The first round of the 2023 4X ProTour took place at Winterberg in Germany at the huge IXS Dirtmasters festival on Saturday. With huge crowds watching all weekend, this festival is certainly one of the biggest events in Europe and its amazing to have 4X ProTour there. The 4X track has undergone a complete transformation so we were excited to get there and get racing.
Scott had worked with the organiser on the track improvements and they had come up with a totally new layout. During first practice the riders were excited about the changes. Much more open than previous years meant that passing was going to be easier and the crowds would certainly be entertained.
Practice on Friday went well. Scott had the track dialled and looked good. The weather forecast was great all weekend and the track was dry.
Qualifying and the race took place on Saturday, so riders had to be ready for a full day of action. Seeded number 2 into this event, after his 2nd overall in the 2023 4X ProTour, Scott exploded out of the gate seeking the fastest time. The gate dropped and Scott smashed a great run, hitting all his lines. He crossed the finish line with the fastest time to that point. Unfortunately Tomas Slavik, the 2022 4X ProTour Champion was able to just beat Scott’s time. However. The team were happy and Scott went into racing with the 2nd fastest time of the day. He was happy and felt good going into racing.
With a practice session before the race, Scott decided to change his gearing to help make a better start. It was going to be crucial, so he rolled the dice.
Racing went well for Scott winning his early heats and moving through to the quarter finals. In the quarter final Scott made another good start and led that race too from start to finish.
In the semi final Scott chose gate 2. He made a good start but after a bump got squeezed on the first straight. Into turn 1 he was battling extremely hard but was on the outside and had to hit the brakes before going through the tape. With ground to make up he set off in pursuit. Catching up to 2nd place, Scott made his move and dived into 2nd. It was a great pass, but then in the final turn he got passed back. It was the race of the day, but unfortunately Scott was into the small final to determine the 5th to 8th place riders. Scott wanted that 5th place and final spot on the podium!
The gate dropped and Scott was on point. Taking the holeshot, Scott didn’t look back, checking out and taking the win. Another good result for Scott landing on the podium. His speed was incredible all day and with the next 4X ProTour in only 2 weeks away, we are confident of a great year ahead.
In the finish area Scott said:
“That was a good day. The first straight is super technical and quite narrow. I battled hard in that semi final and I’m gutted to not have made the final, but coming back to win the small final feels good and it’s a podium to start the year. The goal all year is top 5’s so that we can chase the overall World title. We are on course.”
Thank you to all our team partners for your support in 2023.