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Hardcore Racing MX Master Kids UK 2014

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The scene was set, the big day finally came after months of organising, on Saturday 13 September 2014 200 motocross racers aged 6-15 arrived at Kings Lynn to battle it out and see who was the fastest in the land.  Those 200 kids would race a qualifier that split them in to 9 groups; 45 races were planned over 2 days, and that’s why it was dubbed ‘Hardcore Racing MX Master Kids UK’!  It was the first event of its kind, born from the lack of races dedicated to smaller bikes, it was to show the world what UK 50cc, 65cc and 85cc racers are really made of.  Hardcore Racing did an exceptional job hosting one of the largest youth motocross racing events of 2014, and Team Nitro there with rider Nitro Neo.  You can read our blog building up to the event here and watch the video below or click here.

 

Neo had the privilege of gaining entry to race in a group of 50 six to nine year olds in the Auto 50cc group.  A friend of the team said “If I could build my own track I’d build it like East Trax”…. so all of Team Nitro were pretty excited to get going.
Nitro Neo headed to East Trax for a practice day a little earlier in the week, the rest of the team followed a couple of days later in order to support him through the weekend.  It was a three hour + drive to the venue from Team Nitro HQ, with a lot of the entrants travelling similar distances, it shows what an important event this was in the motocross calendar, and just how dedicated everybody was to come and try this new race.

 

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East Trax not only has a wicked MX track, but organisers also shipped in a bouncy castle, bungee run, local food delivery services and ice creams to keep people chilled on what turned out to be a very hot weekend.  The kids soon used their imagination to turn the on site radio control car track in to their very own meeting venue and BMX track, so the kids were all kept well entertained catching up with existing racing buddies and making new friends from across the UK.  Team Nitro were astonished at just how many people came to speak to us because they recognised Nitro Neo and follow him on social media sites like Facebook, that really made our weekend, so a big “hi” once again to you all, please catch up with us at future events.

 

East Trax was prime for high octane racing, with it’s 2 mile long recently resurfaced track presenting some fast straights and a great variety of jumps which meant serious entertainment for the crowds coming to watch.  Lots of sponsors supported the event to ensure all kids received great prizes for their efforts, from trophies to hole shot awards, from helmets to professional coaching; these included Hardcore RacingJudd RacingDanger UK,  Thurrock Car and Van RentalsAction Film WerxTrain 2 GainBolddog Extreme SportsRedline Motorcycles,  Gear4 KTMPriden Engineering LtdPro-GreenDestination MXLinge Training AcademyOffroad Motorsport UKCarl Nunn MX TrainingSMRacing.

Fans of the sport who couldn’t make it also had a rare opportunity to watch the racing live via Live Stream thanks to Jason Kirby of Action Film Werx, check it out as next years GT Cup will also be streamed live for racing fans who aren’t able to make it to the tracks.  Also look out for Hardcore Racing MX Master Kids UK on Motors TV around 28 September, we’ll keep you posted on the specifics of that.

Qualifying
Day one of racing began at 7am with friendly event organisers pumping instructions out of the tannoy system.  Neo fuelled up with a healthy breakfast to keep him going and got his kit on ready for qualifying; base layer, knee and elbow guards, kidney belt, Nitro Neo design race jersey courtesy of sponsor D.J Text & Graphics, race pants, gloves, neck brace, MX boots, helmet and body armour courtesy of sponsor Chest Protector UK.  This was the riders first taste of the track after it had been watered and graded ready for the gate to drop.  The autos were out first followed by 65cc, 85cc small wheel and finally 85cc big wheel bikes.  This was stage one and decided whether riders would qualify for the premiere A group, or group B or C.
Qualifying was a great run, Neo battled hard against 50 other riders and made his team proud when officials handed over the A group marker, meaning he’d face off against the fastest boys in the UK in five more races.
Racing
An off in race one cost Neo valuable points, there was confusion as to who was allowed trackside for pick ups meaning nobody was around to help get Neo’s bike started again.  His grit and determination showed through and Neo fought hard to battle through the pack and increase his points.  As each race passed, the crowds got louder and louder cheering on their favourite rider, it was a very exciting time, one of those that can make your spine tingle.
Race two proved to be a good start; you can see Neo in his black Rockstar helmet in the distance around second place in the photo below.  The number board went up and the racers turned their attention to the gate in front of them, brapapapapapapapapap, and when the gate dropped, what an awesome roar brrrrrraaaaaap, all the racers came flying out of the gate.  This was the best race of the weekend for Neo, he was on fire!  He worked the track like he had been practicing there for years, flowing like a river around the twists and turns of the track.  Neo lapped many riders and battled with older boys managing to take some of those in their last year riding autos.
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Race four was another good race, with Neo putting his skills into practice.  He stayed on his bike and really twisted that throttle.   When Neo came off the track he told us he was dedicating that race to his grandad who couldn’t make it to watch him due to illness – he was very proud of his efforts, he knew he’d raced well and tried his best.
Race five: The final race of the weekend saw a good start and Neo stayed high up the pack for the majority of the race, taking a bad line in lap 3 cost him several places and a lot of points as racers chasing him saw an opportunity to sneak on by.  A few riders crashed making it difficult to pass and maintain speed with the yellow flags being out, which proved difficult for Neo to make up the places he was battling for.

