Downham brothers Elliot and Scott Ryan rode in the third round of the MAXXIS ACU British SidecarCross Championships on Sunday at Milton Moto Park near Northampton.
No sidecars had ridden on this track which was very dry on Saturday for the 34 competitors. The fastest time was set by the defending champions Brown and Chamberlain by five seconds.
The Ryans were looking set to achieve a top ten starting position and were riding well until a piece of stone entered under Elliot’s helmet chin guard, needing medical attention for a punctured top lip. They dropped down the qualifying timings being given a starting place of 19th on the second row.
A pile up on the first corner involving several of their closest rivals meant things looked on the up.
They lapped many of their close rivals who were now back markers. However, about three-quarters into the race and in 16th place, they were hit in the front forks by a back marker deciding to deviate from their racing line – resulting in a bent front brake disc and very limited braking ability.
The #29 outfit was brought home cautiously, finishing in 19th spot and valuable championship points. The pit crew worked frantically to repair the unit prior to the second moto. Another pile up meant there was no way through the blocked track.
They rejoined around 26th position and brought themselves back into 18th when they passed the chequered flag. With a decent start a top ten finish would have been on the cards in by far their best ride of the day.
The final race of the day on turn three saw the brothers involved in yet another crash. The bike was not damaged but took an age to restart.
They managed to haul themselves back up into 23rd.
Their overall finishing position for the day was 24th, and they just need a little a little luck to come their way.
The fourth round of the championship is at Toddington on July 26.