'Without them I wouldn't be racing' - Norfolk motorbike star thanks parents ahead of pivotal season
PUBLISHED: 17:20 22 November 2018 | UPDATED: 17:20 22 November 2018
From motorcross to one of Britain's most prestigious motorsport competitions in four years, Ryan Vickers has no intention of slowing down any time soon.
The 19-year-old was racing at club level in the CB500 class in 2016, before rising quickly through the ranks to Superstock 600, running away with the British Championship in 2018 after winning ten out of 12 rounds.
In 2019, Vickers will become the first rider to go directly from the Superstock 600 to the elite British Superbikes after signing a professional contract with RAF Regular and Reserve Kawasaki.
Despite replacing Jake Dixon, who is moving to Moto 2 after finishing second in the championship, Vickers does not feel under pressure.
He said: “I have been pretty relaxed because I know I have no pressure and for me at the start of the year I need to be on the bike and learning as much as possible.
“You are going to have nerves for the first race. Everyone will have had a long winter and it is completely different from testing but it is more excitement taking over.”
He added: “You are not expected to be on the podium straight away. As long as you are improving and getting better and better and being smart and not crashing that is what the team will be happy with.”
Supported by his father, Paul, and mother, Kerry, as well as his grandparents and sponsors, Vickers is aiming for the top of his sport, but says he would not be bike racing without his family.
He said: “I want to win the British Superbikes and then get to MotoGP. My Dad is always doing the bike and truck and makes sure everything is perfect. It takes hours and hours of time.
“My mum sorts my clothes and leathers, cleans and cooks all the meals, while without my grandparents and sponsors I wouldn’t be able to afford to go racing so it really is a joint effort.
He added: “I wouldn’t be in this position without it. Going into last year we were with a team but we left and we had to do it on our own.
“If it wasn’t for my grandparents and my mum and dad we wouldn’t have gone bike racing as it would have been impossible financially. Without them I wouldn’t be racing.”