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Team Nitro give a huge pat on the back to one of Neo’s best racing friends, a kid who worked really hard to win the auto class; Kyle Ingram rode extremely well and nobody deserved to stand on that number one podium spot more, well done dude.
We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Brad Boughen for organising the event and every last person who helped make it such a memorable experience; running under the rules and regulations of Offroad Motorsport UK ensured the two days ran seamlessly.
 
Babe Behind the Blog Interview with Nitro Neo

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What was the best thing about MX Master Kids UK?

“The people, people I’ve never met before wishing me well, everybody was so friendly”.

What was the track like to race on?

“It’s a really good track, I like all of the jumps and catching up with the people that run it, I can’t practice here much because I live so far away so it was good to see Tom, Andy and Dave.  They look after East Trax really well”.

Will you return next year?

Yeah!  There is so much to do between races.  I loved riding around the BMX track we made, the camp fire at night, going on the playstation with my friends.  It’s been a sick weekend, the racings been really fast, I actually can’t wait to come back to Master Kids UK, I’ve met loads of people.

Photos from Hardcore Racing MX Master Kids UK

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The Men Behind The Hardcore Masters Kids UK 2014, Roland Shaw And Brad Boughen, explain how the event came about.
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Hardcore Racing MX Master Kids UK
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It’s just around the corner!  On Saturday 13 September Hardcore Racing MX Master Kids UK will bring together around 200 young races for one of the largest youth motocross racing events of 2014, and Team Nitro will be there with Nitro Neo.

MX Master Kids UK is being held at East Trax in King’s Lynn that is prime for high octane racing, with it’s 2 mile long recently resurfaced track presenting some fast straights and a great variety of jumps which means serious entertainment for the crowds coming to watch.  Lots of sponsors are supporting the event to ensure all kids receive a great prizes them for their efforts, from trophies to hole shot awards, from helmets to professional coaching.

So if you like motorsports why not check out some of the best motocross racing in the UK, where races are only aged 6-15!  You can watch all races LIVE by logging in to Live Stream and it will be aired on Motors TV around 28 September, but we’ll keep you posted on the specifics of that.

Neo is racing in the Auto class and a race schedule is below.  6-9 year olds will put there 50cc race tuned machines through their paces, and up to 10 year olds will be having a blast on their 65cc bikes; 9-12 year olds will push their 85cc small wheel bikes whilst 11-15 year olds will be on the biggest bikes for this event, the 85cc motocross bike with big wheels.

Event details:

Held at East Trax, Eastlands Bank, Walpole St Andrews, Kings Lynn, PE14 7LB.  Freestyle Motocross (FMX) Show Saturday at 6pm and 7:30pm.  Spares, equipment and advice available from Hardcore Racing, Judd Racing, Danger UK,  Thurrock Car and Van Rentals, Action Film Werx, Train 2 Gain, Bolddog Extreme Sports, Redline Motorcycles,  Gear4 KTM, Priden Engineering Ltd, Pro-Green, Destination MX, Linge Training Academy, Offroad Motorsport UK, Carl Nunn MX Training, SMRacing.

Nitro Neo practicing at East Trax

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Facilities:

Fresh water taps, jet wash, toilet block, huge paddocks.

