News 6 Dec 2016

Kawasaki confirms Crawford signing for 2017 season

Teenager will step up to MX1 category with Kawasaki Racing Team.

Source: Supplied.

Source: Supplied.

Kawasaki Motors Australia has announced Nathan Crawford will join the Kawasaki Racing Team in 2017 as the teenager moves into the premier MX1 division.

Long-linked to the Queensland-based factory organisation, 19-year-old Crawford confirmed this week he was departing Husqvarna and is now official at Kawasaki.

“I’m so pumped to be racing in the MX1 class with Kawasaki next year,” Crawford commented. “It’s been a personal goal of mine to be on a factory team, so to be on the Kawasaki team is a dream come true. I am young and have a lot to learn, but I feel I am ready and I want to get my feet wet in the 450cc class. Having the support of a factory team for the first time will be a huge benefit.

“I did a great job this year and I’ve always wanted to step up – I’m tall enough and I feel strong enough. Troy Carroll sees something in me and I feel I can deliver. I definitely think it is going to be one of the best teams in the competition next year.

“I’ve met the team mechanics and I’ve got an existing personal relationship with them, so in that sense I’m not jumping into a new environment, but at the same time I know we will have a job to do and I am committed to keeping it professional and delivering the results.

“Racing the factory KX450F at a national level will be a learning curve, but I know that I have the work ethic. I just need to follow through and have the structure of the factory team behind me which will be the key to making progress and becoming a contender in the 450cc class.

“On top of developing my race craft this year, I learnt to keep my cool and take a smart approach. In the Australian Supercross Championship I was down in training because of my crash in the last MX Nationals round, so my results weren’t where I would have liked them to be, but I love supercross and it will just be a matter of training and developing with the Kawasaki KX450F.”

Team manager Carroll, himself a multi-time national champion, welcomed Crawford to the team and is confident that he will be a standout in his rookie season.

“Nathan’s diligence in the MX2 class this year was exceptional and he has the right attitude, so I think he will gel very well with the team,” Carroll said. “He is younger and I think he will be very receptive to our established team environment and the direction that we want to take, so I think he will be a great asset.

“Right now there are so few Australian riders to choose from in the MX1 class. We had to look at the next up and coming riders and Nathan was the perfect fit with his size and experience, so we believe he is the best option for our team. We also want to do our part in supporting the development of Australian talent and giving local riders the opportunities they deserve.

“The goal for Nathan in 2017 will be development. We have a detailed plan in place and everyone is on the same page. We want Nathan’s first year in the MX1 class to go smoothly and we will be providing all of the support necessary.”

Kawasaki Racing Team is yet to announce Crawford’s teammate for the 2017 season.