Neil Hodgson - Dirt Rider Magazine

Roadracer for Corona Extra Honda. Won the 2000 British Superbike Championship and the 2003 World Superbike Championship. At age 18 was the youngest rider ever to compete in the FIM 125cc Championship. His 2009 season was sidelined after a motocross crash in March. 35 years old.My dad used to roadrace, so from an early age we rode bikes. I started racing dirt bikes when I was nine years old, but stopped racing when I was 15 because I broke my tib and fib really bad. To be honest, at that point I'd had enough of motorcycle racing all together. And then thankfully I had a go at roadracing and suddenly was fast at it, and that's what started me down that road.The first race weekend , I found it so much easier. I was always really fast at motocross on flat, smooth tracks. I was crap at jumps, I was crap when it got rough. I come from England, and I raced a lot of flat stubble-field races, so it was almost like training for roadracing, backing into the corners and sliding out. It was almost destined I would become a roadracer, but motocross is still my number one passion, and I ride three times a week now. didn't mind me riding motocross. They understand that I take my training really seriously, and they know I ride within myself. Everything's been great right up until two weeks ago when I did this . And now obviously they're not happy about me riding dirt bikes, which I can understand. They want me to get fit, and then concentrate on my job, which is roadracing. Which is a shame for me because motocross is such a passion.Over the last four years I've gotten faster and faster , and I've gotten more stylish because of the jumps . In England it's always muddy and horrible and there aren't that many jumps. When I first came over here I was at medium speed, and now, obviously right up until crashing, I've actually got a decent pace and all in control. I could do all the doubles, I was just learning to whip it... It's so frustrating now that I've gotten injured.I want to thank my sponsors. First of all American Honda for being patient with me, Speed and Strength Leathers, AGV helmets, Cycle Gear, Corona (which is the best beer in the world), FMF, all those guys. I feel like I've let them down, so I promised I'm going to come back in better shape and I'm going to win some races for them.