Late starter Clint Clarke loves to race no matter the odds
ALL Clint Clarke ever wanted to do was race motorcycles.
But growing up "poor" didn't leave much room for Clarke to own a bike.
"I didn't ride a bike until I was 25," Clarke said.
Starting at an age when most successful motorcyclists are taking the world by storm, Clarke said he knew the odds were stacked against him.
"In my first year of racing I was 30."
All he had was "a real old bike" but his passion and skill saw him become a successful racer, including most recently when he won the Tasmanian Motorcycle Club's Tasmanian State Championships at Symmons Plains.
Clarke managed to win all three races at the state championships and smashed his competitors in the first two; winning by 20 seconds and 25 seconds respectively.
Throughout his motorcycle career the now 40-year-old's goal has been to ride in an international race, but he said something had always stood in his way.
"Earlier this year I had been offered a two-year contract in Spain, but couldn't take it up as I couldn't gain the sponsorship I needed,'' he said.
"About a month later I was offered a ride for the BMW factory team in Malaysia; again I couldn't take it up as didn't receive the sponsorship I needed.
"I also did get a ride for the upcoming 8-hour enduro ride at Phillip Island in the first weekend of December with a Japanese team, sadly the event was cancelled."
He said he did not believe he would ever get to the MotoGP World Championships, no matter how much he might want it, due to his late start in the profession.
"Because of my age you can't set anything outrageous (as a goal)."
With the help of Shadforths, Clarke was able to relocate from Tasmania to Gladstone to earn enough money to keep racing.
He said everything he did was geared towards having enough money to get out on a track.
With little hope for his own racing career culminating in an overseas race, Clarke said he hoped he could help someone in a similar position that he was to see their racing dreams come true.
"I've always wanted to get to a point where I could be a team manager.
"I could give a kid who grew up without coin a chance," Clarke said.
The next challenge Clarke has set himself is the Queensland and Australian championships next year but he is looking for sponsors. Anyone interested in supporting Clarke can email him on firstname.lastname@example.org.