Monster Energy MX Nationals 2012 – Round Eight – Appin

Coppins, Dale and Wilson win Appin Monster Energy MX Nationals

CDR Yamaha’s Josh Coppins has claimed a pivotal third win of the 2012 Monster Energy MX Nationals, extending his MX1 Australian Motocross Championship lead to 12 points at Appin in New South Wales on Sunday, 29 July.

The former world number two, who announced his retirement from the sport during the weekend, was fourth in the opening moto, second in moto two and then sealed the overall with a dominant win in the final 30-minute moto.

It was a special win for the New Zealander on an emotion-charged day, while title challenger Todd Waters was second for Motul Pirelli Suzuki. Waters started the round with a victory in the first moto, before claiming a pair of fourths in the final motos.

“In the first two motos I struggled with arm-pump, which I was surprised with because the track was really smooth,” Coppins said. “It’s always good to win and nice to take a few points back [in the race for the championship]. Hopefully we can keep it up in Moree and not make it too tense at Coolum.”

Third for the round was Honda privateer Jake Moss, a rewarding result in what is his home round of the championship. Moss was seventh in moto one, but a third and a second in the final motos landed him on the podium for the weekend.

New Zealand’s Cody Cooper was fourth for Motul Pirelli Suzuki after winning moto two in fine style, while JDR/KTM Factory Racing rider Dan Reardon completed the top five just one week after announcing his retirement.

The MX2 category was won by Carlton Dry Honda Thor Racing’s Ford Dale as he attempts to close in on series leader Luke Styke. Dale was a disastrous 10th in moto one, but bounced back to salvage the overall with two wins to complete the weekend.

“The first moto didn’t go to plan after I went down on the second lap,” Dale said. “The second moto was a lot better and I was able to get into the lead on the last lap, so I won that. Moto three was good as well, I just rode my own race and that’s how I ride my best.”

Moto one winner Josh Cachia was second overall and tied with Dale in a continuation of his recent form, claiming 1-3-5 results for the weekend. Cachia maintains third in the series behind Styke and Dale.

The podium was completed by Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Kade Mosig in a solid performance, scoring second in the first two motos before a seventh in moto three wrapped up his weekend.

Runaway series leader Styke was fourth for the round in another consistent effort, now holding down a 31-point lead in the series with three rounds remaining.

Winner of the MXD class overall at Appin was Raceline Pirelli Suzuki rider Jay Wilson in a breakthrough performance. Wilson started off the weekend with a dream result of two wins in the back-to-back motos, and then won overall with a third in moto three.

“I’ve finally got the monkey off my back for this year,” Wilson said. “We finally got it all dialed in, the Raceline Pirelli Suzuki was sweet and I’m so happy to get this win for them. The team has been working so hard, so it’s nice to reward them with this.”

Second was Dylan Long for Choice Motorsports KTM, edging out title rival and fellow KTM contender Kayne Lamont. The Kiwi may have had his four-round win streak broken, but he enjoys a 27-point lead in the series ahead of Long.

The final moto of the weekend was won by new Axis Motorsports Kawasaki recruit Dylan Leary, resulting in a promising fourth overall on debut with the team on a four-stroke.

The Monster Energy MX Nationals, Australian Motocross Championship, will now take two weekends off before continuing at Moree in New South Wales on Sunday, 19 August.

– Honda Report

Carlton Dry Honda Thor Racing experienced both ends of the spectrum at today’s eighth round of the 2012 Monster Energy MX Nationals at Appin’s Macarthur Motocross Complex.

Ford Dale won two races on his way to overall victory in the MX2 class but bad luck foiled teammate Brad Anderson’s charge. The Brit sustained a twisted ankle after coming together with another competitor in the second MX1 moto.

A small crash in the opening MX2 moto dropped Dale to the rear of the field. The Honda rider fought his way back up the order to finish in the top ten. He got a reasonable start in the second race and steadily worked his way to the front, passing Kade Mosig for the race lead on the last lap.

In the final 30 minute challenge Dale got another good start and progressively moved towards the front, before taking control of the moto mid race.
“It is great to come away with a couple of race wins and the overall,” Dale said. “It really sets me up for the final two events.

“I was clipped by another rider in the opening race and had to fight my way back through, but everything seemed to fall into place for me in the final two races.

After taking his fourth consecutive podium Ford Dale continues to sit second in the MX2 championship standings, trailing Luke Styke by 31 points with two rounds remaining.

“I lost too many points at the start of the season so it is good to be consistent now we are at the pointy end of the championship,” he concluded.

Brad Anderson holeshot the opening MX1 race but a mistake on Lap 1 saw him drop through the order. After catching the frontrunners Anderson finished the race third.

The Honda rider held the lead off the start in the second moto but was forced out of the race after twisting his ankle when he came together with another rider mid jump.

