Meet the UK’s youngest daredevil competing in national motocross races
Daredevil River Mathias is the UK’s youngest motocross racer – aged just four.
The fearless youngster started riding motorbikes before he could even walk and now races against children more than twice his size and age.
River tears up the tracks hitting speeds of 25mph on his souped-up electric dirt bike worth £4,000.
The bike-riding fanatic, from Kempsey, Worcs, wants to follow in the footsteps of petrol-head dad Craig who also races motocross.
Craig, 37, said: “It started when it was his first birthday, I bought him an electric quadbike. He just got on and rode it.
“From then I got him a push bike with stabilisers and he could ride it no problems.
“Like any dad would I took them off and he could ride it without stabilisers. He couldn’t touch the ground but he could balance.
“He started racing at three on an outdoor track. He had a big crash with a kid on a petrol bike.
“At that point we had to review it and ask if he wanted to do this as it was scary to watch.
“He got back up on the bike and just said he wanted to do it.
“We told him, ‘you do it until you don’t want to do it.’
“He does think he’s the fastest thing in the world.
“He is fearless but I am quite nervous watching him because he’s another level. It’s scary and amazing at the same time. He has no fear whatsoever.
“He’s crazy - fearless and crazy, a little daredevil.”
River finished an impressive second at his most recent race, beating hundreds of other competitors at the SX Worx indoor motocross track in Sheffield.
Despite standing just over 3ft-tall, the mini-bike fan is now being tipped as a future star in the electric motocross category of the sport.
Craig, a hairdresser, added: “Electric motocross is quite new, he’s the first generation of kids doing it.
“The racers ride on an adult track. It’s steep and they do crash. The bikes will go 25pmh which is rapid.”
Craig and his wife Emma, 35, travel in their campervan to tracks up and down the country with their daughter Isla, ten, and River.
Craig, a hairdresser, added: “I race motocross so he grew up on the track. I didn’t want to push him into it as it’s dangerous.
“It was always do what you want.
“He just wants to do motocross. It’s a family thing, we meet other families there. We travel around there a lot in the van.
“Motocross as a combustion engine sport is on the decline, due to the noise as they’re always in rural areas.
“The electric is what’s saving the sport, they’re quiet and don’t make any noise.
“The electric is growing and these kids are the first kids of their age to ride it.
“We just spent £4,000 on a bike. The petrol one was the same price but a risk.
“He has lots of friends that can’t ride push bikes yet and here he is tearing around at 25mph.
“He loves the sport, I can tell that he loves it. The future plan is to go until it’s no longer fun. We tell River to just have fun.”