Kawasaki Motors Australia press release:
MEGA Bulk Fuels Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Nathan Crawford and Aleksandr Tonkov have one thing on their minds at this weekend’s fourth round of the 2017 MX Nationals at Horsham, Victoria, as they race for a strong haul of points.
Fresh off a career-best third-place race result in the premier MX1 class at Conondale two weeks ago, 19-year-old rookie sensation Nathan Crawford is feeling confident coming into the typically challenging Horsham round.
“Last year I finished second at Horsham and they’re expecting a bit of rain there over the next few days, so it should shape up well,” Crawford said. “I’ve proved over the past couple of rounds that I can be up at the front of the field and I want to build on that this weekend. I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself, but just want to get out there, have fun, and hopefully break into the top five again.”
Crawford’s fourth overall at the previous round at Conondale has elevated him to sixth overall in the MX1 championship chase.
Meanwhile, Crawford’s team-mate and former MXGP front-runer Aleksandr Tonkov has put in two solid weeks of practice and development to find the perfect bike settings following a disappointing round at Conondale. He finished 11th overall a fortnight ago, despite showing searing pace on his 2017 KX450F early in the day, including a memorable second place in Super Pole.
The hard-pack, technical Horsham circuit and the upcoming back-to-back weekends of racing will provide the perfect opportunity for Tonkov to prove that he’s a serious contender for improved race and round results.
“I’ve had two busy weeks of riding, training and bike testing and I feel like I’m getting a lot more confident,” Tonkov explained. “Before this championship I hadn’t raced for 11 months, so to jump straight in wasn’t easy and I’ve had to slow myself down to go faster. I feel I’m coming back to the pace where I used to be and am getting comfortable at that pace, so the aim for this weekend is to be up there battling with the top guys and trying to get as many points as possible.”
The 24-year-old Russian is ninth in the MX1 championship standings.
The gates will open at 7:30am for Sunday’s fourth round of the MX Nationals at Horsham, Victoria. Tickets are available at the gate or visit www.mxnationals.com.au for additional details.
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