The final squad to represent New Zealand against the rest of the world has been announced.
The initial New Zealand squad of 32 to tackle the RoadCraft FIM Junior Motocross World Championships at Taupo on August 15-16 has now been whittled down to 24 riders.
Motorcycling New Zealand CEO Paul Pavletich said it was extremely hard for the selection panel to choose the squad in the first place but even more difficult to cut eight more names from that line-up.
“It is appropriate to thank MNZ junior motocross commissioner Bryan Davidson and the other selectors for all their tireless work to date. They’ve all put in an enormous amount of effort,” said Pavletich.
Even those in the final Kiwi squad are not guaranteed a start in the championship races proper with each of them is still required to survive a stiff qualifying process at the two-day event.
Many of the world’s elite riders are expected to arrive from the United States, Australia and Europe to contest the RoadCraft-sponsored event and it is likely that only the absolute cream of New Zealand riders will get to line up for the chance to gain world championship points.
This is the first time a world motocross championship event has been staged in New Zealand and represents a huge coup for the host Taupo Motorcycle Club.
New Zealand has a proud history of producing world class motocross riders, individuals such as Ben Townley, Josh Coppins, Daryl Hurley, Cody Cooper, Scott Columb, Katherine Prumm, Tony Cooksley and brothers Darryll, Shayne and Damien King.
Below are the New Zealand Junior Motocross team riders (in alphabetical order by Christian name):
Aiden Kiff (Silverdale)
Brandon Tipene (Auckland)
Callum Moore (Featherston)
Campbell King (Brighton)
Courtney Duncan (Palmerston, Otago)
Dane Russell (Ngaruawahia)
Dion Picard (Atiamuri)
Garth Amrein (Katikati) (reserve)
Haki Waller (Feilding)
James Anderson (Foxton) (reserve)
Logan Blackburn (Tauranga)
Micah McGoldrick (Rangiora)
Cameron Dillon (Taupo),
Craig Smith (Christchurch)
Ethan Martens (Waitakere)
Hamish Dobbyn (Warkworth)
Isaiah McGoldrick (Rangiora) (reserve)
John Phillips (Rotorua)
Jonathan Martelli (Reporoa)
Kayne Lamont (Mangakino)
Kieran Scheele (Elsthorpe)
Matt Hunt (Gisborne)
Mitchell Rees (Whakatane)
Sam O’Callaghan (Cromwell) (reserve)
Words and photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com