Dale wins MX Nationals title
YOU haven't seen anything yet.
That was Sunshine Coast flyer Ford Dale's bold prediction after securing his first national title at the final round of the MX Nationals 250cc series in Coolum yesterday.
It was fitting that the Carlton Dry Honda Thor Racing rider captured the title in front of his home fans after rebounding from a horror injury-marred 2011.
With the backing of a new team, Dale had hoped 2012 would be a watershed year for him - and the series win was the realisation of a long-held dream.
He made it tough on himself, though.
Having taken a commanding 21-point lead into the final round, he finished sixth in the first two races yesterday and had his series lead cut to four points heading into the final race.
He finished third in race three to win the MX2 Pro Lites championship by two points, with Luke Styke second and Josh Cachia third.
JDR/KTM Factory Racing rider Cachia won the last race and Styke, riding for Serco Yamaha Metal Mulisha Racing, finished second.
If Styke had won, Dale would have finished second in the championship.
"So far it's been a long, hard road and it's good to finally get one," Dale said.
"I didn't make it easy on myself today.
"I put myself under way too much pressure, instead of just riding the way I can.
"But who cares, I still got it."
Dale wants to scale greater heights, dismissing talk that he has finally "arrived".
He plans to move up to the premier MX1 Pro Open (450cc) class next season, and he hopes that will be with Carlton Dry Honda Thor Racing.
Race three yesterday was halted before the end of the first lap after Serco Yamaha rider Kirk Gibbs was "seriously" injured after a heavy crash.
Gibbs' injury or injuries were not specified, but a series spokesman last night said he was recovering well.
Another Coast rider, Brock Winston, placed sixth overall yesterday in the Pro Lites to finish the season in 13th place.
Todd Waters was the overall winner in the MX1 Pro Open class at Coolum, but finished 11 points behind Josh Coppins in the championship race.
Final MX1 championship standings
1. Josh Coppins618
2. Todd Waters607
3. Cody Cooper509
FInal MX2 championship standings
1. Ford Dale571
2. Luke Styke569
3. Josh Cachia565