4X ProTour 2022 Round 1 – Fort William

Scott Beaumont

Seeding – 7th

Result – 5th

After 3 years away from Fort William due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Scott Beaumont arrived in Fort William feeling excited and ready to start the 2022 4X ProTour in front of his home crowd.After signing on, Scott picked up his number plate and all systems were go. Scott was seeded as World number 3 at this race on the recent UCI World rankings and would therefore qualify with the number 67 plate.

The first practice session was held on Thursday under the best conditions of the weekend. The sun was shining and Scott was able to tame the track quickly, looking fast and hitting all the technical lines with ease. He was clearly in the mood for a great result to kick start his 2022 campaign.

On Friday the weather went downhill as the rain arrived and settled in for the weekend. It was time to qualify. Scott had worked on the fastest line down the hill during practice and he was all set to set a qualifying time.

Qualifying is very simple. One lap, no crap. There is just one chance to qualify in the top 32 riders. A mistake, crash or mechanical and its time to go home.

In the gate, Scott looked calm and focused. The gate dropped and Scott fired down the long first straight. Hitting all his lines and putting together a good run, Scott crossed the finish line with a time that would give him 7th position for the session – 0.8 seconds behind the fastest time.

“Yes I’m happy with that. I had a good run and hit all my marks. The real day is tomorrow and we will be ready to race” said Scott in the finish area.

Race day arrived and the rain continued to fall.. The track, thankfully was fantastic. The sandy nature of this track means it actually gets better with rain as the riders are able to push their tyres harder in the corners.

During the day Scott did interviews with BBC as well as in front of the huge Fort William crowd ahead of the finals. After a short practice session, the scene was set and it was time to race.

Round 1. Scott chose the inside gate, made a great start and took a commanding lead to win the race, leading from start to finish. 

Quarter Final. In the quarter final, Scott had second pick. The current 4X World Champion, Tomas Slavik had first pick. He went for gate 2. Scott decided on gate 3 as the run to turn 1 from gate 1 gets tight when racing bar to bar. Making a trademark explosive gate, Scott took the fight to Slavik and into turn 1 just lost the race. He settled into 2nd and qualified through to the semi final.

In the Semi Final, Scott would face his biggest rival again, fastest qualifier, Czech Republic rider Tomas Slavik. Slavik chose gate 2. Feeling good with his gate, Scott decided on gate 3 again to try and drag race him on the first straight. The gate dropped and Scott made a flier. The two riders went bar to bar on the first straight both trading the lead at different parts of the first straight. Entering the first turn level, Slavik took the advantage from being inside. Scott settled into second and looked comfortable.

Then the drama came. Hannes Slavik (no relation to Tomas) railed turn 2 and carried huge amounts of speed and he block passed Scott in turn 3. Scott battled all the way to the finish line but couldn’t re pass. Finishing 3rd, Scott was furious with himself. 

He had to regroup and head back up the hill for the small final to determine 5th – 8th places and the final step on the podium.

Small Final time. Scott had made such great starts from gate 3, he decided to go with it again. Giving himself space to get a good drive and fast wide line in turn one. 

The commentator had the crowd going wild. All chanting the riders names, blowing air horns, revving chainsaws and blowing whistles. It was an electric atmosphere.

As the beeps went Scott made his best gate of the day and took the lead into turn 1. From here, he rode a faultless lap and took the win to give himself 5th place for the day and another Fort William podium.

In the finish area, Scott said:

“I am absolutely gutted. I have had the speed to win all day, and it just all unravelled in that semi final. Hannes made a great pass and it is what it is. 5th place gets points on the board and thankfully we head straight to Winterberg in Germany for round 2 next week.”

Our next race will be 4X ProTour Round 2 which will be held in Winterberg, Germany on Saturday 28th May.

We are excited to see what Scott can do.

Thank you to all our team partners. We couldn’t do this without your support.

