Hit­ting top gear

Auckland City Harbour News - - FRONT PAGE - By JESS LEE

JADEN Hassan has bro­ken more records than he can re­mem­ber but his younger brother Aaron is hot on his heels.

They are fast be­com­ing the ones to beat in the mo­tor­cy­cle world.

Jaden, 19, is more than 1.9 me­tres tall and 14-year-old Aaron is close be­hind so both are un­likely cham­pi­ons in a sport where most com­peti­tors are built like jock­eys.

Jaden started rac­ing on a 125cc bike when he was 13 as the youngest Kiwi to com­pete in that cat­e­gory.

He moved up to a 600cc and at the age of 16 fin­ished fifth in the Su­per­stock cham­pi­onship in his first sea­son.

The West­mere rider has stepped things up a gear this year and will now ride a 1000cc su­per­bike for Suzuki.

Mt Al­bert stu­dent Aaron took out the 125GP win­ter se­ries and the 250 Pro­lite cham­pi­onships last year.

He went on to fin­ish third in the 125 class this sea­son.

A lot of his early suc­cess has come from years of watch­ing his brother on the track, Aaron says.

‘‘I’m just learn­ing ev­ery time I ride. I want to slowly build up that pace and keep work­ing at it.’’ Jaden is proud of him. ‘‘I’m still his big brother and al­ways will be – I al­ways try to help him as a men­tor if he has any prob­lems on the day. I’m never not go­ing to help him so he can’t break my records.’’

And Jaden has bro­ken more than just records in his short ca­reer.

Last year he frac­tured an an­kle and three bones in his back but was on his bike just six weeks later to win two races and break lap records.

He was hop­ing to make a re­peat of this speedy re­cov­ery af­ter break­ing his wrist while qual­i­fy­ing for the sec­ond round of the 600cc Su­pers­port champs in Ti­maru. Jaden find­ing it too dif­fi­cult to ride with a cast so Aaron stepped in and cut it off with a steak knife.

Things didn’t quite go to plan with Jaden fin­ish­ing 12th place and forced to pull out of the next race be­cause of the pain.

‘‘As long as I know why I crashed and what hap­pened I want to get straight back on that bike and go just as fast for the next lap,’’ Jaden says.

The broth­ers dif­fer­ent rid­ers.

‘‘He’s a very, very ma­ture young rider,’’ Jaden says.

‘‘When I was his age I didn’t re­ally have much re­spect for my­self and my body.

‘‘I would just kind of go all out un­til I crashed, whereas Aaron thinks things through

are

very a lot more and when he can’t win he’ll just take sec­ond place and take it easy which is good.’’

Mo­tor­cy­cling runs in the fam­ily. Dad Greg started out rac­ing as a teenager be­fore aban­don­ing the sport only to re­turn to it in his 40s.

He hopes to see both of his sons test their abil­i­ties with Euro­pean cam­paigns in the fu­ture.

Photo: JA­SON OX­EN­HAM

On track: Broth­ers Jaden, left, and Aaron Hassan are smok­ing records on the New Zealand mo­tor­bike cir­cuits, de­spite their age and height. Rac­ing runs in the blood with their fa­ther Greg, cen­tre, re­turn­ing to the sport in his 40s.

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