Manns make most of return

HILL climbing is back at Le Val des Terres and the Mann family ultimately had the most to celebrate on Saturday.

Solitary record-breaker: Jez Mann lowered his own class record riding his modified Lambretta scooter. (Picture by Andrew Le Poidevin, 28534455)
Solitary record-breaker: Jez Mann lowered his own class record riding his modified Lambretta scooter. (Picture by Andrew Le Poidevin, 28534455)

Nick Saunders’ quick but not record-breaking ‘FTD’ of 28.26sec. followed the trend of the belated season opener, the first such fixture since September 2019, as the inevitable lockdown rust blunted performances somewhat.

Yet Jez Mann managed to buck the general trend of the Guernsey Kart and Motor Club event.

This proved somewhat fitting given his commitment to a rather unorthodox racing machine – a 250cc Lambretta scooter.

Mann set the only record of what was outwardly a rather pleasant day, finishing with a 39.75sec. clocking to remove five-hundredths from his previous class mark.

‘I’m very pleased with today,’ said a rider who broke the 40sec. barrier only last year but did so twice on Saturday.

‘I’ve done a lot of work over the winter – work on the chassis, it handles a lot better than it previously did, and the motor is just totally different and alien to me.

‘I’m trying to get used to it but it’s got a lot more potential than what I had last year. Fingers crossed there’s more to come.’

He finished the day doubly pleased after son Harry Mann edged Jamie Bacon, a fellow motocross regular, in a battle of the 14-year-olds.

Both were making their ‘Valdees’ debut on their 85cc bikes and were among the healthy number of fresh faces on the course last weekend.

But, unsurprisingly, experienced regulars and their powerful race cars led the way once more.

Reynick driver Saunders, following an errant first run, painted a picture of consistency around the 28.5 mark before retiring with his leading time.

Veteran Tim Torode made some good improvements through the day and finished with a rather impressive 29.68 for second. Another Tim took third – that was Tim Tulie and his 29.84 finishing run in his newly upgraded Empire 00 Evo.

Emma Rayson clocked 31.09 for the women’s honours, while Anthony Poynder topped the ranks of the two-wheelers with 35.17 but Pete Le Page impressed with 35.65 using a humble 250cc engine.

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