Canadian Cole Thompson made an impressive Australian debut with the Serco Yamaha team as he produced a very methodical and mature performance to claim second place in the SX2 (250cc) division at the opening round of the Australian Supercross Championship.Thompson, who will contest the full four championship rounds for the Serco Yamaha team, landed just two weeks prior to the event but quickly adapted to the YZ250F and immediately parked it on the podium with a second place finish at round one, inside Marvel Stadium in Melbourne.
His quick adjustment wasn’t only with the motorcycle but also the Australian tracks and conditions as he quickly established as a contender in the SX2 division with fast qualifying laps and a good heat race performance.
He leapt well from the gates in the 15 lap main and was immediately inside the top four on the opening lap. He moved to third by lap two and then into second on lap five but by then, the race leader had a comfortable gap and Thompson had his work cut out for him if he was to claim a maiden race victory.
He tried to peg back the margin but as the laps clicked off, he backed it back a notched to take a well-constructed and mature ride to claim second and make a great start in the championship.
“There was a whole lot of learning for me going on tonight so I’m happy to end up on the podium and put myself in a good position in the championship after the first round. This was my first race on the YZ250F, very race with the Serco Yamaha team as well as finding my feet with the Australian riders and racing conditions.
“I’m not pumped on my riding and think there is room for improvement so with the experience from this weekend, hopefully we can kick it up another gear next weekend and go a little better.
“The Serco Yamaha team have been awesome since I landed and the bike is really good. We have a quick turnaround to the next round, so I will just brush up a few things and look to keep improving at Adelaide,” Thompson said.
The Serco Yamaha team were on track for a good night as Bailey Malkiewicz had charged his way through the field to move into fourth, only then to make a mistake a go down just a couple of laps later.
Malkiewicz, who showed speed all night, lost traction in a tricky jump section and fell from his bike. He was in some pain but slowly got to his feet before being assisted from the track by the RACESAFE medical team.
He was then taken away for further assessment where it was determined his ankle had been dislocated and they also found two small breaks. He had surgery on Sunday and is now on the road to recover although a timeline if yet to be set.
“I’m ok but just disappointed,” he laments. “I had put in so much work and was as ready as I have ever been for a championship only for this to happen, so it’s a bit hard to take at the moment. I honestly felt I had the speed to match it with anyone and at the very worst, finish on the podium tonight but it wasn’t to be.
“The team had put in a huge effort and were we confident coming into the weekend, but anything can happen and this sport can bring you down to earth pretty fast sometimes. Apart from the ankle, I’m ok and will try and get back on the track as fast as I can,” Bailey ends.
Serco Yamaha will provide an update on Bailey’s condition as they know more.
Australian Supercross Championship
Round 1 – Marvel Stadium
1st Max Anstie
2nd Cole Thompson (Yamaha YZ250F)
3rd Nathan Crawford
4th Kaleb Barham
5th Jai Constantinou
6th Rhys Budd
7th Noah Ferguson
8th Jy Roberts
9th Geran Stapleton
10th Tomas Ravenhorst