With no small degree of uncertainty in the weeks prior, the quarter-mile dash along Vazon’s Coast road sent the post-lockdown motorsport scene roaring into life on Saturday afternoon.
The weather gods were not at their kindest, presenting a steady headwind and cold air for the motorists eager to return.
It meant only one competitor – junior motorcyclist Harry Mann – set a class record on the day.
Mechanical issues and one clock error left Girard with even more to overcome, yet he and his one-litre Honda Fireblade sliced through the resistance to eventually post not one but two sub-10sec. times.
His efforts culminated in a 9.95sec. on the final run.
‘I am miles off my record and my PB, but it is what it is,’ said a rider whose best is 9.48 from three years ago.
‘It’s a win, it’s a nine – I was worried I wasn’t going to get in the nines.
‘With the headwind, it’s not ideal, and it’s cold as well – the road was so cold that it’s hard to get any grip.
‘It’s great to be back.’
Girard had opened with a comparatively modest 10.78, then what looked a promising second effort was lost to a timing failure. His series ended 10.01, 9.99 and 9.95.
No other competitor touched the 10sec. range – though the battle for runner-up proved a secondary highlight.
Girard’s Motorcycles 750cc and Over classmate Matt Hale opened with a swift 11.52, which put him in control briefly.
Matt Bougourd soon relegated him with an 11.44 in his Force HC racing car.
Even Bougourd was unable to match that afterwards, but a late flourish from Matt Bichard and his 600cc Honda CBR saw him snatch third one-hundredth behind.
Meanwhile, the honour of fastest woman went to young Jade Ferbrache, who placed just outside the fray with an 11.54 on her own 600cc Honda CBR.
She had led the way throughout against race-car driver Jackie Le Cheminant, who only completed two timed runs and peaked at 12.47.
However, one of the crowd favourites was a rider who placed much further back in the circa 40-competitor field.
That was 14-year-old sprint debutant Harry Mann.
Now in his second season of being able to contest road events, Mann had a fruitful first day out at Vazon to improve the existing Motorcycles 125cc and Under record with every single timed run.
Mann’s 17.00 opener on his KTM knocked 0.70sec. off Mark Burbridge’s record, dating back to 2004, but that was just the beginning.
Subsequent runs of 16.83, 16.78 and 16.48 wrapped up a promising day for the youngster, who commented: ‘It was great and the bike ran well – really fun.’