23-year-old Matt Phillips, Aussie enduro champ calls it quits
Four-time world champion Matt Phillips has cited homesickness and premature burnout for calling time on his international enduro career at the age of 23.
Hailing from Wynyard in Tasmania’s remote north west, Phillips has spent the past five years chasing his Enduro dreams in Italy but announced recently he will call it quits following the end of the 2017 EnduroGP season.
“This was not a decision I took lightly,” the Aussie star said. “But I’m missing the Australian lifestyle, and I must admit lately I’ve not been 100 per cent focused on the races – I need to go home and find the fire before it goes out! The fans don’t want that, and me neither.”
As well as working on bringing a future round of the world series to Tasmanian soil, Phillips said winning the Australian Off-Road Championship is something he’d still like to tick of his list.
“I have never won the AORC and that could become one of my goals,” he said. “I would also like to ride in MX, and why not in SuperEnduro. I want to enjoy a bit of everything.”
Despite the announcement, the reigning world champ scored two podium finishes at the recent EnduroGP in Portugal and moves up to third in the championship with two rounds left to run.
By Kel Buckley