Courtesy of Sharon Cox
Sara Andersen at just 17 years of age, lives on an island in Denmark, goes to school, has raced in Women Motocross World Championship for past 3 Seasons, and produced step-up of results: Overall 2016: 30th, 2017: 14th and 2018: 9th.
For the young petite rider, goals have been set: dealing with competitive racing at WMX Rounds within MXGP Series, learning to race on GP tracks- so very different from tracks at home, along with coping best as ‘I can’ through injury to knee.
# 325: ‘In my first WMX season I was riding 125cc and I found it really hard to feel comfortable on the GP tracks. It still is sometimes. I find them difficult and very different from the tracks I normally ride on.
It’s almost impossible to find a track like a GP track, with the deep ruts and everything. The only place you can train is at the World Championship. I think that’s one of the reasons why I have improved year after year.
2018 was the first season I raced all of the Rounds. I showed some good speed, but the results weren’t always there. My best finish was 4th in a race and I made 5th Overall a few times this season. That’s also why I’m not satisfied with a 9th Overall 2018.
What with homework, assignments, training every day and stretch all that out until Sara finishes upper Secondary school in Summer 2020, switching Brands from Yamaha to KTM 250F was part of Sara’s thought process for improving race results.
# 325: I had been riding KTM since I was 4 years old, and it has always been my favorite brand. The Yamaha was fine, and I could get some help, which is the reason why I rode Yamaha. KTM wanted to help me for 2018, and I like the KTM better, so I changed Brand. The electric start made it easier for me, and I also had problems with the clutch on the Yamaha, which I never have had on the KTM. Both brands are good, but I feel better on the KTM, especially the new 2019-model.
Daily challenges aside, Sara has heart set on racing WMX.
#325: As long as I can remember my dream has been to become World Champion. I started to ride World Championship the moment I turned 15, just to get the experience and learn. I’m happy that I did, because it took longer than I expected to get used to the tracks and just the big event.
Big goals to fulfill, 2018 WMX Season confirmed what Sara is made of. Best result finishing 5th Overall in Final Round at Imola, all the while struggling with knee injury which required surgery post racing Series. Sara puts paid to ‘if you want it bad enough, results will come’.
#325: From the beginning of the season I struggled with my knee. I didn’t know what was wrong, but sometimes I wasn’t able to walk and other days I couldn’t feel anything. I gave it some time but it got worse during the season. I couldn’t run, cycle or train like I wanted, and I could definitely feel that, when I was riding. I just wanted to finish the season before I had my knee checked. I managed to win the European Championship and finish 5th overall in Imola, which was amazing. After the season I had a surgery and my knee is doing so much better now.
To cap off 2018 WMX 9th Overall in Championship, Sara represented Denmark at Women’s Motocross of European Nations 2018, with fellow National Rider Line Dam, celebrating 2nd Overall on podium.
What made this result special, was not only the boost in confidence that Sara has the ability to dig deep no matter what circumstances, but also takes inspiration from 6x WMX Champion Kiara Fontanesi and Dutch Racer Nancy Van de Ven who have set bench-mark for Women racing at World MX level.
As Sara explains: In 2018 I was representing Denmark together with Line Dam. That weekend in Poland my knee was really bad and I didn’t walk the track like I normally do, because I had to rest my knee. I qualified second and it was the only time on track I raced like I know I can. I had a lot of pain in my knee and I did my best. I finished 3rd in the first moto and 2nd in moto 2 (with a bit of luck).
Even though I didn’t feel like my riding was the best I made good result and it was amazing knowing that it was only Kiara and Nancy in front of me, because they are some of the fastest girls in the world. We didn’t expect to finish second overall, so we were very happy and it was an amazing experience. Line and I are really good friends, so it was nice that we actually for once had to be a team’.
Surrounded by supportive family, friends and sponsors, which as Sara puts it without this support, ‘I wouldn’t be able to race WMX‘ # 325 heads into 2019 WMX Season fresh, keen to go racing, and more than comfortable that the past 3 seasons learning curve has been worth it.
Topping the list pre-WMX Opener at Valkenswaard # 325: ‘I will first of all make sure that I’m in good shape. Then I will ride as many hours on the bike as possible. I will also train in some sand, because it’s not my strong side and the season kicks off on a sand track. I showed some good speed in 2018, and I will try to take it with me and just minimize my mistakes’.