Features 17 Oct 2019

Profiled: Jayden Rykers

SB Motorsports Suzuki rider on his impressive SX1 debut in Brisbane.

Establishing himself as a regular strong contender in the Pirelli MX Nationals over recent years, Western Australian Jayden Rykers has seemingly struggled to find his feet in the Australian Supercross Championship until 2019.

The 22-year-old made his supercross debut in 2016 as a KTM-mounted privateer at Jimboomba’s season-opener, however it would be short-lived after crashing out of the event and aggravating a shoulder injury. It was the last we saw of Rykers that season before he earned a ride with Raceline KTM for the 2017 championship.

Coming off a respectable campaign in motocross, Rykers tried his hand at supercross again, although, just like 2016, it was a brief assault, completing just four laps in the main event of round one. He pressed on, and was supposed to line-up at round two, but a collarbone injury would see his season come to a premature end before making it to the venue.

Image: Foremost Media.

In 2018, the Australian Supercross Championship was a write off altogether for the number three when he underwent shoulder injury in order to recover in time for the 2019 series.

Fast-forward to last weekend at the season-opener in Brisbane where he made his SX1 debut with the SB Motorsports Suzuki, Rykers made it through his first full night of supercross completely healthy and with points in the bag.

“Overall I have to be happy with tonight’s result,” said Rykers following the night show. “My goal was to make it through the opening round ready to move onto round two and we more than achieved that. My start was not to bad in my heat race, and I spent the whole race looking for a way around [Richie] Evans for the final transfer spot, with two turns left I was able to make the pass.”

Image: Foremost Media.

Amazingly, Rykers scored a ticket directly to the main event after a fourth place finish in his heat. A confidence-booster in the early stages of the night considering the tight confines of Brisbane Entertainment Centre meant there was only 10 spots in the pair of mains.

“It was a relief just to get through to the main straight from the heat, with only 10 gates for the nights final I did not want to be in the LCQ fighting for one of two spots.

“The first final I was doing well but just left the door open a little and was forced off track and leaving me at the rear of the field. The second final was going really, then on the final lap [Justin] Brayton came by with a couple of corners to go and I did not realise Waters was just behind me, he snuck up the inside of me in the last turn putting me back to seventh.”

Image: Foremost Media.

The Suzuki pilot recorded a 10-7 scorecard, granting him ninth in the classification as the series heads to Port Adelaide for round two this weekend.

“Tonight was the first time I have finished a round of supercross, it’s good to get that monkey off my back and head to Adelaide next weekend with a top 10 round result in the bag.”