London, 3 Jun 2013: Dave Huddleston currently heads up the 2013 AquaX Championship title leader board after the opening rounds in Kingston-Upon-Hull at the weekend.
Calm and sunny conditions on the Humber saw Dave Huddleston take the first win and set an early pace in the 300 Superpole class on Saturday ahead of Ian Moule and Tim Batte. 250 Superpole was won by Mat Shipley ahead of Adrian Wilson and Duncan Johnstone. John Heath led the 200 Superpole class ahead of Steve Hockney and Ron Burgoyne.
In Saturday’s Race one it was Tim Batte who led the field home in the 300 class followed by Dave Huddleston and Jim Goodchild who enjoyed a good battle with 4th place Anya Colley after suffering some reliability issues.
The 250 class was won by Mat Shipley ahead of Adrian Wilson. John Heath won the 200 class despite taking a swim, ahead of Steve Hockney.
Day two saw a change in the leader board after Jim Goodchild took the win in the 300 class. Some 15,000 spectators came out to St Andrews Quay in Hull to witness Jim Goodchild take the race win in the Hull Grand Prix Sea ahead of Dave Huddleston and Tim Batte as the sound of 22 skiers thundering down the Humber estuary echoed off the quayside wall.
Goodchild who had been dogged by mechanical gremlins on Sat was anxious to make up ground on the frontrunners. “I fixed the ski from Saturday and was keeping an eye on where Dave was, I could see he was chasing and the gap was closing.” commented Goodchild “It’s not been the best start to the season and I am disappointed not to be racing against the current AquaX Champion (Russell Marmon) on a level playing field basis; it is a shame for the series and competitors like me who want to pit themselves against the best..”
A change of fortunes also for Race 1 winner Tim Batte. The new 40min + 1 lap race format took it’s toll as Batte could only manage a 6th place in race 2 leaving Huddleston to take the overall top step on the podium courtesy of his second place behind Goodchild. “It’s not been a great weekend for me, I got a good start but 15mins in got really bad arm pump, my finger was just slipping off the throttle there was nothing I could do about it.” commented a disappointed Batte.
Ian Moule just missed the podium by one point, but a great weekend with three solid results means he’s right up there in the championship fight. “This weekends been tough but I have really enjoyed it, I qualified 2nd, and Saturday’s race got really bad arm pump. Today I just clamped the throttle fully open and hung on â€“ it was great!” said Ian.
Anya Colley rounded out the top 5 with Steve Robinson finishing in 6th and the stunning Aysha Rensink finished a credible 7th in her very first race.
The 250 class saw Mat Shipley’s flawless riding earn him the first red beanie of the season (Rider of the Weekend) and the championship lead ahead of closest rival Adrian Wilson.
Shipley’s out of season training paid off as a stronger, fitter Shipley returned to defend his 2012 title. Adrian Wilson tagged Shipley in all 3 races but was unable to challenge for the lead this time round. “I was a bit unsure coming into this weekend, I’ve been training hard through the winter, but you never know who you are going to be up against, but this weekend it has all come together and the results were fantastic. I’m very happy, it’s a good start to the title campaign” explained a delighted Shipley.
Duncan Johnstone, the 2011 AquaX 200 Champ finished an excellent 3rd overall on his brand spanking Yamaha FZR and despite a swim that let Dan Bell through to grab third in race 2 rounded out the overall top three. “I was racing alongside Steve ahead of Anya and catching Mat, and suddenly just fell off I have no idea what happened, one minute I was there, the next I was bouncing across the water at about 60mph!” said Johnstone
The 200 class was dominated by John Heath, also fondly referred to as Jonny Bravo who took all 3 class wins in the 200 Class in Hull. Looking completely at home on his Yamaha FX160 he was as unstoppable on the Humber he raced on. “I just hope I can keep it up for the season and carry on the success.” commented a delighted Heath.
Closest rival Steve Hockney had a tough outing on Saturday but looked more comfortable during Sunday’s 40 min race. Ron Burgoyne rounded out the top 3.
Russell Marmon took home the AquaX Cup this weekend, after opting out of the AquaX Championship classes to compete on a modified ski. Russell rode to three flawless races in front of the huge crowds gathered along the shores of the Humber. “I enjoyed the weekend, it is good to see everybody and race without the pressure, today for me was all about fuel management and making it to the end.” said a relaxed Marmon.
The next outing for the AquaX riders is at Plymouth on the 29th June.