Young Will races for thrills

William Carnell, 11, is looking forward to competing in the national TT age group championships at Leeston in October.

William Carnell likes testing his motorcross skills against others in TT racing.

The 11-year-old speedster is a member of the Ashburton Motorcycle Club and the Canterbury Mini Motorcross Club.

In every race he is competitive and focused, using the start time to plan his race and which line he will take to win.

He has three years of racing under his belt – one of which was non-existent due to covid restrictions – and already a few trophies to his credit.

The latest win was at the Ashburton Motorcycle Club’s recent Wheels Week TT racing, at Rakaia Barrhill Methven Road.

It was a five-race event.

There is also a second place from the King of the Bowl five-race series held in Darfield earlier this year.

He rides a Suzuki DRZ125, four-stroke trail bike, in full protective gear, and has just completed his final Wheels Week TT racing event in the 7 – 11 trail class; he turns 12 in mid-October and will face new challenges with racing in the next age group.

He is looking forward to it, but until then he has the Canterbury Championships in early August and has already qualified for the national championships in Leeston in early October, by winning six qualifying races during the season.

He likes the thrill of riding and competing against others and is always seeking ways to learn more skills to help his racing.

William was introduced to motorcross by a friend in 2018 and is now racing most weekends.

With most of 2020 wiped out by covid restrictions, this season has been William’s first real competitive year.

He has the coaching support of dad, Duncan, who also helps with bike maintenance and travel arrangements.

The father and son duo start most race days with bacon buttie sandwiches – and later enjoy pot noodles for lunch.

William is still learning about bike maintenance but he does have cleaning responsibilities and can change a tyre when needed.

The TT racing events, mostly run as a series of races, has seen William compete around Canterbury, but he has been as far south as Southland (competing on sand) and will next race at the King of Central MotorCross, hosted by Central Otago Motorcycle Club in Cromwell.