Timings:

Friday 12 September

Signing on.

Saturday 13th
Signing on.
Rider briefing

Practice
Qualifying

Race 1

Race 2

Race 3

Evening Entertainment
Freestyle display
Riders awards

Sunday 14th starting with 10mins practice

Practice

Race 4

Race 5

Trophy presentations.

Michelin logo
 Nitro Neo goes head to head with top boys and girls from across the country

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Some of the equipment required
On Friday 15th August 2014 Team Nitro loaded the mobile HQ and set sail on a 130 mile journey to transport their rider, Nitro Neo, to the prestigious Offroad Motorsport UK Michelin Finals taking place over the following two days.  It was to be the first national event Neo had raced and here’s a run down of how he made it to the finals if you want to catch up.  Neo was equipped with his ‘i’-gadgets for the three hour journey ahead, chilling time is majorly important for him as I told you in my last blog.
On arrival at Wild Tracks, Newmarket Suffolk the team were greeted by friendly staff they met on a previous visit (shout out to Liam and Ben) and Neo soon spotted other friends he’s made during his first year racing motocross.  It was a very impressive sight, there were 259 riders listed across 8 groups, from 50cc bikes right up to premier MX1 450cc, there were 39 riders aged 6-9 listed in Neo’s 50cc auto group.
Preparation
After finding the perfect spot near friends in the paddock, the team parked the mobile Nitro Neo HQ and Neo got busy unloading his BMX and mini BMX to set off for the BMX track with friends.  His mechanic unloaded his motocross bike, grabbed Neo’s Airoh helmet and took them for scrutineering by officials to ensure they met the required standards to race.  Neo returned when he got hungry, just as boys do, for a healthy dinner of tuna pasta bake with plenty of fresh water to remain hydrated then he was put on charge for an early start the next day.
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Started an hour later than usual so the team were up at 8am instead of the usual 7am which was very nice!  The team was well rested and excited about the full day of racing ahead, there were three races on Saturday and two races on the Sunday with points scored in each race dependant on your finishing position, then added together to give an overall result.
The auto group was first out for practice so they got the first taste of the track before the bigger bikes drove deep ruts through the sand.  Each group had three practice laps to familiarise themselves with the track layout, although riders usually walk the track the night before to check conditions and see which lines (route) will be best, but once you’re on your bike things can change, practice laps always help.
Once practice was over the autos were back to the start gate for 12 minutes of full on hardcore racing, Neo was accompanied by his manager/father to ensure he had adequate track side support.
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Race 1
An official raises a flag to inform riders they are under starters orders and the 15 second board goes up to notify them the gate will drop in approximately 15 seconds.  The board then turns to five seconds at which point the riders focus on the gate that could drop at any point, and when it does, bbrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaaaap, the air fills with the humming sound of two stroke KTM motocross bikes and the race is on!  Wild Tracks MX is a 1.55km long sand track with loads of jumps, twists and turns for the racers to manoeuvre around, as well as each other.
Neo was out of the gate like a rocket but soon lost momentum on the start straight, he was twisting full throttle but not going full speed, a problem that occurred again in race two before being diagnosed as the clutch slipping.
Neo is always in the front half of the pack to hit the first corner after the start straight, but he was at the back in the first two races through no fault of his own, anybody who races will know these things happen, it goes with the territory.  Neo never quits and he dug deep to work his way up the pack, overtaking other racers anywhere he could, taking others too scared to hit big jumps hard, or overtaking on corners where others took a slower line.  Any pro who rode like that at the age of 6 would be proud of themselves.
Race 2
Neo had the same problem on the start straight as in race 1, he was on the throttle but his bike wasn’t going full speed. When the race finished we diagnosed the10604499_10202656916688615_6924644402040666625_o clutch had gone so the mechanic had to fix this ASAP.  The old clutch was taken out and once it was stripped down we could see the clutch plates had been worked hard by Neo, they were shot!  A brand new clutch was fitted and new clutch plates and springs ordered to get the old clutch up and running again.  This didn’t stop Neo, once he was up to speed he kept on it, well done little dude.
Race 3
It was a hot day so despite the track starting out wet it was now very dusty.  Neo’s start improved thanks to his new clutch, he was back in the top half of the pack but all of the racers disappeared in to a whirling cloud of dust as they turned the first corner, all spectators, fans and track side family support were on tender hooks waiting for their rider to appear on the next section of the track. Neo looked more confident since his throttle response was back, he charged forward taking the competition one by one until his bike wouldn’t give any more, so he fought to hold his place.
Team Nitro were praying for Neo to finish the race as they spotted smoke bellowing out of the overflow pipes on his bike, symbolising further problems the mechanic would have to overcome.  Fortunately the bike didn’t die and the worst that came of it was a slightly slower time instead of a Did Not Finish (DNF).
Day 2 – Began with showers which isn’t too bad for racers as it wet the track and made it more tacky compared to yesterday’s dust, however visibility was reduced as racers returning from practice with clumps of sand splattered all over them and their goggles.  The rain wasn’t so great for spectators though!  The day got better as every hour past and so did the racing.  Races 4 and 5 saw hustle and bustle as racers headed out knowing it was their last chances to get much needed points to get their best position at the end of the competition.  Elbows were jostling, revs were high and jumps were big as the racers became more and more confident after each and every lap.
The new bike for Neo meant he shaved up to 18 seconds off the previous days lap times.  They say it’s a poor workman who blames his tools, but Neo didn’t complain once, he knew his team did their very best for him and he knew once he was on that track it was all down to him to do the very best he could.
Presentations
At the end of race five the chequered flag marked the end of the competition and time for riders and teams to reflect on the past two days.  The list of chores stacked up in the teams minds as Neo pushed his bike off the track, everything had to be loaded in to the mobile HQ ready to race another day.  Neo saw to cleaning his bike and the rest of the team packed away a seemingly endless chain of equipment.
The team then headed to the presentation area where Neo sat patiently as officials read out the results in reverse order, name after name was read out and the respective racer went to meet the Offroad Motorsport UK Chairman for their award.
Team Nitro were over the moon that Nitro Neo had even made it as far as the finals in his first year racing but Neo looked a little worried he wasn’t going to receive recognition for his efforts over the past two days, and believe me, he tried his best and worked very hard.  Then it came over the tannoy system, in 20th place Neo McCartney, at which point his ears pricked up and a smile beamed across that young boys face.  He’d done it, he made it to the finals and received the trophy he had worked so hard for; it made all of the endless hours in the garage maintaining his bike, the sacrifices he makes, the heartache, sweat and tears to keep him rolling over the past several months all worth while.
Overall: 20th
Best Lap Times 
Race 1 – 2min 29secs
Race 2 – 2min 35secs
Race 3 – 2min 35secs
Race 4 – 2min 17secs
Race 5 – 2min 20secs
The full list of riders and their positions can be found here.
Nitro Neo gets his first chance to race at national level, aged just 6

