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Photo Credit: CWL Photography UK

David Knight put his years of experience to use in testing conditions to win the fifth edition of the Sucker Punch Extreme Enduro.

Fresh off his runner-up result at the previous weekend’s Weston Beach Race, Knight delivered in a start-to-finish victory ride at the WOR Events race in the UK.

He was joined on the podium by Humphrey brothers Owain and Gethin in second and third respectively.

The Sucker Punch, now in its fifth year saw the level of extremity raised and cut off time for the riders shortened, ensuring a more brutal and challenging event for the hardy competitors. 

The course had everything you could imagine a forest-based extreme enduro should have. 

Eleven miles per lap of trail leading to monster hills with roots, ruts and rivers everywhere. 

A four-hour duration was set for the event, with any riders completing five laps deemed Gold finishers. Four laps was the target for Silver, three laps for Bronze, with two laps being enough to be classified a finisher.

Expert — Gold focus for Knight

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Photo Credit: CWL Photography UK
 

David Knight on his 300 Eurotek KTM was on a mission from the off and his super-fast, effortless style had him making some of the harder sections of the brutal course look easy. 

Such was the pace of Knight that he completed the set target of five laps in 2 hours and 56 minutes. 

Runner-up and putting in a fine ride was two-time Sucker Punch Winner, Owain Humphreys. 

Owain on the CF Racing 350 FX Husqvarna was his usual fast and competitive self and he kept a solid second spot to Knighter for the duration of the race. 

He eventually finished six minutes behind the four-time World Champion. 

Gethin Humphreys, the younger brother, was looking to claim his first Sucker Punch Glove after coming so close a few times in previous years. 

The 250f MRS Sherco rider chased down his brother and Knight all race, but a few crashes and a zap in energy levels put paid to his challenge.

In the end he took a well-earned third overall and a Gold finish. 

Only 7 riders completed the five-lap Gold route. Charlie Frost (KTM), Aled Price (KTM), Fred Adams (GasGas) and Gary Jenkins (Sherco) finished in fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh respectively. 

Jenkins on lap four became fully submerged in the river, looking like an early bath. 

However, within a few minutes of being recovered by a fellow rider, he was back chasing that fifth lap and a Gold finish.

Expert Vets

Gareth Leonard finished on four laps and at Silver, which was enough to make him the Expert Vets class winner. 

WOR stalwart, Gary Benniman completed three laps and Bronze for the runner-up result. 

Third spot went to Mark Kirby, who after having had a tyre come of the rim, loosing at least 35 minutes, still managed to get to Bronze on lap three.

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Photo Credit: CWL Photography UK

Clubman

Dawson Marriott carried on from where he left off at the recent Tough One’s Little Brother Extreme with a brilliant ride to top the always competitive Clubman class by over 20 minutes. 

Finishing in the top ten overall was a just reward for the Notts based youngster as he continues to improve week in week out. 

Showing that the event’s newly designed track and format tweaks were working perfectly, Marriott was the winner of the Clubman class on four laps reaching Silver. 

Fellow classmates, TT road racing star Steve Mercer and Will Cornthwaite were second and third place respectively after almost fours of racing.

Gary Morley on his Beta 300 was the man again to beat in the Clubman Vets, as he dominated the class. 

As the only 4 lap Silver finisher and had almost a 50-minute advantage over runner-up, Lee Allis Smith and third placed Simon Dhar.

Over 50

Top Over 50 was the evergreen Mark Houson, who showed the same class he did a few weeks earlier at the TOLB. A skilful ride saw him finish on Silver at four laps. 

Runner Up Over 50 was Richard Lewis with Paul mcKie in third place — all digging very deep to secure getting to the finish.

Sportsman

Sam Jamison made the trip over from Ireland well worthwhile as he topped the Sportsman class with three laps to his credit and a one-minute advantage over runner up Jake Oakley, who in turn had chiselled out a seven-minute advantage over third placed Sam Morris.

Andrew Mills was the best Sportsman Vet from runner-up Gary Nicholson and third placed Jason Clarke. Mills and Nicholson managed three laps each with Clarke on two.

Ian Jones rode two laps, which was enough to take a seven-minute win in the Novice class from Josh Terry and Danny Griffiths in second and third respectively. 

Just finishing this enduro for most riders was an achievement in itself and riders that bravely completed one lap in four hours were still excited and delighted at the handshake from Steve Ireland at the end

WOR had the mix just right for everyone and the event was received unbelievably well by 99% of the folk there.

Steve and his team thank event title sponsors Bike Industries and Paul Mercer, along with all the staff, medics, caterers and those involved in the event organisation.

The biggest thank you goes to the riders for supporting the event in their droves and trusting in WOR Events. Without these hardy, battle ready enduro warriors there would be no events like these that’s for sure. 

WOR now start November with their Wulfsport Winter series for solos and quads on 5th November, followed by Team Extreme on 19th November and a timecard enduro on the 26th November.

 

Report: Keith Williams
Photos: CWL Photography UK