“With pretty much two thirds of our racing season in the bag it’s going well. After Kacey (Hird) and Lewis' (Hall) second and third overall right at the beginning of the year in the Monster Energy Arenacross UK Tour we’ve been building on continued momentum in outdoor racing. I always knew that 2016 was going to be a slightly different year than before with all four racers making transitional changes by moving up to different classes and different bikes, but it’s gone well with all that considered and the lads are progressing really well.
“Both Dylan (Woodcock) and Jed (Etchells) are now really starting to get to grips with the KX250F after moving up from the KX85. Of course it’s never an easy step to make jumping from such contrasting bikes but they’ve applied themselves well. Jed has found it a little difficult following complications from his off season double leg break. He’s had issues with his ankle that has hampered his progress a little and we’ve never quite got to the bottom of it. It’s seemingly getting better now although I do believe it effects his riding a little and he’s not quite 100% healthy just yet. He’s missed some rounds of the Maxxis MXY2 as a result so effectively he doesn’t have a real chance of making the top 10 in that series in his debut year. However he’s now worked his way into fifth in the championship standings for both the Michelin MX Nationals MXY2 class and the Thor British Youth Nationals Open class, so if he stays consistent he has a good shot at staying in the top five in both of those championships by the end of the year.
“Dylan is now really pushing on for wins, which is encouraging in his first year. He’s working hard and it’s starting to show, taking his first race win at the last MX Nationals and if not for a bent disc in the second moto it could’ve been another one and a shot at the overall win. He’s had some genuine bad luck at the Maxxis MXY2 championships and a couple of mechanical issues, hopefully we’ll see the last of them. Now we seem to have consistency in the bike and his confidence is starting grow. He raced his first ever EMX250 event at the British GP at Matterley Basin and didn’t let himself down. I was never expecting him to qualify in his first ever attempt but he wasn’t too far away, and even in the last chance qualifying race he rode well. He should’ve had the holeshot but bottled it, I think the magnitude of the event got to him a little but it’s all part of the learning curve and we’ve taken that on board. He currently lies sixth in the Maxxis MXY2 championship and without the two DNF’s, which was not his doing, he would be pushing on for the top three. With two rounds to go he still has a shot of making the top three in the championship, but it will be take a least a couple of race wins to do so. With confidence high I wouldn’t put it beyond the realms of possibility.
“In the big wheeled 85cc class Lewis has been smashing it. He may not be leading any domestic series but that’s simply because he’s been competing in the European 85cc championship and been forced to miss rounds of our domestic UK championships here at home. He qualified through the North West sector in fifth, which was a great result as it was arguably the toughest one to get through. It took him to Denmark, Slovakia, Holland, Germany and Finland. Then at the finals at the Czech GP he stormed through the pack in both motos for a 5-8 score to finish fifth in the championship. That was just after winning round three of the Thor British Youth Nationals and the French Master Kids event two weeks before. Due to the fact he’s grown so quickly he suffers off the startline against the lighter kids but when he gets rolling he does it at some speed and in some style. He’ll be moving up to a KX250F for 2017, aged 14 and I have absolutely no reservations about that. The kid has a bright future in MX if he can avoid any misfortune.
“It’s been a bit of contrast for Kacey as he’s got to grips with joining the team and getting used to his new ride. It’s taken a little while to get the bike set up for him and initially he lost a little bit of confidence and the swagger that made him the 2015 Thor British Small Wheeled champion, but that’s clearly returning now. He’s looking great and with major engine upgrades at the next national and for the remaining part of the season I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see him on up on the box, he certainly believes so! He’s currently fourth in the Michelin MX Nationals and ninth in the Thor British Youth Nationals and I expect him to move up the table in both championships come the end of the season. It’s very much been a learning year for Kacey and I’m excited about his prospects because he’ll be a real contender for all the championships he competes in for 2017. But that’s next year, and we’ve still got five major championship races to get done this year. Hopefully we’ll be picking up our fair share of wins and podiums. I’m pretty confident we will. As always, thank you all for your continued support, it’s so greatly appreciated and never goes unnoticed.”