It’s always busy in the world of motocross, and this summer has been no different in the run up to the Offroad Motorsport UK Michelin Finals.  Nitro Neo has been training even harder since qualifying for this prestigious race, here we explain how he got his chance and share some action shots of all the fun on the way.

In May 2014 Nitro Neo, age 6, ranked 3rd in his Club Championships which meant he qualified for the semi-finals, this was his chance to earn a highly desired place in the Offroad Motorsport UK Michelin Finals; a chance to race against the top 6-9 year old boys and girls from across the UK on 50cc race spec motocross bikes, but did he make it?

Motocross clubs operating under Offroad Motorsport UK (ORMS UK) put forward their 6 top riders from the Club Championships to compete in the semi-finals on 8 June 2014.  As Neo ranked 3rd in his Club Championships this secured him a place in the semis.  Two semi-finals were held, one in the north and one in the south of the country and the top 16 riders from each of these events qualified for a coveted place in the finals.  Neo accumulated enough points at the semi-finals to qualify for the ORMS UK Finals sponsored by Michelin.

As you can imagine, Neo’s team were ecstatic with his achievement. Manager Shaun McCartney said:

It is well deserved, Neo works so hard and despite being up against older children in his group who have several years more experience than him, he gives each race his best shot. It’s safe to say he’s the fastest of the six year olds on the line up!  We set realistic objectives for Neo and support him every step of the way so when his determination to get to the finals paid off we were so happy for him, it’s going to be an amazing experience for every racer that makes it.

