Since it’s conception the team at the ‘Michelin MX Nationals powered by Milwaukee’ have always wanted a race with the ‘Fastest 40’ riders in the UK filling the start gate at all rounds of the championship. Now with even more interest into the series for 2022 from aspiring Expert riders the team have come up with a new structure that will see the genuine ‘Fastest 40’ riders in the country line up on the day for what will be a hard charging, hard fought race from front to back, which of course, is what we all want to see!
MX Nationals race director and founder Paul Irwin explains, “It’s important to us to have a structure and obvious route to the top echelons of the sport in the U.K. We want our riders to earn the right to be called one of the best, our premier league of you will. Many other sports have league or points systems to the top and motocross in the U.K should be doing the same. It should be a case of if you’re good enough, fast enough, then you’ve earned the right to be there and not just because you’ve got more support or resources for whatever reason or are on a professional team.
“We introduced the Amateur class not too long ago to good effect for those riders who are just that bit faster than being a Clubman but not quite ready to race in the Experts. Now we want to make that final step to the top for Experts riders with no arguments that they belong there. As a championship we built our reputation on having the ‘Fastest 40’ riders in one race no matter if they’re racing MX1 or MX2 and we would like to continue with that, it’s part of our identity and we don’t want to lose that. But we want to have it so the riders in that race are legitimately the ‘Fastest 40’ and have a full start gate of riders, so we’ve come up with a new structure for the Experts and Pros for 2022.
“The idea is give the Expert riders a chance to get in those two ‘Fastest 40’ motos on Sunday and test themselves against the best, whilst still scoring points towards their Expert championship. As well as that, with the new format and structure we’ll have a real ‘Fastest 40’ championship of riders at the end of the year and those riders will be our official Elite/Pro riders for the 2023 championship. This effectively gives an Expert rider the chance officially become an Elite/Pro rider in the MX Nationals championship. At the end of next year’s championship we’ll have our Pro MX1 and MX2 champions and our Expert MX1 and MX2 champions as previously, but we’ll also have a ‘Fastest 40’ championship overall winner. The best of the best. It will be interesting to see how far up the leading MX2 rider will be too, I’m sure we’ll find an extra incentive for them to push on against the 450’s!”
Here’s how the new structure of the Pro and Expert riders will work at the Michelin MX Nationals powered by Milwaukee for 2022.
- The Pro MX1/ MX2 class will now be called the ‘Elite’ class.
- The newly named Elite class will race on Sunday only.
- The Expert class will race both on Saturday and Sunday (2 motos per day)
- Both the Elite class and the Expert class will be made up of 20 x MX1 riders and 20 x MX2 registered riders (effectively making 40 Elite riders and 40 Expert riders)
- On Sunday morning the Elite and Expert classes will combine in qualifying for Sunday’s motos (Elite/ Expert MX2 qualifying followed by Elite/ Expert MX1 qualifying)
- The fastest 20 riders from each group (Elite/ Expert MX2, Elite/ Expert MX1) will go through to the two ‘Fastest 40’ motos.
- The remaining 20 riders from each group will race in the Expert races.
- The Top 10 Elite riders in MX1 and MX2 from the 2021 championship results will be seeded going into the round 1 of the championship. Should any fail to qualify for the ‘Fastest 40’ motos through a mechanical issue, crash or injury they will still be eligible to race ‘Fastest 40’ motos, but will go to the start gate last. After round 1 of the 2022 championship the top 10 in both the MX1 and MX2 Elite class current championship standings will be the seeded riders coming into each round.
- Any non seeded Elite riders that fail to qualify for the ‘Fastest 40’ will race in the Expert races. They will be scored as per their ‘Elite’ class status in those Expert races.
- Any Expert MX1 or MX2 riders who make the top 20 in their respective qualifying group will race in the ‘Fastest 40’ race.
- Riders will line up behind the start gate for the ‘Fastest 40’ race with the fastest MX2 qualifier having first gate pick, followed by the fastest MX1 rider, and so on down the line.
- Elite and Expert riders will score points respective to their class in the ‘Fastest 40’ race.
- Eg: If an Expert MX2 rider finishes 15th in a ‘Fastest 40’ moto but is the first Expert MX2 registered rider across the finish line, they will take the maximum points score for the class. Same applies for Expert MX1 riders.
- All riders must complete 75% of the moto to be classed with a result.
- Eg: If only three Expert MX2 riders qualify through to the ‘Fastest 40’ race that doesn’t guarantee a top three result in the Expert MX2 class. You must compete in and you must finish the ‘Fastest 40’ motos. Therefore the first Expert MX2 rider across the finish line in the Expert race will effectively finished 4th in the Expert MX2 class.
- All riders in the ‘Fastest 40’ race will be scored as per their registered class towards their respective championship.
- Eg: Elite MX2, Elite MX1, Expert MX2, Expert MX1.
- On top of this a new championship class will effectively be formed. The ‘Fastest 40’ championship. Point towards that championship will only be awarded in the ‘Fastest 40’ motos as per the riders finishing position in the race, regardless of their respective class (Elite MX2, Elite MX1, Expert MX1, Expert MX2). Effectively giving us a ‘Fastest 40’ overall national champion. Best of the best. The Champion of Champions.
- The final ‘Fastest 40’ championship positions will effectively determine the registered ‘Elite’ riders for the 2023 Michelin MX Nationals powered by Milwaukee championship.