Bako back to winning ways ON TOP OF THE TREE . . . Young Zimbabwean junior motocross champion rider Emmanuel Bako (centre, back row) proudly takes the first step on the podium after winning the 65cc Class during round two of the Mayfair Gearbox Gauteng Interclub Challenge in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Saturday
ON TOP OF THE TREE . . . Young Zimbabwean junior motocross champion rider Emmanuel Bako (centre, back row) proudly takes the first step on the podium after winning the 65cc Class during round two of the Mayfair Gearbox Gauteng Interclub Challenge in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Saturday

ON TOP OF THE TREE . . . Young Zimbabwean junior motocross champion rider Emmanuel Bako (centre, back row) proudly takes the first step on the podium after winning the 65cc Class during round two of the Mayfair Gearbox Gauteng Interclub Challenge in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Saturday

Collin Matiza Sports Editor
YOUNG Zimbabwean motocross sensation Emmanuel Bako was back to his winning ways on Saturday when he stormed to victory in the 65cc Class during the second round of the Mayfair Gearbox Gauteng Interclub Challenge in Johannesburg, South Africa. Following a disappointing 14th place finish in the first round of the 2016 South African National Championship series at Rover in Port Elizabeth on February 27, Bako came out with all his guns blazing as he swept the board in the 65cc Class during Saturday’s Gauteng Interclub Challenge race meeting.

The nine-year-old Mai Grace Mugabe Junior School’s Grade Four pupil did not disappoint and took the win in all the 65cc Class three heats, giving him the first place spot in the overall placings in that division in which he collected the maximum 75 points to emerge as the top dog ahead of his South African arch-rival James Thompson and Tyler Tarantino, also of South Africa.

Bako was just in good form, and gave the contestants in the 65cc category a solid run for their money as well, by gunning for the top spot and securing it without raising much of a sweat ahead of Thompson and Tarantino.

Seven riders took part in the 65cc Class on Saturday but that could not stop Bako from having “a field day” over Thompson, the lad who painfully edged him for the 50cc Pro title during last year’s seven-round South African National Championship series.

This was also a sweet victory for Bako who did not to take part in the previous weekend’s second round of the 2016 South African National Championship series at Zone 7 in Cape Town after he failed to get his bike to the Mother City.

And after missing the second round of this year’s South African National Championship series in Cape Town, Bako headed out to Johannesburg at the weekend to compete in round two of the Gauteng Interclub Challenge event and he didn’t disappoint in this regional championship.

Although Bako was the only Zimbabwean who took part in Saturday’s event at Terra Topia in the outskirts of Johannesburg, there was a big turn out of South Africa’s top junior and senior riders who competed in different classes in this one-day competition.

Speaking to The Herald on Saturday, Bako said he felt good riding his brand new KTM 65 bike on the Terra Topia track which had big jumps and longer straights.

“Today (Saturday) I had to prove that I’m a far much better rider than the one that people saw during the first round of the 2016 South African National Championship series at Rover in Port Elizabeth in February where I finished 14th overall. In fact, I had a ‘bad bike’ during that race meeting.

“But today I had a brand new bike and I’m excited about it because it helped me to clock the fastest lap time of one minute 58 seconds. I’m also happy that I managed to beat James Thompson who controversially beat me to the 50cc Pro title in last year’s South African National Championship series.

“In fact, I had to win today’s race for my grandmother and grandfather . . . they came here to support me,” a beaming Bako said.

Next up for the talented, young Zimbabwean rider is the third round of the 2016 South African National Championship series scheduled for May 28 at Borc track in Bloemfontein.

He is likely to be joined there by fellow top Zimbabwean junior riders Regan Wasmuth, Kuda Mhene (Jnr), Josh Gobey and Jordan Dewdney, who produced a brilliant performance during round two of this series at Zone 7 in Cape Town on April 2 where he finished second overall in the 50cc Class behind South Africa’s Neil van der Vyver.

In fact, Dewdney (8) is now placed second in the 50cc Class Standings of the 2016 South African National Championship series and another top three finish in Bloemfontein on May 28 will put him in good stead to be crowned the division’s overall champion, come the end of the tough seven-round competition at Terra Topia on October 8.

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