The semi-finals in June seem like a distant memory now, but it’s safe to say that preparation to get there started a long time ago.  Neo eats a healthy balanced diet any top athlete would approve of and he trains four times a week to make sure he is in tip top shape for competitive racing; martial arts, swimming, sparring and motocross training each week help Neo on his quest to be his best.

 

 

That’s quite a packed schedule for a 6 year old, so it’s also important he gets chance to chill out and relax.  To unwind he likes to play outdoors with friends, have a blast on the PS4 (MXGP of course) and when he has a few hours spare there are always movies to kick back with, Lego Movie, Rio 2 and Moto: The Movie series being just a few favourites.  He also loves eating out with family and having a full body massage when he can, don’t we all?  Oh yes, and of course there is school and homework to keep on top of inbetween all of this!

 

A Last Chance Qualifier held on 29 June saw 7 last minute entries join the other 32 top riders, making a line up of 39 heading to the Finals at Wild Tracks in Newmarket, Suffolk for two days of racing on 16-17 August 2014.

Making it to the semis and the finals is a massive achievement so well done to everyone who made it.

Finally, a big thank you to Neo’s mechanic. Without him, the finals, all races and practice wouldn’t be possible. There have been a number of bike issues to overcome in the run up to this big race… so a big Nitro thank you for getting him up and running and ready to race once again.

Neo thumbs up start gate

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I popped along on Sunday to watch the final race of CJMX’s Winter Championships to check out how Neo and the other racers got on, and I can’t say I was disappointed!  The final race of the Winter Championships is also the first race of the Club Championships, so there was a lot on the line for these guys as the points would count for both series.

It’s normally an early start for race meetings, but with the sun out on Sunday and the track looking in great condition ready for a good day of racing it doesn’t put you off.  First things first – Nitro got his new kit on which has been pimped with his race number 1 in hot pink and neon yellow leopard print – gotta love a bit of leopard print, and hey, he wears it well 🙂 Looking around the rest of the racers it seemed quite a few have been treated to new kits for the new season – looking good guys!

Next thing is the announcement of scrutineering – now I don’t know if you’ve been along to a race before, but the tannoy systems are RUBBISH, so it’s a bit of guess work on the order of the day and when to take the bikes for scrutineering. So 9am comes around, and off pops the team manager and Nitro Neo to have the bike and helmet checked over. Everything has to be in tip top shape or there’s no racing, but a lot of love and attention goes into that 2014 KTM 50SX – so it’s always gonna pass.

Nitro Neo lines up for practice laps

In the autos the ages range from about 6 (like Nitro) up to 8 year olds. For some, it’s their first year racing (like Nitro), and others have been in this class for a while. The older ones are quick, no doubt about it, but it gives the other racers someone to chase, and try and beat so it makes it interesting.

First out for practice laps were the adults, then youths then autos. Nitro Neo gave it a good go, taking it steady to learn the track and make sure he knew where the best lines were to keep his speed up for the real race ahead.  Neo would have three 20 min races over the course of the day. The first race started with picking a good gate to start off from and getting into a good frame of mind, before starting up the bike and filling the air with that great sound – braaaaaaapapapappapappap!

GATE DROP TIME! Engines are revving and all the kids are fighting for the hole shot – Neo makes it to third position. Round a sweeping left bend they all head, tussling between them for a better position before heading up hill and towards a few jumps. Everything was going so well, until Nitro is side swiped and knocked off by another rider! Quick to pick himself up, the next setback was his bike not restarting – imagine the frustration in the middle of a race. Eventually he got going again, but it was going to take hard work to regain his place at the top.

Pushing on through the set back, Neo went full throttle and managed to work his way up two places – despite the fall and mechanical issues, there were two races left, and that’s what he had to focus on.

In the time leading up to the second race his bike got a good once over so it was ready to race once again. This is the time to unwind, refuel and chat to friends – it was nice to see that some Facebook followers came over to say hi, and two fans also came to watch him race.

