While four (4) Taree Motorcycle Club riders (Juniors, #45 Will Bisley, #107 Mitch Bisley and #296 Thoren Openshaw and Senior, #112 Kye Andrews) achieved podium positions at the 2018 Australian Senior Dirt Track Titles, which included Junior support classes, over the weekend of the 8th and 9th September at Gunnedah, the event was Kye Andrew’s first major race meeting as a Senior.
Kye was eligible to compete in the 2018 Australian Junior Dirt Track Championships on 12th August and by the 19th August, Kye competed as a Senior in Round 5 of the Taree Motorcycle Club Championship. As a Senior, Kye was then entered in the 28th Akubra Classic to have been held on 26th August but the event was postponed due to rain.
Not only was it a great effort for Kye to get on the podium at the Australian Senior titles on the weekend, Kye’s transition through Taree Motorcycle Club from a Junior to a Senior is an achievement to be proud of – particularly, as he is the first rider to do so for many years.
Kye’s grandparents, Cheryl and Dave Andrews, not only travelled to the titles at Gunnedah on the weekend but Dave said that they go to all the race meetings that Kye is competing in. Cheryl is an ex-President and a life member of Taree Motorcycle Club.
Dave advised that Kye was entered in five (5) classes on 250cc and 450cc bikes. Kye had a heavy fall in the second race but showing his resilience, he didn’t let it deter him and Kye went on to compete in every race he was entered in. By the second day of competition, Dave commented that Kye was doing much better coming out of the starting gates. Dave added that Kye led a lot of his races for a couple of laps and was placed in some heats and won a couple as well.
Dave was happy with the way Kye rode and felt that his grandson learnt a lot at the titles race meeting, including the fact that getting fitter and building up his strength in his upper body would be of benefit against the more seasoned Seniors.
With regard to the race meeting at Gunnedah generally, Dave commented that it was well run – a good meeting – but a few riders had bad “spills”, including Kempsey’s Jarryd Oram.
Taree, Kempsey and Gunnedah Motorcycle Clubs all have oil tracks and Dave mentioned that Gunnedah had thirty (30) millimetres of rain over the three days leading up to the weekend and as a result, oil had been lost off the track.
Kye’s grandfather then went on to talk about the other three Taree riders – the Bisley boys and Thoren – commenting that they rode well in their events.
This coming weekend, the 2018 NSW Junior Dirt Track Championships will be held at Allen Park, Somersby (Central Coast Junior Motorcycle Club).
While Kye Andrews will not be competing at these Championships, Taree Motorcycle Club riders, Hayden Nelson and three (3) Wilby brothers – Blake, Kurtis and Cody – will be racing on Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th September.
As it is an interesting situation to have three brothers all competing at the one junior championship meeting, we spoke to Blake Wilby about the upcoming event.
Blake said that the brothers would travel down to the Central Coast with their parents on Saturday.
#18 Blake then detailed that he will be competing in the combined 13-U16yrs class on a 250cc Husqvana (Husky), 100cc-150cc 2st 13-U16yrs on a 150cc KTM and 200cc-250cc 4st 13-U16yrs on a 250cc Husky.
#81 Kurtis will compete in the combined 13-U16yrs class on a 250cc Husky and 200cc-250cc 4st 13-U16yrs on a 250cc Husky.
#19 Cody will compete in the 85cc modified 7-U10yrs class on a 80cc Honda, 65cc 9-U13yrs on a KTM and 85cc 2st/150cc std. 9-U11yrs on a 150cc Honda.
Blake was reserved about how he was feeling prior to the championships but when asked was there “friendly rivalry” between the Wilby brothers, Blake commented, “Not really – as long as I’m in front!”
#279 Hayden Nelson will be competing in the 85cc 2st/150cc std. 9-U11yrs class on a 85cc Husky and 65cc 9-U13yrs on a 65cc Husky.
Hayden Nelson and Mitch Bisley achieved podium finishes at the Australian Junior Dirt Track Championships in August, while Kye Andrews, Zane Hopkins, Blake Wilby and Cody Wilby had all made it through to the finals.
Taree Motorcycle Club thanks Dave Andrews and Blake Wilby for taking the time to talk to us and the Club wishes its four (4) Junior representatives all the best for the NSW Championships this coming weekend.