He may be only an occasional racer these days, and mostly just in the veteran’s class, but Hamilton’s Darryll King still has plenty left to give to the sport of motocross.
Of course he still does give plenty, as manager of the high-profile MXDK Rockstar Yamaha Race Team, but more than that he just can’t seem to stay off motorcycles, or racing them whenever the opportunity arises.
One such opportunity was at the weekend’s 50th annual Woodville Motocross, itself an iconic event of venerable status, and with his younger brother Damien King – the national 125cc champion – sidelined with injury, Darryll King decided to fill the vacancy and enter himself in the MX2 class.
And what a fateful decision that turned out to be with the 42-year-old winning the day, humbling many of the sport’s rising young stars at the same time.
With 3-1 results, King finished three points ahead of Taupo 18-year-old Cameron Dillon (Honda) and five points ahead of Mangakino 17-year-old Kayne Lamont (Suzuki).
While former world 500cc No.2 King may have wrapped up his international career a few years ago, both Dillon and Lamont are just branching out on theirs. Both teenagers leave for the United Kingdom for a season of British championship racing in a few weeks.
Then, just for good measure, King also scored back-to-back wins in the Veterans’ class, superbly juggling his duties in the pits with four stints on the race track on his way to winning two of the day’s four big classes.
“I enjoyed my riding and surprised myself with my starts and had some of the fastest lap times in each race,” said King.
“It was good to be part of the 50th anniversary of Woodville. My first race here was in 1985 so I’ve done my fair share of laps around there.”
During his years there, King also won the main Woodville trophy five times, the last occasion being nine years ago, in 2002.
“It was neat to win the MX2 class at my age and not have to take any risks or ride beyond my comfort zone to achieve the win.
“After my performance at the weekend, I would love to race the motocross nationals in the MX2 class … we’ll just have to see.”
© Words and photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com