A NEWTON Stewart teenager has a bright future in the motocross world after moving up the ranks of the two-wheel racing circuit.
Josh Hurley, 16, has been keen on the fast-paced sport since he cut his teeth on the Clarkswood track which opened up in Minnigaff, and has now secured sponsorship meaning he can play with the big boys.
Josh, who now works for 3B Construction after leaving school, said: “It all started when I was nine years old and my dad bought me a KTM 65cc two-stroke race bike. Before this I had only played with mountain biking but I always had a love for motorbikes.
“About a year later, my dad got me a brand new small wheel KTM 85cc two-stroke race bike, which I rode for a couple of months until the Clarkswood Motocross track closed. We then just moved to practise tracks hoping Clarkswood would reopen or another track would open closer to home.”
But this didn’t happen, despite campaigning by many locals who used the track regularly. So Josh’s dad Clive stepped up and took Josh to the various tracks holding races.
Josh continued: “I competed in my first race when I was 11 years old at Lochouses Motocross track, Dunbar. I came twelfth overall in that first meeting, and that was me hooked on the buzz of motocross racing!
“We competed in various races for a year or so then Dad got me a Honda CRF 150 4-stroke big wheel race bike, on which I completed the whole of the Scottish Championship and quite a number of Cumbria meetings too.
“It was a learning year for me and by the end of it, I had won a few races. In 2010 I rode mainly the Cumbrian meetings and a few of the Scottish rounds, and I started to build my collection of trophies on the 150.”
But it was in September 2010 Clive bought Josh a new 2011 KTM SXF 250 4-stroke race bike, which immediately gave Josh the results he needed to progress his position in the sport.
Josh said: “I’m currently riding in the youth class which is extremely competitive and fast - the more time I spend on the bike the closer I’m getting to the race leaders, and this is where money helps to get out and ride the bike, and keep out there, racing and progressing.
“I’m now racing mainly in Cumbria and do the odd Scottish round, and for the last year I have been helped out by Rembrand Timber and Building Supplies, and I would like to thank Malcolm MacDonald for the support and sponsorship. I’d also like to thank Jimmy Kirkwood Ground Maintenance.