After being examined by Racesafe and with his ankle heavily strapped, Anderson courageously lined up for the final 30 minute moto, which he finished ninth.

“I felt great and I was so comfortable on the bike today I just can’t believe my bad luck,” Anderson lamented.

“It felt like I had torn something but Racesafe examined my ankle and strapped it so I could contest the final race.

“I had limited movement and ninth was definitely not my best race finish but it could have been a lot worse. I wanted to make sure I came away with some points from that race,” he continued.

The Carlton Dry Honda Thor Racing rider who finshed the round tenth has dropped to fourth in the MX1 championship standings. Anderson will undergo extensive physiotherapy to ensure he is fully fit for the penultimate round of the 2012 Monster Energy MX Nationals at at Moree in New South Wales on Sunday, 19 August.

– Yamaha Report

On an emotional day where the New Zealander announced his retirement from full time professional racing at the end of the 2012 Monster Energy MX Nationals, Josh Coppins also claimed the overall win at round eight at Appin Raceway, Sydney.

Coppins started brightly on his CDR Yamaha YZ450F, posting the second fastest qualifying time behind team mate Lawson Bopping and was confident about what the day would bring. In what has become typical Coppins style, he started slowly in the opening back to back motos finishing with 4-2 results and coming to grips with the hard packed Appin surface.

Then with the emotional package of his retirement announcement finalised in the lunch break, Coppins burst from the blocks early in race three and proceeded to check out on his competitors. His consistent 4-2-1 results netted Coppins the round win and built his lead to 12 points for the championship with just two rounds remaining.

“While the track wasn’t difficult, it was a challenge to ride as it was hard to read traction in the surface. The hard dirt often looked tacky but was quite slippery and then in the final moto, it was like the moisture was coming back to the surface again and it was easy to get over aggressive on the throttle or attack the turns too hard.

“Fortunately, I was able to get a great start in the last moto and just work on doing my best laps and building a lead.

“It was nice to get the retirement announcement out of the way as it has been weighing on my mind and every interview I did, it was a question that I was asked. So to win the day and have the announcement was a big relief and a nice day for the CDR team and sponsors,” Coppins said.

While team mate Lawson Bopping didn’t have a great day, he finished sixth for the round, he was able to claw back some points in the championship and move into third spot for the championship.

Bopping was on fire during the qualifying session posting the fastest time, but average starts in the first two motos left him charging from the back of the pack and scrounging for points. He clawed his way back to fifth in each of the first two motos but wanted a better result in the final 30 minute moto.

Things didn’t start out well as he rounded the first lap in 14th place and with plenty of work ahead of him. He put his head down and with two laps to go was knocking on the door of third place and looking for a way by. But hard luck struck as he miscued a rut and went down and could only salvage eighth place.

“It was a tough day and the results don’t really show how I raced. My track speed was good, just starts let me down and I was always stuck in traffic in the early laps of the race.

“I feel confident on the bike but I will get in plenty of practice on my starts before the next round,” Bopping explains.

“It was a day where the entire team had to work hard for the results today,” Team manager Craig Dack states. “After years on the GP circuit and longer races, Josh struggles to get going in the back to back races, but always comes into his own in the final long race. It finished up a good day for him and I feel confident he is back riding in good form.”

“Lawson just couldn’t get through the first turn anywhere near the front. His ride in the final race was heart breaking as he put in a huge effort to get near the top three and then to throw it away was shattering. He will have better days but the positive was the he moved to third in the championship.”

The penultimate round of the 2012 Monster Energy MX Nationals takes place at Moree on August 18/19. The CDR Yamaha team will look to build on the confidence and momentum gained at the Appin round.

– Suzuki Report

Motul Pirelli Suzuki’s rising star Todd Waters remains in contention for the 2012 MX Nationals, Australian Motocross Championship, after storming to second place overall at Appin’s eighth round in New South Wales on Sunday, 29 July.

Waters, 21, rode the fuel injected RM-Z450 to the runner-up place overall on the weekend, now sitting 12 points out of the series lead with just two rounds remaining this season.

After opening his account at Appin with a superb victory in the opening moto, Waters maintained consistency with a pair of fourth places to complete the weekend. Those results earned him his seventh podium of the season.

“As soon as the track got hard I struggled a little bit, but I’m pumped to get a moto win and have to be happy with that,” Waters explained. “I’ve got to give it to Josh [Coppins] and Jake [Moss] as they were riding unbelievable today, but I’ve just got to train hard for Moree and try to get that points lead back down.

“I was struggling a little bit with the hard-pack track, it’s just something that I need to work on and it’s going to be fine. I’m looking forward to Moree and Coolum, just putting this behind me and coming out hard for those weekends coming up.”

Motul Pirelli Suzuki teammate Cody Cooper also picked up a dominant moto win at Appin on Sunday, continuing his recent explosive form. The Kiwi finished eighth in moto one, first in moto two and seventh in moto three.

