Eight-year-old Emmanuel Bako has defied all odds in motocross, winning a myriad of accolades on the local and international scene. People have been asking how a boy of such an age manages to balance between school work and the demands of motorcycle racing.
BY DON MAKANYANGA
A Grade Three pupil at Heritage Primary School, Emmanuel starts his lessons at 7am and goes for motocross training after school. However, the young motorcycle racing sensation has defied odds as he enjoys doing both and has managed to balance well the two.
His father, Brighton Bako, spoke on the life of the racing maestro outside motocross in which he has become one of the promising stars in the world.
Bako said his son was cut from a different cloth, as despite his tender age, has managed to be a darling of many of his age. He balances his love of motocross and school well.
“Emmanuel is different in the sense that he can balance his school work and motocross, while also participating in other sporting disciplines at school and is one the best cricketers at his school,” Bako said.
“He travels outside the country on most weekends for motocross competitions and comes back for school on Mondays.
You would be surprised that this is the boy who wouldn’t want to miss a day of school, despite having travelled a day before the school week commences”.
Emmanuel was introduced to the racing world at a tender age of four, after having received a birthday present of a Yamaha motorbike. Since then, he has never looked back and has managed to win more than 90 gold medals and a century of trophies.
“He started riding a Pwe [a bike used for racing with children between four and six years] at the age of four and it was his birthday present and I was really interested to support him. I said to myself, if he can handle and ride a bike with gears, then he can do well in school and mentally-motivated,” Bako Snr said.
“I was introduced to motocross training school by Bigs Chitima and Innocent Masimo at Donnybrooke where I met Stanley Mugiyo, who later became his coach. His first race was in 2012 and it was a national race and he was the overall winner in the Pwe and never looked back.”
After having made it on the local scene, young Bako had to seek more competition abroad and was moved to the more competitive hub of South Africa.
“After his first race and in no time, he had moved to a bigger bike ktm 50cc, where he started competing in B class and in no time he moved to the A class which had more competition, but he proved good as he continued to defy all odds,” Bako Snr said.
“We later moved him to South Africa where there is tough competition, but he continued to do his best and currently he sits on the summit of the South African national championship. Locally, he competes in two classes the — 50cc and 65cc — in which he reigns supreme”.
Bako said his son is a born winner who believes in his own world and works hard for his success.
“He loves to win all the time and believes in his own world that hardworking and pushing harder is the key to success in everything he does, including school,” he said.
On why they have been encouraging the racing ace to balance his school and motocross, Bako said the reason was for parents to support their children, while using education to support their sporting endeavours.
“As parents, we need to support our children on what they want to do in life as God blessed us differently. Some are footballers and have made it in life, but above all, we should pray to God for our children and make sure that they get a proper education,” he said.
The racing sensation is set to participate in the final round of the Womza South African national championship with a win set to be a befitting present for the eight-year-old who will soon turn nine.