Nor West News : April 14th 2016
High fliers –P3 Identity farewelled - P15 Nor-west News Thursday, April 14, 2016 YOUR PLACE, YOUR PAPER New Zealand Under 21 Speedway Champion Jake Turner is set to race in the worlds. PHOTO: JOHN SPRAGUE Turner prepares for worlds CARYN WIGMORE Jake Turner is preparing to hurtle at breakneck speeds along an international track. The Waimauku teenager will represent New Zealand in the World Under 21 Solo Championships in England. He won the qualifying title of NewZealand Under 21 Solo Champion the day before celebrating his 19th birthday. The former Massey High School student dominated the championships at Oreti Park, clinching the title ahead of Invercargill’s Jake Gillespie and Canterbury’s George Congreve. Turner won his first heat and placed second in the next. He went on to win the following two heats and the final. Adjusting to a new track proved challenging. ‘‘I found it quite difficult- the track’s not something I’m used to but it was hard for everyone and we all have to adapt,’’ he says. Turner says he was really excited to achieve a goal he had set himself. Winning has given him the opportunity to hopefully reach some much bigger goals on an international level, he says. Turner is bracing himself for the May competition. The dedicated rider trains at the gym five times a week after working long days as a concrete layer. Turner says he is looking for- ward to racing but knows his competitors will be top quality and no easy task to beat. He has been handpicked to rep- resent his club and ride for the Auckland Rhinos, the current New Zealand teams champions. He helps the team by earning points and planning team rides strategy. Turner started riding Solo Speedway five years ago on the junior circuit at home track Rosebank Rd. In 2013 he was awarded Junior Solo rider of the year. Turner is believed to still hold the fastest lap time for the junior track. When Turner was 16 he moved from riding a 200cc model to the 500cc Solo bike class and quickly got up to speed with more experienced riders. ❚ A Give a Little fundraising page has been launched to get him to England. Go to https://explore.givealittle.co.nz/ search?q=Jake+Turner for information.
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