didn't take long for them to find out what had happened - a broken bead on the rear tyre had allowed one side of the tyre to come completely off the rim! Amazingly having eased the tyre back on Steve was able to continue (albeit very, very carefully) to an astonishing 10th place!

SCEC seem to get their groups pretty well spread and nothing demonstrates this better than the Clubman results. For the last umpteen events the Clubman E1 and E2 winners have finished concurrently in the overall results and more often than not within a few seconds of each other - that's in spite of starting (and finishing) one minute apart. This time Dan Beaven took the E1 class and a highly credible 13th overall while Tyson Mayton-Jones took the E2 class and an equally credible 14th overall. On elapsed time just 4 seconds separated these two after 3 hours racing! You can't get closer than that!

The Over 40 class at SCEC events has become so enormously popular in recent years that this year the decision was taken to split it into sportsman and expert groups. For several years now Peter Archer has made the Over 40s class his own and as the newly formed Expert Over 40s group tore off into the woods for the first time it looked like nothing much had changed, but come the mid-way point Paul Tossell gave notice that 2008 is going to be different by grabbing the lead and holding it till the finish. It was a close run thing though and just 7 seconds separated these two after 3 full hours racing. Just seconds behind them Michael Brooks seemed to be waiting in the wings, perhaps waiting for them to trip each other up and gift him the lead, but that didn't happen - some of these guys might be nearer 50 than 40 but all that experience means mistakes are rare and Michael will no doubt have new tactics for the next race!

Being all new the Sportsman Over 40 group was anybody's guess, but it soon became apparent who everyone will be gunning for this year. Karl Phillips quickly established a comfortable lead which he maintained until the finish while Steve Edgington and Simon Minch were never more than a few seconds apart finishing 2nd & 3rd respectively and the end of their 2 hour stint.

Finally it was good to see some new faces for the new Novice class. SCEC have always encouraged newcomers to come and have a go, and it is hoped that with the formation of this new class the whole idea will seem somehow less scary. With a slightly shorter race and the knowledge that the other guys on the line are as terrified as you are it doesn't seem quite so bad! If the reaction on Sunday was anything to go by SCEC have hit the nail on the head and the lads all had a ball! Top 3 in this class where David Mears, Mike Snook & Chris Roos managing 7, 6 and 5 laps respectively in their allotted 2_ hours and all 3 grinning like Cheshire cats!

So that was the Inside Park 2008 - and the question on everybody's lips at the end? Well there was only one… When's the next one! There's no secret there… Hardye's Monument near Dorchester on April 27th - see you there!

Championship
1. C1 Andy FROST - DMC KTM 300
2. C25 Brad KING - K4 Gas Gas 250

3. C3 Mark CORNICK - Sideways KTM 525

Expert
1. X15 Freddie BROADWAY - Yamaha 250
2. X36 Dave NUTTALL - Husaberg 400

3. X18 Jeff CANNONS - KTM 250

Expert Over 40
1. V16 Paul TOSSELL - KTM 300

2. V1 Peter ARCHER - KTM 300
3. V44 Michael BROOKS - KTM 144

Clubman E1
1. 123 Dan BEAVEN - KTM 250
2. 122 Bill RICHARDS - Yamaha 250
3. 160 Ross HARVEY - KTM 200

Clubman E2/3
1. 201 Tyson MAYTON-JONES - Husaberg 450
2. 232 Gary WEBB - Honda 250
3. 206 Lee POPE - KTM 300

Sportsman
1. 324 Ian HUGHES - Suzuki 250

2. 388 Andrew PARKINSON - KTM 250
3. 326 Hugh THOMAS - KTM 250

Over 40 Sportsman
1. 409 Karl PHILLIPS - Suzuki 250
2. 417 Steve EDGINGTON - Yamaha 250
3. 403 Simon MINCH - KTM 525

Novice
1. 503 David MEARS - KTM 250
2. 504 Mike SNOOK- Husaberg 450
3. 507 Chris ROOS - Yamaha 250

Results - Print friendly CLICK HERE…

Results – Web page version (includes lap data) CLICK HERE…

(press ‘ctrl’ when clicking link to open in new window or tab)


Dear Rider

In spite of going to a great deal of trouble to plan our 2008 calendar (and publishing our dates way back in September last year!) we find ourselves once again in the ridiculous situation where date clashes force riders to choose between local events. On top of that the first round of the WOR’s new “Great Britain Cross Country” series has now been announced on our doorstep at Matchams and unfortunately clashes with our first race of the season on the 17th February at The Inside Park. We think this exciting new series will be a good thing for the sport and having spoken with Steve & Eddy at GBXC it seems they are tied by their TV contract as well as circuit availability so we have agreed to ask the land owners at The Inside Park if we might visit them two weeks later (on the 2nd March instead of the 17th February).

In order to truly give you the freedom to ride we have been working on our other dates too & present below our revised calendar – we could have dug our heels in and kept our original dates - but what's the point? - like you we just want to have fun on our bikes, so if it's all the same to you we'll leave the stupid games and petty squabbles to others and we'll stick to what we do best - RACING!

Yours in sport

Gary & the team

Dates:

2nd March - The Inside Park (was 17th February - date change to be confirmed)

27th April - Weymouth

22nd June - Milton Abbas

12th October - Stonedown Forest

7th December - Somerley Park

20-21 September Ringwood Forest (BEC round)

Wednesday evening Rogershill Raceway Summer series: 3 dates tba

Saturday afternoon Rogerhill Raceway fun-race: 1 date tba

SCEC 2008... ENJOY THE RIDE! "


Rain didn't stop play for Frost Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk

If ever there was a weekend when animals should consider going in two by two, it was the weekend of the 9th December when the Southern Counties Enduro Club held their final round of the year and one which would decide the 2007 championship standings. Somehow, the rain was nowhere near as heavy on the Sunday as it has been for countless days leading up to the event, but needless to say the course was going to demand very careful line-selection and this became very clear as the race progressed. The marshals were out in force, helping to keep riders moving, but as soon as one bike was removed from the quagmire, another was waiting to take its place in exactly the same spot where someone had obviously had difficulty. Sometime ago, I was told that Enduro could be a thinking man's game and this proved true in the wet conditions with the leading riders carefully plotting a course around the buried bikes - one of which was submerged so deeply in the opening stages that it remained in place for a further 5 hours until it could be dug out!

