GYTR Yamaha Junior Racing’s Alex Larwood has claimed two national junior motocross championships after a long and challenging week at the 2018 Australian Junior Motocross Championship, held in Penguin, Tasmania last week.The South Australian took victory in the 13-14 years 125 and 250cc classes in a very successful week for the young gun and adds to his national 85cc championship he won in 2017.
Larwood, won the 250cc class with a 28 point margin after the five finals were completed. His results of 1-1-2-2-1 proved his consistency as well as his speed and he took a well-deserved victory and a stunning debut for the 2019 YZ250F.
And while the win on the 250 came with ease, the 125 class was a dog fight until the end with three riders entering the last of the five finals just six points apart. Larwood needed to finish inside to the top three in the final race to take the victory and there were plenty of tense moments in the early stages.
With his Queensland based team mate, Levi Rogers out in front and doing exactly what he needed to do to pile the pressure on Larwood, the young South Australian was in fifth on the opening laps and scrambling to move forward. He moved to fourth and then a rider fell giving Larwood the much needed third place points to secure the championship by just a single point over Rogers.
“It has been an awesome week and to win both championships is a bit of a dream come true,” Larwood beams. “With 10 final races across both classes, it is a lot of laps and a lot of things have to go right to win and I’m so happy that we were able to pull it off.
“It’s been great fun racing Levi this week and with us both up there, it shows how good the Yamaha’s are and that our team is filled with great people and sponsors. I also want to thank my family for the huge effort they put into my racing as well as Shane Metcalfe for all of his help.”
Another Yamaha Junior Racing rider making two trips to the podium was Queensland pocket rocket, Jake Cannon. Cannon is a ball of energy and the young thrill-seeker charged to second place on his YZ65 in the 11-12 years 65cc class as well as a third place in the 9-11 years 85cc division.
Cannon finished with 3-1-2-5-1 results over the week on his YZ65 and had it not been for some crashed as pivotal times during the week, he may well of landed on the top step of the podium. He led races one and three and fell with just a lap to go in both cases and handed over the race lead but the 11-year old proved he will be a force to be reckoned with in future events.
He also landed in third spot in the 9-11 years 85cc class, which boasted several potential race and championship winners. After comfortably qualifying through to the finals, Cannon took 4-8-2 results to finish third and finish off his week in fine style.
“I’m pretty happy to finish on the podium in both classes and had a good week down here in Tasmania. I crashed a bit too much, the only races I didn’t crash in, I won, so I need to stop falling off.
“This year is my first time with the Yamaha Junior Racing Team and it was cool to hang out with all the other riders from the other states and race with them.
“Thanks to my Mum and Dad as well as Yamaha Junior Racing for all their support,” Cannon ends.
As mentioned above, Levi Rogers finished a turbulent week in Tasmania with a second-place finish in the 13-14 years 125 class. Rogers finished with 6-2-1-2-1 results and there was some controversary surrounding the opening race that saw Rogers relegated three positions under a yellow flag infringement. Regardless, he kept fighting all the way to the end and should be proud of his second-place finish.
“First up, congratulations to Alex for winning both championships. He was fast and consistent all week and that’s what it takes to be successful at this event.
“I went into the last race six points down so my focus was just on winning the race and if whatever happens behind me, happens. I was able to get the win but Alex was good enough to get third, so he beats me by one point.
“I will come back next year and give it another go and hopefully I can get a national championship,” Levi said.
And, there is plenty of heartbreaking stories throughout the week as six continuous days of racing and riding throw up all kinds of challenges. Victoria’s Liam Andrews was well placed in the 15 years 125 and 250cc classes only to fall while leading his second 125 final and injure his knee, forcing him from the event. He has also won a moto in the 250 class prior to sustaining the knee injury.
Rogers was also a contender in the 13-14 years 250cc but a fall in race one which damaged his kill-switch resulted in a DNF and took him out of contention early in the piece. He rebounded with 2-1-1 results and charged back to sixth place but the damaged was done with the opening moto Did Not Finish (DNF).
New South Wales, Ryder Kingsford, took third in the first 13-14 years 85cc final but a fall while inside the top 5 in race two slowed his charge and a podium result was out of reach.
“Once again it was a top effort from our Yamaha Junior Racing Team and we were able to secure two championships, two second places and a third in a huge week of racing,” states Yamaha Motorsport Manager, Ray Howard.
“Congratulations to Alex and his family on a job well done as it’s an impressive effort to win two classes at an event like this.
“On behalf of Yamaha Motor Australia, thank you to all the riders and families in our Yamaha Junior Racing program who make such a huge effort to go racing and represent out brand so well,” Howard ends.
2018 AJMX Results
13-14 years 125cc
1st Alex Larwood - 160 (YZ125)
2nd Levi Rogers – 159 (YZ125)
3rd Ricky Chalmers – 157
13-14 years 250cc
1st Alex Larwood – 169 (YZ250F)
2nd Blake Hollis – 141 (YZ250F)
3rd Kipp Adams – 137
11-12 years 65cc
1st Jet Alsop – 160
2nd Jake Cannon – 156 (YZ65)
3rd Seth Burchell – 155 (YZ65)
9-11 years 85cc
1st Jet Alsop – 102
2nd Kayden Minear – 91
3rd Jake Cannon – 83 (YZ85)