Take a super-bouncy rubber ball, draw a smiley three-quarters of the way around, and pump it full of fun and energy, and you have a fair idea of what Dovydas Karka is about. The young Lithuanian has joined the steady stream of quality young motocross racers to have emerged out of the Baltic, and he is gaining a good foothold in the international racing arena with his Gaerne boots.
Like his friend, Latvian Thomas Sileika, Dovy settled in for the long, long, seemingly interminable trip to Tensfeld in Germany for round four of the ADAC Junior cup series. Another experience he shared with his sparring buddy was the fact that waiting for him in Germany was a brand new Shoei helmet, and he was chattering non-stop with excitement at this fine addition to his battle gear.
The youngster had a good look over the sandy fields of Tensfeld. He got into a good rhythm during the free training session, posting the third fastest time, but all of that deserted him during the qualifying session, and he had to be content with the seventh qualifying spot. He nevertheless converted this into a good start, and was third into the first corner as the swarm of snarling 85cc bees got off the line. An early crash dropped him into the black hole of the field, and he had to fight his way back from 23rd position. He did this with some success, and broke into the top 10, finally securing ninth spot for his troubles.
A start outside the top 10 in race two had him whispering some Lithuanian encouragement inside his new lid, and this seemed to have worked, for he battled all the way forward to sixth. This was good enough to secure seventh spot overall for the day, and the number seven also reflects his championship position.
After dusting off the sand, the family turned the car around and headed back for the Baltic. There was some urgency to their travels, for on Wednesday there was racing again, this time in Somerpalu, Estonia, scene of the annual Vaino Leok memorial race. The race attracts a growing entry of good riders every year, and with his buddy Sileika in the mix, Dovydas was not going to have an easy time of it. He duly qualified in second position. A mighty mite lightning start catapulted him into first spot, and he held onto the lead for all but one lap. Sileika, charging from the rear, passed him in the final throes of the race, and he crossed the line in second position.
Another rocket start guided the number 71 bike to the front in race two. Dovy rode for all he was worth, as if he had the proverbial lion chasing him. As the end approached, the realization dawned that no one was going to catch him, and that he therefore had the biggest trophy in the bad. He pumped the air in jubilation as he crossed the line, and the Estonian crowd gave recognition to a job well done.