Report by James Franklin
Monday, October 10, 2011
HUNDREDS of competitors slogged it out on Weston’s seafront over the weekend as part of the 29th Weston Beach Race.
The enduro event attracted hundreds of competitors and more than 55,000 spectators who braved wind and rain over Saturday and Sunday to see three-time world champion David Knight MBE clinch the solo race for the fifth time.
The event, organised by RHL Activities, experienced a late surge in rider entries which saw it eclipse last year’s number, as around 1,100 riders tackled the 6.8 kilometre-long track.
Around 200,000 tonnes of sand were shifted around the beach to make the track, which featured 38 dunes, some of which were up to 11 metres high.
Event organiser Gareth Hockey said: “Everything has worked well and after a difficult 12 months, we’ve stood up to prove who we are and what we can do.
“We thought entries would be down, but we received a lot of late entries, which surprised us and we were actually up on last year. It’s very positive for us considering the situation with the world economy and it’s certainly been a good weekend.”
After an intense battle on the three-hour-long solo race held yesterday, 33-year-old Knight eventually broke clear of the pack to win his sixth Weston race.
Paul Winrow overcame the disappointment of retiring in last year’s adult quad race in perfect style, winning the event to add to an impressive haul of national medals.
The quad two-man class was won by the team of Keitch and Price-Draper, while Robert Davidson won the 85cc big wheel class and Mitchell Warhurst the small wheel class event.
Ben Howell won the rookie 125cc/250F class race, which was held before the main solo event, while 11-year-old Jed Etchells sealed a win in the 65cc class.
Jeremie Soyez took the honours in the 4x4 class, and Williams/Jones took top spot in the sidecar group. Leon Rogers was the overall youth quad winner, with Reece Swann and Keiron Taylor taking wins in their respective classes.
* Were you at the beach race over the weekend? Send your pictures of the event to firstname.lastname@example.org