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New kid on the block – By: Todd Jarratt

Welcome everyone to my new weekly column here at www.MCNews.com.au. In being a first time contributor to the site, I thought I’d better give you guys a bit of an insight into who I am and what makes me tick – so bare with me for a moment so you know why I write as much as I do.

I’m 19-years-old and grew up in outback New South Wales. I began racing motocross at the age of eight and most would say I was obsessed with the sport by the age of 11. I was a kid who read every dirt bike magazine cover to cover and studied international results like it was a full time job. I was submerged in a life of dirt bikes and absolutely stoked about it!

In 2008, I took up an offer to commentate a local motocross event, as I was unable to race due to injury. Apparently for a prepubescent kid I did alright and for the next few years in between my racing and schooling commitments, or when injured (which was quite frequently) I would get mum and dad to drive me to regional, state and national events so that I could call the races.

Long story short, I am now heading into my second year as series commentator at the MX Nationals. In amongst all the talking and racing I also lived at boarding school five days a week from the age of 12 and continued racing motocross most weekends of the year, with a bit of enduro, dirt track and supercross mixed in there as well. A few seasons passed by and in 2014 I managed the Victorian based WBR Junior Race Team, began my university degree studying a Bachelor of Exercise Science and Masters of Exercise Physiology, commentated the MX Nationals and raced at State Titles whenever possible (though I probably shouldn’t have worried about that one as I was about as handy as a one legged man in an ass kicking contest).

In 2015, I am currently competing in the Pro Open class at the Victorian Motocross Titles and finalising my personal training course in the bit of spare time I have away from university work.

So there you go, that is my life story and fortunately for you guys it will be the only time you’ll ever have to read about it! Now, onto some talking points from around the country.

Over the weekend Australian motocross had two very important pre-season ramp up events held on the east coast. Round one of the Shell Advance Sunshine State Motocross Series at Roma, QLD, and the opening round of the Senior Victorian Motocross Titles at Broadford.

Up north there were somewhat surprising results being carded only two weeks out from round one of the 2015 MX Nationals. In only his first outing of the season and aboard his new Husqvarna 450, 17-year-old Jesse Dobson managed to grasp the MX1 win ahead of two former national motocross champions Daniel Reardon and Ford Dale. In the MX2 class it was Caleb Ward taking the round win ahead of 2014 MXD graduate Nathan Crawford and privateer Bailey Coxon.

Down south it was Yamaha mounted privateer Dylan Long collecting an unexpected overall round win in MX1 ahead of another returning MX Nationals rider, Lawson Bopping. The final spot on the podium went to Kale Makeham onboard his factory Suzuki, who looked to be the fastest rider in the field though a few crashes in the second moto let down his overall result. Will be interesting to see where each of these three riders can finish up come next Sunday. In the MX2 field Jack Simpson took advantage of some solid starts to stay out of the Broadford dust and start off his 2015 state campaign where he left off in 2014 – winning. Jed Beaton, another rider moving teams and now on the Serco Yamaha finished in second ahead of Alex Morris. Just two weeks prior at a regional event in Victoria, Beaton had Simpson’s speed plus a whole lot more so this result definitely shocked a few of the locals.

On the topic of Broadford, a former venue of the FIM World Motocross Championships, both days of racing at the state titles were cancelled after only two shortened rounds, as a direct result of insufficient track preparation. This issue has recurred over many years and after much rider and official discussion, a formal petition was lodged for competitors and representatives to voice their concern over the quality of the track. Much to the acceptance of riders ahead of the 2015 MX Nationals round, the petition has been accepted and consequent evaluation of the State Motorcycling Complex’s motocross circuit is currently being undertaken. I will bring you more up to date news as it becomes available, and hopefully we see a revived Broadford track come April 26th!

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That’s all I have time for this week, so stay safe and tune in next Wednesday.

Todd Jarratt
Todd Jarratt