AMID multiple spills, crashes and a host of ambulances, Millthorpe dirt bike rider Josh Dominello produced a stunning performance to earn a second consecutive podium finish at the Australian Junior Dirt Track titles in Cowra last weekend.
Despite being just 12 years old, Dominello won silver in the 10-14 years 85cc 4-stroke modified division, backing up the bronze medal he won in the same division in 2013.
“It’s pretty exciting,” he said.
Dominello qualified second, of 10, after the preliminary heats and was left to watch the repechage race to determine the last two qualifiers, before the final.
“I got out pretty well,” Dominello said.
“I came into the first corner in second, and the guy in front of me led for the first two laps. I overtook him then led for the next two. Unfortunately, he overtook me on the last corner of the last lap.
“He was just too quick for me after that. Our elbows were actually touching on that last corner, and I could feel his handlebars digging into my ribs. Ours was the only race where we all stayed upright too, there was a heap of ambulances around waiting for a crash. I’m not too disappointed though, he is 14 and has never been beaten on that bike.”
Making the 12-year-old’s achievement even bigger, he had virtually no preparation leading into the race.
“I only raced two races leading into it,” he said.
“Most of the other guys had heaps more than that, but I have a good bike, and you need a lot of luck. I definitely wasn’t overconfident though. I haven’t really been able to race because of rugby.”
Dominello, a hooker-come-flanker-come-fly-half, plays for Kinross Wolaroi School.
He said he has been torn between rugby and racing for some time.
“I’m not sure how my preparation will go for next year now either,” he said.
“It depends on rugby. I’ve got two years left in my division though, so I’d love to get a gold medal.”
Dominello’s next chance on the bike comes in a fortnight, at the West Wyalong Cup.
“It will be a big meet,” he said.
“I’ve been riding two new bikes, so I need as much time to get used to them as possible.”