The Championship class looked to be going Andy Frost's way from the early stages and this was reinforced as the race progressed with the retirement of the usual top-runners such as Mark Cornick (left), Danny Hall, Jeff Goss and Wayne Player. From here Frost was unchallenged and proceeded to build an insurmountable lead - so much so, that when I was (briefly) following Frost, he came across a rider trapped beneath his bike at the bottom of a steep descent. Andy took the time to lift the bike off of him; made sure he was ok and then re-mount to still finish with a 2 lap lead over Phil Studley and John Leigh who finished second and third respectively.

A couple of front-runners in the Expert class also suffered from retirements which left Steve Harding and Gary McCoy at the front of the pack with Chris Salt in third. Harding lead until the half-way mark before being passed by McCoy and from here Gary never relinquished his lead, finishing some 3 ½ minutes over Harding, who in turn finished 2 laps ahead of third placed Salt.

Ian Shuttleworth enjoyed a convincing win in the E1 Clubman class, eventually finishing with an entire lap between himself and second placed Darren Morgan. Morgan also has a significant 10 minute buffer at the end of the race over third placed Richard Tucker.

The E2 Clubman class had another convincing winner - Tyson Mayton-Jones. Strangely, the E2 class had the fewest retirements, but Jones remained unchallenged with a 2 lap lead over second placed Terry Beecham at the end who, much like E1 entrant Darren Morgan had gradually built a 10 minute lead over James Courtenay in third.

The Sportsman race ran for 2 ½ hours instead of the usual 3, but this still gave Nik Rowbotham enough time to romp away into the distance, never to be seen again. Things were somewhat closer for Pete Fry and Nigel Perring though. Fry would gap Perring for a couple of laps and then Perring would close the gap. This continued for the duration with Perring seemingly missing Fry after a couple of laps and pushing to close the distance between them, but sadly for Perring, second place was not to be, which meant that the top three were Rowbotham, Fry and Perring.

In a copy-book example of most of the other classes, the Over 40's class winner Mark Tucker finished a whole lap ahead of the rest of the bunch. It wasn't quite so easy for second and third placed Dave Salkeld and Peter Archer though as they were barely separable, especially during the closing stages - but Salkeld held second place with just 30 seconds over third placed Archer.

Championship places are never easy to come by and the final round of the year made sure that the remainder of the points had to be fought for. Attrition rates were high and no doubt helped shuffle the pack when it came to the final standings. Enduro may be a thinking man's game, but conditions like that will make sure that Enduro is never a betting man's game

SCEC Enduro results 9-12-2007:

Championship: 1st Andy Frost, 2nd Phil Studley, 3rd John Leigh Expert: 1st Gary McCoy, 2nd Steve Harding, 3rd Chris Salt. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Ian Shuttleworth, 2nd Darren Morgan, 3rd Richard Tucker. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Tyson Mayton-Jones, 2nd Terry Beecham, 3rd James Courtenay. Over 40: 1st Mark Tucker, 2nd Dave Salkeld, 3rd Peter Archer. Sportsman: 1st Nik Rowbotham, 2nd Pete Fry, 3rd Nigel Perring.

2007 SCEC Championship final standings:

Championship: 1st Andy Frost, 2nd Gary Wright, 3rd Mark Cornick. Expert: 1st Gary McCoy, 2nd Dave Nuttal, 3rd Lee Wheatley. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Ian Shuttleworth, 2nd Richard Middleton, 3rd Gareth Thurgood. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Matt Guppy, 2nd Tyson Mayton-Jones, 3rd James Courtenay. Over 40: 1st Peter Archer, 2nd Patrick Wills, 3rd Paul Hart. Sportsman: 1st Pete Fry, 2nd Mike Owen, 3rd Nigel Perring.


Mud-wrestling win for Wright.

Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk 

Even with the wet summer that we've enjoyed this year, each event I've been to has been pretty dry. Don't get me wrong, there's always a section or two that includes a stream or river to dampen things down a little, but the Southern Counties Enduro Club event on the 28th October proved that Dorset's monsoon season is definitely at the latter part of the year. Sadly for me, I was sidelined for this particular event and call me masochistic, but arriving shortly before the start only to be greeted by horizontal rain and the kind of winds that demand a firm grip on the car door as you step foot into the muddy field, I was more than a little miffed that I wasn't taking part; especially as this particular venue at Milton Abbas was all-new.

Course wise, there was a bit of everything to keep those who were lucky enough to ride amused. The start led into a typically technical wooded Enduro section which snaked its way into a muddy field crossing which the faster riders made look incredibly easy, whilst those with slightly less momentum had to content with clogged tyres and a very wayward bike. The reward for climbing out of this field was one of plentiful grip in the stubble-field Motocross track. From here there was a mixture of smaller woodland sections that were interspersed with tricky off-cambers that demanded absolute concentration at all times. Once these were safely navigated, a short wooded trail was all that stood between those riders who were still upright and the start of another lap.

The Championship class looked to be going Mark Cornick's way as he took to the lead and continued to stay there for the first 2 hours of the race. Mark (left) was one of a number of four-stroke riders suffering from overheating, and having only just rebuilt his engine after cooking it at a previous event; he decided to retire which handed the lead to Gary Wright. Wright finished the race with a 6 minute buffer over second placed Bradley King, who in turn had a 7 minute gap between himself and third placed Jeff Goss.

Sam Chapman led the Expert class from the start and looked to be safely in the lead until James Ovens began to reel him in after a few laps. Sadly for Ovens, Chapman cleared off into the distance, deciding that Ovens was too close for his liking. In third place was Gary McCoy but with Ovens gathering pace whilst trying to catch Chapman, McCoy had to settle for third spot with a minute between himself and second place.

The E1 Clubman class was won convincingly by Ian Shuttleworth who must have been very lonely at the front as the remainder of the E1 field were far behind. David Parker was in second place and following Ian's example, had built a considerable lead over third placed Sam Richards. Obviously the E1 bunch had decided that it was far too slippery for bar-to-bar action.

Christopher Stuckey and Tyson Mayton-Jones in the E2 Clubman class had other ideas. No one will ever know whether it was a conscious decision to accompany each other around the sodden course or not, but the leading two were never more than a minute apart and finished a cosy 4 seconds adrift of each other at the end. Being gooseberry was never an issue for third placed Matt Guppy, as although Matt was riding well, maintaining a fairly equal gap between himself and the leading pair, Stuckey and Mayton-Jones had an unassailable lead.

Some of the Sportsman riders were finding the wet, slippery conditions particularly tiring, but the leading trio of Andrew Rossiter, Brendan Reese and Pete Fry didn't seem to suffer. Not only did they claim the top three places respectively in the Sportsman class, they also enjoyed a respectable mid-pack finish in the overall results.

