He was dubbed Wollongong's "hometown hero" and Luke Clout seemed to enjoy the responsibility on Saturday night.
Clout emerged victorious in the SX1 category (450cc) in round three of the Australian Supercross Championships at WIN Stadium.
Three-time defending champion Justin Brayton won the first race while Clout finished second. However, Clout proved too strong in races two and three to be declared round winner.
Daniel Reardon finished runner-up while American rider Brayton finished third.
Clout, who was actually born and raised in Annangrove, had great support from a passionate and loud Wollongong crowd because he was the most "local" rider in the SX1 class.
"We are two hours away from my house but I do a lot of riding and training here and I've got some sponsors down in Wollongong," he told the Mercury.
"For me, it is a home race. The amount of family and friends, and people that I didn't really know that supported me was crazy. It's really nice to have a good fan base and deliver a win for the Australians.
"It's been a build up between the Aussies and Americans in the lead up, but it was good to see the Aussies on top."
Clout said he was happy with his form in all three races at WIN Stadium.
"The first race was definitely a lot harder because I was actually coming through the pack a little bit," he said.
"When you're coming through the pack, you're in a little bit more danger because there's obviously the risk of other riders. That was a bit harder, but I came through to come second in that one. I knew I had the speed because I actually caught Justin [Brayton] in that race.
"I knew I had to get off to good starts in the other two, and I managed to hole shot both of them. I rode clean laps and had my own fresh air. And the rest is history.
"It's taken too long for me to finally win one [round], I never really got one in the 250cc (SX2). Obviously now I've stepped up into the 450cc class. It's been a long road, there's been a lot of injuries and stuff behind the scenes that a lot of people don't see. I always work hard and this year I've been working really hard. I'm happy with the bike and really happy with the team and the people I'm surrounding myself with. That's what it comes down to now, I'm just in a better head space."
Brayton retains the championship lead after winning the opening two rounds this season. He said Clout deserved credit for the victory.
"He's good in these types of conditions really, where there's no ruts...it played into his favour but all good, that's racing. Everybody had to ride the same track," Brayton said.
"I've won in front of my hometown before and it's really special, so I'm stoked for him to do that. It was really good tonight, the crowd was amazing. And the stadium is unbelievable. But if you didn't get the hole shot, it was a really tough race. First one, I got the hole shot, and the next two I didn't which was unfortunate. If you don't get the start, you kind of follow each other around a bit.
"But I'm excited for the next two [rounds], the tracks will be really good at full-sized stadiums. I'm excited to still have the red plate [as championship leader]."
It was difficult to split a winner in the SX2 class, but it was Chris Blose who emerged as the round three winner.
Jay Wilson jumped out of the blocks to win race one, Blose was declared victorious in round two while Connor Tierney won the final race.
Blose was the round winner while Joshua Osby finished second and Mitchell Oldenburg took third place.
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