QUEANBEYAN motorbike racer Ben Richardswill return to competition this weekend, two months after sufferinglife-threatening injuries in a crash at Bega Speedway.
After receiving a doctor’s clearance to getback on the bike a fortnight ago, Richards will line-up in this weekend’sAustralian Classic Dirt Track Titles at Fairbairn Park.
The 17-year-old was left with bleeding onthe brain and multiple broken bones after wiping out during a regular seasonspeedway meeting in August.
But the brash youngster was adamant therewouldn’t be any nerves when he takes his place on the starting line for thefirst time in eight weeks tomorrow.
“I was having withdrawals from not being onthe bike for so long, that’s how bad it’s been,” Richards said in the lead-upto this weekend’s titles. “The most exciting part of my day for the past fewweeks has been walking the dog.
“Just to be back on the bike was unreal.Not even riding that hard, just putting around I realised how much I missed it.I was definitely over sitting at home.”
Incredibly, Richards will make his returnto racing on a bike he has ridden just once before – a 1973 Honda CR 250 whichclocks in at more than twice the age of its rider.
This weekend’s Classic titles are limitedto vintage bikes produced pre-1978 and Richards will be the youngest competitorat the meet.
“It’s a whole different experience when youhop on a classic,” Richards said. “There’s just a different way to handle it toget it around the corners, it’s more on an art to ride the classics than anormal bike.”
Richards estimates the bike, which waspurchased from the United States and which has rebuilt over the space of sixmonths by his dad Wayne, has not been raced in more than three decades.
The Australian Classic Dirt Track Titleswill be held at Fairbairn Park on Pialligo Avenue, Majura from the 6th-7thof October. Entry is $5pp or $15 per car.
Queanbeyan’s Ben Richards will make his competitive return to racing this weekend at the Australian Classic Dirt Track Titles. Richards was seriously injured in a speedway crash two months ago. Photo: Andrew Johnston
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