RACING PASSION: Ellyse O'Connor.
RACING PASSION: Ellyse O'Connor. Contributed

Desert's speediest ready to race to 80

Motocross: The countdown is on to the Queensland Women's Motocross Championship held in Emerald later this month.

Emerald Junior Motocross 'Mozzie Creek' track will host the competition on July 21 and 22, as the state's fastest females fight it out for this year's title.

Meet one of the many local competitors gearing up for the weekend.

Name and age

Ellyse O'Connor,

29 years old

Current bike and riding number

Yamaha YZ250F, #288

How long have you been riding and how did you get into it?

I'VE been racing for about 15 years in NSW and now QLD, I had older brothers who rode and my dad is obsessed with bikes so I guess it just rubbed off onto me.

What do you enjoy most about riding?

I LOVE to challenge myself and improve. I had never had professional coaching before and when I met my partner Aaron about four years ago, he happened to be a coach. After learning from him I have totally changed the way I ride and now I feel so much safer and my skills and technique have improved so much.

What has been your favourite riding memory?

IN THE last year I have been an assistant coach at the Fox Women's Off Road Campouts alongside Off Road Champion Jemma Wilson, so I have been able to meet so many amazing ladies that love riding as much as I do and hang out and ride dirt bikes with them all weekend.

Biggest motocross achievement?

IT WOULD definitely have to be not only finishing, but becoming the first recognised fastest female at the Tatts Finke Desert Race just last weekend at Alice Springs.

This race has been on my bucket list for many years, so to go there and achieve that has been such a highlight for me. My body is still so sore but I'm still smiling.

Your favourite track?

I ABSOLUTELY love Emerald but I'm lucky to live 10 minutes away from two of the best tracks in Queensland - Rocky and Yeppoon.

Ambitions and goals?

CONTINUE to become a great coach so I can help build MX/Off Road in our Central Queensland region. We seriously have some of the best tracks and club committees up here that make racing possible and so enjoyable.

Also, I seriously just love riding my bike so much, so I would love to stay competitive and racing safely until I'm about 80.

Who is your inspiration?

LIKE most of the little boys that ride dirt bikes in this area it would have to be my partner Aaron Hutton. He is a super coach! Also, recently racing Finke and experiencing what that brutal track is like I have formed a new appreciation for Toby Price. That guy is seriously something else! Being able to ride at those speeds on that track with the pressure he must be under is next level, and how amazing he is with all the fans and little kids is so cool to see.

What are you looking forward to most about the upcoming competition?

WELL Emerald is up there with one of my favourite tracks and I haven't raced a Queensland Women's Championship in a few years so I'm excited to get back out there and see how I go.

Ellyse O'Connor.
Ellyse O'Connor. Contributed

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