Donna Collins Multiple Moto-X champion Mathew Nederlof (19) is riding full throttle to support cancer awareness, after staging a fundraising event last Saturday at Swakopmund’s newly built MX race track. The Moto-X track was put to good use again since staging the hugely successful race day held in December, and offered the first junior rider training event for keen young boys and girls. And who better than to coach them than Mathew himself, who put about a dozen up and coming Moto-X riders and their mini machines through their paces, which included basic riding and handling skills. Of course, a few of the senior riders who joined in the day, let rip with some hearty practise rounds thrown in for the upcoming championship event being held at the track on 5 May. Kitted out in a bright pink and white full racing suit and straddling his 125cc 2-stroke Yamaha, Mathew threw some light on the reason behind the youngster coaching session, and why he is raising funds for cancer. It turns out that his mother is battling cancer, which he said requires a costly recovery process, and because of this he was inspired to raise awareness for the cause. Also, despite the multiple accolades, the 19-year old ‘super rider’ notched up, his racing career was cut short after being diagnosed as a diabetic a few years back. Coupled with this, the sport also died and the Moto-X national championship series fell away, leaving young aspiring riders like Mathew with nothing left but a burning desire to get back into the saddle and open the throttle. In fact, Mathew won his first championship trophy at the age of four, and went on to be nominated as Namibian Junior Sportsman of the Year at age seven. He was also sponsored by Kawasaki back then. During the height of his racing career he competed in all the major national Moto-X circuits in South Africa where despite missing an entire race day finished 4th overall in his class. Thankfully the fortunes have turned for Moto-X in Namibia when the old Galina track revived itself around three years ago, and along with it the sport. This revival spurred Mathew on to ride again, even though there were no national races staged. As such Mathew, his dad and a committee called ‘Swakopmund MX Promoters’, refurbished the dormant Swakopmund Moto-X track to what is ranked as an internationally designed circuit, with the idea of growing the sport and bringing more competition down to the coast. “I really lost interest in riding at one stage, but I am truly inspired again and even more now as I want to win the trophy for my mom,” said the talented rider who is off to full throttle start to the year.
New Era Reporter
2018-03-15 09:34:40 8 months ago