2022 Schwalbe British 4X Series Round 1 & 2 – Afan, South Wales

Rounds 1 and 2 of the 2022 Schwalbe British 4X Series took place at Afan in South Wales at the weekend. The season would begin on this iconic track and as the defending champion, Scott was excited to get the season started.

A cornerstone of the British 4X Series for many years, Afan is fast, flowing and always a favourite for riders and spectators. With fun jumps, high berms, rocks, corkscrew bridges and split lines on the track, racing is always amazing. The sun was shining and the stage was set for a great weekend of racing.

On Friday, Scott did a photoshoot with team photographer Charles Robertson to get some images on Afan’s trails as well as on the 4X track.

Then, Scott did a small amount of practice on Friday evening on the 4X track to see how the track was riding and dial in some lines. 

Saturday – Round 1:

The British 4X Series uses the moto system for qualification which means Scott would race 3 qualifying races against different riders to qualify through to the knockout rounds.

Racing got underway at 12.00. Scott’s first moto was going to plan until the final corners where another rider dived inside of him. There was contact and Scott unfortunately crashed out of the race. It was a fairly slow crash so didn’t look like it was anything to worry about. On any other day he would have been straight back up and on his feet, but something was wrong. He stayed down and looked uncomfortable. After a few minutes he tried to stand but couldn’t so he was carried off the track and over to the waiting ambulance. After a thorough examination, it was determined that he had twisted his knee and that the lateral collateral ligaments had been stretched.

So……. Scott made his way back to the truck and was obviously distraught. There was a small delay as the track repairs were carried out. The whole team could see Scott was weighing the options up. After a few minutes, his race bike was ready to go again and he immediately took the bike around the back of the truck (out of sight) and had a roll around. Incredibly, he reported that there was no pain when riding his bike. So. In typical Scott fashion, he decided to give it a go. His 2nd moto was the easiest of his motos on paper. Scott made an ok start but was able to make a good move in turn 1 and he ended up winning the race! This was enough for him to roll down in his 3rd moto and still qualify for the semi final. So that’s what he did to preserve his focus and energy.

By the time the semi-finals rolled around, Scott was feeling confident. With his results in the motos, he had final pick of the start and was left outside on gate 4. He made an incredible gate and tried to get across to the inside. He didn’t make it all the way and settled into 2nd. He was able to hold position and crossed the finish line to qualify for the final.

The team were ecstatic. We had gone from retiring from the meeting after moto 1 to making it to the final!

In the final, Scott was left again with gate 4. Saving his best till last, Scott made a perfect start and was able to get all the way across the other riders to take the holeshot! He was pulling away until the tight turn above the rock section. His rear wheel skipped off a rock and he had to unclip and dab a foot (luckily his right), before setting off again. The pack were on him again and Scott powered down the rocks and into the pro line doubles. He pulled a slight lead again and it was enough. Crossing the line Scott was clearly in disbelief! From a disastrous start to winning the opening round in a couple of hours.

“I could not be any happier. This has been one of the toughest days of my racing career. It also goes down as one of my best British 4X races ever. After that crash earlier, I thought it was all over. But we have stayed focused all day and made it happen. I am absolutely stoked to have won. Thank you to everyone for their support.”

After the podiums, photographs and film interviews were done, the team returned to the Dethleffs team motorhome, where Sunday was discussed. Unanimously we decided that Scott would sit out Sundays round 2 race to now rest his knee and focus on the 4X ProTour series which starts in Fort William in two weeks.

Sunday – Round 2:

The team got the call absolutely 100% right. After a nights sleep, Scott’s knee had bruised up and it was not possible to compete on Sunday.

However. What a story Saturday was. As Scott said it was his best ever British 4X race. We couldn’t agree more. He toughed out a huge amount of pain and was able to beat the best 4X riders in the country. It was an incredible day that we will celebrate for years to come.

Thank you to all our team partners. We could not do this without you.