Takeshi will receive support from Kawasaki Motors Australia and Sony Action Cam, while racing the full 10 rounds of this year’s MX2 championship.
“We are extremely proud to have Takeshi on board as a Kawasaki supported rider throughout his first Australian MX2 season. Takeshi will continue to race on the KX250F which has proven to be a successful combination. There is no doubt that Takeshi will be a strong contender for the Lites title this year”, commented Ken Hashiba, Managing Director of Kawasaki Motors Australia.
Sony Action Cam will back the team as a naming rights sponsor this year. Sony’s Head of Digital Imaging, Vivek Handoo said, “We are excited to be supporting the reigning Japanese MX Lites Champion (Takeshi). The Sony Action Cam naturally associates with Off-road motorsports and this relationship will reinforce the application of our Sony Action Cam in Motocross”.
Takeshi has demonstrated his ability to be a fearsome contender given his successful performance throughout the All Japan Motocross Championship. The 35 year old, has secured 4 Japanese Lites titles and he explains that this year he is after a fresh challenge, “I am not getting any younger but I feel I can still ride very well and I want to race in a challenging competition”.
‘Tak’ is no stranger to the Australian motocross racing scene. Last year he raced on his KX250F at rounds 9 and 10 of the MX2 series. At the 9th round he qualified second and managed to hold second place until a bike failure compromised his efforts. “I didn’t finish well at Gladstone due to a failure with the bike I was riding, but I felt that I still had the speed and I proved that in round 10 at Coolum”, said Takeshi who finished second overall at Coolum.
“I want to test the field and aim at getting a podium at the first round to see what I need to work on. If I have a chance at winning then I won’t back off. If you are not completely comfortable, then you need to settle for second and work on improving your form, I have been there before. If I have to finish second on the day then that ok to settle with but my main goal is to win the championship. I have ridden half the tracks through practice or competition so I have a rough idea of the turns and I am good in all weather conditions but in the rain particularly. My fitness is good, my bike is good, I am comfortable, and I have no excuse now”.
Takeshi’s mechanic will shadow him from Japan. Takeshi explains, “To have a chance at winning each race, we need someone who knows the bike back to front. Not too many people have touched my bike and Yukio Sugimoto knows all of the intricate bits and pieces. We have won 3 Japanese championships together”.
Shifting to Australia has been made possible by the support Takeshi has received from sponsors. “Without Kawasaki, Sony and JB exports I wouldn’t be racing. JB Export have provided me with the team truck that we work out of and travel in. Kawasaki and Sony have provided crucial support for the team. I am very grateful and pumped to race this year”.