Interview: Alex Hutchinson

Being one of the ‘old men’ of the pit lane suits motorcycle racer down to the the ground.

Not only does the experience he’s gained in over 15 years of competitive racing mean he has the edge in terms of skills on his younger rivals, but it also means he’s seen as one of the main men to glean experience off for the new generation.

Alex, 36, of King’s Square, Norwood, is at Silverstone to race at the Moto GP meeting this weekend, the pinnacle of the world racing scene.

And he hopes the hard lessons learned over the years can help him nurture the future stars of the sport and make a big difference to their competitive careers.

He told .net: “I think what I would like to do is to take a younger rider and help him. I would not be a team manager who doesn’t know what he is on about but I’ve been there and done it.

“There’s stuff that might take you five years to learn and it might just be stupid stuff but you could cut that out and tell people what to focus on, what to forget about.

“People come and ask questions. It’s nice to be asked and it makes your chest stick out a bit further. It is nice that they come and ask your opinion, and not for the wrong reasons.

“One of the big things I tell them is that racing incidents happen, they are bikes, they fall over. If at any time you have caused someone to fall off the best thing you can do is say I am sorry and it is all gone.”

Alex is running a Honda RS250 two stroke bike at the weekend’s big meeting in one of the support races to the World Championship races.

It’s one of three bikes Alex runs over the course of the year, although it is primarily a road race bike for use on tracks such as Oliver’s Mount in Scarborough and at the North West 200 in Northern Ireland.

He added: “We haven’t run this on a track this year but we are hoping it will probably be top 10, top six.”

His track bikes are a Honda 450 based four-stroke machine that he runs in the Supermono Class, practically a full engineering class, which, he admits is a stepping stone to a new bike next season.

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In GP2, Alex runs a Kawasaki ZXR400 based-bike and is currently leading the event.

Although Alex has no real family background in racing, he has battled to the top of the British scene since 1994. He has ridden in the British Championships and the European Championships, and counts Cadwell Park and Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium as his favourite tracks.

But he obviously relishes the challenge of road racing more, and quotes the Triangle course at the North West 200 in Northern Ireland as his ultimate test.

He continued: “I love the Triangle at the North West 200 – it goes between Coleraine, Port Rush and Port Stewart.

“There are two straights and there is nowhere like it in the world where you hold the bike flat out for so long on effectively a B road.

“When there is a break in a hedge if you are flat out doing 160 or 170 and there is a little gust of wind through the hedge it blows the bike over the road.”

Alex admits he is no big fan of recreational biking saying “a racer has one goal, while a biker is into the whole scene. Each to their own”.

And he summed up just why he loves the risk and speed of racing on roads and tracks.

“For me, it’s the ultimate buzz.

“If someone could inject you with 100 per cent adrenaline that lasts for half an hour and I can give you that five or six times a weekend, it’s like that.”

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