It’s all over in the UK for another season.
Suzuki’s Carl Nunn and Honda’s Neville Bradshaw wrapped up the Red Bull Pro Nationals at the final round of the series at Wakes Coln a week ago.
The first race of the day was won by Honda’s James Noble after a brilliant ride back through the pack. Noble and KTM’s Stephen Sword had a coming together whilst battling for the lead and soon found themselves way back down the field. The race had so much incident it was hard to keep up with action.
Suzuki’s Martin Barr soon found himself at the front of the pack on his MX2 machine but he then went down hard and retired from the race. By now Nunn was finding his grove and picking off the likes of Kawasaki’s Elliott Banks-Browne, Honda’s Scott Elderfield and Suzuki’s Scott Columb.
Back down the field Bradshaw had closed the gap to just six points on Yamaha’s Wayne Smith in the quest for the MX2 championship going into the final moto as he finished sixth in the moto but the third MX2 rider behind Elderfield and his Kiwi team-mate Michael Phillips, but he managed to put Alan Keet between him and Smith. The stage was set and it was going down to the wire.
Nunn was out to rubber stamp his series in the second moto as all he had to do was finish in the top 20 to take the MX1 Red Bull Pro National crown, so there was never going to be any unnecessary risks from him. The real action was always going to be the fight for the MX2 championship between Smith and Bradshaw.
In the opening laps, Smith was tucked in just behind Bradshaw but then it started to get interesting. As the race went on Bradshaw started to edge away.
Smith knew the championship was his if he could just stay one place behind but Elderfield was closing and closing fast with wild card rider Nicoli Larsen pushing him along. By the halfway stage, Smith knew the gloves may have to come off if he was going to win the championship, which had led for the most of the year. With about five laps to go Elderfield forced a move on Smith and the title pendulum had swung Bradshaw’s way.
They were now tying on points for the series but Bradshaw would take the title with the most race wins.
With two laps to go, Smith got back around Elderfield and pendulum had swung again, but then just less than a lap later Elderfield put a move back on and now Bradshaw was in the championship hot seat again.
Smith tried one more major push, but Elderfield held his line and his nerve to the line. That was it, a devastated Smith rolled over the finish line while Bradshaw was fist pumping his way to the winners’ circle. Noble emphatically took the race win ahead of Nunn and Sword but all eyes were, quite rightly on the battle down the field.
Someone also had the honour of driving away in the Proppa.com VW van at Wakes Colne as the mini-series also came to its conclusion. That man was Carl Nunn, who completed a brilliant day at the office.
Going into the final two-lap sprint race of the year Nunn had a three-point lead over Scott Columb with Noble only another three behind him. It was Noble who got the holeshot but Nunny soon squeezed by and got the hammer down and a rode a flawless, flat out two laps to get his hands on the keys of the van and polish off a great year for him in the series.
It was a just a brilliant end to a brilliant race series. The MX2 Red Bull Pro National championship was won on a points tie-breaker after six amazing rounds of motocross action.
Phillips photo by Ian Roxburgh
Columb photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com