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Weston Beach Race - 24 September 2018
Martin Jessopp switches from Road to Sand at HydroGarden Weston Beach Race Powered by KTM
Road racer Martin Jessopp is looking forward to lining up on the beach and getting amongst the action at the 36thHydroGarden Weston Beach Race Powered By KTM, on October 20/21.
A podium finisher at the Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix and Northwest 200 road races, Jessopp has competed at a number of different events this year including the British Superbike Championship. Jessopp has previously raced in Endurance, British and World Supersport, British Superbike and Superstock championships over the years.
No stranger to going fast, Jessopp clocked his first 130mph lap at the TT in 2017 and took two podium finishes. A motorcycle racer from a young age, Martin started his career off-road, racing as a junior on a dirt bike in the former British Youth Nationals series. From there he went on to race British and International Supercross events before making the switch to slicks and contesting the Aprilia Superteen Challenge.
Jessop’s career highlights include three wins at the Northwest 200, two podium finishes at the TT and five at the Macau Grand Prix. Feeling as much at home in deep sandy ruts as he does on smooth tarmac, Jessopp will line-up at Weston for the third time aiming for more success. And to enjoy the UK’s biggest off-road motorcycle event with family and friends.
Martin, we’re nearing the end of the 2018 road racing season, how has your year been so far?
Martin Jessopp: “The year has been great, the team have raced a number of BSB rounds and had some solid results there. I got a first place at the Northwest 200 on the Supertwin and then at the Isle of Man TT I had a number of top-10 finishes including seventh in the Superbike, Superstock and Senior TT races all on my own Riders BMW machines.”
And you’re capping off your successful year by racing one of the world’s toughest beach races?
Martin Jessopp: “I love the HydroGarden Weston Beach Race, ever since I was a kid growing up riding motocross we used to go to watch the race. Now as a father myself I take my daughter up to Weston – she has started to race herself now on KTM 65. It’s not just about the racing up there either, there are so many other things going on – it’s a great weekend.”
You’re a road racer by profession, but a dirt biker at heart. How strong is your need to get back to the dirt all these years after making the switch to Tarmac?
Martin Jessopp: “Despite all my road racing, motocross has always been my first love. I don’t get to ride as much as I’d like during the racing season, but over the winter I try to compete in a few local events and my friends and I often head down to Spain or Italy for some training in the winter sun. Weston will give be a big old dirt bike fix, that’s for certain.”
What’s your weapon of choice for Weston this year?
Martin Jessopp: “I haven’t made up my mind yet. I’ve got a KTM 250 SX-F motocross bike and a 250 EXC enduro bike. I’m undecided whether I go for the 2-stroke with a big tank on enduro suspension, or the 4-stroke motocross bike which would be better suited, but doesn’t have a big tank. Either way it’s going to be tough but I’m looking forward to it.”
Any goals for the race, or are you simply looking to have fun and enjoy it?
Martin Jessopp: “Well I haven’t been able to practice on the off-road bike so much, that’s my excuse anyway! No, the plan is to go and enjoy the event to be honest. I have only done it twice before back in 2012 and 2016. I was injured last year, so I really wanted to have a good crack at it this year. I’ll try my best and hopefully get a good finish.”
Photo Credit: Full Throttle Images
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