Wozza Discovers: Mettet Superbiker

Mettet's end-of-season all-star supermoto knees-up is a must-see event. Wozza went one step further and entered the thing. Did he win? Did he hell

Meet Fred Fiorentino. That's him up there, no. 41. He's a bit good on a bike. In fact, he's just destroyed all-comers in the Mettet Superbiker event in Belgium, as well as wrapping up both the French and Belgian supermoto titles a few weeks earlier. And he finished seventh in the World S1 Supermoto series. 

If you've heard of Mettet forgive the history lesson; if you haven't here's the deal. Every year since 1986 this sleepy Belgium backwater turns itself into a heaving mass of supermoto madness as the roads are closed and the town given over to one of the planet's biggest two-wheeled parties. An epic motocross section is shoehorned behind the main straight while Mettet's petrol station forecourt (which doubles as the apex of turn one) becomes an open air boozer for the crowds. 

To spice things up further Mettet attracts a stellar spread of riders from all disciplines, even eclipsing the now defunct Guidon d'Or as the end-of-season supermoto party. Over the years the likes of Foggy, Walker, Corser and even Kevin Schwantz have taken the grid alongside supermoto pros, enduro world champs and motocross legends. 

This year was no different with Regis Laconi, Fabien Foret and Sebastien Le Grelle representing the road racers while ten times world motocross champion Stephane Everts and five times holder of the same title Joel Smets spearheaded the off-road attack.

However, no mention of Mettet would be complete without Stephane Chambon. The tiny Frenchman has not only cleaned up French motocross and superbike titles in his time, he's also bagged a world supersport championship. And, despite not being able to get both feet on the ground on a supermoto bike, is the undisputed king of Mettet with nine wins since 1990.

And in the invitation-only Starbiker race this year Chambon did it again, leaving Everts in second and the rest to pick up the pieces. However, what the headlines won't tell you was that in the regular Superbiker race not only did Fiorentino clean up, he did it by lapping a second faster than Chambon, just as he had been all weekend through practice and qualifying.

Rather than watch the race, I figured it would be far more interesting to have a crack myself, but having never ridden supermoto in anger before I needed help. Fortunately Fred and his team took me under their wing, not only giving much needed tuition but also supplying one of their 2005 factory KTMs, my own mechanic and even a chair with my name on it in their garage.

Overtaking Le Grelle on day one was a high (he was running out of fuel but I'm counting it anyway), while crashing in my main race was a low. Still, as it was only a measly lowside I resigned myself to not covering myself in glory (highly unlikely anyway without a severe talent transfusion) and remounted to wheelie throughout the rest of the race with a massive grin on my face.

An incredible weekend even as a spectator, and I can't believe I've never been before.

You can see an onboard video of the Metter Superbiker race here.