Bilo man wins Motorcycle Rider of the Year
THERE are some people who are content with going through life at a slow and steady pace, but that's not Ryan Yanko's style.
The 33-year-old father from Biloela is tearing up the road racing world whilst juggling his job as a mine site contractor and teaching his children a thing or two when it come to motorbikes.
Yanko raced in motocross from the age of 15 and in 2005 took out the Victorian C-grade motocross championship.
Although, despite his enviable skill on two wheels, he was looking for something outside of the dirt track and that's when he turned his attention to the roads.
"My dad and a couple of his mates used to race road bikes as well so I was always on the track with him whenever he raced,” Yanko said.
"In 2010, Dad asked if I was interested in going road racing and I said 'yes' so I bought a bike.
"I've always loved motorbikes. I raced motocross for a long time and decided I was sick of getting hurt so much so thought I'd try something different and road racing is it.”
With his father's advice "don't be stupid” and extensive safety measures on the track, Yanko has been lucky enough to only walk away with a few bruises during the years.
The cleaner, faster and "expensive” sport quickly became a passion for Yanko, and in 2011 he placed third in the Australian Prostock Series.
In 2015 he also won the Formula 2 Bears Series and just last year he won the Queensland Road Racing championships and the Southern Downs Road Race series.
He also won them both again this year.
"It felt pretty good,” Yanko said.
"All the hard work has paid off.”
Yanko aims to get on the race track as much as possible and is fortunate enough to have the support of not only his family but also his work.
"I try and get out to all the local meetings in Queensland and if I get enough time off work I try and do meetings around Australia that are on if time permits, and if I've got the funds for it,” he said.
Being such an expensive sport, with one weekend's worth of tyres costing thousands of dollars, Yanko is appreciative of the sponsorships he has received.
Bettapork and Hides R Us help out the impressive roadster as well as a few others.
"We've got Active Motorcycles in Biloela - they help me out with parts for my bike - and Moto National down in Brisbane they help me out with Kubuto helmets and oil and stuff,” Yanko said.
Yanko hopes to put Biloela on the map in the racing world, and next year, he hopes to compete in the Swan Super Series on the East Coast.