Features 27 Apr 2021

Fast Thoughts: Alex Larwood

WBR Bulk Nutrients Yamaha rookie opens up on racing, training and stepping up to MX2.

The performance of 17-year-old South Australian Alex Larwood at the opening round of the 2021 Penrite ProMX Championship had people talking as he raced to a podium position in his first-ever national MX2 appearance. MotoOnline caught up with the WBR Bulk Nutrients Yamaha racer for this edition of Fast Thoughts.

Image: Foremost Media.

Scoring a podium on first MX2 outing…

I couldn’t be happier with my performance at the opening round of the ProMX Championship at Wonthaggi. I knew the competition would be pretty tough in the MX2 class and my aim for the weekend was to go out and get a top five result. I didn’t think I’d get on the podium, so both me and the team were stoked on that one. Wonthaggi is my ‘home’ track in Victoria and I’ve done a fair few laps around it, but the club ripped it deep and brought in a fair bit of sand, so the track was a little different to what we normally ride there. The weather on the day was pretty challenging too, but it was awesome to get a second and a fourth from the two motos.

Training with the Beatons Pro Formula crew…

Last year I made the move from my home in South Australia to Victoria to work with Ross Beaton, but we got stuffed around with covid, then in early August I broke my femur and collarbone. I headed back to Victoria in February to work with Ross and the boys, and it’s been awesome. We ride four days a week and have a fair bit of off-bike training with Jon Park, who’s a personal trainer and also part of the Racesafe team. Normally we have 10-15 guys at the track, including the likes of Regan Duffy, Kyle Webster, Hayden Mellross, Connor Tierney, Daniel Milner and Mason Semmens, so every session is a full-on one. I’m living with Ross at the moment and everyone lives quite close by, so we can go road cycling together and what-not.

Going 1-1 in SA state race on the weekend…

The Gillman track has changed a fair bit since the 2019 juniors were held there, so I thought it’d be a good experience to bring the crew across and get some track time before the nationals. I went 1-1 in both motos and beat Kyle in both of them, which was I stoked about. He’s a bit older, has more experience, and is normally quicker than me at the practice track, so Sunday was the first time I’ve really battled him in a race situation. In the first race he was out front for most of the race, but made a small mistake and I got by him on the second-to-last lap. In the second moto I was second through the first turn and moved into the lead quite quickly. Kyle got a pretty good start and closed up on me, but I managed to hold him off all race. Having him push me hard for most of the race was definitely good experience for me.

Image: Foremost Media.

Expectations for Canberra…

My goals haven’t really changed after Wonthaggi – I’m still hoping for a top five result. There are a lot of good guys in the field and hopefully, if everything goes to plan, I’ll get a good start and be able to finish on the podium again. Canberra is very technical, with deep ruts, so it’ll be challenging. I’m also one of the youngest in the class at 17, so I’m really trying to learn as much as possible from each MX2 race that I line up on. I could’ve raced in MX3 this year, but I figured I would be competing against a lot of guys who were just out of juniors and I decided it would be much better for my career to make the step up to MX2 instead. It’s definitely paid off so far.

Life between race weekends…

We have a few off-days a week, but we don’t get up to much apart from going to the gym or going for a cycle, as we’re normally pretty buggered! If the swell’s good we go surfing, but if not, we might head into town for a look-around. A few of the boys are into playing PlayStation, but that’s not really something I’m interested in.