After a couple of years competing with an 85cc machine in the Coventry Junior MotoX series, 15-year-old Northampton-based Lewis Bethell has stepped it up for 2021 with a 125cc motorcycle that he now uses to compete in this championship as well as a handful of others.
Like most athletes across the country, the EBC-equipped rider was faced with less practice time for the season thanks to Covid-19 lockdowns over the winter, but has since successfully competed in a number of races in the last few months.
Bethell explains how the first meetings have gone down in his own words below.
“Having made the decision to move up to the 125cc class for 2021, winter practice was hit with ‘Lockdown 3’ meaning I could not really start any practice until the start of April for the 2021 season, so I was unsure how my pace would be in a very competitive class.
“The first race of my Rookie year was a warm-up meeting at Cradley on 18 April with Cotswold Club, where I was really pleased with my pace and performance over the three races – taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd to take 1st Overall for the day.”
“The next meeting was at Cusses Gorse on 24 April, amongst a really competitive line up and a full gate of 40 riders – a really good test. Over the three races, I placed 7th, 8th and 7th to take 6th overall, which I was really pleased with against some of the top UK riders.
“Next up was Walterstone with Cotswold Club for a two-day meeting over the May bank holiday. I finished 8th in the first race after a really poor start and having to work my way through the pack from 20th at the start. In race two, I got a good start and was running 4th when a stone jammed in my chain and it snapped, ending my race. Race 3 and another good start, finishing 4th. Sunday saw just two races; I finished 6th in the first race and 4th in the second for another pleasing weekend overall and only the non-finish on the Saturday seeing me not achieve a top-six finish.
“The latest meeting was at Chatteris with CJMX on 9 May. Again, another full gate of 40 riders took part. I got a good start in the first race and worked my way up from 6th to 4th when on the last lap, I crashed and ended up in a fence head-first with my face covered in blood. That was the end of the day with a trip to A&E with a suspected broken nose and cheek bone. Fortunately, the X-rays showed no broken bones – just cuts, bruises and swelling. I was lucky but it is a reminder of what a dangerous sport this can be.
“Massive thanks to EBC for the continued support.”