Peter Archer definitely didn't want the rest of the Over 40 class catching him and finished with a massive 2 lap barrier between himself and second placed Steven Taylor, which equates to some 25 minutes! Chris Beswick gave chase, eventually finishing 3rd.

As impressive as some of the leads were, weather of less biblical proportions could have seen them stretched further still, as the race was shortened to 2 hours 20 minutes. With the course becoming ever more challenging, the harder it got, the wider the course became - but it has to be said not one rider complained! Also worth a mention is a comment received from SCEC's Gary Warr regarding the compulsory use of Enduro tyres. "Following our inspection today we are stunned by the condition of the land as rutting and long/medium term damage is negligible - this is truly remarkable considering the weather and is proof once again (if it were needed) that these tyres are the way forward for our sport."

SCEC Enduro results 28-10-2007:

Championship: 1st Gary Wright, 2nd Bradley King, 3rd Jeff Goss. Expert: 1st Sam Chapman, 2nd James Ovens, 3rd Gary McCoy E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Ian Shuttleworth, 2nd David Parker, 3rd Sam Richards. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Christopher Stuckey, 2nd Tyson Mayton-Jones, 3rd Matt Guppy. Over 40: 1st Peter Archer, 2nd Stephen Taylor, 3rd Chris Beswick. Sportsman: 1st Andrew Rossiter, 2nd Brendan Reece, 3rd Pete Fry.


A win for Wakely at Kingston Maurward Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk

The rolling countryside of Kingston Maurward, just outside Dorchester, Dorset was the venue for the Southern Counties Enduro Club Hare & Hounds on the 16th September. Being held with the kind permission of the Agricultural College, this was an all-new venue for the club and consisted of a sweeping Motocross course that was laid out by Poole & Parkstone Motocross club, which led into a couple of feet-up (if you were lucky) trials-type sections - one in a technical "pit" and the other being an off-camber woodland section. Conditions were perfect, parking was close to both signing-on and scrutineering, and the burger-van was open for business. All was looking rosy.

Having already seen Simon Wakely (above) and Andy Frost as we arrived at the meeting, I was certain that this pairing would finish first and second - and they didn't disappoint. Wakely led from the start, carving a continuous arc around the first corner, but Frost had the bit between his teeth and was with Wakely until the third lap, when Simon pulled a small, but significant 10 second gap. From here, Wakely continued to build his lead with a further 10 seconds each and every lap until he disappeared from view. Initially, third place was a four-way race between Bradley King, Gary Wright, Andy Scudamore and Simon Thomas, but King eventually claimed the final podium spot.

The Expert class was won convincingly by Gary McCoy who led from the start and couldn't be caught. Behind McCoy, was a freight-train of Expert riders constantly passing one another, but it was Andy Claxton and Dave Nuttall who eventually finished second and third respectively.

The Over 40's class entrants enjoyed a little space between one another. Peter Archer stormed into the lead, not to be seen again, finishing some 7 minutes over second placed Michael Hughes, who in turn had an initial battle with Paul Hart before pulling a 1 ½ minute lead and forcing Hart into third.

The E1 Clubman class win could have been anyone's for the first half of the race, as the top three were constantly changing place. But Lee White (left) made a break for it and started to gap the chasing pack. Dean Reed (in second) then followed White's example and created a gap between himself and third placed Gareth Pearce.

Looking at the gate-times, the E2 Clubman class win could have been literally anyone's from the start, as a matter of seconds separated the top 20. When the dust settled, eventual E2 winner Matt Guppy was a minute behind the leading trio of James Courtenay, Ian Challoner and Tony Primmer, but after 2 hours had closed the gap and made the pass shortly after, relegating Courtenay and Challoner into second and third respectively.

Last, but certainly not least were the Sportsman riders. Again, as is so often the case, the leader, Glenn Drinkwater took to the front and then proceeded to build on his lead, leaving the rest of the field to follow. A net could have been thrown over the chasing pack of six or so riders and this bunch continued to circulate for the 2.5 hour duration on the Sportsman race. Drinkwater took the win with a 6 minute lead over second placed Brendan Reese, who in turn, had an 8 second lead over third placed Mike Owen.

For me, things didn't quite go to plan. Having worked on my bike for a good deal of the previous week to make sure it was tip-top, the damn thing refused to start on the line. On the last occasion I tried to make up precious time after a non-start, I crashed a matter of yards from the line and ended up in the back of an ambulance. So you'd think I'd have learnt from this experience, and with a 3 hour race in prospect, used the 90 minutes to make up the time that I'd lost; which in reality was only 10 seconds or so. But me being me, I pitched myself over the bars within the first half a dozen laps and spent more precious time in the pits, fixing my bike and then visited the Paramedics where they attempted to do the same to my wrist before I ventured out again. True to their word, freezing my wrist only lasted a lap, so I decided that intelligence should prevail. Back at the van, I fished out a mixture of tablets and took a seat until they took the edge off things a little, allowing me to get my gloves back on. With a rousing cheer from my wife (I think that's what it was), I re-joined the race to finish way, way out of the points in a heady 27th place. But hey, a finish is a finish.

But I wasn't the only one encountering problems: Mark Cornick's (left) bike wouldn't start (like mine) and he eventually got away 4 minutes after the rest of his class. But he still managed a highly creditable 5th place (unlike me). And the top three guys all suffered rear brake problems due to overheating - Bradley King's dad stationed himself at the transponder point and doused his calliper with water each lap in an attempt to cool it down. And last of all, I have to mention Andy Elliot who entered the Championship class on a 1981 Maico 250 and finished an unbelievable 8th in class!

The next event is the 28th October. I might spend a little extra time prepping my bike between now and then.

For further details and full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk 

SCEC Enduro results 16-9-2007:

Championship: 1st Simon Wakely, 2nd Andy Frost, 3rd Bradley King. Expert: 1st Gary McCoy, 2nd Andy Claxton, 3rd Dave Nuttall. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Lee White, 2nd Dean Reed, 3rd Gareth Pearce. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Matt Guppy, 2ndJames Courtenay, 3rd Ian Challoner. Over 40: 1st Peter Archer, 2nd Michael Hughes, 3rd Paul Hart. Sportsman: 1st Glenn Drinkwater, 2nd Brendan Reece, 3rd Mike Owen.


Andy Frost conquers Cornick Hill.

Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk

Wednesday 5th September saw the final round of the 2007 Crescent Suzuki/SCEC Wednesday Evening Series, and what a tough one it proved to be.

