Last weekend I attended the Dirt Track Riders Association awards presentation for the 2019 UK Flat Track National Championship. As Indian Motorcycle is the series sponsor the event was held at the new Krazy Horse Farm House facility in the cotswolds. Krazy Horse are one of the leading Indian dealers in the UK and have been supporting flat track racing in the UK for the last few seasons. It was great to see the new venue and hang out with racing pals, and celebrate the 2019 champions. I barely completed a race last season and with this new crop of super quick riders I would have struggled to challenge for a podium anyway, so no prizes for me. The bar has been raised, considerably. Best thing about the DTRA....? The people - easily the most friendly bunch in motorsport. Fact! The Rookie Class was a tight contest all season between Sam Neville and Franck Casoli. Seeing as Rookie Class championship is where I cut my teeth (wining the title in 2016) we thought it fitting for the Bike Shed to sponsor the class and encourage newcomers to the sport. Jeremy Skipp won the Spirit of Bike Shed award. Every year he builds some of the best looking bikes on the grid... for his kids. I wish Jeremy was my dad. Hold the phone, a prize! Surprised and chuffed to scoop the Gentleman of the DTRA award for services to fellow competitors. Nice guys can win, occasionally. Thanks to Toko Design's Wes Agius for the trophy and nomination. I'll be wearing a top hat for the rest of the week. 2019 has been one of the best seasons to date. The grids have been bursting at the seams yet the vibe is so friendly and inclusive that one could be excused for thinking that flat track racing in the UK isn't competitive. But that couldn't be further from the truth. Every round sees riders travelling from Spain, Sweden, Italy, Holland and France to compete. Notably Dimitri Coste. The flamboyant and ruthlessly rapid Frenchman has competed in every season since the DTRA was formed in 2013 and was awarded Rider of the Year for his standout commitment to the sport and raising the awareness of flat track - in the UK and globally. Whilst providing us all with a spectacle. Watching Dimitri is like being transported back to the seventies.
The Pro and Hooligan classes were nail biting at each round which has raised everyone's game and attracted ever faster riders from across Europe. The UK Championship is still a grassroots series that nurtures amateurs but the front runners are among the quickest in flat track, full stop. Even pushing the hugely experienced American full time pros when they're over here during the summer.
Here's to 2020 being another belter of a season. And If I can get my Yamaha framer a bit more dialled in maybe there are some results to be had. Another podium one day would be a dream, even if a bit distant. - Ross
Full 2019 standings - click here
To find out how to take part, which bike to build and how to be involved - click here.