Collin Matiza-Sports Editor
ZIMBABWE’S junior motocross champion rider Emmanuel Bako is set to make his first big plunge into the tough world of professional riding when he takes part in the 2022 Junior Motocross World Championships in Finland next month.
The 2022 Junior Motocross World Championships will be held on August 26 to 28 at the Lavanko track in Finland, in the famous motocross city of Vantaa.
The former MXGP organising club — Vantaa Motor Club — hosted the World Juniors last time back in 2006 when current super stars were on their way towards their professional careers. Names like Alessandro Lupino, Ken Roczen, Eli Tomac, Glenn Goldenhoff and many others were fighting for the title in Finland.
The Vantaa Lavanko Track is located just 20 kilometers from the Helsinki downtown and next to the Helsinki-Vantaa (HEL) international airport.
And Zimbabwe’s 15-year-old junior star rider Bako will be among hundreds of promising dirt bike riders from across the whole world who are expected to converge at this popular track in Finland for this year’s Junior Motocross World Championships.
Bako’s father and manager, Brighton, told The Herald soon after the fourth round of the 2022 Bogwheelers Club National Motocross Championship series at Donnybrook Park Raceway in Harare on Sunday that his son will next month be heading to Finland to represent Zimbabwe in this year’s Junior Motocross World Championships.
Emmanuel will be riding in the 125cc Class at the World Championships.
‘’Emmanuel has matured very well in motocross and as he is now an international rider, he will be going to Finland for the World Championships from August 26 to 28 where we think he will represent Zimbabwe very well.
‘’His trip to Finland will be bankrolled by his traditional sponsors Better Brands Jewellery, a company with vast interests in the mining industry in Zimbabwe.
‘’His bikes are ready and they are already in France with his French-based international trainer Joe Tavares. In fact, before competing in the Junior Motocross World Championships, Emmanuel will attend a two-week training camp in south France under Joe Tavares for his final preparations for this big international event,’’ Brighton said.
On Sunday at Donnybrook, Emmanuel was in a class of his own as he won both the 125cc and 250cc classes much to the delight of his father.
“Emmanuel rode very well today (on Sunday) . . . He was just pumped up and this will give him more confidence as he prepares for the Junior Motocross World Championships where a much bigger test awaits for him,” Brighton added. Sunday also saw a number of the country’s top junior and senior motocross riders taking part in the fourth round of the Nationals which they were also using as part of their preparations for the 2022 FIM Africa Motocross of African Nations Championships to be held next month in Uganda.
Among the junior riders who took part in Sunday’s event was eight-year-old Victor Nyamupfukudza, who came fourth in the 50cc Class, aboard his brand new bike which he was testing ahead of the African Championships.
Nyamupfukudza’s father and trainer/manager, Simbarashe, confirmed on Sunday that his son, Victor, and daughter, Tadiwanashe, will “definitely’’ be part of Team Zimbabwe for the African Championships which will be held at Victoria Raceway Park in Garuga, Entebbe, Uganda, from August 19 to 21.
“We are gearing up for the African Championships and we have already approached several sponsors, including Victor’s main sponsors, Mashwede Holdings, with the hope that they will bankroll our trip to Uganda next month where we are aiming to raise the Zimbabwean flag high,’’ Simbarashe Nyamupfukudza said.
Their trip to the east African country will cost them about US$12 000. At the African Championships, Victor is expected to ride in the boys 50cc Class while Tadiwanashe (13) will represent the country in the 125cc Class where she will be riding with the boys.
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