My future's on the line as British GP approaches

Talking bikes with Georgina Polden in the garage ahead of her race at Thruxton

Talking bikes with Georgina Polden in the garage ahead of her race at Thruxton

First published in Sport Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by

There is nothing I would like more than arriving at Silverstone in three weeks’ time for the Hertz British Grand Prix with two good results at Indianapolis and Brno in the bag.

A new contract in my back pocket for 2015 would make it the perfect journey home.

I’ve had a good rest. The injuries, apart from a few scabs on my shin and little finger, have cleared up, and I can’t wait to get back on that M1 Yamaha at the ‘Brickyard’ this weekend.

During the break, I had plenty of time to think about those first nine grands prix.

Where we went wrong and most importantly about the mistakes I made, the crashes that were unavoidable and the crashes that were definitely my fault.

I took a long hard look at our whole structure, and I decided it’s down to me to lead the guys in a more balanced and less emotional way.

My future with the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha will be decided in the next three or four races, and MotoGP, like all other international sports, is a results-driven game.

I’ve quickly got to start transferring my pace in practice and qualifying into race results.

It sounds so simple, but as I’ve shown in that first half of the season, it’s not.

The break was great with eight days down in the Cote D’Azur in France really re-charging the batteries.

I’ve never had time to look around the area before and enjoyed sightseeing plus some time on the beach, but no more than a couple of hours at a time with my ginger hair.

Surprise, surprise I planned the little trip just when the Tour de France happened to be coming through.

We watched a fairly flat stage, but found we were staying in the same hotel as Team Sky.

I sat in the lounge pretending to read the newspaper, but watching just how meticulous and planned their whole preparation is for each day.

It was brilliant to watch and hopefully I learnt something.

I also managed plenty of motorcycle riding to keep my hand in.

There were trials bikes at home in Andorra, and some mini dirt tracking in Aragon with Kenny Noyes, Simon Crafer and Jules Cluzel.

Then it was back to my parents’ home near Oxford for some good old-fashioned motocross.

While back in England I went to the British Superbike Championship meeting at Thruxton.

To be honest, I was not sure just how the British public reaction would be after that disappointing first half of the season.

They were brilliant – of course they all wanted to know what was going to happen next year, but their support and interest in three 40-minute autograph and selfie sessions was such a boost for me.

They are all coming to Silverstone to support the British riders in three weeks’ time.

The British Superbike Championship was fantastic and what a great job they have done with all classes and at all levels of funding.

There is certainly plenty of British talent about and l would like to think we will see some of them in action in the MotoGP world championship in future years.

The highlight for me was Georgina Polden’s third place in the 125cc class.

I’ve known Georgina and her Oxfordshire family for a long time and we’ve been motocrossing together.

Despite her lack of experience at that level, she was tremendous and definitely one of those British riders we could see joining us in the next few years.

Thank-you everybody at Thruxton for your support and belief.

The most important nine races of my career start at Indianapolis on Sunday.

No point in hiding the facts.

I’ve got to perform at these next few grands prix to secure my future in MotoGP.

It’s down to me, and me only, and I’m really up for it.

Who was Oxford United's man of the match at Portsmouth?

Oxford Mail: oxford united logo 1200pix

5:34pm Saturday 28th February 2015

Portsmouth 0, Oxford Utd 0

Oxford Mail: oxford united logo 1200pix

4:53pm Saturday 28th February 2015

OXFORD United ground out a valuable point as they held in-form Portsmouth to a goalless draw at Fratton Park.

Updates - Portsmouth v Oxford Utd

Oxford Mail:

1:55pm Saturday 28th February 2015

All the news from Oxford United's trip to Fratton Park in Sky Bet League Two.

Johnny Mullins calls for a repeat show when Oxford United travel to Portsmouth

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Saturday 28th February 2015

JOHNNY Mullins says memories of last season’s terrific win at Portsmouth will be in his mind as Oxford United attempt to pull off a repeat this afternoon.

TABLE TENNIS: Holton's hopes of title are still alive

Oxford Mail: table tennis bat and ball close up for sport

8:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

Holton A kept up their chances of retaining their Oxford & District Associa - tion Division 1 title with a 10-0 drubbing of Forum C.

RUGBY UNION: Rob Lewis comes in at scrum half as Piri Weepu departs London Welsh for Wasps

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

Rob Lewis will fill the vacancy at scrum half left by the departure of Piri Weepu for London Welsh’s Aviva Premiership bottom-of-the-table clash with London Irish at Oxford’s Kassam Stadium today (2.30).

RUGBY UNION: London Welsh must retain their enthusiasm, says Carl Kirwan

Oxford Mail: Carl Kirwan will lead London Welsh

8:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

Carl Kirwan believes London Welsh must show the same energy and desire of recent weeks against London Irish today (2.30pm) to stand a chance of breaking their miserable run, writes JACK JOHNSON.

DARTS: Deta Hedman sees off Trina Gulliver

Oxford Mail: Deta Hedman has set her sights on bringing the world championship trophy back to Oxfordshire

8:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

Oxfordshire's Deta Hedman battled past old rival Trina Gulliver, the nine-time world champion, 4-2 in the BDO World Trophy first round at EventCity, Manchester.

ICE HOCKEY: Mike Whillock in Oxford City Stars boost

Oxford Mail: Mike Whillock will play for Stars against Basingtoke Buffalo

8:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

Oxford City Stars are lifted by the return of Mike Whillock for their South Division 1 match at home to Bracknell Hornets tonight (7.30).

MOTORSPORT: Marussia in team list for 2015 season

Oxford Mail: REVVED UP: Marussia's Max Chilton races around a circuit. His Formula One team has worked with Sage Group

8:00am Saturday 28th February 2015

Marussia have been named on a ten-team entry list for the start of the 2015 Formula 1 season.

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