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Crystal's amazing national motocross debut
Heaton Avenue Primary School student Crystal Knapton is taking the sport by storm after finishing second in the British Schoolboy Motorcycle Association UK Girls’ Motocross Championships.
It was the first time the nine-year-old from Cleckheaton had raced in the national event, and her family were hoping she could achieve a top-ten finish.
But Crystal, who takes her inspiration from her two older brothers, pushed hard and eventually finished as runner-up at the Upton Court dirt track in the West Midlands.
Crystal’s dad Mark was delighted, saying: “You wouldn’t believe how proud I am of her.
“She’s been brought up with the sport and she absolutely loves it. She was riding her first bike at three years old and she then got her motocross race licence at just six.
“She enters over 40 races a year, mostly with girls and boys, but at local level she just takes all the girls apart, so we had to get her in the nationals.
“We told her to take it steady and just work hard to get the points over the weekend but did she listen? No!
“Instead she just went all out for the win, and she almost got that in the end which was just amazing.
“It’s all she’s ever wanted to do and she just can’t take her mind off it. When she comes home from school, she even helps me fix the bikes through the week.”
Mark admitted that it is a massive financial commitment to support his daughter but he wouldn’t have it any other way.
He added: “It costs an absolute fortune for us but me and the rest of our family just love it, and we go along with her to every race.
“They reach speeds of up to 50mph, and my wife sometimes can’t watch, but I know what she’s capable of.
“She gets great backing off us but we’re not pushing her into doing anything. It’s all up to her and she can’t get enough of it. She just wants to go to the top and become a professional one day.”
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