As with the previous two rounds there were easy or hard route choices, some offering substantial time savings - should you be lucky or skilful enough to make it to the end of the section unscathed. SCEC member Mark Cornick had helped build the course and decided to include a "double" which led to a near vertical climb that also boasted a "kicker" near to the top. This route undoubtedly gave the biggest opportunity on the course to save time, but as is so often the case, was the most difficult to negotiate. Unsurprisingly this section was mentioned at the riders briefing, which prompted a few nervous glances in the direction of Cornick Hill before the start of the two hour multi-lap event.

The Championship class were the first group away and Andy Frost revelled in the dry conditions, eventually finishing with a 1 ½ minute lead over second placed Mark Cornick. Frost didn't have it all his own way though as Cornick led Frost for the first two laps but grudgingly relinquished his lead. With Cornick now occupying second it was up to third placed Leigh Williams to try and close the gap. Sadly for Williams he was unable to catch Cornick and the top three finishers in the Champ class were Andy Frost, Mark Cornick and Leigh Williams, each completing nine laps.

For the Expert riders it was certainly a case of mix and match. For the first few laps Ross Hill and Brett Wheeler were battling for first and second places with Hill eventually gapping Wheeler. Wheeler then came under pressure from Gavin Flagg who claimed second spot. Wheeler then passed Flagg and taking a leaf from Ross Hill's book, continued to expand his lead over Flagg. The Expert finishers were Ross Hill, Brett Wheeler and Gavin Flagg respectively.

The E1 Clubman class was won convincingly by Tommy Layzell who took the lead and held it comfortably with an eventual lead of some eleven minutes after the 2 hour race. Second and third placed William Richards and Brad Perrett had a very different race to Layzell with places continually being exchanged. Perrett led Richards for all but the first lap, but was passed at the closing stages to give Richards second over third placed Perrett.

The E2 Clubman race looked to be anyone's for the majority of the event. James Courtenay took the early lead with Neil Deakin hot on his heels. Deakin and Matt Guppy then passed Courtenay only to have Courtenay pass them both and reclaim his lead. Sadly for Courtenay his lead was short-lived and was passed by Guppy and Deakin. Guppy held first place for the majority of the race but Dean Pennington came from nowhere to take the class win, relegating Guppy to second and Deakin to third.

The Over 40's class was initially led by Russell Priddle but Karl Phillips was having none of it and led the class on the second lap. From here Phillips was untouchable and second and third places were left to Priddle and Steve Cook to fight over. After an hour and a half, Cook had a comfortable lead over Priddle, but had no way of catching Phillips who eventually finished with a two minute lead over Cook, who in turn had a one minute lead over Priddle.

The Sportsman class was a similar story to some of the other classes, with Jon Stamper taking the initial lead and then clearing off into the distance whilst second and third places were being exchanged at will. Stamper finished with a 1 ½ minute lead over second placed Paul Cummings who had relegated Brendan Reese to third. At the end, only a set of feeler gauges could measure the distance between Cummings and Reese.

For me; riding in the E2 Clubman class, things were not going well. After tackling Cornick Hill on the first lap, I was pleased that my bike effortlessly crested the top of the hill. Sadly, I wasn't on it at the time and unceremoniously slid all the way to the bottom, only just managing to clamber my way to the top and rejoin my bike. From here it was definitely a case of more haste = less speed as I proceeded to bounce off all that I could find. Eventually I settled into some sort of rhythm but it wasn't enough to challenge the top three, let alone the leader. At the flag I finished fifth, which all things considered, I wasn't too upset with as its a few points to add to my Championship total. I know I've said it many times before, but I MUST get fitter for next year.

After speaking to event organiser Gary Warr, it transpires I wasn't the only one in difficulty. Course owner, Danny Hall was aboard a borrowed 125 Husqvarna. The chain snapped on the first lap, and following a push to the pits, he set off a lap behind the leaders. Champ rider Stan Watt had a great start, but his front brake adjuster somehow jammed causing his front brake to lock each time it left the ground, eventually causing Stan to crash out of the race. Much to the delight of my little girl (who's 5); Charlotte Ryall was flying the flag for the girls. Riding a Yamaha YZ with pink hubs and rims, levers, grips and graphics, Poppy was absolutely mesmerised each lap. At the end of the race, the first thing she said was "Did you see how high the girl on the pink bike was jumping?" The final words I'll leave to Gary Warr and his thoughts on Cornick Hill. "Mark Cornick built the new jumps and expert routes - then made them look sickeningly easy. Sadly for Dorset Police Club's Craig Redmond, he made them look impossible!"

For further details and full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk 

Crescent Suzuki Wednesday evening Enduro results 5-9-2007:

Championship: 1st Andy Frost, 2nd Mark Cornick, 3rd Leigh Williams Expert: 1st Ross Hill, 2nd Brett Wheeler, 3rd Gavin Flagg. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Tommy Layzell, 2nd William Richards 3rd Brad Perrett. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Dean Pennington, 2nd Matt Guppy, 3rd Neil Deakin. Over 40: 1st Karl Phillips, 2nd Steve Cook, 3rd Russell Priddle. Sportsman: 1st Jon Stamper, 2nd Paul Cummings, 3rd Brendan Reece.

2007 Crescent Suzuki Wednesday Evening Championship final standings:

Championship: 1st Mark Cornick, 2nd Daryl Bolter, 3rd Andy Frost Expert: 1st Gavin Flagg, 2nd Darren Hounsell, 3rd Mark Lewis. E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Tommy Layzell, 2nd Brad Perrett 3rd Paul Charman. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Matt Guppy, 2nd Lee Davey, 3rd Neil Deakin. Over 40: 1st Karl Phillips, 2nd Dave Coles, 3rd Steve Cook. Sportsman: 1st Brendan Reese, 2nd Paul Cummings, 3rd Steve Green.


to run hare & hound ‘enduro’ at leading agricultural college in bid to win over land owners - Kingston Maurward, Dorset. 16th September 2007

Each year SCEC try to introduce at least two new venues, this year they are rolling out four of them. So far this year members have enjoyed two new stunning venues in the shape of Moreton Forest back in March and Higher Melcombe in July. Generally speaking though finding new venues is a struggle for clubs as farmers rely heavily on government schemes and are fearful of anything that may jeopardise their income. No wonder SCEC are so excited about their next event at their next new venue at Kingston Maurward near Dorchester. Kingston Maurward is one of the countries leading agricultural colleges and apart from creating a superb event in it’s own right SCEC, have put this event together to promote the legitimacy of the sport to land owners and farmers from all over the country.

