Hawkins Makes Stunning Top Ten Maxxis MX1 debut
For Luke Hawkins, it's been an eventful year to say the least, but after the eventful season, the youngster was determined to make that last Maxxis British Motocross Championship round count. And that he did with a great debut in the MX1 class. Entering into the class as a wildcard after being unable to secure an MX2 spot, Hawkins showed that even a KTM 350SX-F was no problem for him.
Qualifying in eleventh place in the Sunday morning practice session, he improved his position in the super-pole to tenth, guaranteeing a good gate pick for his races. Off the first race start just outside the top ten, Hawkins soon turned up his eye on the ninth place fifteen seconds in front, finally making a move with the timer ticking to zero and the two-lap board out.
The second race went as well as the first. Although off slightly worse in the starting stakes, Hawkins had to work hard to keep not only his older rivals at bay, but also to try to make progress against seasoned MX1 rider Tony Craig in front. Two solid race finishes resulted in an eleventh place overall, qualifying Hawkins for the super-final at the end of the day.
In the last (restarted) race of the day, Hawkins had to contend with not only his own class, but the fastest the MX2 class had to offer. Undeterred, he put in a solid effort, keeping himself busy in fourteenth for the majority of the race after being unable to secure his twelfth place in the combined results. The point score was sufficient to move Hawkins back to eighth overall on the day, arguably a very successful debut and end to the season.
Commented Hawkins: “I was unsure where I was expecting to be, but went into qualifying with an open mind and I thought it was good. With the fast boys out in super-pole, I was a bit tense and made a few mistakes but was still tenth which is good. In the first race I didn't get that good a start but Krestinov was in front of me and I followed him through and past a few boys, then got a bit of arm-pump and ended up ninth.
“In the second race I didn't get a great start, but I didn't fight my way through for the first two laps and it cost me the race really. I battled with Tony Craig and found it hard to pass him. I knew I had to get a good start in the last race. In the first start I got a really good start, but it got red-flagged. In the second start I got a good start too, but Aubin went down in the first corner and messed a few people up. I fought through and ended up ninth which I'm happy with. I know where I can go from here and be strong for next year.”