Ronald Slamet is retiring from racing this year to promote development in the sport.
Cape Town - Namibian-born motorcyclist Ronald Slamet is hanging up his leathers this year after clinching three consecutive Mike Hopkins Motorcycles Regional championships from 2013 to 2015 and will focus on the development of the sport.

Slamet moved to South Africa with his family in 2005, and began racing professionally in 2011 after being introduced to the sport by his father, who is also an avid motorcycle racer.

“My father was a racer and he introduced me to the sport because he is a motorcycle fanatic,” Slamet said.

Winning the three titles was the highlight of his career.

“It’s one of my biggest achievements in my career, mostly because we have this high calibre of motorcycle riders in our country. So for me it’s a huge achievement.”

'Big brother' programme

After quitting the sport, Slamet will be working with children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

“I want to educate the kids about the sport and would like them to participate.”

He will be embarking on a sponsorship drive to fund a “big brother racing programme”, which he hopes will foster a love and following for the sport in disadvantaged communities.

A spiritual man from a spiritual family, Slamet said: “God wants me to give back to the community.”

But, motorcycle racing is no walk in the park, and he has to stick to a strict regime of diet and exercise.

He moved to Cape Town in 2005 when he received a sports bursary from Paarl Gymnasium where he played rugby.

But Slamet’s sports career was almost over when he suffered a knee injury in a rugby match.

'Be your best'

“I just couldn’t cope with not being able to play sports and not be able to do anything” he said.

It was then that his father introduced him to motorcycle racing.

Slamat says that being a motorcyclist requires a lot of physical work. He has a special diet he follows to ensure he stays in tip-top shape.

“I go to the gym as well every single day. To be a motorcyclist requires you being your best - you need to be fit and strong.”

Slamat will be racing for Yamaha in his final race this year before he gives back to others.

Cape Argus

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