With a stack of accolades to his name within the sport of Motocross, Anthony Raynard sets a standard most aspire to. In Hits Close To Home find out more about the Cape Town based rider and his involvement in the motorsports world as he puts down laps at Atlantis Dunes and Zone 7 Motocross track.
Full name: Anthony Raynard
Hometown: Cape Town
Years riding: 20
Riding style: Smooth and consistent
Class: MX1 and MX2
Sponsors: Tintswalo Yamaha Racing, Dragon Energy, Ace Sports, Alpinestars, Puma, 100% Goggles, GR Tax Consulting, Pelotrain, Pirelli, Ohlins Suspension, Nithrone, Akrapovic Exhausts and Kite Wheels
Give us some insight into the highlights of your racing career to date?
Honestly there are so many epic moments to highlight but if I had to choose, it would be; winning the SA Championship in 2012 – that championship went down to the final race of the day. Racing for Team SA at the 2017 Motocross of Nations at Matterley Basin in the UK and again in 2019 at the Assen circuit in The Netherlands. Motocross of Nations is referred to as the “Olympics of Motocross”.
What first attracted you the sport of Motocross?
I ripped on my black plastic bike as a kid so bikes were always my favourite. The jumps and speed of Motocross definitely attracted me at first.
When you think of riding and racing your dirt bike, what emotion comes to mind first?
Happiness. With life being busy and lots happening, riding my bikes bring pure joy and a sense of escape from the daily grind.
After a long break in the MX National Championship due to Covid-19, what are you looking forward to most getting back to racing?
Being in the race environment, not much beats a race day. And, definitely giving it my all in races!
How did you keep yourself motivated and in shape during lockdown?
We never knew if and when we would start racing again so I kept pushing daily, just in case things changed at any time.
With the MX Nationals about to kick off with double-header rounds, what has gone into your preparation to get back to racing?
We have kept it simple in my circle, we know what works for me. Important at the moment has to been to keep healthy with the crazy times we are going through.
What are your thoughts on the double-header rounds?
It’s the only way for us to catch up on races and race this year, so it had to be done. Racing two classes means eight motos for me – demanding weekends ahead.
What goals have you set for yourself for the remainder of the 2020 season?
Fight hard for the MX1 and MX2 SA Championships. With two double header nationals coming up, we are all in!
What have been some of your experiences and highlights of being supported by brands like Dragon Energy Drink?
Rad memories! Travelling to places creating insane content and meeting amazing people throughout the journey. In 2018, the Dragon Energy team and I powered through Dubai for a week of adrenaline filled sports. Memories that will last forever that’s for sure.
How much of a role has the support of your family and friends playing in your racing career?Huge! Having support and positive vibes puts you in a good space whether it be for a race or training.
How would you best sum up the experience of shooting for Hits Close To Home?
Effortless. Thomas Sandell is a master in his craft and so cool to work with. It’s our first collab and won’t be the last.
Which scenes where your favourite?
The sand dunes for sure! We tackled the dunes with the new Ford Ranger from Barloword Ford, this amazing vehicle helped us find new spots that were rad to shoot.
Now seeing the final product, what are your thoughts on the whole project?
Not to sound cliché, but it’s honestly a project that hits home for me. I have dedicated a lot of my life to the world of Motocross. I’m so grateful for where it has taken me and has allowed me to film cool features like this one.
The incredible brands/ sponsors that have been with me for many years, thank you for every bit of support no matter the result! My Tintswalo Yamaha Racing team, you guys are all incredible humans that help me do what I do! My dad, Earle Raynard, and crew chief, David Freeman, thank you – thank you! Lastly, thank you to everyone for supporting me throughout my career and following the journey on the social channels. Let’s keep it going!
Filmed and Edited by Thomas Sandell – Sandell Films.
Photos by Thomas Sandell and Ruben Louw.