Team Suzuki Press Office – September 28.
A year ago, Jett Lawrence was playing second fiddle to his older brother Hunter, but in 2018, the 15-year-old has proved himself in the motocross world, with some experts believing he has even more potential than his successful older 2018 MX2 World Championship number nine brother. Following his victory at last weekend’s ADAC Youngster Cup Championship in Germany, we caught up with him to talk about his first full season on the Team Suzuki Germany-sponsored RM-Z250.
Jett doesn’t fear the competition even though he started this year’s European MX Championship (EMX250) as one of the youngest riders on the grid. While the older riders in the class started as comparatively seasoned racers, Lawrence should have been at a disadvantage from his small stature alone, but the cheerful youngster wasn‘t restricted by that and has recently impressed the MX paddock with a double win at the EMX250 Championship round in Assen, Netherlands.
At the ADAC MX Masters Championship series, because of his age, he could have started in the ADAC MX Junior Cup 85cc, but he was aiming for a higher, tougher challenge and made the direct step-up to the highly-competitive ADAC MX Youngster Cup. The title win, which Lawrence achieved at the final round of the championship in Holzgerlingen on September 23rd, showed everyone that the decision to move up was the right one, and took the title graciously, with a manner beyond his young years.
“For me it was a completely natural development that I start Motocross,” he says about his start into the sport. “Hunter demonstrated it to me and I followed in his footsteps,” a fact that was also confirmed by father Darren Lawrence, who thinks it is an advantage for his younger son. “In our family, nobody had a history in Motocross, we all started completely from scratch. We never had the plan or any idea to bring our boys into the sport. The initiative came from Hunter, who had the idea when he was seven years old after he saw the American Supercross races on TV. At his first race he was in the very last position, as he always stood there waiting when someone crashed in front of him. Jett was able to learn from his brother. When he started with the sport we already had some experience, from which we benefitted.”
When he was eleven years old, Hunter showed so much success that the Australian Federation paid for his participation at the Junior World Championship. Some people there saw the talent of the young Australian and Ben Townley finally got things rolling, so Hunter got contracted in Europe when he was 15 years old.
“For us as a family there was no option we would separate,” Darren explains, “So we sold everything at home in Australia and moved to Europe.” Jett’s talent didn’t go unseen either and he was picked-up by Suzuki Germany to participate in the EMX250 Championship and also the ADAC MX Youngsters Cup.
“I always hated it when I did not win,” Jett smiles. “I remember one of my first races very well; I cried after the finish as I was not a part of the leading group!”
These early periods are now long gone but they may explain the success of the young Australian: Ambition, paired with great skill and talent, lead to big success most of the time and therefore it is not really surprising that the 15-year-old not only achieved an impressive win in the European Championship EMX250, but also won a hard-fought title in the ADAC MX Youngsters Cup