Australia has a long history of producing top motorcycle riders and champions. We do not discriminate – over the years our riders topped all categories: Superbikes, Moto3, MotoGP, Motocross, Endurance, Dakar Rally and more. Our list of champions is extensive and includes legends such as Mick Doohan, Wayne Gardner, Casey Stoner and Toby Price, to name just a few.
It is our love and passion for motorcycles, as well as our endless riding destinations and world class riding roads, which contribute to this long list of champions.
Our champions and our top riders have always inspired new generations of riders, and the young talents just keep coming.
One of these promising young riders is Cros Francis, a 13 year old talent from Sydney.
Young Talent – Cros Francis
Cros was born in 2006 and grew up in Sydney. Although his family has no history of motorcycle racing, he got the “bug” at a very young age. He was only two years old when he got a Yamaha PW50 PeeWee for x’mas which he learned to ride in empty carparks.
At the age of 4, Cros started enduro training with Mike Coles at Trailblazers, which he still attends as he enjoys riding the trails around Windsor with Mike. When he was about 5 years old he met Paul Caslick, multiple time Australian Dirt Track champion, and has been training with him since. In 2012 Paul Caslick said: “… Cros Francis is only 5 and a half, can break slide his KTM, feet on the pegs and power slide away, without realising most established riders couldn’t do this exercise. He does it over and over precisely. For such a young child, I have never seen anything like Cros, most children his age when asked by their parents for coaching I normally advise them to develop their confidence and skills by just riding. Maybe we have something here, as long as he continues to smile and enjoy what he can do”.
Today, Cros is developing under the guidance of Mark McVeigh and Yanni Shaw of motoDNA Academy. MotoDNA operate nationally offering road riders training with a focus on road safety to safeguard motorcyclists on the road.
Cros continued riding throughout his childhood, moving to bigger and faster bikes. He rode KTM 50sx, 65sx, 85sx motard and 105sx, Yamaha YZF R15 and YZ250F, RMU GP8 and Honda NSF250RC. In his own words he was ”simply riding and having fun!”
Throughout this time his parents Don and Samaya were very supportive of his riding passion. But when Cros wanted to race they felt he wasn’t quite ready for motorbikes racing. So at the age of 7 he started racing Go Karts, which he learned to drive when he was just 3.5, and this was a good introduction to racing for him.
Racing from the Age of 12
Cros continued improving his riding skills on weekends while attending school on weekdays. Then in 2017 he was selected to be the Junior test rider for motoDNA and assist with data collection to investigate rider behaviour patterns with the aim of developing Road Rider Safety Technologies. He continued to spend time at motoDNA under the guidance of chief coach Mark McVeigh who taught him the discipline required for racing.
That year he managed to convince his parents he was ready for racing and in November he took part in his first road race. He took everyone by surprise when he placed himself on the front row in P2 and won the state championship race on his first attempt.
In 2018 he wanted to tackle a full championship season and was competing against young riders who started racing at the age of 6! In 2019 he was selected to compete in the inaugural bLUcRU Oceania Junior Cup alongside 25 other riders from Australia and New Zealand. “I would be a relative novice on the grid with only a year and a bit of racing under my belt and no Australian titles, nor any experience at a national level. Again I surprised myself and those in the paddock. I took pole for all the first six races with 5 podiums finishing either 2nd or 3rd, falling short no more than 0.4s each time”
Cros was one of the youngest participants in the recent Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Selection event held in Spain. 110 of the best junior riders from around the world from ages 13-17 were invited to tryout for the converted Red Bull Rookies Cup for 2020. The experience has provided him the opportunity to understand the level he needs to achieve to be successful at next years’ selection event at which he hopes to perform better and be one of the final 11 to be selected.
Currently his racing career is fully financed by his parents as official sponsors are hard to get. However, he is a supported Jnr Rider at motoDNA.
Cros is undoubtedly a promising young talent. So far in his short racing career he has already scored 9 poles, 7 wins and 18 podiums! He is only in his first year of high school (in the Gifted & Talented Program too!) so it looks like a long successful career is ahead of him.
We will keep following Cros’ career and wish him best of luck in both his riding career and studies.
Links & Tags:
motoDNA Juniors – Cros Francis #42 Oceania Junior Cup on Facebook