Christian Berrington-Smith has certainly charged into his 2022 racing season with some authority, collecting a number of regional championship wins along the way. The second round of the Northern Regions championship series took the circus to Harrismith, half way between Johannesburg and Durban. The riders were treated to perfect cool weather and a lush and loamy track. Christian qualified second, just a whisker over half a second off pole. The first race had a false start initially, but order was restored and the flying freckles thundered off into the countryside.
Christian was fourth off the start, but soon moved into third and clamped onto the rear fenders of Matthew Correia and Ashton Martin ahead of him. He disposed of Correia with a clean pass, and set off in chase of Martin. The leader crashed handing Christian the lead, and he had to keep his wits about him to fend off determined attacks by Correia. He managed to do so, and claimed his third race win in succession in the series.
Christian again had a less than optimal start in race two, but soon the first race tale photocopied itself, with Martin, Correia and Christian setting the pace. Christian again got past Correia, then passed Martin with a beautiful clean move to claim the lead yet again. He opened up a healthy gap initially, but lost his rhythm and flow, allowing Correia to close up again. When Christian got held up by backmarker, Correia pounced and took over the lead. Christian was like a furious wasp on his tail, but came half a second short of making yet another clean sweep.
Christian and Correia were on equal points in total, but the overall victory was credited to Correia by dint of the second heat result. Christian has increased his championship lead, though, and now leads over Martin by a solid 20 points.
The training program is relentless and will intensify leading up to the next national championship event early in April.
Check out the video race report of the event here.
Published by: Tinus Nel