National Motocross Championship – Zone 7
As the start of the 2022 National Motocross season approaches, Red Bull KTM is more ready than ever to unleash its star-studded line-up of riders. The Western Cape is set to host the season opener at Zone 7 on Saturday, 19 February.
After an unforgettable year of racing, Tristan Purdon steps into the new season with two red plates to defend. Purdon stormed to double national glory with a title in both the MX1 and MX2 Class respectively last season. The rider lines up armed a KTM 450 SX-F and 250 SX-F as his weapons of choice. He commented: “I’ve been riding for a very long time and nothing compares to my KTM racing bikes. The suspension couldn’t be dialled in better, which makes life so much easier for me when I’m racing.”
Having spent the off season at his parent’s farm, the rider feels as ready to get back behind the gates as ever. He added, “Coming from the high of winning the MX1 and MX2 Championship, I’m feeling very excited to get out there again. The goal is obviously to defend the titles, but I know the competition just keeps getting stronger and that I have to work harder than ever to stay on top. I have spent most of the off season back at the farm – a place that allows me to spend more time on the bike, focus on my weak points and keep my fitness up.”
Joining him in the fight for both national titles is Red Bull KTM teammate Cameron Durow. The youngster was recruited by the orange team at the start of last season and entered a bar-to-bar battle for the MX2 Championship with Purdon. Having only narrowly missed the top step and gained invaluable experience, Durow will certainly come back swinging this season.
“We’re fighting for the MX1 and MX2 Championship this year – I’m so excited to have the opportunity to compete in both classes. The off season has been good, I have really enjoyed spending time on the 2022 KTM 450 SX-F and 250 SX-F – they feel incredibly fast! I’ve also been conditioning myself for longer motos to not only prepare for racing in both classes, but also for my plans to race overseas this year. I think this kind of training will give me an extra edge when it comes to fitness,” said Durow.
Fresh off his High School Class victory, the talent-stacked Jonathan Mlimi will make the leap to the MX2 Class this season. Having shown immense talent, the rider is ready to step up to a new challenge. He will now join his teammates on a KTM 250 SX-F, something he describes feeling very excited about.
“The level of competition is going to be really high because I’m racing against guys with a lot more experience than me, but that’s how I’m going to learn and grow as an athlete. The power of my new machine is the thing I’ve enjoyed the most! I’ve stuck to my training programme, but managed to add in some running this time – something I’ve struggled to do after my leg injury in 2019. I’m very excited to see how that will give me an extra edge with my fitness this year,” said Mlimi.
Joining the fray on the motocross scene is Luke Grundy. The young gun will represent the Red Bull KTM team in the High School class in 2022 aboard a KTM 125 SX with his sights firmly set on being crowned the National Champion.
Grundy lives in Amanzimtoti, Durban, and has done the large majority of his off season training at Cato Ridge, Thundervalley and Hammersdale. The prodigious young talent has represented South Africa at the FIM Junior World Championships in Italy in 2019 and attributes his already lengthy list of successes to a relentless work rate.
Grundy expressed his immense admiration for the Red Bull KTM team and admitted that he is honoured to race for what he considers the best racing team in the country. Grundy will bring a massive dose of youthful energy and pace to the team and he will be frothing to fight for his first holeshot for his new team.
Rounding out the team is young gun Trey Cox. The rider came painstakingly close to snatching up the Pro Mini Championship last season after a nail-biting three way battle. Having taken his place as a frontrunner in the class, Cox will line-up with more confidence than ever as he chases down the seemingly elusive Pro Mini title.
Published by: Louwrens Mahoney