Race number two: Neo know’s what he’s got to do to regain his place…. Preparation is key, so he spent some time smoothing out and treading down his line out of the gate to make sure his bike wouldn’t hit any ruts that could slow him down as he tore off the line. Neo exploded out of the gate, doing well to stay on his bike! There was a crash on the first corner, luckily the kid was ok!
By this race the track had big holes and deep ruts from the bigger bikes so the autos had to hold on tight as their small bikes bounced around taking the force from the bumps – at one point, what should have been a good stretch to lick some speed they were bouncing all over, I’m surprised at how well they all did to stay on their bikes! Luckily, Neo had found his rhythm and as he gained confidence with the track and started to push himself and his bike harder – right up to 8th position.

In the break Nitro gave a big shout out to a friend he’s made in the Clubman class; Ricky ‘Bobble’ Mitchell, who has a KTM 125 SX (ps Ricky, I hear you did well and got a good score, well done!)

Race number three: Unfortunately, during another race there were two bad accidents in the 85cc small wheel class, so the final race was delayed. Two kids were stretchered off by the paramedics – I hope they’re being fixed up and get well soon, it looked pretty painful and it’s not nice to see!  While everyone waited for the track to be cleared, Neo did some pre-race exercises before getting on his bike so when the gate dropped he was more than ready. He came storming out of the gates when the time came and was FLYING!

This race was super exciting, easily the best of the day. Honestly, I think other people had seen how well Neo had bounced back from the first race, and saw how he was creeping up on some of the more experienced riders and they didn’t see it coming – it’s safe to say there were some parent-kid talks in-between racing (nobody wants to be beaten by the seasons newcomer!).

However, the luck wasn’t in for the other riders as whenever Neo had someone in his sights he chased them down and took their position, finally making his way to fourth position. Neo was battling to keep fourth position with Jacob Moore, a older more experienced rider. Neo took Jacob for one lap, then Jacob would come back for the next….. at the end…… it was…….. Jacob’s. It was so close right to the end, with only seconds in it.

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Race results:
Given Neo’s amazing performance as newcomer, the points from Sunday’s race secured him a podium finish of third place in the Winter Championships.

I caught up with the race scorers at the end who confirmed Neo came ‘unofficially’ 6th in the first race of the season (will check back when the points are up and officially confirm), so not a bad start and the only way is up for this kid!  Overall everyone raced well that day, it was great to watch the autos especially as they are all so young, but love the sport so much already – they all try so hard and all want to win.

It’s great to see such a good start to the season for Nitro Neo, who pulled in the last three races of 2013 as a test to see if he wanted a race license and to start properly in 2014. Those races saw him in the bottom three, which isn’t surprising with such little race experience, but to compare to what I saw on Sunday was an amazing turnaround…. WOW. Out of nowhere, Neo is jostling in the top five and from what I saw, the only way is up.

It just goes to show, that winners never quit, and quitters never win – Nitro Neo chooses to win. Well done dude, all your hard work certainly paid off and I can’t wait for the next race – I hope I’m kept on the edge of my seat again!

Also see:

Moto Magazine Race Report (Neo’s in the auto section towards the end)

more photos on Instagram and Facebook

Neo’s website nitroneo.co.uk

Nitro Neo’s most recent training session went down at Stalker MX last week – take a look at their website if you’re interested:  www.stalkermx.com

The scene was set, the sun was shining, the wood chip track was graded and he couldn’t wait to get on it. He went out with 65’s 85’s & 125’s (he’s on a 50!) but he wasn’t bothered. He likes to hang with the big boys!

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All was going so well… until someone on a bigger bike ploughed straight in to him on a corner, he was well out of control! In true Nitro Neo style, he picked himself back up and got back on his bike.

It was a real hard track, we’re talking big holes all the way around.

Overall, he learned that even though the track was hard, he doesn’t want an easy ride. A challenge is a good thing. To be honest, having stuck at it for the day he ended up riding 4 full sessions, which is more than most of the adults could manage – that’s good going for a 6 year old!

Next stop – his first race of 2014 next Sunday at Fat Cat moto-parc!

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Nitro Neo has his mechanic working hard on some upgrades to his bike in preparation for his debut race season.  The bike has been stripped to get the radiators off; the old hoses are going and being replaced with Samco silicone hoses to carry the new Liquid Intelligence 115 Synthetic, waterless nano-fluid coolant to stop engine overheating.

Here’s a sneak peak of what’s going on 🙂

Nice, huh?!