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Morland stretches his lead in championship

Halstead’s Jason Morland increased his lead to 19 points in the Championship Class of the ACU Eastern Solo Endurance Championship on Sunday.

On what was a very hot and sunny day, round four of the GH Motorcycles/Husqvarna/ACU Eastern Solo Endurance Championship took place at Little Hadham, Herts.

Organisers, Sudbury Motorcycle Club, laid out a blistering course of five miles through ditches, open fields and woods.

On the first lap, Morland was experimenting on what line to ride and dropped his machine straight into the mud.

However, that did not deter the championship leader, as he had two cracking rides on the two Special Tests, beating Matt Pope, in second place, by 6.6 seconds.

There was strong competition among the other Championship Class riders, which saw Halstead’s Brendan Mayers finish in third, Tim Rose, of Diss, in fourth, and Braintree rider Will Hughes in fifth.

Provisionally in the overall standings, Morland has increased his lead and, with two rounds to go, he needs 18 points to retain his title.

The Expert Class has so far been a battle between Sudbury’s Myles Saunders and Kevin Palmer, from Norwich.

Palmer pulled out all the stops, having the top rides in the Special Tests to beat second-place rider Dan Willis by 10.156 seconds.

Sudbury rider Alex Walton was third, while Saunders, who was 12.279 seconds behind Palmer in test times, had to be content with fourth.

Sudbury duo Jack Nicolaou and Nick Barrett finished fifth and seventh respectively.

Palmer has opened up a 14-point gap on Saunders for the Expert title, but he can still be caught.

In the Expert Veteran Class, Stowmarket’s Michael Ridge was 0.277 seconds quicker than Sudbury rider Gavin Hockey in the first test, while Hockey hit back in the second test and was 0.263 seconds faster than his rival.

The win, though, went to Ridge by 0.014 seconds, with Hockey taking second place, and in their wake were Sudbury duo Phil Roper (third) and Paul Belton (fifth).

Overall, Ridge is 18 points ahead of Hockey in the standings, but with two rounds to go he still has work to do.

There is a keen rivalry ensuing between two Sudbury members, James Barker and Lee Monger, in the Clubman Class.

Barker beat Monger by 13.139 seconds in the tests, however, he had a 20-second penalty earlier in the day for failing to start his bike in the prescribed time, which gave Monger the win.

Up and coming Sudbury youngster George Eustace secured third place, while the Diss pairing of Paul Hunt and Scott Chaplin completed the top five placings.

Elsewhere, it was a third win on the bounce for Sudbury’s Dean Curry in the Clubman Veteran Class, as he beat club-mate Terry Allen by 8.498 seconds in the two tests.

Another Sudbury rider, Jeff Sharp, took third place, but it is Curry who now has a 31-point lead in the class.

Sudbury’s Andy Mason saw his winning record in the Clubman Super Veteran Class come to an end, with his club-mate Graham Mays beating him for the win on the day by 6.768 seconds.

Sudbury riders Nigel Ross and Gary Drage finished in third and fourth place respectively, while Mason now leads Mays by 14 points in the standings.

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