The wheels keep turning and the wins keep coming for motocross rider Ethan Martens.
The Waitakere rider grabbed two podium finishes at the New Zealand Tourist Trophy Championship last weekend.
Martens successfully defended his MX2 class title on his Yamaha YZ250 two-stroke bike at the event held on farmland at Kuratau near Lake Taupo.
This style of TT racing is run on a dirt track with the course set out on a flat paddock without steep hills or jumps to slow the riders down.
They are able to reach high speeds until the track becomes rough and that's where things can become tricky.
And it wasn't all smooth riding for the 21-year-old.
Martens crashed in his first MX2 race of the weekend and couldn't recover in time to finish in pole position.
"The race was going really well but with about three laps to go I hit a turn and the ground was a bit softer than I anticipated.
"It swallowed me up and I flipped over my handlebars."
Martens was uninjured and continued the race to muscle his way back to third place at the chequered flag.
"Crashing doesn't really scare me. Complacency can creep up when you're settling in at the front and I just made a stupid mistake," he says.
But Martens gathered his composure to put together a string of wins in the following races to regain top of the leaderboard and win the competition.
Martens also rode his Yamaha YZ450F four-stroke to finish third overall in the MX1 class.
Andy McGechan from Bikesport NZ says Martens has the potential to go to the top.
"He's got all the ingredients of speed, skill and determination.
"Watching him crash, dust himself off and finish third in a short race is pretty remarkable," McGechan says.
Martens will continue with the MX1 and will trial the 2014 Yamaha YZ450F soon.
In the meantime Martens will continue his fitness regime with Lee Parore, who also trains boxer David Tua.
"Motocross is a really difficult sport to train for," Martens says. "You basically need to use every muscle in your body so you've got to stay fit."
Martens' next stop is the Taupo Extravaganza on Labour Weekend.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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