Goulburn Valley riders found the going tough at last week's Australian Junior Motocross Championships.By Hannah Driscoll
There were mixed results for the Goulburn Valley riders at the 2013 Australian Junior Motocross Championships at Horsham last week.
Topping the results for the championships, which finished on Saturday, was a 10th place for Shepparton’s Morgan O’Loughlin in the 125cc 13/u15 class, but the 15-year-old was disappointed he was unable to finish higher.
The earlier part of the week was especially tough for the teenager as he was coming off a two-week battle with the flu.
He still qualified for the finals of that class, but a costly mistake in the first final saw him finish 23rd and made the task of a higher overall finish very tough.
‘‘I got a really bad start and got caught up, hit a kid’s wheel in front of me and made a mistake and then I fell off and went right back,’’ he said.
But O’Loughlin, who finished third in the 125cc A-grade state titles this year, finished seventh and fifth in the next two finals to be able to improve his overall finish.
He said he was disappointed because he had hoped to do well to gain sponsorship.
‘‘The positions I don’t think really reflected the way I could ride or the speed I was riding at, so we’re just a bit disappointed with that, but we’ve still got next year,’’ he said.
O’Loughlin said next year he would stay on the same bike, but go up to the next age group.
This was his fourth time at the nationals, and said it was ‘‘always good learning experience to race the other guys in the more high intense races, it’s a lot more full-on’’.
He said it was a ‘‘well-run’’ meet with plenty of support from the Horsham community, and he ‘‘couldn’t fault’’ the track.
Kialla’s Madi Healey finished 13th in the 50cc division two class, but was the highest-placed female rider, while Cobram’s George Knight finished 19th in the 65cc 9/u11 class.
Tom Artini, Brock and Levi Healey also competed.
Goulburn Valley Junior Motorcycle Club president Gary Healey said it was a big learning experience for some of the riders.
‘‘A lot of them were first timers and it’s just starting on the 40-bike gate drop, there’s 40 bikes every time they go racing and they’re just not used to that,’’ he said.
‘‘It was a pretty big eye-opener and a good experience all round, so when we go next year they’ll know what to expect and should go a fair bit better.’’
The riders will now prepare for the final Northern Region Series round at Seymour on Sunday.
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