Race wins at Foxhills and Hawkstone Park were the bright spots of a hectic and dramatic weekend for Shaun in two more domestic competition dates and ahead of the British Grand Prix.
12-1 (4th overall) and 2-1 (1st overall) were the two scorecards posted by Shaun at Foxhills for the fourth round of eight in the ACU British Championship and then at Hawkstone Park for the second date of the MX Nationals series. The results were promising and yet more signs of progress for the SS24 KTM MXGP squad but interspersed with moments of drama with a mechanical problem and crash in the first moto in Swindon and then the theft of Shaun’s second race bike from the Hawkstone paddock in Shropshire on Saturday night.
“The goal was to pick up some points in the British Championship and that’s been the target since the first round really but we ended up losing nine more, which was frustrating,” Shaun said of the initial race near Swindon on Saturday. “There had been a lot of rain at Foxhills on Friday and it made it tricky for us but I actually really enjoyed the track and the new layout. I didn’t get off to the best start in the first moto and wasn’t prepared to take risks like some of the others. I stuck to my guns and then had a bit of a rear brake problem: it’s something we really need to get to the bottom of. I ended up going through the fence at the base of one of the hills and ripping the back of the fender and saddle away. I was determined to continue and managed to get something at least for 12th. I was a bit dejected back in the paddock but re-grouped and came out like a new man in the second moto and moved up from 4th at the start for the win. It was nice to remove the monkey from my back and get a victory. It put me 4th overall and 29 points behind Tommy in the championship.”
“It’s not ideal but here’s hoping for a slice of luck in the next couple of rounds to try and claw something back,” he added.
“From there we went up to Hawkstone Park for the second race of the MX Nationals. The track looked good and I was feeling sharp but we woke up on race day to discover one of our race bikes had been stolen from the trailer. It was a bit of turmoil from there. I took Pole but my head was all-over-the-place. I made it to 2nd and was chasing Todd Kellet but our lines came together and I went down. I fought my way back to 2nd again but Todd was riding really well and I couldn’t catch him. Like Foxhills the second moto was all mine. I did the business and was in the lead by the first lap. A good overall victory.”
Shaun now has several days to evaluate and prepare for the second round of 2021 MXGP and the British Grand Prix at Matterley Basin in Winchester. The meeting starts a run of six weekends in seven for FIM World Championship action.
“Things are starting to come together,” Shaun assessed. “My first races need to be better and I need more consistency through each individual day. I’ll have to work hard on this with the Grands Prix also having this format. I hope we can get the set-up right for Matterley Basin and quickly get up to speed.”