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Thrills and spills - but Will Shaw tops the standings

By James Driver-Fisher | Grassroots | Published:

Crashes and bike problems besieged Shropshire’s riders as the East Midland Racing Association series returned to action.

Will Shaw recovered from an early crash at Mallory Park to take the championship lead. (Picture: Steve Snelling)

Mallory Park ended up being a place to forget for Matthew Speed who couldn’t even make a single race due to gear box issues, while the Telford-based Shaw twins, Will and Matthew, both suffered crashes.

Will fell off his Kawasaki on the first lap of the first race of the day and then Matt crashed his Honda on the last lap of the last race of the morning.

But things finally improved after lunch as Will took maximum points in the supersport races to move into the championship lead, also finishing second in the Richard Jones Trophy race after starting from the back of the grid.

He also came to Sunday’s meeting with a 37-point lead in the Tamworth Yamaha Superstock championship, which was fortunate as he scored no points in race one as the track turned out to be a little damper than it looked.

Will found himself on the eighth row with 21 bikes between him and the front for the second trophy race but the 30-year-old made a great start and was up to third after seven laps.

Rotherham’s Chris Hellewell was next to be overtaken but Lincolnshire racer Arnie Shelton was still two seconds clear when the chequered flag dropped.

The championship lead is down to 25 points over Shelton with two meetings left.

The supersport races were run in conjunction with the Buildbase Mallory Trophy, and in the first event Barnsley’s Lee Wilson ran away with the race leaving Will in second 12 seconds behind – but he was the first supersport rider to corss the line, ahead of Shelton.

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The second saw Will leading for most of the race and he managed to hold Shelton and James East on a 1000 Aprilia until Wilson forced his way into the lead and held on to win by one second.

Will said: “It was a very wet start, the track was damp and it didn’t quite go to plan in the superstock race as I went straight off the line into turn one the rear just let go and came round, close to 100mph, sliding through the grass thinking that’s my day done with.

“The bike looked a bit of a mess but once we got it back it wasn’t all that bad.

“Thanks to a great effort by family and friends we got it fixed up and back out for my other three races.

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“I got the perfect start for the second race and then had some great battles to eventually grab second overall, setting the fastest lap of the race and my personal best.”

Matt was left ruing what could have been after securing a positive sixth place finish in the Lightweight/Mini Twins class before crashing out of both CB500 races.

“It was another bad day at the office,” he said.

“My first 500 race was really good, battling for the lead, but I lost the front exiting Edwina’s.

“Starting towards the back of the grid for the second, I made a good start and by about the third lap I was with the leaders.

“I got up to second and was holding on to it but again, on the last lap, the front tucked at Shaws hairpin.

“It didn’t reflect my performance on the day and I was again just a little unlucky but wanted to put on a performance for all who came to spectate and as always trying my best.

“Roll on round five where hopefully some luck will come my way.”

Speed, 32, from Whitchurch, is now in desperate need of financial support if he was to have any chance of continuing his EMRA series.

“It was just a mess as after going testing Friday the gearbox gave up and all but ended my championship so it was a no show due to engine failure,” he said.

“I would really appreciate some sponsors as I’m pushing as hard as I can to try and get to the next round.”

Email mspeed7@icloud.com to sponsor Speed. Round five of the championship takes place August 20.

James Driver-Fisher

By James Driver-Fisher

Entertainment and food reviewer for the Express & Star and Shropshire Star

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