The weekend of March 19th and 20th saw the MAD Peter Stevens KTM Junior development team competing at the opening round of the Gippsland regional series at the Maffra circuit. Competing just one week after the opening round of the 2016 Junior Victorian State titles, our junior team of riders are beginning to get the race day routine back into their system and Maffra provided many positives for us to work from.
With heavy rain on Friday we were greeted with the first soft and challenging race conditions of the season and practice was very wet and slippery. As the day progressed into race one, dry lines were still limited as was vision and therefore starts were essential! As the day progressed the track dried out and held up fantastically to the number of bikes competing, providing good line variations and exciting racing.
Photo’s courtesy of Marc Jones Photography and Julian Roberts
85cc B/W A grade – 1st overall
Murphy took two from three holeshots and continued his impressive form on the 85cc B/W sx machine. With tough competition against Tom Bell on the BCP Pro Circuit CRF150, Liam Andrews aboard the YAIM yz85, team mate Riley Findlay and young gun Jacob Sweet there were great battles throughout the field early on. Murphy’s starts were a huge help and his early race track position was challenged in different moto’s but Micheal went on to take a perfect moto score of 1-1-1 to start the Regional series off with a overall win and first position.
125cc A grade 7th overall – Murphy’s first 125cc moto was a lot more eventful than his 85cc races and two falls on the first lap in the heavy mud conditions made life very hard for him to come back through to a 17th position. Battling through a tough field of talented riders, the second two moto’s Murphy would score 5-5 moto scores with better starts and track position early on for an eventual 7th overall.
85cc B/W A grade 3rd overall
Findlay put the crashes and small set backs from the opening round of the Vic state titles series behind him and started the day strong with a solid 3rd position in moto 1. Running in third in moto two he fell on lap one and with a lot of work to do charged hard through to 6th place. In an intense final moto that saw battles for the lead through to outside the top five, Riley rode smart from a decent start and finished strong in fourth position that lead to third overall on the day. A confidence building day for Findlay on the team to now progress on heading into round 2.
125cc A grade 4th Overall
Brewster again showed good speed and solid riding as he demonstrated a week earlier at the junior state titles. With starts just outside of the top five all day Josh will need to secure better track position early in order to challenge the very talented riders at the front of this class, with Cody Dyce, Mason Semmens and Fogarty just a few national caliber riders to mention in the series. With moto scores of 6-6-4 Josh showed consistency to build from and with better starts and track position early he will give himself the opportunity to see the leaders and learn from their speed.
Matt Van Slooten
450 A grade – 2nd overall
Team coach and 450 pro class representative Matt Van Slooten debuted the MAD Peter Stevens KTM sxf 450 machine to a solid 2nd overall at round 1 of the Gippsland regionals. Matt is the defending series champion from 2015 and will look to build from this early podium performance at the coming rounds.
The team now heads to Warrnambool this coming weekend for our Easter Jnr Vics preparation camp to work with our development team and coaching students to improve their performance from round 1 and have them confident to perform to their potential at Round 2 of the series.
We wish to take the time to thank the following sponsors for their support this season; Peter Stevens Motorcycles, KTM Australia, FOX Australia, Dunlop, Repsol Oils, SPMX, The Collective, Slootz Designs, Dirtybits Moto Accessories, Titan protein, Flush Fitness, Flooring Sales.com.au and Race Socal Mx vacations.