FRANCE EVENT IN SIGHT AFTER SUCCESSFUL RALLY FROM INJURY
New Zealand’s Motocross of Nations campaign is warming up nicely now that one of the Kiwi team’s three riders, Mangakino’s Kayne Lamont, has managed to shrug off injury concerns.
Lamont picked up a wrist injury in June, but the Kiwi international pushed on with his racing duties overseas and has wasted no time since his arrival in the United Kingdom last month.
A positive first outing there just over a week ago demonstrated that he is quickly building up his strength and speed for next month’s Motocross of Nations (MXoN) event, widely regarded as the Olympic Games of motocross.
The 22-year-old former New Zealand MX2 champion and former Australian under-19 champion — who races for the Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing Team in New Zealand, but is racing for the MX Zone Turvey Construction Yamaha Team in the UK — described his first race meeting in England as “a safe first outing”.
Mangakino's Kayne Lamont (Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ250F), in high demand internationally. Photo by Andy McGechan, BikesportNZ.com
Lamont, who finished the day fourth overall in the MX2 (250cc) class at the fifth round of the British Masters Motocross Championships at Foxhills near Swindon, was extremely satisfied to finish 5-3 in his two races, his first serious event since injuring himself in Taupo two months ago.
“The track was so hard-packed and rocky, but I managed to stay upright.
“The racing was eventually cancelled not long after my second race because the number of injuries had the medics flat out,” said Lamont.
“My injured wrist isn’t too bad now. I landed awkwardly in a hole on the second-to-last lap in race one, which upset it a little, but nothing major.
“Since the classes were mixed with MX1 (450cc) and MX2 (250cc) on the track together, I was racing alongside top international riders such as Kristian Whatley, Elliot Banks-Browne, Martin Barr, Steven Clarke and Bryan Mackenzie to name a few, but the MX2 class was scored separately.”
Lamont finished the day behind former GP rider Mackenzie, Clarke and Lewis Trickett in the MX2 class.
“I’m looking forward to the next events I have coming up,” said Lamont.
The biggest event is the annual Motocross of Nations event, held in France in September.
For the MXoN, Lamont will be teamed with Bay of Plenty pair Cody Cooper and Ben Townley, with the trio to be managed by Wellington motorcycle business owner Mike McLeod.
All three riders have previous experience racing at the MXoN; Cooper and Townley were members of the Kiwi squad the last time New Zealand stood on the podium at the MXoN, in England in 2006.
Lamont represented New Zealand at the MXoN in 2012 and 2013. Team New Zealand failed to qualify among the top 20 countries at the MXoN in Latvia last September and that meant no travel assistance funds were offered by the world’s governing body for the Kiwis to attend this year’s event in France.
However, Motorcycling NZ has recently received financial support for this year’s MXoN from WIL Sport, Workshop Graphics and the Taupo Motorcycle Club.
If Lamont, Cooper and Townley can injury-free over the next six weeks, Team New Zealand could possibly once again be one of the feature teams in France.