Mmegi Online :: Unyielding Crosbie overcomes hurdles to fulfil childhood dream
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Last Updated
Tuesday 24 April 2018, 14:46 pm.
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Unyielding Crosbie overcomes hurdles to fulfil childhood dream

From the village of Serowe, Vincent Crosbie is trying to fulfil his dream of being the first Motswana to participate at the Dakar Rally.
By Kabelo Boranabi Fri 16 Dec 2016, 13:28 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Unyielding Crosbie overcomes hurdles to fulfil childhood dream








Crosbie says it all started out as childhood dream he shared with his late father to take part at the world’s biggest motorsport event.

“My biggest influence in my riding career has been my father, Noel. Sadly he passed away when I was young and now I have taken it upon myself to fulfil our dream of us going to the Dakar Rally,” Crosbie told Mmegi Sport. However, the 26-year-old’s road to Dakar Rally has been a bumpy one, as he had to raise around P1-million. He said he has managed to source around P600,000.

“We are probably short of P290,000, which I had to take a personal loan for. I had to take a loan of P255,000, which is something that I never thought I would do at this age. But this is all because I am determined and willing to go an extra mile,” he said.

Crosbie started racing at a tender age of three. He first took part in the competitive motocross race at the age of five. According to Crosbie, he quit the sport for eight years following the death of his father but returned in 2010 when he won the Botswana off-road championship. “With the help of some family members I started off with some small bikes and eventually I went onto do the bigger bikes. It has been five or six years and here we are. The journey has been tough; it is not something that I look back on. I was held back by injuries and financial issues. Obviously Dakar Rally is much bigger than that,” he said.

Crosbie said he had to go through a two-year process to secure a position in the competition which came with costs as he had to rent a space in one of the teams participating at the rally and a motorbike amongst other things which came at a big cost.

“Dakar is massive like the World Cup of motorsport if not bigger. What most people do not understand is, it is limited to a few people. You have to go through a very long qualifying process, which has taken me two years.”

Crosbie got a feel of the competition in 2015, when he was a mechanic for a friend. He said the experience prompted him to

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start his own campaign of going to the race after he realised it is achievable. He took part in the annual Toyota 1,000km Desert race where he obtained a podium finish. He went on to take part in South African national championships and the Merzouga Rally in Morocco and the races formed part of his qualifying process.

The two-wheel biker said he initially thought that the local association, the Botswana Motorsport (BMS) will spearhead his campaign as they did for the other local riders in the past but the problems that had marred the association affected the whole process.

 “They (BMS) have not done anything. They have not been involved in my campaign at all. Unfortunately, they are in a bad shape. The politics there have made it really hard for me. I am not a politician. I ride motorbikes, so for me it is not to try and deal with what is happening with BMS and focus on the race not the politics. We only had certain individuals within the BMS who really helped.”

He further said his efforts of trying to source sponsorship from the Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) and the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development hit a snag as he had to have the backing of the local association.  

“I’m targeting a finish at the race. If you look at the history of the race the person who won it most times had to wait for six years. He competed for six years before he could win the race. On my race I will try to finish in the top 40 and that will be amazing for me,” Crosbie revealed his targets.

He said he is up to the task as the terrain in South America is similar to the one in some parts of Botswana, where he has been preparing for his race.

Crosbie will leave the country on December 29, while the race will start on January 02, 2017.

 

Profile

Full Name: Vincent Crosbie

D.O.B: June 13, 1990

Hometown: Serowe

Sport: Motorsport

Relationship status: In a relationship

Hobbies: Fishing, adventurous activities, mountain biking and working with mechanics

Favourite dish: Phaleche, morogo and steak and anything from Nandos

Honours: Three times Botswana off-road champion; 2015 African Off-road champion; 11th at the 2016 world championships and 2016 African Motocross Champion

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