Rhys Carter dedicated his weekend at round six of the 2014 Monster Energy MX Nationals at Swan Hill to Suzuki-supported New Zealand teenage racer Trent Haywood, who tragically lost his life earlier in June.
Carter traded his customary number 12 for Haywood's number 323 in his memory at Swan Hill as family and friends of the 14-year-old watched on after travelling from NZ.
"Trent's family and a few of his close friends came over to the race, which was really nice to have them there. It was special for me and it meant a lot to race with his number during the round."
The Team Motul Suzuki riders day started strongly at Swan Hill with a fifth in the opening moto, one of his best performances of the season as he both caught and passed CDR Yamaha's Billy Mackenzie in the closing stages of the race.
Moto two didn't fare so well as he recorded a DNF due to a rare chain derailment during the moto, resulting in 17th overall for the round. That dropped him to 11th in the standings following six of 10 rounds, however just 22 points separates seventh through to 11th.
"Qualifying didn't go that good for me, so to come away with fifth in the first moto was really good and my best result I've had," Carter said. "I came from around 14th back up to fifth, so I felt really strong.
"In the second one I worked my way through again and was about to make the pass for fifth again, but I hit the wall jump on the circuit and the chain derailed. It was a freak thing, not something that has happened to me before, but it was a promising weekend overall.
Carters championship leading team-mate Matt Moss' defence of the 2014 MX Nationals, Australian Motocross Championship, remains positive following a third place overall finish at Swan Hill in Victoria on Sunday. For teammate Rhys Carter, the round marked an opportunity to remember fallen countryman Trent Haywood.