Land-owners will be treated to the full VIP treatment including a pre-event seminar and the chance to witness an event first hand – apart from experts from within the sport, various government bodies will also be on-hand to help and advise them.

The event will demonstrate in a totally practical and honest way the benefits and problems associated with hosting an event. It will drive home the fact that motorcycle sport is a legitimate way of generating revenue from the land and that crucially, a well run event has only a modest environmental impact and carries no risk to the landowner. The event is a massive undertaking but will have a huge impact on the way our sport is perceived to those that hold the keys to the venues of the future. For more information or if you feel you would like to help in any way please contact Gary Warr at on 01929 463265 or at gary@enduro.org.uk 


2007 CRESCENT SUZUKI Summer Evening Series

Bolter takes his second win Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk

With all the rain, rain and more rain, plus the countless meetings that have had to be cancelled due to waterlogged courses - I'm pretty sure that anyone with a gambling streak would have bet against a bright, summers evening for the 2nd round of the Southern Counties Enduro Club/Crescent Suzuki Wednesday evening championship. But, luckily, that's exactly how it turned out. The course for the 11th July meeting promised to be reminiscent of the Rogershill Raceway course of the late 1990's and with a memory that can't seem to remember what happened last week, parts of the course brought these memories flooding back in a most familiar fashion. Very strange. The first part of the course was the main Motocross track plus a short rutted track, which in turn led to a telegraph pole/ditch combination that seemed to catch more than the un-wary. From here a whooped track led to a concrete pipe (of the junior Kickstart variety) where it was a case of up and over, along another stretch of track, before a meander around a copse of trees, a twisty banked and berm'd section and some more tree action. From here it was back to the 90's and into top gear as the course followed the river, over the access road and into another small plantation of trees. Once out of the tight stuff, it was time for more top gear action before ploughing through a small river section, across a field and rejoining the other Motocross track. It was hard on the brakes after the double jumps before another tight tree section which in turn led to a mini-bike track where the full-sized bikes went from lock-stop to lock-stop in an effort to negotiate it. Into top gear once more, before re-joining the main Motocross track where another lap began. Pheww! As with previous events, the Championship class were the first away, where Mark Cornick in his first race in the Championship class took the initial lead, before being passed by Daryl Bolter. At the end of the first lap it was Bolter who led Cornick and Andy Frost, who dropped valuable time after having to swap the lap transponder to the other wrist in an effort to be scanned. The top three stayed in this order until Frost (who now had the transponder on the correct wrist) passed Cornick to take second spot, but Bolter had an untouchable lead (well, I guess he is a World Enduro Championship Husqvarna rider) and Frost and Cornick kept battling away to finish second and third respectively. Unknown to the leading three, 2006 Champ class winner Danny Hall, who was on the In-Chains TM250, was forced to end his race prematurely after discovering the course blocked by another rider who had trailed the marking rope from a tree, across the track and around his back wheel, forcing other riders to queue behind him. Danny (who is the course owner) had to repair the track, ending his chances aboard Ben Milward's TM machine. For me, things were going pretty well even after a poor start. I've had uncharacteristically good starts at the last couple of races and I'd decided this was to be no different. At the drop of the flag, I had gone from first (in my mind) to mid-pack, but managed to stay sunny-side up (this time) and picked up a few places. At two-thirds race distance, I was second (in class) and had managed to (very) slowly catch Matt Guppy who was leading. Now, with all forms of racing, the most important people to beat are your mates, and with Matt being a good friend, it was imperative that I passed him. Sadly for me, Matt spotted me directly behind and this seemed to propel him along at a super-sonic pace, never to be seen again. Damn, second for me then.

With the Crescent Suzuki Wednesday evening series seemingly blessed with glorious weather each round it came as no surprise that the event was fit to burst with 130 riders, some of which had travelled to Bere Regis in Dorset from as far away as Wales! I'm sure yet more good weather has been booked for the final Wednesday evening round on the 5th September. In a serious attempt to go one better next time, I've thrown caution to the wind and embarked on a startling fitness regime. Gone are my lunchtime treats of whiter than white bread and a chocolate biscuit, to be replaced by Hovis best of both (one step at a time) and a Banana. If nothing else, I should be able to coax a few more MPG's from the bike.

Crescent Suzuki Wednesday evening Enduro results:

Championship: 1st Daryl Bolter, 2nd Andy Frost, 3rd Mark Cornick. 
Expert: 1st Gavin Flagg, 2nd Sean Tranter, 3rd Darren Hounsell. 
E1 Clubman (up to 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Marcus Feltham, 2nd Tommy Layzell, 3rd Brad Parrett. 
E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Matt Guppy, 2nd Lee Davey, 3rd Barry Mitchell. 
Over 40: 1st Karl Phillips, 2nd Simon Dobinson, 3rd Steve Cook. 
Sportsman: 1st Brendan Reece, 2nd Jason Coombes, 3rd Steve Green.

For further details and full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk 


2007 CRESCENT SUZUKI Summer Evening Series Rd1

Daryl does it again
Report: Lee Davey Images: Imageconsortium.co.uk 

How many times have you had a mid-week Friday feeling?

Leaving work at 4pm - nice. Basking in glorious sunshine whilst unloading your bike - great. Having the all-important pre-race burger whilst chatting to all and sundry - fantastic. Forgetting that it's your wedding anniversary until the wife gives you a "gentle" reminder shortly before the event - not particularly recommended. Oops.

Following the success of last year's Wednesday evening series, The Southern Counties Enduro Club kicked off a fresh series for 2007 on the 6th June (must remember that date). Entries boomed and over 100 riders lined up at Rogers Hill Raceway near Bere Regis in Dorset for the 2 hour event which had undergone a few changes from the following year. Course owner Danny Hall had obviously been offered some telegraph poles at a reasonable price as they could be seen at various parts of the track, and did their very best to catch the un-wary. Another change was the rockery, the brain-child of Si Wakely which was followed by the river crossing - over by bridge or through it; the choice is yours - both sections giving the rider a choice of easy or hard routes.

From the 6.30pm start, the Championship class disappeared into a thick cloud of dust, rounded the first few turns and then punched back through the dust into the downhill section of the Motocross track. At the end of the first lap, Husqvarna's Daryl Bolter (left) was first, closely followed by Andy Frost and Danny Hall (who was fresh from watering the track with tractor and bowser). Laps 5 and 6 shuffled the pack as Andy Frost passed Bolter, and Mark Cornick passed Hall to take third place. Positions remained unchanged until lap 10 when Andy Frost retired, elevating Cornick (below) and Hall into second and third respectively until finishing a lap later.

