In only his first season riding for the Relentless Suzuki by TAS MX team and first year as a lead team rider, Mel Pocock rounded of the 2011 Red Bull Pro Nationals series today at Culham in Oxfordshire, by taking the runner-up spot in the series, after riding to a pair of solid race finishes.
After a hard fought, season-long battle with eventual title winner Elliott Banks Browne, Pocock went into the final round of the series with a small mathematical chance of taking the title. But while it was technically possible, the ask was too great for the Relentless team’s youngest rider, after a sixth in qualifying would only yield sixth and fourth place finishes, giving him fourth overall on the day and second in the series.
Mel Pocock: “It’s fair to say there was a bit of pressure on me today, but we all knew it was one hell of a long shot. Qualifying was tough and in truth I was too aggressive, so I settled it down for race one, only to be taken out and forced to restart. I had a good ride, but by then the best I could manage was sixth which effectively ended my chances of improving on the series position. However, I’m not disappointed. It’s been my best season by far. The team has been great, the bike fantastic and the racing really close. A big thanks to everyone that’s helped and supported me in the Red Bull series this year.”
For teammate Gordon Crockard, Culham would signal the end to the Northern Irish team and rider partnership. With it already agreed for Gordon to miss the final British championship round at Hawkstone next weekend, a scare in the opening Pro National race was enough for the hugely experienced MX1 rider to pull in and call it a year.
Gordon Crockard: “Before we came to Culham, I had agreed with the team that I would finish my season early. The return to Hawkstone earlier this year was an uncomfortable experience for me and one I really didn’t want to repeat at the end of the year again either. Today reminded me why I decided to make that decision, and after the first race scare I decided enough was enough. I’ve enjoyed the relationship and banter with the team immensely, but it’s time for me to consider my future and decide what I want to do next. A huge thanks to the team, Suzuki for giving me this opportunity, my supporters and everyone that’s helped me this year.”