Moto Media

from ... Alan Henderson

It seems like only yesterday there was Josh Coppins ensconced in Belgium, Mikchael Phillips (aka Mikey P.) and Scott Columb in England. Cody Cooper was in the USA with JGRMX (Joe Gibbs Racing) as was Paul Whibley who was chasing cross country titles - GNCC and OMA titles. Luke Burkhart and Justin McDonald had a brief sojourn at the American AMA Outdoors and both rode with distinction. Luke's suffered an injury but stayed on to support Justin.

Here we are in 2011 and already 5 newbies are either there or heading to Europe.

1, 2 and 3:

For Kieran Scheele it's really a continuation of 2010 with Rex Michau's Team DBG which is based in West Sussex, in England - south of London. Scheele had a taste of it riding with World Champions on practice days in Belgium in deep gnarley sand and raced against UK's best, including GP riders such as Jake Nicholls and Matiss Karro.

Rex decided to offer the chance for two more New Zealand riders to come to Europe and ride in the British Championships, Red Bull Pro-Nationals, Masters and if riding well in selected world FIM rounds.

Kieran will ride MX1 as will Bjarne Frederickson. The third rider is John Phillips who will ride MX2. These three will ride Suzuki and train together with DBG under ACU coach, ex-British Champion and GP rider Jason Morris as coach and coordinator of the riders. They will gain huge experience during mid-week practice days in the UK and Belgium.

4: Is Joel Doeksen, who will compete in the 13 Round, MX3 World Motocross Championship on a KTM350F.

Joel and his family left NZ on 09 December. They flew to England to pickup their purpose built KRM Transporter. The purpose built Mercedes Benz, is a motorhome with a full workshop in the back and room to stow up to three bikes - Josh Coppins was sponsored by KRM.

They had intended to make their first trip to drive to Austria for Christmas with family but delays at KRM, not helped by bad weather, saw them stop in Holland. They will then head south to the warmth of Spain where Joel will train under former World Champ John van den Berk. This is all in preparation for Joel to compete in the MX3 Championship which starts in Greece on 17 April. They have have no illusions as to how tough it will be but are going for the experience. MX3 is being recognised as the amateur step-up class for the MX1 Class in Europe.

With sponsorship from Brouwer KTM in Holland they already have two Cairoli spec'd SXF350s. Joel's bikes will be fitted with the Doeksen Racing sub-frame seat kits that they sold from NZ into Europe.

Whilst born on the Caribbean Island of St Maarten (Dutch territory) Joel will ride under the New Zealand flag – they have been here for over 10 years.

5: Is Kayne Lamont, who has been signed to ride MX2 in the Maxxis British Motocross Championship in 2011 for Maxxis Hooper Suzuki alongside MX2 rider Steven Clark. Clark returns from a four-year stint in the USA and more recently the Australasian SX series – he won the last Lites round in Brisbane.

The name Hooper is not well known in NZ but Rob Hooper has had an association with Suzuki for many years.

Lamont and Clark will contest the MX2 in the Maxxis British Championship, Red Bull Pro Nationals and the British Masters series on the RM-Z250.

So that's the 5 committed to Europe and who knows who else will head off. Joshua Jack is another young MX2 talent and if his parents can sell up their rural home they too will head off.

Paul Whibley is going back to the USA again and several Kiwis will contest the Australian MX Champs but that's another story.