Toby Price wins AORC | Milner heading stateside? | By Russell Colvin
Daniel Milner (CDR-Yamaha) has closed the 2014 Yamaha Australian Off-Road Championship season off with a faultless victory at Heathcote yesterday. In what could have been Milner’s last ride in Oz after posting a comment to social media not to long after the curtain was drawn saying; “What an awesome two years I have had with this team (CDR)! They have got me to where I am now and help me get my first AORC outright championship and also two of my three A4DE’s Going to miss them all in the next few years but I hope to be back working with them one day! But for now it is time to move on and work at bigger goals of mine.”
Milner finished 12.731sec ahead of the newly crowned Outright and E2 champion, Toby Price (KTM Enduro Team). With Milner’s third placing in round eleven on Saturday and the win yesterday, it was good enough to see the young Victorian rider finish the season in second place overall in the outright championship. In the E2 class however, Milner finished third, just two slender points off Active8 Yamalube Yamaha’s Josh Green who came home with a sixth in round eleven and finshed fourth in round twelve.
With Price and Milner finishing one-two, it was a fitting end to the championship, because when you look at the round wins in season 2014 it looks like this; Price nailed six wins and Milner also scored six wins as well! While Price didn’t really need to fight hard yesterday, the likeable man Hillston, NSW got to enjoy his final day at school by ‘cruising’ around and having some fun. “Today went fairly well” said Price. “I didn’t ride over the top or anything as I locked up the title in round eleven. It’s been a fairly good year. We’re stoked to come out with both the Outright and the E2 championship win. We have done what we needed to do. I can’t thank the KTM team enough. The boys have done a fantastic job all year and supplied me with a great motorcycle!”
Rounding off the season with a solid performance was Active8 Yamaluble Yamaha’s Beau Ralston. Ralston snared a second in round eleven and finished third yesterday where he was a further 1hr33.456 behind Milner. Ralston expressed that it was a tough day at the office yesterday as the track was quite tough and got chopped up a lot. “I’m happy with my result and really enjoying learning each race as they come” said Ralston. “A big thanks to the whole team as they have all worked really hard this year.”
Two fourth positions in the outright and the win in Transmoto Under-19 championship went to the ever never dull Daniel ‘Chucky’ Sanders. This kid is a superstar of the making and will without a doubt be one of Australia’s next stars in the AORC, if not the world. With two fourth places, Sanders managed to finish sixth outright in the championship, and the end result in the Under-19 championship saw him winning the series with 297-points to Broc Grabham’s 259.
Fifth outright and fourth in the E2 went to Josh Green who is still struggling with injuries that he suffered from the A4DE. “Today was much better then yesterday” explained Green. “For me, still I’m struggling with injuries, but I did feel that I had a consistent day.”
Milner’s teammate, Chris Hollis was sixth and fifth in the E2. Hollis ended up fifth outright in the championship and dropped back to fourth in the E2 title race.
It was an unfortunate round for Husqvarna’s Lachlan Stanford who ended up seventh outright and sixth in the E2. Stanford, 23, had a goal of finishing in the top five for the round. “Today didn’t go to plan” said Stanford. “I was a bit disappointed on how I rode. I was riding smooth, but I just didn’t quite have the speed I needed. I’ll have a bit of a break now and get myself ready for the ISDE.”
A surprise eighth place and seventh place went to Riley Graham.
Rounding out the top ten was Broc Grabham, who finished second to Sanders in the Under-19, with the new E3 champion Glenn Kearney completing the top ten. Kearney did hit the deck pretty hard in the first part of the morning, but all in all the likeable New South Welshman was really pleased and wrapped to walk away with the E3 title under the belt.
“It’s been a really good year” said Kearney. “The only way it would have been better if I were to have won the outright championship. But to finish third behind Toby and Daniel in the outright, I’m pretty happy because they are both world class riders.”
Just missing out on the top ten in the outright was the new E1 champion, Tom McCormack. McCormack was once again the victor of the E1 class which saw him winning a total of nine rounds. Finishing second in the E1 class, 26.179 behind McCormack was Husqvarna’s Scott Keegan, while it was a remarkable ride from young Nic Tomlinson in third. Peter Boyle (KTM Enduro Team) and Tom Kite were fourth and fifth.
26-year old Emelie Karlsson topped off her season and has the bragging rights to say she ended the year with a win in the Women’s class. “I’m really happy to finish the season with a win” beamed Karlsson. “My riding felt good all day. I pushed myself more and more for every sprint and my times were getting better. It hasn’t really been the year I wanted, but I have been doing my best to stay in there and train hard. I’ll work on everything to get back where I want to be. The win has put me in second overall in the championship which is a great bonus.”
Jess Gardiner (Balllard’s Motorex Off-Road Team) finished second to complete her fairy-tail year that has been. Gardiner cleaned up in round elven which was good meant she locked up the title. The 21-year old superstar flew out early this morning to head to France to tackle the grand finale of the Enduro World Championship this weekend.
Tayla Jones took the last step on the podium who was riding a borrowed KTM after her race bike dropped its lunch during round eleven which put her out of the championship hunt. 2015, watch out, Jones will be on a charge and looks the goods to just maybe take a title out very, very soon!
Karlsson’s win leaped frogged her into second position into the championship, finishing just one point ahead of Jones in the final standing.
Sophie Coldiutt and Elizabeth Lee were fourth and fifth respectfully.
Queenslander Derek Grundy took out the Masters division ahead of Trent Lean and Ian Jenner. Kirk Hutton completed his season with a win in the Vets beating the 2014 champ Damian Smith (Husqvarna Enduro Team) who has bowed out from AORC racing after spending many years at the top of racing. South Australian hotshot Rowan Pumpa was third.
Kawasaki’s Lyndon Snodgrass did all he could to try and stop Wil Ruprecht’s charge towards to taking the J4 crown. The dynamic pair have been at each other for the whole year, so the script was written to plan, with just .284sec between Snodgrass and Ruprecht. The end result was just six points to Ruprecht’s favour.
Seth Muller was third and third in the overall standings, finishing thirty points behind Snodgrass. Victorian’s Stuart Holt was fourth ahead of fellow Victorian Jai Wedlock.
It was another masterful display from the 2014 J3 champion, Ben Kearns as he collected his eleventh round win. Kearns, who has simply been the runaway rider in the class dropped only one round which was in round elven.
Hunter Semmen and Dean De Fazio joined Kearns on the podium.
It was a home round win for Mason Semmens in the J2. Semmens’s finished 23.120sec ahead of this year’s champion, Joshua Brierley. Joshua’s brother Mitchell was third, finishing fourteen points behind in the overall standings.
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