Motorbike balance specialist Blake Fox finished his first and second rounds of the North Island Moto Trials Championships, near New Plymouth, in fifth position last weekend, which was not as high as he had anticipated.
"I probably didn't go quite as well as I wanted to. I was hoping for about third," he said.
The Brighton 17-year-old was up against some older and more experienced competition in the experts grade, including winner Jake Whitaker, of Wellington, a five-time former national champion.
Fox took heart that he was close in points to fourth-placed John Haynes, of Rotorua, after spending two days negotiating his way around and over steep climbs, big rocks, a small creek, native bush and more than a few tree roots.
"There were some big, hard sections, especially the first day," Fox said.
With moto trials, the emphasis is not on speed. The prime aim is to conquer the extreme terrain without setting foot on the ground or falling off. Points are lost for these faults.
Combined with his six-day-a-week training regime, the event was good practice for competing in the youth class of 16 to 18-year-olds in an Australian-based world moto trial at the end of May.
Fox is looking at buying a trials bike in Australia and leaving it there to contest the nationals in August and potentially select events from other series.
He will be giving a demonstration at the Temuka and Geraldine A and P Show in Winchester today and is looking for more opportunities to display his talents to fundraise for his forthcoming trips to Australia.
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