Mixed fortunes for Zim at Summer Series


HARARE – The second edition of Zimbabwe’s motocross Summer Series enters its third day tomorrow night with local riders having experienced mixed fortunes thus far.

Captain Sean Mitchell, who was expected to be one of leading lights in the Zimbabwean team, saw his hopes of adding another accolade to his season go up in smoke when he crashed out of the MX1 class on day one.

Mitchell had tussled hard in a fiery high octane MX1 class pitting South Africa’s Richard van der Westhuizen, Botswana’s Ross Branch and local hope Jayden Ashwell.

He however came unstuck in the second race of the day on Saturday afternoon.

 “I was behind Richard and I was pushing for the lead,” a visibly dejected Mitchell said after the race.

 I hit a bump and I went over the handle bars. I landed awkward on my leg and next thing the bike landed on top of me and my hip went out of place.”

The former Belgium-based rider tips either VD Westhuizen or Branch to run away with the title in the MX1 class.

“Richard or Botswana’s Ross Branch, either of the two will win it. Jayden might have a chance but he will have up his game,” the Fim MX1 African Champion said.

Ashwell, who is 12 points off the pace, will hope to come to the party in the last three heats of the Summer Series, starting with the Supercross on Wednesday night.

Ashwell comes into the tournament as MX1 local club champion, MX2 MSA champion and the Fim MX2 Africa champion, but has not yet hit top gear at Donnybrook.

Ashwell has had his fair share of problems.

“I didn’t have the best opening day, in the second race I crashed but got back up again. The last race was similar, though I was leading the last lap before I crashed again,” he said.

“But I’m still in it; I’m just 12 points off the pace. There are three heats to go and 25 points for winning each heat so at the end of the day 12 points is not that much

“We going into triple cross now. Its more technical with more jumps so anything can happen,” he said.

Ashley Thixton, a multiple Zimbabwean champion, could still spring a surprise in this category.

In the 50cc, Junior Sportsman of the Year hopeful Tristan Granger and Mudiwa Chigumba are still in with chance of podium finishes but will have to fend off stiff competition from South African riders.

It is however in the Pewees class where Zimbabweans seem to be enjoying a field day with Big  Chitima Jnr currently leading, Ryan  Masimo closely in second place and eight-year-old Eaglesvale School pupil Tanya Muzinda in third.


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