Bridgestone are further stepping up their motocross activity ahead of next season, after revealing that two of the sport’s most talented young stars will be riding on Battlecross tyres, in huge coup for the brand.
So soon after announcing its title sponsorship of the Bridgestone British Masters MX Championship for 2018, the world’s largest tyre manufacturer can now add Josh Gilbert and Callum Green to its ranks, who will both be riding on its range of Battlecross X10, X20, X30 and X40 products.
Josh, who recently won the prestigious Coupe de l’Avenir competition for Great Britain – which is the under 21s version of the Motocross of Nations – was using the Bridgestone X20 tyres for the first time and will now ride on Bridgestone for the Honda Adventure Centre Team along with 17-year-old Callum.
The signings are regarded as a massive accomplishment for Bridgestone, with Josh and Callum competing in the British Championship MX2 and British Championship MXY2 series respectively. It is hoped that both will elevate the brand to an even wider audience at the elite level of the sport.
Josh, who will also compete in the MX Nationals next year, said he couldn’t be more impressed with the product.
The Cornish youngster said: “I have always been a bit fussy about my front tyres but the Battlecross offers just about everything. It gives me more stability which is key. It means I can change my line quicker and save vital milliseconds on my lap times. It has given me more confidence as a result. The more confident I am, the faster I’ll ride.
“I have heard a lot of positive things about the tyres but I had never ridden on them before. I’m already thrilled to bits with the product and the early signs are that Bridgestone will play a big role in any successes I achieve next season.”
Callum was similarly upbeat about his chances in 2018 after teaming up with the HONDA Adventure Centre Team and Bridgestone. The Nottinghamshire teenager has been recovering from a ruptured liver but is already back on the bike following rehab work with Kirk Gibbons, who counts Tai Woffinden, Leon Haslam and Alex and Sam Lowes as close contacts.
“I have met a lot of those guys who are superstars in their own rights. Their commitment and dedication has rubbed off on me and the rehab experience has been a positive one. I have been injured for much of this year so to get a ride with Dave’s team with Bridgestone backing is massive.
“I want to win the MXY2. I might go under the radar a bit because of my lack of competitive action this year, but I will definitely be pushing to win and from what I have heard about Bridgestone, I will enter the season with an advantage.”
Josh and Callum complete an established stable of motocross riders under the Bridgestone banner, with James Hanscomb, Ray Rowson, Robert Yates and Nadiya Jones all winning British championships in 2017 on Bridgestone Battlecross tyres. Josh Waterman also blossomed with two runner-up awards.
Bridgestone’s sales and training development manager Mark Fereday said: “We are thrilled to have Josh and Callum on Bridgestone tyres for the forthcoming season. Not only will they give us a presence at the very highest level of the sport, but they are supremely talented young men who will add prestige, professionalism and a great sense of pride to everything we are trying to achieve in the sport.”
Four-time world champion Dave Thorpe had high hopes for the pair, who he has admired for a long time. He said there was no reason why they couldn’t go on to dominate their respective championships in the future.
“In my eyes, they are both very talented. I think it would be fair to say that we are thin on the ground in terms of talent at the top of the sport. But Max Anstie has shown what can be done and he should be seen as an inspiration to the likes of Josh and Callum. Success is achievable and these two boys should back themselves to win, in much the same way as Max has. I’m excited about the pair of them.”
You can find out more about the full Battlecross range here.