Whatever the riding discipline, it seems PWR Yamaha’s Wil Yeoman is capable of transferring his winning ways, after scoring a victory in the 2021 New Zealand Enduro Championships’ E1 0-200 2 Stroke class at the opening round yesterday.
The Taupo 15-year-old seamlessly continued on from his two recent national cross country series wins to head his rivals home after the five enduro tests near Tokoroa. Riding his YZ125X over the slippery forestry tracks at Tar Hill, Yeoman says he was happy with how his first couple of tests went.
“Then I underestimated a section and lost a minute. The rest of the day I pushed hard trying not to lose any more time. Overall, I was happy to take first in class and eighth in the AA class.”
Team Manager Paul Whibley, of Taikorea, had to adjust to riding a different capacity Yamaha for the enduro series, following the opening two cross country rounds.
“It was a bit of a slow start for me. I felt pretty rusty on the 450FX after racing the 250FX lately. Also I was riding in muddy conditions for the first time in a while,” Whibley says.
He made a couple mistakes in the early tests - missing a turn and having a small crash - which meant he rode conservatively on the first two loops.
“I began to get into a groove and rode much better in the second half of the event to post some good times. The 450 setup worked great, with the MotoSR suspension soaking up the varied terrain and when paired with the Michelin tyres, I was able to find track in some of the slickest conditions,” he adds.
Whibley came away with third overall and the same position in the E4 301-Open 4 Stroke class.
Riding in the E2 0-300 4 Stroke class, PWR rider Seth Reardon, of Whanganui, finished third in his category and ninth overall. He says the 130km total of forestry trails had “a few steep uphills and downhills to keep us on our toes.”
“I made a few mistakes going down in some tests, and accidentally lost time in a transfer section, which set me back a few placings, but I enjoyed the ride and learnt from my mistakes. I am going to give it my all down south for round two in two weeks time.”
PWR Yamaha-supported riders Ethan Harris placed sixth on his return to racing after a wrist injury in the competitive Open 4 Stroke category - one class position behind Tommy Watts (YZ450) - and Charlotte Russ was third in the ladies class.
The enduro series only ran over four rounds last year due to Covid-19, but is back up to five rounds in 2021. Riders are able to discard their one worst result in terms of capturing an individual class win. However, all rounds will count towards the overall championship.
NZ Enduro Championship Round One (Tokoroa) Overall – Senior
1st Tom Buxton
2nd Dylan Yearbury
3rd Paul Whibley (YZ450FX) – 3rd in class, E4 301-Open 4 Stroke
8th Wil Yeoman (YZ125X) – 1st in class, E1 0-200 2 Stroke
9th Seth Reardon (YZ250FX) – 3rd in class, E2 0-300 4 Stroke
10th Tommy Watts (YZ450) – 5th in class, E4 301-Open 4 Stroke
11th Ethan Harris (YZ450FX) – 6th in class, E4 301-Open 4 Stroke
2021 NEW ZEALAND CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIP
Round 1 – Bushriders Motorcycle Club – Sunday 28th February – Marton
Round 2 – Central Hawkes Bay Motorcycle Club – Sunday 14th March – Flemington
Round 3 – Gore & Districts Motorcycle Club – Saturday 17th April – TBC
Round 4 – Mosgiel District Motorcycle Club – Sunday 18th April – TBC (including prizegiving)
2021 NEW ZEALAND ENDURO CHAMPIONSHIP
Round 1 – 11th April (Tokoroa)
Round 2 – 24th & 25th April – hosted by Kapi Mana Motorcycle Club
Round 3 – 5th, 6th & 7th June (race days TBC) – hosted by Kapi Mana Motorcycle Club
Round 4 – 12th June (Masterton) & 13th June (Martinborough)