This week we introduce you to fourteen-year old Brian Hart from Spain, currently battling for the championship lead in both the Santander Consumer Finance KTM RC Cup in the UK and also the ADAC Junior Cup powered by KTM, in Germany.
Brian is a rider with dual citizenship. His mother is Brazilian and his father British. His natural affinity with bikes perhaps due to his mum riding a Suzuki GSX-R1000 throughout her pregnancy! At just seven-years old, Brian had his first taste of motorbikes after his brother got a minibike. He knew straight away he wanted to ride.
“I always asked my mum for a bike to race,” said Brian. "But she didn’t want it. Soon I drove her crazy, and she agreed!”
Upon finally giving in, Brian was enrolled at a training school in his hometown of Malaga. He was just nine-years old when he started racing minibikes around Spanish karting circuits.
After discovering he had a natural ability for racing and was beating his friends who had been riding longer than him, he made the transition to a Kawasaki 65 Minimoto at aged ten.
In 2013 he was Champion of Copa Sur y Nacional in Spain, but it was on a trip to Brazil, to see the world cup, that his career really started to move forward. Brian explains:
“Although the reason for going was for soccer, I took full advantage of this trip and took part in a motorcycle racing competition so I could discover the level of the Brazilian boys. It was fantastic”
His time in Brazil certainly impressed as Hart caught the eye of former 500cc Grand Prix, MotoGP and World Superbike race winner, Alex Barros. The Brazilian contacted the Hart family and invited Brian to become a part of his team. Naturally, he grabbed the opportunity and started racing straight away. However the championship had already started, meaning Brian had missed two races. That didn’t stop him and on his first outing he put his bike on the top step. He then continued on to place 3rd in the 250 GPR class within the Moto 1000 GP Championship and delivered a fastest lap and new circuit record on the last race of the season.
In 2015, he went even better by finishing as champion which lead Hart to being signed up by the Monlau Repsol academy to compete in the pre-Moto3 class in 2016. For 2017, the family started looking for a series he could compete in. First looking at Moto3.
“Moto3 is very expensive, so we kept looking for a series which was relevant but affordable. This is when we found KTM RC Cup.”
Brian chose the Santander Consumer Finance-backed UK series because he knew there would be good support for the riders and raising his profile in the UK would be useful for helping find a sponsor for the next steps of his career. Then, he did something a bit different.
“The ADAC Cup was running in Germany and alongside the Dutch racers. I knew they were fast so decided to take on both series to maximise my experience and exposure.”
Luckily for Brian, there is only one clash on race weekends for the UK and Germany. He’s chosen to ride in the UK and miss one German round. So it is vital he pulls out a good lead in both championships. He’s started well! Leading in the UK and sitting just 4 points behind Germany’s Aaron Schäfer.
“It is a lot of pressure running in both series, so I only try to do my best every time I get on the bike.”
Brian’s dream is to one day race in the MotoGP or the WSBK. He tells us KTM RC Cup has been a great choice for him because the cost to race is low and because of the support the riders get from KTM.
“They really help you with the future, which means a lot.”
His advice to other young riders wanting to follow in his footsteps is to start racing minibikes on karting circuits and work step by step, gathering all the experience you can before moving onto the bigger bikes, such as the KTM RC 390.
“The KTM is a great bike. It is unique to anything I have raced before, but I am adapting well and becoming more comfortable on it with every race - which is so many this season! My last race in the ADAC Junior Cup in Oschersleben was my best, for sure. I was very fast and managed to put the KTM RC 390 on pole position and won both races.”
When Brian isn’t racing bikes he enjoys various sports including tennis, pingpong, running, swimming and heading out on his bicycle. We asked him how he managed to balance his studies with a busy racing calendar.
“I use a lot of my free time to study and complete homework because we are away at the track most weekends. So I work hard to make sure I don’t lose too much school time”
Brian really embraces what the KTM RC Cup is all about. He is hardworking, dedicated and focussed. We’ll be keeping our eye on Brian and wishing him all the best for the rest of the season!