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The American Racing Team’s 2023 lineup of Sean Dylan Kelly and Rory Skinner were reunited in January for the team’s inaugural three-week winter training camp in California. They were joined by the American Racing Academy’s newest member, Max Toth, who is preparing for his first season in the JuniorGP European Moto2 class.

Thanks to key partners of the team, Family Powersports Texas and the W Training Facility, the trio were flat-out for three weeks taking on as many disciplines of motorcycle riding as possible, sharpening their skills with motocross, supermoto, flat track, enduro and mini bikes, while taking their fitness to new heights in the gym and on mountain bikes between riding sessions. Along with expert tuition from American Racing Team’s Racing Director, John Hopkins, the riders were able to pit themselves on track against 2021 MotoGP World Champion, Fabio Quartararo, and fellow Moto2 competitor Tony Arbolino, thanks to Johnny Louch at the W Training Facility.

With the extended MotoGP calendar and the team aspect becoming all the more important with the intense travel schedule, the team opted to rent a house in the Temecula Wine Country area for the riders to stay in with some of the team, getting to know each other better before the 2023 lap of the world begins.

Rory said: “I had a great time. Every day kind of just merged into one. Flat out from the start with limited rest, 16 days in total and having just two to really chill out. California is super cool. I’m loving it here. So much so that I’m staying for another three weeks at Hopper’s house to train some more. For me, the highlight in general was riding in the warmth of the Californian winter… you can imagine it’s not the same as home. Was super cool to ride with the Maddison family, Fabio and Tony. Wasn’t just on the bike though, being altogether as a team before and after was a real highlight as well. Was a great trip for us all to get to know each other better before we’re all on the road for so long. The American Racing Team is the best. The camp was amazing.”

John Hopkins added:  “It’s been an awesome, awesome few weeks, even while I’m still recovering from my godsend of a hip replacement! But was great that I still managed to get out with the boys riding motocross on the pro track a week later! We were non-stop for nine-ten days straight on every type of riding: supermoto, minibike, dirt track, enduro… it was awesome, really good for all the riders to get that kind of experience. The aspects of MX and dirt track are hugely relevant in terms of what they’ll do on the road race bike: picking it up, getting it turned, your body positioning and bike control, all of it is extremely relevant to Moto2 – everything helps!

“I’m very confident these last couple of weeks will have brought them all heaps of confidence to be ready to go for the season. At the end of the day, seat and bike time is all about bike fitness. You could train your ass off in other ways, be the fittest guy out there but then get on the bike and find you’re not using those same muscles, so bike fitness is a whole other category. Sean’s headed back to Florida now to spend time with family before heading to Spain for the final stage of pre-season, get himself riding over there – it’s obviously a place he knows well and he speaks the language so that’s right for him. Rory has opted not to go back to Scotland for now and actually staying with me for a little longer. We’ll be putting in some more rides, MX trail riding, supermoto and get him on the Ohvale some more, too. On top of that, they’ve been doing a load of mountain biking, had full access to the W Training Facility with my good friend, Johnny Louch, so it’s been a great trip. Organising something like this was huge and we think it’ll pay off in the long run. We’re already counting down the days till round one!”