KTM Racing Team SX2 contender Nathan Crawford claimed his first-career podium in The Australian Supercross Championship at Melbourne's opening round in Marvel Stadium on Friday night.

After qualifying in sixth position, Crawford powered the all-new 2023 KTM 250 SX-F to P5 in his heat race, despite being bumped off-track early on.

Determined to put those performances behind him, the Queenslander launched to a strong start in the 250 class main event and settled into second place.

Several laps later he dropped one position to P3, but continued to clock consistent lap-times for the remainder of the race, as multiple riders made errors throughout the 15-lap main event and that's where he would take the chequered flag.

In the SX1 category, KTM Racing Team signing Brett Metcalfe unfortunately crashed in his heat race and sat out the main event as he underwent medical evaluations.

After qualifying seventh aboard the 2023 KTM 450 SX-F, Metcalfe was comfortably holding down third place in his heat when he went down on the last lap and was ruled out for the remainder of the evening.

Round two of the Australian Supercross Championship will be held next Saturday, 29 October, at Adelaide Showground in South Australia.

Nathan Crawford: “I’ve spent six or seven weeks on the new 2023 model KTM preparing for supercross and I’m feeling very comfortable on it. I honestly didn’t know where I’d fit into the SX2 class, so it feels awesome to get my first-ever supercross podium and get that monkey off my back! I’m not super-satisfied with how I rode tonight... we can always be better, but I know the areas I need to work on and what I can improve before next weekend. The first round is always tough as everyone comes out guns blazing and there’s often a bit of carnage, but I tried to minimise my mistakes, stay out of trouble and pick up some good points on what was a deceptively slippery track. I'm definitely happy to start the season with this result!”

2022 Australian Supercross Championship - Round one, Melbourne