Collin Matiza Sports Editor
AS expected, young Regan Wasmuth swept the board during the first club event of the 2016 motocross season at Donnybrook Raceway in Harare on Sunday. Mounting his brand new Tintswalo, Out of Africa Yamaha Racing YZ125 machine, 14-year-old Wasmuth was just a joy to watch on the track as he took the first step on the podium in the 125cc Class ahead of former Zimbabwe’s champion rider Ashley Thixton and Josh Goby who came second and third.
It was another good day at the office for Wasmuth who recently spent three weeks of training with his new racing team in South Africa — Tintswalo, Out of Africa Yamaha — and he used Sunday’s event as part of his preparations for the opening round of the seven-round 2016 Monster Energy South African National Championship series, commencing on February 27 at the infamous Port Elizabeth track.
On Sunday, Wasmuth was emulated by young Daiyaan Manuel who came first overall in the 65cc A Class, beating the exciting Emmanuel Bako and Big “BJ” Chitima into second and third places.
But it was nine-year-old Bako who won the hearts of many at Donnybrook on Sunday by finishing second in all the heats as he was competing in the 65cc A Class for the first time this year, having graduated from the 50cc Class.
This was a promising start for Bako, who is now a Grade Four pupil at Amai Mugabe Junior School in Mazowe, and was riding his new 2016 KTM 65 motorbike.
Bako, the 2015 50cc champion in Zimbabwe, will be back on the track again this coming weekend, competing in the first of the six-round Northern Region Motocross Championship series at Dirt Bronco in South Africa.
Dirt Bronco Raceway is situated in Krugersdorp and is one of the best motocross tracks in Gauteng.
And apart from taking part in the Northern Region Championship series, Bako is also expected to compete in the tough seven-round Monster Energy South African National Championship series, starting on February 27 in Port Elizabeth.
Bako is likely to be joined in this year’s South African National Championship series by another young exciting rider Davin Cocker who got his 2016 season off to a good start by winning the 85cc Class on Sunday at Donnybrook ahead of Tristan Grainger and Mudiwa Chigumba.
Not to be outdone by Cocker was Ashley Thixton who came out tops in MX2 Class in which he jostled for the first step on the podium with his young brother Cameron and Regan Wasmuth.
Regan Wasmuth eventually settled for second place in the MX2 Class with Cameron Thixton coming third overall.
By winning the MX2 Class on Sunday, Ashley Thixton gave himself an early birthday present as he will be turning 23 today. In the Senior B Class, first place went to Phil dos Santos with Zenin Ekron and Leigh Ann Young coming second and third.
Young Jordan Dewdney was also all smiles on Sunday afternoon after he won the 50cc Class ahead of Lee Chigumba and Munya Bako.
In fact, Dewdney had a very good start to the 2016 motocross season with three hole shots and three firsts in the 50cc Class on Sunday. The eight-year-old rider is a real star in the making.
The country’s top female rider Tanya was “missing in action” on Sunday and her father and manager, Tawanda, said yesterday that this was due to the fact that they are yet to buy her an 85cc Class bike.
“Tanya is now too big to ride on a 65cc bike and has moved a class up to 85cc and we (Team Tanya) are currently running around trying to get her a new bike.
“Sunday’s race meeting at Donnybrook came too soon for us as we were expecting the first race meeting of the year to be held towards the end of this month but when Gary Grainger came in as the new chairman of the Bogwheelers Club (who run motocross in this country) last month, he brought forward the opening club event of the year to this last Sunday and we were not yet ready to compete in it,” Tawanda Muzinda said.