A Big Bay teenager’s need for speed has seen him taking the motor racing world by storm and he’s only getting started.
Jared Schultz, 16, was introduced to the sport by his father, Karl, who bought him his first bike, a Honda 150cc, to race the short circuit at Killarney Race Track two years ago.
“My dad wanted to start racing, and he asked me if I’d like to join him,” said Jared, a Parklands College pupil.
Jared, who also does kite surfing, said the speed and adrenaline were what he enjoyed most about racing.
He currently takes part in a SuperGP event which includes eight races around different tracks throughout the country.
Jared placed 10th in his first race in February at the Red Star Raceway in Johannesburg this year.
In March he came ninth at the Phakisa Freeway track in Welkom. In April, he placed fourth at the Zwartkops Raceway in Pretoria “and gained a lot of momentum going into his home race”. In May, he raced at his home track, Killarney, where he came third in race one and second in race two.
“But the biggest reward of all was being awarded rider of the day,” he said.
Now Jared has been invited to the Netherlands to race at the TT (Tourist Trophy) Circuit Assen, a race track regarded by many as the “cathedral of motorcycling”. He leaves today, Wednesday June 15, and will return on Tuesday June 28.
“He will be racing the week before in Belgium in the Battle of the Lowlands to get used to the same bike (a KTM RC 390) that he will use in Assen,” said Karl.
“The TT Assen will be a huge challenge because there will be 26 KTM RC 390 riders on the grid which is the biggest field of the same bike I have raced in,” said Jared.
“Joey Litjens, the marketing co-ordinator for KTM in the Netherlands invited Jared to race over there. He will be taking part in one of the supporting races in the KTM RC 390 European cup,” said Karl.
Karl said he was “exceptionally proud of his son that has done so well in the sport in such a short space of time.
“Depending on how he does overseas and if he’s good enough, he will get the support of many locals to go further in the sport,” he said.
Jared’s dream is to race in the Moto3, Moto2 and MotoGP championships one day and to help make this dream a reality he will be meeting up with Brad Binder, a South African Grand Prix motorcycle racer competing in the Moto3 class and leading the championship at the moment.
“We’re going to meet Brad overseas. David Mcfadden, a local rider currently racing in the World Superstock 1000 series, which is part of the Superbike FIM Championship, put me in contact with him. Brad’s a nice guy. He said he’d try to help Jared wherever he could. He said it was great to see more South African talent,” said Karl.