Exciting close-run battles light up memorial meeting

CLASS ACT: Sam Mitchell 2017 winner of the Championship Class with Brendan Mayers. The pair completed 80 laps in the four-hour session
CLASS ACT: Sam Mitchell 2017 winner of the Championship Class with Brendan Mayers. The pair completed 80 laps in the four-hour session

It was a sunny autumn day for the fourth and final round of the Dave Barkshire Motorcycles Two Man Enduro Championship at Tye Farm, Great Cornard.

The championship was part of the double header for the Dave Roper Memorial Event staged by the Sudbury Motorcycle Club.

Before the start there was a minute’s silence in memory of Sudbury member Gareth Young who suffered a cardiac arrest at the last Sudbury event.

Although there was a good entry, the Championship Class had only two teams. However they battled it out throughout the four-hour session.

Sam Mitchell/Brendan Mayers completed 80 laps to Harvey Mutten/Toby Morley’s 78 laps.

Mitchell/Mayers win the Class for 2017 from Mutten/Morley, with brothers Rick and Jamie Roper third, having only been able to ride the first two rounds due to Jamie’s injury.

There was a hard-fought battle in the Expert Class for the first seven places.

Tommy Clark/Jack Berry completed 77 laps, just one more than Myles Saunders/George Eustace, but when time penalties were deducted both teams were equal on 74 laps.

So it was down to which rider had the best lap time over the whole session. Saunders/Eustace recorded 3min 53sec, some 37 seconds faster than Clark/Berry.

Kevin Palmer/Ben Grice secured third place on 73.33 laps, with Joe Marsh/Mark Mitchell fourth on 72.67 laps.

Dan Willis/Chris Wright completed 75 laps, while Paul Belton/Phil Roper and Paul Whitehead/Terry Allen finished on 72 laps.

However when time penalties were deducted these three teams were equal on 71.67 laps so best lap times came into play.

It was only by one second that Belton/Roper took fifth place from Whitehead/Allen, while Willis/Wright had to be content with seventh place 36 seconds behind.

The 2017 provisional final positions for this Class see a win for Palmer/Grice, with Marsh/Mitchell second, and Saunders/Eustace taking third place over Willis/Wright on the Series tie-break system.

Before the day Will Nice/Ben Marsh had a one-point lead over Dan & Paul Hunt in the Clubman Class.

These two teams battled it out and were equal on laps ridden until Nice had a fall, and after treatment by the paramedics and was forced to retire.

At the end of the session Shaun Palfrey/Toby Rogers finished on 73 laps, compared to the Hunt brothers 72.

But with time penalties deducted both teams were equal and the Hunt brothers took the victory with a better lap time.

Michael Barker/Raymond Otoka finished third and Matt Smith/Marc Norton fourth. The 2017 Clubman Class title goes to the Hunt brothers with Nice/Marsh second and Smith/Norton third.