Bird has the edge on Roper with third-round victory

STUCK IN THE MUD: Sudbury's Jamie Leach gets held up in the bog
STUCK IN THE MUD: Sudbury's Jamie Leach gets held up in the bog

Jamie Roper had to settle for second place as Sudbury Motorcycle Club hosted the third round of the Eastern Centre Enduro Championships.

The course and weather conditions were perfect for the G H Motorcycles/Husqvarna-sponsored event held at Foxborough Quarry, Sible Hedingham on Sunday.

The main event was the afternoon session of 2.5 hours for the championship and expert classes.

Home rider Chris Hockey shot into the lead from the mass start but Sudbury’s Jamie Roper took the lead over the next lap.

Woodbridge’s Aston Bird recovered from a bad start though to head the field, before Sudbury’s Sam Toy stormed through to lead until the final stages.

He was passed by former Eastern Centre Enduro Champion Bird, who proved to be in unstoppable form, winning from Jamie Roper by two minutes, with Toy finishing third.

Gavin Hockey, battling with a back injury, saw his problems get worse as he had to ride out the last 10 minutes on a flat rear tyre, but he managed to secure fourth.

Steve Mason (Sudbury) came fifth, while Lewis Bond (Lowestoft) was sixth, Stevie Roper (Sudbury) seventh, Matt Pope (Norwich) eighth and Tom Braddock (Lowestoft) ninth.

Bird now leads the contest on 52 points, from Jamie Roper on 40 points and Gavin Hockey on 36 points.

Jake Gregory (Stowmarket) was in top form in the expert class, winning from contest leader Will Hughes (Braintree).

Ben Alexander (Woodbridge) was third, Ben Grice and Jack Grice (both Lowestoft) were fourth and fifth, while Sudbury’s Nick Barrett was sixth and Damian Long (Woodbridge) was seventh.

Michael Ridge (Stowmarket) was untouchable in the expert veteran class, winning comfortably from Gavin Hockey (Sudbury) with Nic Ames (Sudbury) third and Phil Roper (Sudbury) fourth.

Gavin Hockey still leads the contest on 54 points, Phil Roper next on 43 points and Ridge 35 points.

The three clubman classes and sportsman class rode in the morning session.

There was a great tussle between Sudbury pair Alex Rampton and Alex Walton, with the latter eventually succumbing after slipping up in the bog and Rampton took advantage to take the win, with Walton second.

Ryan McDonnell (Sudbury) was third and Kevin Silvain (Trial Bike and Eduro Club TBEC) fourth.

Kevin Palmer (Norwich) was the star of the day. After going over the handlebars with the bike following in the bog, he picked himself up and finished fifth.

Rampton now leads the contest on 57 points from Martin Stevens (Diss) 47 points and McDonnell 38 points.

Phil Waldron (Sudbury) won the clubman veteran class with Jason Carboult (Sudbury) second and Terry Allen (TBEC) third.

Sudbury’s Jeff Turner was left on the line at the start but fought his way through to fifth place.

Andy Mason (Sudbury) won the clubman super veteran class with Steve Finch (Braintree) second and Perry Miller (Sudbury) third.

Paul Webb (Sudbury) won the sportsman class with Shane Sparrow second and Pete McDonnell (Sudbury) third.