Ryan Houghton battled through the pain barrier to finish a fantastic
7th at Lyng in the 2nd round of the Maxxis British Motocross
Championships for the Rob Hooper Racing Yamaha team.

After suffering from a painful rib injury last week at Culham in the
Bridgestone British Masters, there were doubts about Ryan’s fitness
coming into this event. But he showed grit and determination to power
out 6th in qualifying before holding out for ninth in Moto 1 and a
tremendous fifth in race two which gave him 7th overall, and leaves
him 6th in the series standings.

Ryan said of his weekend “ It went better than I expected to be
honest. When I woke up Friday I wasn’t even sure if I was going to
race or not.  But I went out on Saturday and did some practice starts
in the garden, and took a load of painkillers and it wasn’t too bad,
it was obviously sore, but I knew I could get through the weekend. I
knew I wasn’t going to be on it, I haven’t practiced in the week now
for three weeks, I had a little niggling arm injury then last week I
broke three ribs, so it hasn’t been ideal.  I know I have the
capability, and the bikes good, and that I just needed to get good
starts, put my head down and get on with it.

“In the first race I gated about eighth and I kind of felt pretty good
at the beginning of it, but where I haven’t ridden for so long, I sort
of tightened up a bit. I didn’t get arm pump, I just wasn’t fluid, so
I ended up dropping back to ninth which was where I finished.

“Race 2 I made a good start and was in third. I dropped back to 4th
which was where I was for 4 laps, which was good. I knew I had to go,
so I put my head down and got myself a big gap from me to the guys
behind. But obviously my ribs were hurting and things, and I didn’t
feel that great out there where I haven’t ridden, but where I built up
the gap, I ended up 5th in that race and 7th overall which was really
good.”/

Team Boss Rob Hooper was very pleased with Ryan commenting on his
weekend “Considering Ryan came into this meeting not having ridden in
the week he did very well. In light of him riding with the pain and
with that discomfort, I think he has had a fantastic day. He made two
really good results, with two typical gusty determined rides. The
second race was particularly good. He had a good start, and he rode
really well.”

The weekend didn’t work out as well for young Taylor Hammal in the MX2
class.  His speed was evident from Qualifying, but luck hasn’t been on
his side at all this year. He was taken down at the start of the first
moto leaving him over a minute behind the closest rider in front of
him, but showing remarkable speed and determination he worked his way
right up to 17th and only four seconds off of 14th position. With lap
times on par with the top 6 in race one, hopes were high for Moto 2,
but a mechanical issue meant a DNF and a meeting where you wonder what
could have been.

“Today was probably one of the most frustrating days racing I’ve had
in a while” said Taylor after the meeting. “ I felt really good all
day on the track, and my speed was there to show in the first race
after crashing on the first lap, then, unfortunately, the bike stopped
in the second race. I felt like I could have had a really good result,
but that’s the way it goes sometimes. I just have to move onto the
next one and look for a good result there.”

Rob said of his young rider “Taylor is riding fantastic, but we had a
mechanical problem in the second race, which we need to find out what
it is, but it has caused him a problem. He got taken down on the first
lap of the first race, which messed up what could have been a
fantastic result. The speed on him was up there with the top 5 or 6
riders. He needs to get a good start, and race with those riders at
the front that he is as quick as, and he needs to get used to it. But
at this minute it’s just not happening for him. Everyone around him
and a lot of other people can see the potential is there and it will
come to the forefront for him very soon I am sure.   I am really
disappointed for Taylor that he hasn’t gone home with the bagful of
points that he deserves, but onto next week and let’s put it right.”

This weekend is a busy one for the team as they head to Marshfield to
take part in the Huck Cup, which is part of the Mike Browne Memorial
Meeting on Good Friday before they return to Hawkstone Park on Easter
Sunday for the second round of the Michelin MX Nationals.

Words: Rob Hooper Racing

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