For me, things were a little tougher. In previous seasons, I've enjoyed plenty of bike-time and occasionally some gym-time has been thrown in, but since Christmas I'd ridden a grand total of 9 hours. With the various responsibilities that age invariably brings, time has been more than limited and it's never a good sign when the bike seems alien whilst sat on the start-line. Add the 23 degree heat and my rapidly approaching 40th (3 and a bit years to go…and counting) and I'd already racked up a decent pile of excuses - given more time, I'd have come up with a few more. With an un-characteristically good start in the E2 group, I took second spot and was so surprised to claim first a few corners later, I stalled mid berm and relegated myself to 5th or so. But all wasn't lost - Enduro being thinking mans game, I spotted a queue at the first of the easy/hard route sections and decided to take the un-cluttered easy route, only to end the section with no-one to be seen. That'll teach me to think. With the pressure off and nothing more to do than practice my post-race excuses, I settled into a good rhythm and managed to catch the leading E2 group at the half-way point and sneaked into a second place finish. It seemed so good at the time, but as I'm writing this some 3 days later, I'm still struggling to get out of a chair un-aided. To say I'm in desperate need of a fitness programme is a huge under-statement. Any volunteers?

With the next round only weeks away, preparation is already underway. Forget the bike and the gym - I've looked in the diary, my wife's birthday isn't until October.

Round 2 of the SCEC/Crescent Suzuki Wednesday evening series will be held on July 11th. For further details and full results of this race visit www.enduro.org.uk .

Crescent Suzuki Wednesday evening Enduro results:

Championship: 1st Daryl Bolter, 2nd Danny Hall, 3rd Jeff Goss. 
Expert: 1st Mark Cornick, 2nd Gavin Flagg, 3rd Darren Hounsell. 
E1 Clubman: 1st Ross Follet, 2nd Josh House, 3rd Tommy Layzell. 
E2 Clubman: 1st Marcus Dodd, 2nd Lee Davey, 3rd Matt Guppy. 
Over 40: 1st Michael Hughes, 2nd Gary Warr, 3rd Karl Phillips. 
Sportsman: 1st Pete Fry, 2nd Brendan Reese, 3rd Russell Harris.


2007 Bluebell Enduro
Report: Garry Alan Images:Image Consortium

Round 2 - SCEC Cross Country Championship series, Shillingstone Forest, Dorset.

By any standard Shillingstone Forest rates as one of the finest forest based venues in the South of England. The mixture of wide and fast flowing tracks, knadgery winding paths, tricky cambers, monster hills and beautiful scenery make it really special, and over the last 10 years the crew at SCEC have got to know the place pretty well. Parking limitations restrict the entry to around 140 riders leading to many disappointed entrants, but those that got their entries in early enough were blessed with perfect weather to enjoy this little bit of Enduro heaven. No two events here are ever the same - who can forget the wet one two years ago! This years was a little faster and rather less technical than in previous years, but if the number of riders stopping to shake the clerk of the course's hand at the end were anything to go by, none the worse for that! A sign of the times maybe? 

At Eleven o'clock sharp the flag dropped signalling the start of the 2007 Bluebell Enduro. It would be around 18 minutes before the first of the championship boys would appear at the end of their first lap. When they did it was the hot favourite Andy Frost (above) in the lead, followed just 3 seconds later by a hard charging Gary Player and a few seconds later the smooth riding Gary Wright. These 3 were giving it everything they had, and would continue to do so for the full 3 hours, even the brash that littered the route on the early laps did little to slow them down. For a while it looked like Dakar hopeful Stan Watt might just spoil their party until a monstrous crash whilst attempting to pass slower riders off-piste tempered his enthusiasm somewhat. As the race progressed Andy gradually extended his lead to around 30 seconds, which by the end allowed him to just sneak in an extra lap, but the two Garys continued their tooth and nail fight right to the very end - remarkably when the flag eventually dropped just 3 seconds separated them - just as it had been on their first lap! Andy Scudamore brought his KTM home in 4th and a very bruised and battered Stan Watt rounded out the top 5. With 27 Experts lined up, including a few new faces to SCEC, nobody really knew quite what to expect. Everyone that is except Mark Cornick. Continuing his recent form Mark was quite literally flying. Only Freddie Broadway could keep him in sight, but even Freddie had to concede nearly 2 minutes to Mark by the end. Mik Hill, Gary McCoy and Brad Armstrong had their own little battle (but having started on different minutes didn't know it!) and ended up 3rd,4th and 5th respectively. When an event is as enjoyable as this one everyone's a winner, but as always there are one or two riders that really stand out. Here that rider had to be Peter Archer. Peter proved once again that Over 40 doesn't necessarily mean over the hill. He finished a full lap up on the rest of his class and remarkable 11th overall, thrashing most of the experts in the process!  Next Round, 22nd July at Ansty.

Stan Watts report

Results

Championship 1st Andy Frost 2nd Gary Player 3rd Gary Wright 4th Andy Scudamore 5th Stanley Watt

Expert 1st Mark Cornick 2nd Fredie Broadway 3rd Mik Hill 4th Gary Mccoy 5th Brad Armstrong

Over 40 1st Peter Archer 2nd Chris Boyce 3rd Paul Hart 4th Patrick Wills 5th Neil Shinner

Clubman E1 1st Ian Shuttleworth, 2nd Jon-Paul Oconnell 3rd Gareth Thurgood 4th Richard Middleton 5th Andrew Lawrence

Clubman E1 1st Kevin Barnes 2nd Tyson Mayton-Jones 3rd Steve Whetman 4th Tony Primmer 5th Craig Orton

Sportsman 1st Pete Fry 2nd Nigel Martin 3rd Nigel Perring 4th Russell Harris 5th Colin Wilkins


Frost finds form in the forest Report: Lee Davey Pictures: Imageconsortium.co.uk

It's always good when an event has high drama and even higher emotions. Game-plans are set and each and every individual is focused on victory. Surley that's got to be the perfect recipe for any event, hasn't it?

Well, the first round of the 2007 Southern Counties Enduro Club Championship contained all of the above before the event had even got underway! The venue was Moreton Forest near Affpuddle in Dorset which a few local residents were strongly objecting to. Apparently, one resident in particular had put the fear of god up the others portraying a picture of noise and chaos straight out of Mad Max and promises of fellow walkers blocking the route when the Enduro was underway were pledged.

