Young win­ner aims for the top

Rodney Times - - FRONT PAGE - By MICHELE ONG

Eleven-year-old Cruz Ware is keen to fol­low in the tyre tracks of Kauka­pakapa neigh­bour and mo­tocross cham­pion Josh Jack.

He’s al­ready a step along the way, win­ning his class at the North Waikato mo­tocross cham­pi­onship.

He was first in the seven to 11-year trail class on his Honda CRF100F at the in­au­gu­ral cham­pi­onship run by the Huntly Mo­tor­cy­cle Club. Cruz com­peted with five other high-cal­i­bre rid­ers in the mini trail.

‘‘It was a good day, al­though the competition was tough,’’ the Sil­verdale School stu­dent says.

‘‘There was an­other com­peti­tor who was quite good, and I thought he would win.’’

Cruz had three wins and a sec­ond in his four races. He and an­other rider al­most col­lided as they ne­go­ti­ated the tricky bends. While he man­aged to stay on his bike the other rider was not so lucky.

Start­ing at age five, Cruz says he en­joys mo­tocross be­cause of the rank­ing which comes with the sport.

He says it is the feel­ing of ac­com­plish­ment he gets know­ing he has done well in a race.

The fam­ily’s nick­name for Cruz used to be ‘‘ pud­dle­duck’’ be­cause he would just pud­dle along on his bike, mum Michelle says.

‘‘ But he got quite com­pet­i­tive around the age of seven or eight.

‘‘And he took off from there. He’s very pas­sion­ate about the sport – he’s very de­ter­mined.’’

Mrs Ware says her son’s in­ter­est in mo­tor­bikes was sparked by his mo­tor­cy­cle en­thu­si­ast dad Kevin, who also teaches Cruz how to main­tain and care for his mo­tor­bike.

‘‘ Mo­tor­bikes have been a part of Cruz’s life since a very young age. His first bike was a three-wheel plas­tic one we got him when he was two,’’ she says.

Cruz prac­tises when­ever he can for about 90 min­utes.

His hero is neigh­bour and mo­tocross cham­pion Josh Jack, who he has yet to meet.

‘‘I like Josh be­cause he is a good rider. I read all the sto­ries about him in the pa­per. He’s sort of like a lo­cal hero.

‘‘It makes you go. If he can do it, so can I,’’ he says.

He also ad­mires pro­fes­sional mo­tocross racer Blake Gil­lard, who has given him some point­ers.

Cruz hopes to be one of New Zealand’s best mo­tocross rid­ers one day.

The win­ner: Cruz Ware of Kauka­pakapa won his trail class at the North Waikato mo­tocross cham­pi­onship. The Sil­verdale School pupil started rid­ing when he was five, and has since gone to com­pete in var­i­ous mo­tocross com­pe­ti­tions.

Roar­ing ride: Cruz in ac­tion at the cham­pi­onship or­gan­ised by the Huntly Mo­tocross Club.

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