Travis Whitten's guidance has helped Hugh McKay to a trip to Europe.LUKE MCMANUS May 8, 2014 3:04am
Travis Whitten’s tutelage is working wonders for motocross protege Hugh McKay.
McKay, 14, claimed outright class honours at the national motocross titles in Wonthaggi last month, winning both races in the CRF150 Cup and an all-expense paid trip to Europe along the way.
The prize will see the young Tasmanian travel to England to compete in the 150 European Championship, alongside his father, Leigh, and his Echuca-based mentor.
‘‘It was a pretty big prize to dangle in front of a young kid,’’ Whitten said.
‘‘I didn’t expect Hugh to bring me anything for another couple of years, so to win something like this is pretty cool.
‘‘Hugh handled the pressure really well. He was mature throughout the races and got the job done.
‘‘There were some really good riders in the field and he had to really earn the win.’’
Up against riders from around the world, the odds of winning the European event are stacked against McKay but opportunities for the up-and-comer ‘‘to turn some heads’’ will be endless.
‘‘Looking at the riders’ list, every country is pretty much spoken for,’’ Whitten said.
‘‘It will be good for Hugh to ride with no expectations.
‘‘The pressure will be off so he can just enjoy the experience.
Whitten discovered McKay’s world-class talents at last year’s junior titles in Horsham, with McKay soon recruited as part of Whitten’s WBR Motorcycles Junior Race Team.
Provided with a bike and accommodation, McKay travelled to Echuca for a two-month stint over the summer holidays to train with Whitten.
McKay has since returned for more training sessions while competing in the Victorian junior motocross circuit.
‘‘He had never lived out of home before coming up here, so it was a pretty big deal for his parents to let him go,’’ Whitten said.
‘‘Because motocross is such a risky sport, things can go wrong, for them to trust me enough and for Hugh to want to come up here is really cool.
‘‘He’s very self-driven. While a lot of kids want all the latest gear and are pushed into the sport by their parents — Hugh’s not like that at all
Over the past six months, McKay’s riding has prospered under Whitten’s guidance and the coach hopes the European championship is the beginning of a long and successful partnership.
Whitten said once McKay progressed through the junior ranks, the Tasmanian would join his senior contingency and aim for an all-important premium class win.
St Mary of the Angels Secondary College Year 8 student Kelsey Hislop has taken out the junior public speaking award at Shepparton’s Legacy House.
The Yarrawonga Pigeons defeated Corowa Rutherglen Roos by 76 points at the JC Lowe Oval in Yarrawonga.
The Aboriginal and wider community is mourning the death of revered Bangerang Aboriginal elder, Uncle John ‘‘Sandy’’ Atkinson.
Former Echuca netballer Caitlyn Nevins has helped the Queensland Firebirds book a spot in next week’s ANZ Championship grand final with a thrilling 67-64 win over Southern Steel on Sunday.
IT IS all happening for Rochester Dental Clinic this month.
John Murphy remembers the after-match scenes vividly that day at Undera in mid September 1976.
Local export Willie Wheeler dominating at VFL level
Berrigan Shire councillor Daryll Morris says he has been sickened by some of the vitriol and personal attacks to surface since the council’s proposal to redevelop Finley’s Memorial Hall and School of Arts site was revealed in October last year.
ONCE in a while some people are lucky enough to stumble across their destiny.
Katamatite Lions Club held its 42nd annual handover dinner at the Boosey Creek Tavern on July 13.
Mathoura endured a harsh hammering to its playing confidence on Saturday with a 24-goal thrashing at the hands of Deniliquin Rovers.
SPC will abolish its internal sales team and reduce executive numbers in the latest chapter of the company’s ongoing restructuring.
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.