The battle for the inaugural FIM MiniGP Canada championship saw another huge swing go Treston Morrison’s way on Sunday, as the race one winner continued his epic run at the Greg Moore Raceway with two additional wins to sweep the west-coast tripleheader, hosted by the Pacific Coast Mini Road Racing Club.
Morrison conquered the first points-paying race of the season in Chilliwack, British Columbia on Saturday, but a stiffer challenge on day two still wasn’t enough to dethrone his championship lead in the feature Ohvale class, presented by Motul and Pirelli.
Race two appeared to be producing a very similar result to the first as the 13-year-old Morrison diced with ten-year-old Michael Galvis for the early lead, before stretching out a late gap to snatch the crucial victory.
Unlike race one, however, Galvis couldn’t hang on to the runner-up spot, enduring a number of very close calls and eventually running off-track in the closing laps as he endured a sensational battle with Rhys McNutt and Ben Hardwick.
McNutt would capitalize on the late mistake to steal second, barely fending off Hardwick as the two completed the podium just inches clear of Galvis in fourth.
It was redemption for both McNutt and Hardwick, who got tangled up together early in race one. The former would rebound well aboard his CSBK Scholarship Award machine, while Hardwick salvaged his first points of the year after the incident knocked him out of Saturday’s contest.
Behind Galvis, the damage limitation continued for preseason favourite Lincoln Scott, who has been riding with a broken wrist and managed to bring home a respectable fifth considering the circumstances.
Rounding out the field in race one was Ashton Parker in sixth, who just narrowly missed out on the final podium spot Saturday, Greysen Vondras-Elder in seventh, and Ryder Lock eighth.
The field then had just a two-hour window before returning for the third and final race of the weekend, and this time it brought an even tougher challenge for Morrison.
The Calgary, Alberta native immediately slotted in behind Galvis off the start, and unlike races prior was forced to follow his younger counterpart through lap one, his first real stretch of the weekend where he failed to lead.
The stretch was still short-lived, though, as he fought his way through on Galvis early on lap two, but this time his rival wouldn’t let him get away. The two would run in lockstep for most of the race, but a pass never materialized for Galvis as Morrison would escape with a perfect weekend by just 1.667 seconds.
While the on-track results were tougher than the standings will show, Morrison will head to round two with a perfect 75 points and 22 clear of Galvis, who moved his way back up to second overall after a pair of runner-up finishes on the weekend.
Third in race three would go to McNutt, who again shared the podium after benefitting from another Hardwick error. The reigning MiniSBK runner-up looked to have passed McNutt on the final lap before crashing in turn one, handing the final podium spot back to the CSBK sponsored rider who exits third in the overall championship.
Hardwick would remount quickly and finish fifth, though it was little consolation to one of the preseason championship favourites as he exits the first points-paying round with just 27 points and seventh of eight riders.
The late crash was music to the ears of Scott, who continued to avoid any chaos and bring home a strong fourth. The injured star will somehow escape Chilliwack with third, fourth, and fifth-place finishes to put himself fourth in the standings, a warning sign to his fellow competitors as he hopes to be closer to full health by round three.
The order was concluded in the same fashion to race two, as Parker snatched sixth from Vondras-Elder and Lock with all three showing massive improvement in pace from when they first arrived on Friday.
Missing from the weekend action for various reasons were Ontario riders Addyson McQuaig, Jack Dunwoodie, and Mason Archer, the latter of which has confirmed his plans for a season debut in round three.
The FIM MiniGP Canada series will now get just a week to recover before returning for two more points-paying races, this time at the Strathmore Raceway near Morrison’s hometown of Calgary, Alberta on July 1-2 presented by Motul and Pirelli.
The championship will then shift back to Ontario for consecutive points-paying rounds at the Lombardy Raceway near Smiths Falls in late July and early August, before the final bonus round runs alongside the CSBK finale at Shannonville Motorsport Park in September.