I've been a member of the Southern Counties Enduro Club for some 9 years and this is the first time I have ridden at Moreton Forest and obviously for some residents it was also a new experience. Now, fear of the un-known can make emotions run high when the only experience of two-wheels is one of illegal riding that can plague forest, so I can understand how some might feel when they see thoughtless and un-lawful riding in progress and then contemplate an event with 140 competitors. Thankfully, the blockades didn't appear but Enviromental Health officers were present to make sure the event didn't breach the noise regulations and which in the end reinforced the responsible nature of both the club and competitors. Tests were carried out at various parts of the course and a figure of 52db was recorded at the forest edge, with 72db trackside. Now, my CSE in Physics doesn't cut the mustard with regard to noise levels, so I "Googled" the average figure and found it equivalent to a Zannussi Tumble Dryer (£228.99 plus delivery and available from all good retailers). It just goes to show how important it is to bin that noisy exhaust and fit a "Q" pipe instead.

Anyhow, moving on the real drama of the day - the Enduro itself. SCEC have recently introduced a difficulty rating for each event, with 1 for easy and 5 for difficult - Moreton was originally pidgeon-holed as a 2. To ease possible tension, the course had 2 miles removed from its lap and the adjustments upped the rating to a 3 (possibly a 4), but with a dry, bright day conditions were perfect and with ten riders away at one minute intervals, bunching over the trickier sections was kept to a minimum. At the end of the first lap Andy Frost was leading with Stan Watt in second and Bradley king in third. Nick Life then passed King and Watt to take second place, and with just a 4 second deficit began to challenge Frost for the lead. Sadly for Life, his race was over after an hour which handed Frost a comfortable lead. At the half-way mark the leading pack has completed 6 laps and it was all-change from here. Bradley King had a disasterous lap which handed Andy Scudamore third place behind Stan Watt, but this was relatively short-lived as Gary Holland took third a couple of laps later. At the chequered flag, Andy Frost took a convincing win finishing one lap ahead of second placed Stan Watt. Although Gary Holland was third to cross the line, it was Mark Cornick who claimed the final podium spot due to starting 2 minutes behind the leading pack and beating Holland on aggregate time.

A special mention has to go the marshals who tirelessly pulled bikes from the deeper parts of the bog and also to one lady who could be seen lap after lap, pointing to the best line through the soft-stuff. I caught up with her at the end to say thanks where she explained (while wiping the mud from her glasses) that this was the first Enduro she had ever attended and would be back for more. That's the spirit!

But, I'll leave you all with this thought. While clearing the course, event organiser Gary Warr was asked a question by an 86 year old lady whilst walking her dog. She enquired "Did the bikes make these grooves in the boggy parts?" to which Gary replied "Yes" she then went on to ask " but why did they all ride into that when they could have gone on this part here?" pointing her walking stick to the 3 foot solid gap between the ruts. I've booked myself an eye test.

Full results of this event and details of the 2007 events be found at: www.enduro.org.uk 

SCEC Moreton Forest results:

Championship: 1st Andy Frost, 2nd Stan Wattt, 3rd Gary Holland. Expert: 1st Mark Cornick, 2nd Chris Honeywill, 3rd Gary McCoy. E1 Clubman (up-to 125cc 2-stroke or 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Ian Shuttleworth, 2nd Gareth Thurgood 3rd Sean Renvoize. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, or 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Marcus Dodd, 2nd Steve Whetman, 3rd Tyson Mayton-Jones. Over 40: 1st Peter Archer, 2nd Patrick Wills, 3rd Michael Hughes. Sportsman: 1st Mark Goddard, 2nd Kevin Pippard, 3rd Richard Swaffield,

 


SCEC Championship

Rd1 25th March - Moreton Forest Details
Rd2 6th May – Symondsbury
Rd3 22nd July - Ansty Details
Rd4 16th September – Ringwood Forest. Details
Rd5 28th October – Stonedown Forest Details
Rd6 9th December - Inside Park Details


Mellows wins the final round.
Report: Lee Davey Pictures: Imageconsortium.co.uk

With Christmas almost upon us and 2006 drawing to a close, the Southern Counties Enduro Club held their final event of the year at Inside Park near Blandford Forum in Dorset.

With the previous scheduled event cancelled due to monsoon-like weather, the forecast for Sunday 10th December looked to be yet another day for ducks, but with a large dollop of good luck the weather seemed to be holding albeit with the likelihood of yet more rain for later in the day. At least clouds of chocking dust wouldn't hamper the riders.

With a full to bursting entry of approximately 200, the start was blessed with a wide field into which a series of special test style Motocross turns were threaded before the course then wound its way into the wooded section. After zigzagging through the trees, across a field and over a couple of bumps, it was Supermoto time as the course followed a mud-covered concrete track past someone's front garden (how very understanding) and into another wooded section. From here the course was a mix of rutted tracks and woodland terrain in which tree roots would challenge the unwary, before reaching the final faster turns on the start/finish line. 

First to tackle the turns were those in the Championship class and after the first 7 mile lap it was Luke Mellows who led Gary Wright by just 13 seconds with Ian Putt a further 4 seconds behind. From here the first 3 positions stayed the same with Mellows building a further 1 minute gap over Wright with each hour that passed - not too shabby considering that Mellows was aboard a 125 on a course that was incredibly fast in places. I was sandwiched in the Clubman E2 class, which was the longest line-up of all. The flag dropped and with my customary poor start, I rounded the first turn in the bottom third of the class - great. What a blessing roll-off goggles can be. Once away from the tight and technical going, there was plenty of room to pass other riders, and again, the more challenging parts of the course remained roomy enough to keep things flowing nicely - provided the slippery going didn't claim more than a handful of riders. The long and rutted woodland tracks were not only a test of concentration, but also one of luck as catching a slower rider required either the dark art that is rut-changing or a degree of patience should you have found yourself in the wrong groove. Eenie, meenie, miny mo. Once at the end of the twisty sections, concentration levels were given a boost by the fast turns at the end of the lap. Then the predictions of the Met office came true. Although it wasn't exactly cats and dogs out there, the rain made any exposed tree roots very slippery indeed, so choosing the correct line was absolutely vital. Visibility also proved to be difficult and it's a minor miracle that my roll-offs lasted the full distance. One final pull of the cord back in the pits and voila, the roll-off film was finished. Perfect timing with the chequered flag. All in all, a great course to round off the 2006 Southern Counties Enduro Club championship.

