News 30 Sep 2014

Dale not counting out comeback despite KTM exit

Queenslander still hopeful of racing in 2015 and beyond.

Image: Jeff Crow.

Image: Jeff Crow.

Former MX2 Australian Motocross Champion Ford Dale will return to riding during October, pinning his hopes on a complete season of racing again next season after a devastating two years of injuries.

Since clinching the 2012 championship Dale has had a horrifying run of injuries; forced out of the 2013 MX Nationals early on for knee surgery before landing a dream factory KTM seat alongside Kirk Gibbs for 2014.

But a broken arm sustained in the pre-season ruled Dale out until Swan Hill’s sixth round of the season, until soon after another practice crash at Coolum ended his comeback due to fractured vertebrae.

With KTM signing Luke Styke to partner Gibbs in 2015, Dale has been left without a factory seat if he returns, which is exactly what he plans on doing come round one of the nationals next March in Victoria.

“I won’t be back in time to race supercross obviously, but I do plan to start riding again while supercross is on in October,” Dale told “I haven’t locked in anything for next year as yet – there have been talks, but it has to be the right deal for me to take it.

“I’m not a kid anymore, so I want to ride with all the right things in place for me to do it. I’ve got a family now, so I’m not just going to do it for nothing. If I can get everything in the right places, then I will definitely do it.

“It doesn’t have to be factory, just right. I have had some good people around me and still do, so I want to keep what works for me. In 2012 I had good people around me and won the MX2 championship, so if I can stay injury-free I would definitely like to do that.”

With injuries derailing any hope of performing at KTM nationally, Dale said it was a bitter end of an opportunity crushed by a series of crashes. Still, KTM has stuck by him and he’ll be on board a 450 SX-F next month until the end of the year when he does resume riding.

“It was definitely disappointing,” he added. “I was so excited to be riding for KTM at the beginning of the year and New Zealand went really good. It was all going to plan before I got injured just before the first round, then I got back on the bike too early I think. I tried pushing too hard, too soon, and got hurt again.”