He didn’t win the battle but Adam Reeves certainly won the war.
The Pahiatua man didn’t win the fourth and final round of this year’s Suzuki National Cross-country Championships near Cheviot, just north of Christchurch, on Saturday – he finished fourth — but that was enough for him to successfully defend the title he first won last season.
Waitemata’s Shaun Fogarty (KTM) won the three-hour cross-country motorcycle marathon on Saturday but, with only three of the four rounds to count towards the title and riders able to discard their worst result, the fourth placing by Reeves was enough for him to sew up the title, winning it by four points from Fogarty.
Reeves (Yamaha) finished 1-2-5-4 over the series, which kicked off near Waipukurau in April, proving consistency counts, while Fogarty will no doubt rue the mechanical failure that cost him so dearly at round one, when he did not finish the day and was credited with 47th place.
Fogarty eventually recorded 47-1-10-1 results over the four rounds.
Third best rider this season was Mokau’s Adrian Smith (Yamaha), who contested only three rounds and unable to discard his worst result, a seventh placing at round two. He finished 0-7-1-3.
“It looked as though they’d had no rain down here in about 10 years,” said Reeves afterwards. “It was very dusty and that caused visibility problems. It was quite challenging.
“I was quite nervous at the start of the day … but it’s great to win the title again.”
Raetihi’s Letitia Alabaster (Kawasaki) won the women’s division – with a 1-1-3-1 scoreline, while Otorohanga’s Jan-Maree Pool (KTM) was runner-up (2-2-2-2), finishing nine points behind.
The abbreviated two-round junior section of the championship was comprehensively won by Palmerston North’s Jordan Wilson (KTM), whose 1-1 results gave him the title ahead of Raglan’s Jason Dickey (Kawasaki), who came home 2-3 in the series.
Both the senior and junior series were sponsored this season by Suzuki, DRD magazine, Hydraulink fluid connectors.
Leading overall senior finishers at round four:
1. Shaun Fogarty (Waitemata, KTM);
2. Michael Vining (Huntly, Suzuki);
3. Adrian Smith (Mokau, Yamaha);
4. Adam Reeves (Pahiatua, Yamaha);
5. John O’Dea (Napier, Suzuki);
6. Sam Greenslade (Auckland, Suzuki);
7. Luke Ramsey (Pukekohe, Kawasaki);
8. Dean Goodwright (Waiuku, Suzuki);
9. Jason Moorfield (Te Kauwhata, Kawasaki);
10. Heath Howlett (Hamilton, Honda).
Leading overall senior championship series placings:
1. Reeves 65 points;
2. Fogarty 61;
3. Smith 59;
4. Vining 58;
5. O’Dea 58.
Leading overall junior finishers at round two:
1. Jordan Wilson (Palmerston North, KTM);
2. Jason Dickey (Raglan, Kawasaki);
3. Matthew Quirke (Raglan, KTM).
Leading overall junior championship series placings:
1. Wilson 50 points;
2. Dickey 42;
3. Quirke 37.
© Words and photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com
Full story and more photos in your next issue of KIWI RIDER magazine.