British MX1 champion and former world number two, Kawasaki’s Tommy Searle has stunned the world of motocross by being the first top-flight World championship contender to race the entire UK Arenacross Tour.
This is the first time the 26-year-old champ has set his sights on Arenacross, and he is expected to attack the series with his customary gusto when the Tour kicks off next year, on January 7 at the Manchester Arena.
The multiple motocross GP winner, former world number two and now British number one, has enjoyed a solid outdoor season, fending off season-long attacks from the defending champion Shaun Simpson. He is now poised to tackle head-on, not just a line-up of ultra-competitive and hard-charging Arenacross athletes, but also the three former Pro champions, namely Brit Adam Chatfield (Honda) and Frenchmen Fabien Izoird (Honda) and Thomas Ramette (Suzuki).
Riding a Kawasaki KX450F, the AX series will undoubtedly present a steep learning curve for Searle, as each arena will be completely new to him, but the Kent man is never one to shy from a challenge and he reckons that once the gate drops, he’ll be as competitive as the next man.
Searle is only one of a handful of British riders ever to compete in the AMA Supercross series and the international motocross star says he’s excited about the prospect of adding Arenacross into his racing mix. “I’ve seen some of the Arenacross racing before and enjoyed watching it. Then, a few weeks ago, I took part in the SMX Cup in Germany and found I really liked it so, when the opportunity to contest the whole of next year’s Arenacross with Kawasaki came up, I was pretty excited and thought it would be great fun. I don’t know much about the other competitors, and there’s no-one in particular that I’m worried about, but they’ll be fast, especially the French as they tend to be indoor specialists. They are at the top of their game, and I now have to prepare myself to beat them.
“I do know it’s not going to be easy to win, as there’s the reigning and all previous Arenacross champs to consider, but I am entering the series with the aim of winning, and I can guarantee that I’ll be giving it my best shot.
“I’m really looking forward to the whole arena atmosphere and it sounds like the AX team has good plans for the future. It’s something I want to be a part of.”
Commenting on Kawasaki’s support of Searle in Arenacross, the firm’s racing and marketing co-ordinator Ross Burridge added; “We have had a fantastic 2016 season with Tommy in the outdoor British championship, and are incredibly excited that he has chosen to compete in the Arenacross series. It is one of the most exciting forms of off-road racing and gets our brand in front of large audiences, week in, week out. We believe that Tommy has the skill set and raw speed to challenge for race wins, and ultimately the title, so we personally cannot wait until 7th January!”
Summing up the importance of this latest signing to the Arenacross Tour, series promoter Matt Bates said; “Tommy is one of those effortless riders who, no matter what he’s racing in, is just amazing to watch. He brings a level of world-class status to our series and that’s something we’ve all strived for since we started in 2013. We’ve achieved so much in Arenacross and I’m proud to announce today that we have the UK’s best rider lining up for round one in Manchester. My thanks go to Kawasaki and Steve Dixon of DRT Kawasaki for their help in supporting Tommy to race in AX 2017.”
Searle will be available to meet and greet fans, and talk about his racing endeavours, on the Arenacross stand on Saturday, October 29, 2016 at the International Dirt Bike Show, Stoneleigh Park, Coventry.
The action-packed, fast and furious Arenacross Tour is a firm favourite with audiences as much for its three-hour-long evening of unrivalled razzamatazz and non-stop entertainment, as it is for its class-leading racing activities and its FMX-factor. The Tour will visit the best arenas in the country next January and February, so to catch the cream of British motocross taking on the undisputed Arenacross champs check out www.arenacrossuk.com for the latest news and to buy tickets.
- 7th January – Manchester Arena, Manchester
- 14th January – The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
- 21st January – The Genting Arena, Birmingham
- 27th January – The SSE Arena, Belfast
- 28th January – The SSE Arena, Belfast
- 11th February – Sheffield Arena, Sheffield
- 18th February – The SSE Arena, Wembley
Tickets are also available via 24-hour ticket lines; Ticket Factory 0844 3388 222. Ticketmaster 0333 321 9999.