Mmegi Online :: Lekone: The footballer-turned-biker
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Friday 16 November 2018, 13:42 pm.
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Lekone: The footballer-turned-biker

One of the best local bike riders, Motsumi Lekone never thought he would scale the heights in the sport. During his childhood, he used to admire riders roaring away in their machines.
By Boitumelo Khutsafalo 2013-10-01 10:00:00 Fri 31 Oct 2014, 12:33 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Lekone: The footballer-turned-biker








He fell in the love with quad bikes after watching the annual 1000km Desert race while still a youngster. The route for the bikes passed through his village, Metsimotlhabe and Lekone developed interest in the sport.

His love for the sport was also influenced by the fact that with his friends, he used to watch races at Molapo Crossing next to Gaborone West. Since he could not afford to buy even the cheapest bike, he like many other children resorted to playing football.

“I played for a team called Manchester (an amateur team). It later became Notwane’s development side. I played football even at the University of Botswana,” he said. From Manchester, Lekone moved to Marang FC before being spotted by Mokgosi Young Fighters, who once played in the Premier League.

Because of school commitments, he did not play many games at Mokgosi.

“Mpofu (Ezekiel) at the time was focused on getting results because Mokgosi was in the Premier League and needed players who would be available full-time,” he explained.

While studying at the University of Botswana, Lekone managed to buy a small bike (150cc). He later upgraded to 250cc and began to do what he had always dreamt off. He started by riding just for fun before he entered races in Mafikeng with a friend. In 2009, Lekone joined Gaborone Motor Club (GMC) and immediately began racing in bigger local events like the Desert

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Race.

At last year’s Desert Race, he finished first in the GMC category for the quad bikers. He has also won the annual Khawa Bike Race twice - in 2012 and 2014.

In 2013 he finished second. A few weeks ago, he won the Mmankgodi Bike race.  Lekone said the Mmankgodi race was well attended by spectators, which gives the sport hope.

“I think since the Desert Race was moved to Jwaneng this year, many people were hungry for bike action, hence the high turnout at the Mmankgodi race.” He was also impressed with the fact that everyone had access to the riders unlike in other races where spectators and potential sponsors are closed out.

Lekone still aims high despite the many challenges faced by local riders.

“The main challenge is that of finance. Sponsors are not coming on board and imagine a kit for riders costs around P20,000, just the kit before we talk about the bike,” he said.

Lekone explained that a good bike would cost around P60,000 but in the standard form. “When you include the extras, the price will shoot up to P170,000,” he said.

He said most Batswana prefer to play football because the equipment required is far more cheaper.

He said the price of equipment for sport like bike riding are exorbitant and prohibitive. At the moment, Lekone and other local riders are off-season until the end of the year.

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