Chefs Tom Kerridge, Paul Ainsworth among supporters at the official launch of The Jude Morris Foundation

The Staff Canteen

Longstanding Michelin-starred chefs Tom Kerridge and Paul Ainsworth attended the Michelin MX nationals today at Cusses Gorse in Wiltshire to support and celebrate the launch of The Jude Morris Racing Foundation

The Jude Morris Foundation was set up in memory of Jude, The Staff Canteen founders Mark and Lucy Morris' son and a brilliant 17 year old motocross athlete who sadly lost his life competing in The British Championship at Duns in Scotland in August last year.

The foundation aims to help, develop and coach aspiring athletes through physical and mental performance guidance. It ensures their physical and mental wellbeing for their chosen sport is at the highest level to improve performance, reduce injury and to ensure they can perform. 

The foundation's 16 supported riders for the 2022 motocross season will have everything they need to become the UK's next motocross Champions. Alongside this, the foundation has so far raised more than £84,000 for Air Ambulances UK.

Supporting young people to chase their dreams

Paul Ainsworth, who rode around the track on a Yamaha 250F, said the experience was "absolutely incredible."

The chef said that he came to support Mark, having followed both of their journeys in professional motocross.

"It was something that I really resonated to with my own dad when he was here," he said, adding: "I just know that whole father-son bond, going motorcycle riding at the weekend."

Describing the foundation and its principles as "incredible," he said, "I think going out there to find the next Jude Morris is an incredible thing because it's an expensive sport and the dedication and all that you have to put into it."

"For me, to be here, it's a total honour." 

From left to right: Paul Ainsworth, Andy James, Tom Kerridge

Also attending was Tom Kerridge, who said: "Mark at The Staff Canteen has always been a huge supporter of the [hospitality] industry right from the word go.

"We've been friends for such a long time, and when something like this happens, when a network of people needs support, it's unquestionable that you come and put your name and do anything you can to raise awareness and try and help put something that puts Jude's legacy into place."

"Anything that supports young people chasing their dreams, anything that helps Mark and The Staff Canteen. It's an absolute pleasure and an honour to be here."

Andy James, marketing brand manager for Michelin motorcycle tyres UK, was glad to see the crossover and solidarity between the world of restaurants and motocross, especially as the Michelin Guide was released on the same day as the race.

He said: "Sometimes we forget the importance of the Michelin star system. To the chefs of this world, it's the barometer."

"It's a massive deal, it's the biggest day in the calendar for the world of gastronomy today. Michelin have been synonymous with it since it started."

As a company, he said, "it's important for us. People know about Michelin-starred restaurants, they know about Michelin tyres, they don't always associate the two things together."

"Any way that we can pull together the two elements into one thing and show that Michelin is more than just tyres."

Mark Morris said the event was "absolutely amazing."

"Clearly, it was quite a tough day, with Jude not being there, but to raise £84,000 for Air Ambulances UK after just seven months is absolutely staggering,"" he added.

"We are honoured, flattered and flabbergasted by the amount of people that have supported it, from the motocross industry that have backed it to Paul Ainsworth and Tom Kerridge that came today, all of the riders that have supported it. Onwards and upwards - hopefully we can make a difference for people in motocross."

Visit the foundation's website if you would like to support it by becoming a sponsor, buying merchandise or making a one-off donation. For every £1 raised, 80p will go to the foundation and 20p will go to Air Ambulances UK.

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 16th February 2022

Chefs Tom Kerridge, Paul Ainsworth among supporters at the official launch of The Jude Morris Foundation