West is Best, twice

To win one Victorian Title is great but to win two of them is even better. For youngster Michael West, he recently at Broadford won a pair of Victorian Dirt Track Titles within the one weekend.

Competing in both the Pro Open and 500cc Speedway Sliders classes, West, aged 18, fought hard throughout the heat-race action and went on to win the final in the Pro Opens and then scored the overall points honours in the 500cc Speedway Sliders.

In the Pro Open class, West, from Goulburn in the southern tablelands of NSW, didn’t have the best of runs during the heat-race action, which included a DNF in one heat race and having a fall in another. Despite these challenges, West kept his head up and his results from the four heat races (3rd, 2nd, DNF and 4th) was lucky enough to narrowly scrape into the final. The final saw West put in an outstanding ride throughout the six-lap journey and was rewarded with the win.

West in 500cc Speedway Sliders enjoyed a more dominant run, where he won three out of the four races – and second in the other. By virtue of these performances, he earned the overall honours and it capped what was a sensational weekend.

What made West’s winning weekend even better was the fact that he had never competed in the 500cc Speedway Sliders class, and he made it a winning debut, which was the perfect way to thank to Rick Wason for the opportunity to ride the Matt Jones Motorcycles & Long Track Jawa Sponsor Groups machine.

“It certainly was a crazy weekend when I came back from practice on the Long Track bike realising it wouldn’t be as easy as I thought and that Long Track bikes are nothing like speedway bikes. I learned how to tame this different kind of beast through the heat races and was able to come away with a winning result on top of my Pro Open win,” commented West.

“I’d like to thank Rick Wason, Jody Mason, Leon Edwards, Noel Sens for lending me the Long Track bike to ride and doing everything to keep it running fast throughout the weekend. Thanks must go to all my sponsors and people who help me, and I’m glad to be able to get a good result for all the hard work everyone puts in for me.”

From a very young age, West developed a love for speedway motorcycle racing and his hero is three-time World Speedway Champion Jason Crump. Being such a big fan of Crump, West even carries the nickname Crump.

Over the past eight years, West has been competing in both dirt track and speedway on a small budget, but despite these challenges since, he has well and truly held his own on many occasions. In speedway, he recently finished ninth in the Australian Under 21 Championship and eighth in the NSW Under 21 Championship.

The name Michael West is certainly a young two-wheel motorcycle talent on the rise, and the future is certainly a bright one.