There is a rich motorcycle culture in Australia – road bikes in the city, dirt bikes in the country and many great racers have won on the international scent. It can create bike obsessions with some and 14 year old Brandon Demmery is certainly one of them.
The up and coming racer is currently competing in the Superlites category – which supports the Australian Superbike Championship. The Superlites category uses 125cc, 250 Mono and Moto3 machines.
Brandon competes with his family team – Brando Racing with mother – Sharon and father – Michael running the team and supporting Brandon at each round.
Brandon, one of three children caught the motorcycle bug young with school teachers concerned that he was too motorcycle crazy – but the Demmery family chose to support Brandon and take him into racing.
Undoubtedly it is an expensive exercise and one night, Michael worked out that over a season, it cost the family $50 per lap to test, practice and compete. In fact, just one round – at Queensland Raceway would cost $5000 after taking in bike maintenance, tyres, accommodation, travel, entry fees etc. A tough ask when you still have to pay the mortgage and buy food for the family.
The family are committed to the sport and, indeed find it a great way to strengthen the family bond – just one thing – don’t complain about how much it costs to play football!
The recent round of the Superlites at Queensland Raceway was the first time Brandon had made the trip up north. Previously had competed in New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria state championships and selected rounds of the national championship. The Queensland trip offered miserable weather – making it a hard task for Brandon – making the first sessions difficult.
“In the first sessions I tried to get some lines down and learn the track. In different conditions the track should be much the same. As I learn the track, I’ll probably brake a little later and accelerate a bit earlier – which is hard to do in the wet,” Brandon said to Racer Views.
Brandon had aimed high for the weekend but continual track condition changes made it difficult. It meant that he didn’t the podium result he desired – but it is all a learning challenge having stepped up the National Series from the Victorian State Series the previous year.
“It is certainly different. I get three races and two qualifying a weekend now – the races are a lot longer and it is more competitive. It is a little hard to get used to.”
In the first sessions I tried to get some lines down and learn the track. In different conditions the track should be much the same. As I learn the track, I’ll probably brake a little later and accelerate a bit earlier – which is hard to do in the wet
There is little doubt through with more experience Brandon will continually compete at the front. Currently he can’t compete on a more powerful bike due to his age – but enjoys the Superlites.
“I’m only 14 and you have to be 16 to get on a 600 bike. Hopefully in a few years I will be able to get on a 600 bike, then maybe look to get a ride with Honda, Suzuki.”
The team is a family team – with the funds and weekend support coming from the family with friends and well wishers also contributing valuable funds and resources. The lure of motorcycle racing brings them to the track each weekend. Those of us love motorsport or get involved in it, know its power.
“My dad is motorcycle mad too so we’d thought we would do this – give it a shot.”
Brandon’s Honda RS125 is a sleek and elegant machine to learn on and undoubtedly will provide an ideal learning platform from Brandon to prepare for more powerful bikes later in his career.
The focus, however remains on 2012 and ending the season on a high. Brandon sits inside the top 10 in the Championship with a couple of rounds to go.
The ASBK circus will return to Queensland Raceway for the final round of the year – one which we hope is dry and will undoubtedly provide a challenging end to Brandon’s first season in the national class.
It is riders and teams like this that support racing and prepare it for its future. If they continue to come through like this the future of the sport in Australia is safe. To support them and make their lives a little easier wouldn’t go astray.
Article and photos by Sam Tickell, June 2012
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