By Collin Matiza Sports Editor
TWO of the country’s top junior motocross riders — Emile Croisette and Tadiwanashe Nyamupfukudza — have ruled themselves out of next weekend’s FIM Africa Motocross of African Nations Championships at Donnybrook Park in Harare due to holiday commitments and injury.
Croisette is in Canada on holiday after he took part in the 2019 Walton Transcan Grand National Championship in Ontario last week where he finished fifth overall in the 65cc (7-9) Class. He also competed in the 65cc GP (Master Kids) Class during the same four-day championship which ran from August 13 to 16 at Walton in Ontario and came 10th overall to crown a memorable outing for himself at one of the world’s top amateur motocross racing events.
And Croisette, who was set to compete in the 65cc Class at next weekend’s African Championships at Donnybrook, yesterday indicated that he will not be in a position to fly back home from Canada to compete in this event as his parents felt it was too expensive to get him down here “for just one race”.
“My parents just decided I won’t be able to race the FIM Africa Motocross of African Nations Championships on August 31 and September 1 in Zimbabwe. (They think it’s) too expensive to fly back home just for a race. (It’s) a real pity. It’s my track and I would do very well,” a disappointed Croisette posted on his Facebook wall yesterday.
Croisette also said that he will be in Canada for the next five weeks on holiday.
Also out of Team Zimbabwe for the African Championships is 12-year-old female rider Nyamupfukudza who injured her hand during training and according to her father, Simbarashe, she is likely to be out of action for at least three weeks. “Taddy injured her hand during training and we have been told by the doctors that the injury needs at least three weeks to heal completely and this means she will not be able to compete in the African Championships. It’s unfortunate and she is very disappointed as she was really looking forward to compete in this major international event,” Simbarashe Nyamupfukudza said.
Tadiwanyashe, now an 85cc Class rider, was recently named among four of Zimbabwe’s top female riders who were selected for Team Zimbabwe for this year’s African Championships. The others are Leigh-Anne Young, Bianca Beling and Celine Goodinson.
They were named in a provisional squad of more than 50 junior and senior male and female Zimbabwean riders for this big continental event and the team will this year be led by the country’s former champion rider Jayden Ashwell who rides in the main MX1 Class.
Also included in Team Zimbabwe for this year’s African Championships is an array of the country’s top junior motocross riders who include Daiyaan Manuel, Emmanuel Bako, Tristan Grainger, Jamie Doran, Ricky Whyte, Tristan Versveld, Dilan Faasen and Joshua Halkier. This year’s FIM Africa Motocross of African Nations Championships are expected to bring together more than 200 senior and junior male and female riders from seven countries — Botswana, Kenya, Morocco, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and the hosts Zimbabwe — who will compete for the top honours in all the classes from the PeeWees to the main MX1 Class.