British title delight for quad duo Ross Dillon and Josh McKnight

Ross Dillon and Josh McKnight became Northern Ireland’s newest ACU British quad champions after the final round of the series at the West Meon MX track, Southampton.

Tuesday, 12th October 2021, 5:06 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th October 2021, 5:08 pm

The newly crowned champions join compatriots Mark McLernon and Dean Dillon, who wrapped up their titles at the previous rounds.

Ross made it a Dillon family one-two as he became the 250 air-cooled champion, joining his elder brother Dean who won the under-21 title.

The 14-year-old RBAI student was unstoppable at Duns, qualifying fastest and winning his opening two races, to claim the title.

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Ross Dillon, Dean Dillon, Mark McLernon and Josh McKnight 2021 British quad champions

A crash in his final race didn’t dampen the new champions’ spirits.

“It was a great feeling to wrap up the championship after race two,” said Ross.

“It’s my first British title and it capped a great season where I also won the Ulster title. In the last race I was going for the lead when I hit the bank and went over the handlebars.

“I’m a bit sore but being crowned champion eased the pain.”

Josh McKnight from Loughbrickland secured the 250 open championship with a steady day at West Meon, finishing eighth in race one and second in race two.

“I’m delighted to have won the ACU British 250 Open championship on my JMK-prepared CANAM,” said the 16-year-old.

“I’ve been battling for the overall wins at every round but today I used my race craft to just do enough to bring home the number one plate.”

Mark McLernon finished second, third and third for second overall and runner up in the Nora quad championship.

Meanwhile, it was a big weekend for Omagh motocross rider Lewis Spratt as he wrapped up the S/W Scottish 85cc and the blu cru Yamaha titles at Duns MX track, Edinburgh.

It was his first championships outside of Ireland but they didn’t come easy.

Lewis, who celebrated his 13th birthday a day before travelling to Scotland, qualified third fastest. He crossed the line second in his opening race but there was a problem with the All Moto IE Yamaha’s gearbox and with no spare bike, he had to borrow a 85cc Husqavarna from English rival Hayden Statt.

Fourth in race two, and second in race three behind Statt, who won the three opening races, it all came down to the final race. Spratt kept his focus on the title and brought the ‘Husky’ home in third.

“After race one I thought it was all over for me but thanks to Hayden lending me his spare bike it all came good in the end,” he said.

“A change of tyres before race two and although it was hard to get used to the different bike I brought it home fourth.”

The teenager hole-shotted race three but after Statt took the lead on the second lap, Spratt eased back to cross the line second. Third in race three was enough for the titles.

For Ballyclare’s Charley Irwin it was so close yet so far as he finished second in the youth rookies championship.

Irwin, riding the Discount Beds CRF 250 Honda instead of his usual 125 Yamaha, qualified fastest but two disappointing results in the opening races made it tough for the teenager.

After winning race three he needed to also win his final race. He hole-shotted the race but Logan Ferguson passed him and although he pushed Ferguson all the way to the line, second wasn’t enough and he lost the championship by one point to Ayden Smith.

“I’m gutted to have missed the championship,” he said.

“If I only had better results in the opening two races it would have been a different story.

Belfast rider Ben Kennedy claimed the overall in the MX2 class on the Russells Yamaha after two seconds and a win at Duns, finishing second in the championship.