The team took a trip up the M62 to Fat Cat Motoparc for the first round of the Maxxis British Championship and with the track and weather conditions perfect they had high expectations. With Harry Everts over from the KTM factory top keep his eye on proceeding there was added pressure to put in some good performances.
Qualifying. With the track being smooth and ridiculously fast during qualifying it was a case of who would hang it out most and with both riders fully aware that the conditions would be totally different when the racing kicked off they were content to put in solid but unspectacular times with Karro in 8th & Parker 9th.
Race 1. Parker hit the deck halfway up the start straight and had to start from last, but rode fantastic to get back to the top ten but two further crashes left him in 13th at the end. Karro made a great start just behind leader Stribos and the two of them pulled away from the rest of the field but with three laps remaining Karro had to come into the pits with his rear brake seized on. After quick work from his mechanic, he was back on the track again although he had to settle for a disappointing 8th.
Race 2. Karro was out to make up for his race one disappointment and was back in 2nd early on in race 2. After pressing leader Stribos for a couple of laps he made a couple of small mistakes and lost the tow but maintained his pace all the way to the finish for a deserved 2nd place, ahead of Krestinov in 3rd. Parker moved through from his first lap 11th to 7th and as he closed in on Sword in the latter stages he looked favourite to take 6th but just one small error and he had lost a place instead of gaining one which left him in 8th at the end.
Race 3. Parker hit the deck again on the first corner but as he did in the first race he manfully battled through the field to a hard fought 10th for joint 9th overall on the day. Karro made his worst start of the day in 6th but was soon up to 3rd and as he pressured De Reuver the Dutchman went down. Stribos was already gone in front which left Karro to ride another great race, taking a fantastic 2nd to put him on the podium in 3rd overall.
Matiss Karro, “I didn’t qualify as good as I would have liked but I knew I would be better in the races. The first race I was running in 2nd behind Stribos and felt good but had trouble with my bike and had to pit. I came back out in 8th and rode good, even without back brake and took some important points. 2nd race I got away pretty good and started to catch leader Stribos but made a few mistakes and dropped back a bit, but finished 2nd which was good. 3rd race I didn’t get the best of starts and had a bit of trouble pulling a gear off, but once I managed to get that sorted and could see through my goggles again I soon made it up to 2nd. Stribos was gone though by then so I had to settle for 2nd which put me on the podium in 3rd just one point behind Krestinov in 2nd.It was good start to the season, just need to keep working on my fitness. Bike was working really good and it was a good start to the season.”
Nez Parker, ” didn’t go as I planned today, too many crashes. I expected to do better on a track I really like and I think I pushed too hard coming back through in the first race and crashed two more times. My second race was okay, I rode good to get up to 7th but dropped it and lost a place to finish 8th. The last race I went down again on the first corner and the track was really rough so I tried to ride sensible and not push too hard and I managed to get back up to 10th. I know I was fast enough to be up near the top guys. My bike was awesome and I feel the best I have at the beginning of a season so I should be okay going into the second round.”
Team Manager Steve Turner, ” Matiss rode brilliantly today and was unlucky not to take three 2nd places but a seized back brake cost him 9 points in the first one as he dropped from 2nd to 8th after coming into the pits. It could have been worse though if he hadn’t have made it back to the pits it could have been a DNF and those 13 point he salvaged could be crucial come the end of the season. I’m beginning to think Nez is a sado-masochist who likes inflicting pain on himself and his team. He was unlucky with his two starting crashes but he made too many other errors throughout the day, which cost him dear. He looked awesome when he was in full flow and his times showed that he should have been battling for top six. All in all a pretty good start to the season though and we’re all looking forward to round 2 at Canada Heights.”