KTM Racing Team rider secures P3 overall in challenging conditions.
It was a case of ‘basically trail riding’ for Kirk Gibbs at the third round of the 2023 Penrite ProMX Championship, the KTM Racing team MX1 contender battling the wet and heavily rutted track at Wodonga to finish P3 overall.
The extreme conditions caused by the rain resulted in a shift in the schedule at the Albury-based venue, with the top 10 qualifying shootout cancelled and the second MX1 moto contested over the traditional format instead of the planned two-part race with Olympic-style scoring.
“The ruts were so deep and so rough, you had to pretty much just ride straight up and down, because as soon as you try and tip it over, you just grab peg and it either dragged you in or tipped you over,” Gibbs said to MotoOnline.com.au. “For me, it was basically trail riding.”
Gibbs posted the seventh-fastest time in qualifying and rode to a fifth-place finish in race one on the challenging surface, improving to P3 in race two to secure a podium result overall.
“I’m obviously really happy with the podium and the end result, but it was a tough day today – the conditions were crazy and it really was just about survival,” he added.
“Overall, I’m satisfied to come out of here with some good points and land on the podium after being so close at Appin, so we’re excited to take this thing on to Maitland in a few weeks’ time.”
The 36 points banked from Wodonga elevate Gibbs to second in the MX1 standings after the former national champion finished fourth overall at Appin, notably finishing a season-best second in the first moto at the second round.
He trails red plate-holder and Wodonga winner Jed Beaton (Boost Mobile Honda Racing) by 14 points as the series moves to Maitland with the two-day format to be contested across 6-7 May.