Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Helping to Steer Our Son towards the Big Time; Almost Everything They Earn Is Spent on Their Son and They Haven't Had a Holiday in Years, but the Rouses Are a Close Unit. ZOY BURN Speaks to the Family Dedicating Their Lives to Their Teenager's Motorcycling Career

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Helping to Steer Our Son towards the Big Time; Almost Everything They Earn Is Spent on Their Son and They Haven't Had a Holiday in Years, but the Rouses Are a Close Unit. ZOY BURN Speaks to the Family Dedicating Their Lives to Their Teenager's Motorcycling Career

Article excerpt

WHEN Martin Rouse isn't away working long hours as an electrical contractor, he's usually packed into a motorhome with his wife and three children.

From April to October, most weekends are spent travelling around the UK as teenage son Chrissy follows his dream of becoming the next Valentino Rossi.

The 15-year-old, of Burnopfield, is a pupil at Emmanuel College in Gateshead and one of the country's most promising young motorcycle racing stars.

With a national championship already under his belt, he was this year awarded the BBC Newcastle Rising Star Award.

And he has already made a big impact after arriving in the Sunoco British 125GP Championship last month - a category regarded as a training ground for the Rossis and Jorge Lorenzos of the future.

But his success is down to more than raw talent. The support of family plays a huge role in the development of such a young rider.

Martin, 46, mum Karen, 40, big sister Katie, 19, and little sister Grace, five, all travel to races.

"We all live our lives for Chrissy's racing," explains Martin. "It's something that we all fully support and believe in and we know that to get him to the top will take hard work and solid commitment from us all, but we're up for it. It's a challenge, but it's worth it."

Chrissy's two-wheel career began at the tender age of nine when he started riding motocross. But in 2006 his dreams almost hit the skids when his bike and equipment were stolen.

Rather than spend thousands on replacing the lot, Martin and Karen agreed to buy him a racing bike instead - and as soon as he took to the track for the first time they realised they had done the right thing. Chrissy took to it instantly.

Last year he won the Aprilia Superteen Championship and he has stepped up to the fiercely competitive British 125 series - part of the prestigious British Superbike Championship support package, where he dazzled first time out.

In previous years most of the mechanical work was undertaken by Martin, but now Chrissy has signed for Northumberland-based SGR Racing, he can take a back seat.

"I don't have as much to do on the bike, so now I can play more of a supporting dad role," he explains. …

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