Motocross

Catching up with Riley Graham

Author: Aaryn Minerds

Author: Aaryn Minerds

Posted:

The name Riley Graham is one that has quietly come and gone from the national race circuit and hopefully will be back in the future.

The rider who grew up in South Australia before moving to Victoria with is family has raced quite a few seasons in the Australian MX Nationals as a full blown privateer and has some very good results to his name, finishing 11th overall at season end in both 2009 and 2010 in the Pro Open class.

Graham was planning big things for the 2012 season, which would have seen him race the entire MX Nationals season with some support, unfortunately a early season wrist injury put and end to those plans.

Just coming back to racing early this year, the 23 year old has been taking it some what easy, playing it cautious at the opening two rounds of the 2013 South Australian Motocross Championship with the knowledge that a chance of a life time was looming.

With a planned trip to the United States with his brother to take in the final round of the 2013 AMA Supercross championship in Las Vegas, an opportunity presented itself to stay on with Race SoCal and race the opening round of the American Outdoor championship at Hangtown this weekend.

We caught up with Riley early this morning to see how everything come together and how much he is looking forward to racing against the worlds best riders.
Riley Graham has raced a couple of early season races in Australia this year including the 2nd round of the MX Nationals where he got faster and faster as the day wore on - Credit: Aaryn Minerds
Fullnoise: Why the decision to head over and race the opening round of the 2013 AMA motocross Championship at Hangtown?

Graham: Myself and my brother decided eight months ago we wanted to come over and check out the Vegas SX and I thought I might aswell try get onto a bike and try Hangtown so I started talking to Stephen from race socal about it and he helped out alot to organise a bike for me and has made all this happen a lot easier then it could have been and here I am a week away from the race, I cant wait.

Fullnoise: How many rounds are you planning on racing, or is Hangtown a one off?

Graham: Yeah Hangtown is a one off, I still have to go back to work when I get home and start saving big time for next year. My plans are to finish up work in January move home to my parents and have a real good go at Australian MX Nationals again but without having to work as well and see how it all goes for me.

Fullnoise: Who is helping you out and making all of this possible?

Graham: My biggest help at the moment is coming form Chris Evans from OUTLAWS COATINGS & CONVEYORS. He helped get me over here which is awesome he is pretty much the only guy helping me anymore. I lost most other help when I had a year off with a dislocated wrist. RAM RACING TRAILERS, FLINDERS MOTORCYCLES are also supporting me in 2013 and big thanks to the Bill Edwards as well for his help over years.

Fullnoise: What type of bike will you be riding and what number will you be running?

Graham: I am riding Stephens personal bike from race SoCal he has been kind enough to get me on that for the race. It has a heap of work done to it, more than I have ever had on my own bike. It is a 2013 model Honda CRF450 and my race number will be #628.

Racing the MX Nationals has always been a privateer effort for Riley with help from close friends, family and always his Dad - Credit: Garry Morrow
Fullnoise: What are your expectations going in to the big race?

Graham: I have not got any real expectations, this is all just an experience for me and to try get my speed back for next year. I just want to qualify for the main motos and finish off two races and learn a lot from all these fast riders.

Fullnoise: How long have you been in the United States in the lead up to round one, have you been practising with the other Pro Riders?

Graham: I got here in America on Friday and headed straight to Las Vegas to watch last round of AMA Supercross championship. It was awsome to see live, the 250 classes were so close.

That is where my tour started, then Tuesday to Friday I was on the bike riding. On the Friday I was at the Racer-X Pro practice day at Lake Elsinore which was cool. There were a lot of the top guys there all going fast. We ride another three or so times before we head to Hangtown on Thursday.

Fullnoise: Is there anyone else you would like to thank.

Graham: I would just like to thank Outlaws Coatings and Conveyors, Ram Racing Trailers, Flinders Motorcycles, and also Bill Edwards, Chris Evans and my family and friends for all there help and support over the years cheers.

Top Image: A young Riley Graham had his equal best year on the national circuit in 2009 finishing 11th in the Pro Open Class
Credit: Garry Morrow

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