News 8 Feb 2017

Low-key Victorian pre-season beneficial for Gibbs

KTM leader focused on preparation without NZ campaign.

Image: MXN.

Seat time is the name of the game for Kirk Gibbs as he continues to work his way back into form following a broken femur sustained in the lead-up to the 2016 Australian supercross season.

Spending a substantial amount of his pre-season in Victoria riding with the likes of current national MX2 champion, Jed Beaton, the KTM Motocross Racing Team rider is satisfied with his progress to date.

“It feels good and on the bike I actually feel reasonably strong, it’s been a bit surprising,” Gibbs told “I feel like everything is on track and moving in the right direction. It’s good to be down here, we’re getting heaps of riding in and putting plenty of hours on the bike because that’s what I need. Obviously we’re a bit behind the eight ball, so turning soil is good for me.

“I’ve been in Queensland now for eight or nine years and riding pretty similar tracks, so it’s just good to get some different tracks in and see how the bike reacts on different tracks and things like that. I’ve been meaning to come down and do some riding with Jed and the boys, but it just hasn’t come around, so we’ve made it happen now and we’re down here cutting laps, so it’s been good.”

Entering the season off the back of an injury once again and well aware that his closest contenders are gaining valuable time behind the gates in New Zealand, the 2005 Australian MX1 title-winner believes that at this stage in his program, contesting those events are not the most effective option for him to move forward.

“It’s the same as last year, I didn’t get to do any New Zealand races,” Gibbs continued. “Obviously it’s good to go over there and do that, but at the moment it’s just not for me and I’m not quite ready. I don’t think I could go over there and be on par every lap right now, so it’s just not beneficial for me to go over there.

“I’ll just stay here, stick to my program and get a lot of riding in. I’ll do some local races and hopefully get three or four of those in, including the Conondale Cup, to get myself behind the gate and then go into round one hopefully not too far off.”

With Gibbs expected to remain in Australia for the entire pre-season, factory KTM teammate Luke Styke will continue to contest the remaining three rounds of the 2017 New Zealand Motocross Championship.