KTM’S HARWOOD EXTENDS KIWI DOMINANCE
New Zealand’s CMR Red Bull KTM team has done it again, snatching away motocross glory across the Tasman.
For the second consecutive season, a Kiwi rider on a CMR Red Bull KTM 250SX motorcycle has dominated Australia’s under-19 motocross ranks.
Nelson’s Harwood arrived at Coolum, in Queensland, for the final round of the Australian nationals on Sunday with a massive 50-point advantage over his nearest rival, Jay Wilson, but he wrapped up the crown in the day’s first race with a come-from-behind third place finish, finishing behind Wilson and fellow Australian Caleb Ward.
Then, despite not even needing to line up for the final confrontation, former multi-time New Zealand junior champion Harwood stepped up the pace to win the second and final race, putting icing on the celebration cake.
“It was great to get that last moto win of the series, it was good to finish strong,” said the 18-year-old South Islander.
“I have no plans to race the Australian supercross nationals. I will probably go home and chill out and then start getting ready for the New Zealand series next year. Hopefully I can get a MX2 ride here next year and I’ll come back.
“Racing in Europe in 2012 gave me the experience needed to compete in Australia’s series this year.
“I’m happy with my progress throughout the season. I knew what I needed to do and have put myself where I needed to be, coming off a four-month break from injury.
“I knew it would be a slow start to the season for me, but consistency and confidence in my team, a good training programme (provided by Kiwi-based Target MX Coaching’s Jade Thompson), sponsors and other support, put me in the right position.”
Harwood’s Australian title win at the weekend follows on from the similar success achieved by fellow CMR Red Bull KTM rider Kayne Lamont last season.
Mangakino teenager Lamont dominated last season’s Australian Motocross Championships, easily winning the hard-fought Motocross Development Under-19 class.
So dominant, in fact, was the BikesportNZ.com-backed rider that, just like Harwood did this year, he had the title in the bag with one race still left to run.
Lamont raced in the MX2 class in Australia this season, finishing a creditable eighth overall on debut, and he now prepares to represent New Zealand at the Motocross of Nations – considered the “Olympic Games of motocross” – in Germany at the end of this month.