The MBO Sport Yamaha team’s hope’s of winning this years Garmin Arenacross Series took a fatal blow last Saturday night at Sheffield’s Motorpoint Arena as neither team rides could score enough points to stop Frenchman Fabien Izoird becoming the champion.
On an interesting but testing track Daniel McCoy, one of Australia’s most experienced supercross riders failed to get the start he needed in the main event and combined with a couple of uncharacteristic mistakes meant he finished fifth on the night.
If Daniel could win the main at the last round at London’s Wembley Arena in two weeks time, and if he also win’s the head to head, and if Fabien fails to score any points at all, they would tie on championship points, but Fabien would still be champion as a tie is decided by the greatest number of main event wins in the series.
As for the MBO Sport Yamaha Team’s number one rider and British outdoor Motocross Champion Kristian Whatley, he suffered from his relative lack of arenacross and supercross experience as this year’s series is his first attempt at the indoor sport, and a number of mistakes and crashes meant he ended the main event eighth and very annoyed with his own performance.
In the teams first heat both riders where running first and second, till Kristian over cooked it at the end of the whoops handing the lead to Daniel, but the on form Loic Rombaut managed to find away past them both for the win as Daniel and Kristian filled the next two places.
Daniel was out again in heat three, but after an average start by his standards he managed to fight his way up to third behind Fabien and Angelo Pellegrini.
Kristian got the holeshot in the fourth and final heat but crashed again at the end of the whoops, handing the lead to Cyrille Coulon and Neville Bradshaw.
Another mistake from Kristian put him back two more places, but a crash from Cyrille and a disqualification for over taking on a waved yellow flag for Loic gave Kristian second behind Neville.
Kristian was third into turn one at the start of the main event, but Daniel was way back in seventh with a mountain to climb.
Loic found a way past Kristian on lap five, then a lap later Kristian and a hard charging Cyrille came together in one of the banked turns and Kristian went down and by the time he had picked up and re-started the MBO Sport Yamaha he was almost at the back of the pack, all chance of some good points gone.
While all that was going on Daniel had made a couple of mistakes on the unforgiving track and dropped back to eighth place, but recovered to fifth by the end of the twelve lap main event, with Kristian three places behind him in eighth.
After the race Daniel said, “I didn’t get a good start in the main. I don’t know what’s going on with them as I haven’t had a good start in a while, something we will have to work on. I was in the middle of the pack but made some good passes, but then made some mistakes, so it was an up and down sort of race and I didn’t feel happy with my riding, my setup or the track, so I am happy to come away with some points”
Kristian said, “I had a good start and was behind Fabien for a while till Angelo Pellegrini came past me and I thought that wasn’t so bad till I messed it up at the end of the whoops again. I re-grouped again but Cyrille came up under me on one of the turns and I went down again, ending the race in eighth place. I can’t keep making excuses but I am new to this side of our sport, but I don’t give up and will keep working at it till I get it right”
The seventh and final round will be a London’s Wembley Arena on the first of March.
* Photographs by Numo Laranjeira.