After blowing out the cobwebs at the Hawkstone International, the Rob Hooper Racing Yamaha Motocross team start their season-long National title crusade this weekend at Sherwood for the opening round of the MX Nationals.
Last year the series was a successful one for the team’s MX 1 rider Ryan Houghton, who finished third overall, while new recruit Taylor Hammal ended the MX2 championship in 4th.
Team boss Rob Hooper is looking forward to seeing his riders take to the track for championship points saying “The MX Nationals is a fantastic championship and is growing year on year. The team there continue to innovate and push the sport forward, so we are very happy to be part of it. We saw the best of Ryan last year in this series, and third overall was a great achievement. We have been working hard through the offseason so that we can push for higher up the podium in 2019. Young Taylor just needs to believe in himself more. He has so much talent, and if we can nurture him as we did with Ryan, I am sure we can get him standing on the podium by the end of the season”.
Houghton saved his best for last in 2018 with a superb second at the final round at Cusses Gorse back in September, so he heads into 2019 knowing he has what it takes to be a contender saying, “I am out to improve my position this year, I have been working hard with my trainer all winter, and on the bike, so I don’t want to be third again I want to be higher. I am coming into this season confident after a good end to last year, so I just need to build on that. I really like Sherwood as a track, the weather is good so let’s hope it stays like that and we can make a good start to the championship”.
Hammal is a young rider with vast amounts of ability, and the MX Nationals brought out the speed in him as he consistently scored good points throughout the series. Taylor is looking forward to being back on the line saying “My aim is to get in the top three this year. I really like the MX Nationals and riding with the MX1 riders. The MX2 riders don’t get as good starts as they are against the 450s which helps me as my starting isn’t the best. I just enjoy the whole MX Nationals series really, and I like Sherwood, so I am really looking forward to it”.
The Pro races which feature the RHR team take place on Sunday, but there is racing all weekend long. For Ticket and venue information go to www.mxnationals.co.uk
Pictures by Ray Archer