Off-road ace to pilot KTM 500 EXC-F in the premier class this weekend.
Reigning Australian off-road champion Daniel Milner has confirmed he’ll line-up in the premier MX1 category at this weekend’s Pirelli MX Nationals in Wonthaggi, Victoria, marking the first double-header of the season for rounds three and four.
Milner will pilot his regular Australian Off-Road Championship (AORC) entry, the KTM 500 EXC-F, however he’ll contest the event under his own terms rather than pitting out of the KTM Motocross Racing Team truck.
“We have such a big break, my next race is Hattah and that’s still over a month away,” Milner explained to MotoOnline.com.au. “Wonthaggi is perfect for Hattah because it’s sandy, it’s going to be whooped out and will get real rough – it’s the perfect training for Hattah especially with the high-intensity.
“I’ll be riding my KTM 500 EXC-F, I called up Kev [Williams] to make sure I could ride it in the MX1 class – it obviously has a lot power. He said yeah no worries, so we’ve done a little bit of testing and made the suspension stiffer. I’ve gone from there and have been doing some training with Ross Beaton alongside Wilson Todd and Mitch Evans, those boys are at the top of their classes, so I’ve been chasing them down trying to get my intensity right to go racing.”
The factory KTM enduro rider last raced an MX Nationals round in 2017 at Toowoomba’s penultimate stop where he lodged 15-17 race results for 15th overall. This weekend’s new format could play into the Victorian’s favour, being that all national off-road events are staged over consecutive days, which is experience that Milner will be drawing upon for the four 30-minute motos he’ll have to complete over Saturday and Sunday.
“I’m not putting any pressure on myself and I know how fast those guys are,” he continued. “I’m using this weekend for training, but it would be cool if I could place around the top 10. The last time I tried an MX Nationals was last year at Toowoomba and I got absolutely hosed – we’ll see what it’s like on my own bike [this time].
“Being the two days – it’s the first time the motocross guys will be doing it – but it will be interesting to see how their recovery plans are for the following day and how they’re going to push forward. For me, it’s something we do every race event.”
Milner is currently undefeated in the E3 category of the AORC and recently earned the Australian 4-Day Enduro (A4DE) title in April.