Special mentions have to go to the following:

Barry Mitchell, Richard Swaffield and Kevin Pippard, proving that even the Sportsman class which is primarily for those who are new to the sport, needn't be uncompetitive. After three hours, a lone rider managed to squeeze between Mitchell and Swaffield denying the trio a one, two, three finish. Simon Wakely who was marshalling the course aboard his Trials bike. It's tough enough for someone of my dubious talent to sit out and watch others race, but it must be tougher still when you ride at a world level. And finally, to Gary Warr's Dad who fixed a tow rope to his nice, shiny 4x4 and helped tow my van out of the car park. It's a gold star to you all.

SCEC Inside Park results:

Championship: 1st Luke Mellows, 2nd Gary Wright, 3rd Ian Putt. Expert: 1st Mark Cornick, 2nd Andy Scudamore, 3rd Mick Gregg. E1 Clubman (up-to 125cc 2-stroke or 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Dave Nuttall, 2nd Paul Vincent 3rd William Richards. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, or 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Mark Stokes, 2nd Michael Clift, 3rd Mr Joff (even Enduros can be formal). Over 40: 1st Jack Twentyman, 2nd Dennis Harrison, 3rd Michael Hughes. Sportsman: 1st Barry Mitchell, 2nd Richard Swaffield, 3rd Kevin Pippard. Full results of this event and details of the 2007 events be found at: www.enduro.org.uk 


Life with the Royal Marines.

Report: Lee Davey Pictures: Imageconsortium.co.uk

Compared to the heavy rainfall we generally experience during the good old British summer, it had been pretty dry. Cleaning the bikes after an event was usually a case of removing the dust and providing no-one had an incredibly keen sense of smell; boots could escape a wash until the next outing. What's more, I managed a record five events plus a few practices from one rear tyre - dry tracks can certainly help the overdraught. Well, that was until Sunday 29th October when the Southern Counties Enduro Club held a three hour Hare & Hounds Enduro in conjunction with the Royal Marines at the ever-popular MEXE ranges in Bovington. As you'd probably guess, if you're riding on a course that the Marines use for training, chances are it's going to be a challenging three hours. The four and a half mile lap offered tight woodland sections, sandy tracks, rocky crossings and mud. Lots of mud. Deep too.

With the drop of the flag, PAR Homes Honda's Si Wakely led the Championship class closely followed by Nick Life (left). The pair couldn't be separated around the first lap and checked in with just two seconds between them. The winner from the previous MEXE event, Stan Watt was in third, but the leading pair already had a one minute advantage. Wakely and Life stayed inseparable for the first hour until Si, who was on a two-stop strategy due to a small tank, had to pit for fuel. This allowed Nick to pass and build a slight lead. That was until one of the muddy sections drew him in and allowed Wakely to reclaim the lead - but with racing being racing, lady luck stepped in with a couple of mechanical issues and ended Si's day. From here Nick's lead was unchallenged and at the end of the race, he enjoyed an impressive 9 minute advantage and was the only rider to complete fifteen laps. For me, the day was a mixture of surprise and exhaustion. Surprise, because at the drop of the E2 Clubman flag I found myself in the lead - not something that happens very often. Brimming with the confidence that the lead brings, I rounded a corner to find the track blocked by a fallen rider. With nowhere to go (not even over him) the rest of the field quickly lined up behind me. Well, that was until a course marshal decided to by-pass the blockage by redirecting everyone behind me around the hold up, relegating me into a lowly position. That's racing for you. But to be fair, it gave me a welcome excuse for being passed by the rest of the field. With the course offering little in the way of rest, I became tired very quickly and the dreaded arm-pump set in. For those of you that haven't ever had the pleasure that it brings, imagine trying to use the throttle/brake/clutch whilst wearing boxing gloves. What's more, it's uncomfortable too, so when I saw a friend of mine in the re-fuel area, it seemed the perfect opportunity to have a drink, a banana and a chat whilst things returned to normal. Once my ageing body had regained some of its limited composure, I was able to fully enjoy all that the course had to offer, negotiating the trees, bogs and sand without incident. Although I can honestly say I was pleased when the chequered flag came into view. A special mention must to Stephen Harrison who decided to pilot an Army issue Harley Davidson (no, not one of the leather-tasselled cruisers) and finished on a creditable eight laps. If trying to extract something of that weight from the mud doesn't put hairs on your chest, then nothing will.

And finally, a word from Si Wakely: "Not the best race for me. It was enjoyable at the start as Nick was riding really well and staying close, which was great practice for me and made sure I had to push hard all the time - It was made even closer by having to pit for fuel twice due to my small fuel tank, so he had the one stop advantage! I managed to pull the time back that I'd lost in the pits, and then passed Nick when he became stuck in one of the bogs. This helped give me a one minute advantage over him. After my second re-fuel, I came out just in front, but a lap later had a stone jam my rear brake losing a couple of minutes. This coupled with a broken rear mousse forced an early retirement. With unpredictable handling, I decided to use my head and save myself for the International Six Days Enduro (ISDE) which is less than two weeks away and being held in New Zealand. I'll be leaving next Monday so Sunday's event was great practice for the event, in which I'm hoping to do well for my country."

SCEC/RMPEC "MEXE" results:

Championship: 1st Nick Life, 2nd Gary Wright, 3rd Bradley King. Expert: 1st Neil Hawker, 2nd Tim Hunt, 3rd Rob Carey. E1 Clubman (up-to 125cc 2-stroke or 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Paul Vincent, 2nd Kevin Lamacraft, 3rd Sam Legg. E2 Clubman (over 125cc 2-stroke, or 250cc 4-stroke): 1st Chris Collins, 2nd James Courtenay, 3rd Matt Guppy. Over 40: 1st Steven Taylor, 2nd Arthur Johnson, 3rd Steve Cook. Sportsman: 1st Kevin Pippard, 2nd Gareth Thurgood, 3rd Mark Woodman

Full results of this event and details of the next can be found at: www.enduro.org.uk 


2006 Southern Counties Enduro Club SCEC Events

19th February 2006 - Southern Counties EC Cancelled

23rd April 2006 - Southern Counties EC / Royal Marines Regs

28th May 2006 - Southern Counties EC Bluebell enduro

2nd July 2006 - Southern Counties EC 3 September 2006Southern Counties EC

29th October 2006 - Southern Counties EC “Stonedown Forest” Hare & Hounds

26th November 2006 - RMEC/Southern Counties EC “Mexe” Hare & Hounds

10th December 2006 - Southern Counties EC

2005 Final Standings

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