Cooper sits fifth in the championship chase, but moved closer to a top three position as only 32 points now separate him from an overall podium in season 2012. Despite struggling to find consistency during round eight, Cooper was satisfied to win the second moto.

“Again it was a mixed bag for me,” Cooper reflected. “My speed felt good and I felt awesome, but it was difficult for sure and Appin was probably the hardest track of all to pass on – there was just one rut around the whole track during the motos.”

The Australian Motocross Championship will now take a two-week break before reaching the penultimate round at Moree in New South Wales on Sunday, 19 August.

–  KTM Report

JDR/KTM Factory Racing rider Josh Cachia claimed another podium in the MX2 category of the MX Nationals, Australian Motocross Championship, at Appin in New South Wales on Sunday, 29 July.

The 20-year-old was again in sensational form as the series reached round eight of 10, winning the opening moto of the weekend. Cachia was again up front in the second moto, before finishing third in the back-to-back format. Moto three saw him fight back from a bad start to fifth, sealing second overall for the round on the 250 SX-F.

“It’s been good and I think my level of riding has picked up,” Cachia said. “I feel like when I get a start, there’s no doubt in my mind that I can hold onto it – I’ve been proving to people that I can do it. I guess that’s confidence talking, but still, I got a shocking start in that last 30-minute moto and made it tough on myself.

“I needed fourth in the final moto for the win, but the track was so tight and it was tough. I can’t complain though, I got equal first, and I’ve never finished second overall before. If anything, it’s something new to hang up on my wall with the number two plate for the weekend.”

Cachia remains third in the championship standings, now 48 points from the series lead.

MX1 teammate Dan Reardon, the 2007 series champion, was fifth overall at Appin after claiming a spectacular second in moto one on the 450 SX-F. Reardon backed that result up with eighth in moto two and concluded the round with a fifth in the final outing.

“It was a good day and I was pretty happy,” Reardon said. “We made some changes during the weekend and they felt good, so if I’m comfortable then I ride well. The track was hard and fast today, but overall I’m happy and couldn’t ask for anything better right now.”

Reardon is now ranked eighth in the MX1 title chase, in what he has confirmed will be his final season of professional competition.

Motorex KTM Off Road Racing’s current Australian Off-Road Championship series leader Toby Price was a surprise entrant at Appin, finishing a promising 12th overall on debut. Price was 12th in motos one and two before taking home 13th in the final moto.

The MXD category for Under 19s riders saw two KTMs on the podium, with championship hopefuls Dylan Long and Kayne Lamont second and third respectfully. Lamont now holds a handy 27-point lead over Long with two rounds remaining.

–  Wilsons Jet Pilot Report

Wilsons Jetpilot MX team MX1 contender Luke Wilson piloted his Kawasaki to 23rd overall at round eight of the MX Nationals, Australian Motocross Championship, at Appin in New South Wales on Sunday, 29 July.

Battling with severe arm-pump throughout the day, Wilson’s results were hindered, breaking into the top 20 for elusive points once during the three moto format with 24-20-21 finishes.

“Yeah it wasn’t too bad, but wasn’t my best day either,” said Wilson. “I’ve been sick for the last week and I’m pretty much sick of making excuses, but I just got arm-pump real bad and couldn’t hang on.

“So I didn’t really get any results, although I got one point in the second moto with a 20th and that was about as good as it got for the day. I’m just hoping for a better next round and will keep trying my hardest.”

Wilson’s fellow MX1 contender and teammate Thomas Rushton, still recovering from a shoulder injury suffered at Horsham in Victoria a fortnight ago, was able to complete only one moto on the day.

Rushton scored a 23rd place finish in moto one, before receiving an unfortunate DNF-DNS score in the final two MX1 motos due to ongoing shoulder complications.

Wilson currently holds 27th position overall in the premier class series, while Rushton sits in 33rd.

–  Kawasaki Report
Monster Energy Kawasaki rider Kade Mosig continues his surge to form late in the season with a podium in the MX2 class at the 8th round of the 2012 Monster Energy MX Nationals at Appin, NSW on Sunday 29 July. A DNF for reigning champion Jay Marmont prevented him from reaching his potential and fellow MX1 rider Billy Mackenzie settled back into racing well after a 5 round absence, riding once again with the front runners.

A revitalised Kade Mosig was unfortunate to miss the podium last round after qualifying in pole however he ensured himself a 3rd place finish at Appin. Mosig started well in the first two back to back motos and grabbed himself a pair of 2nds. A bad start in the final moto could have spelled disaster but a determined Kade Mosig fought back hard and did what he had to do to get himself back on the box. Mosig’s 2-2-7 results gave him 3rd for the day and seats him in 4th place in the championship.

Kade Mosig say’s, “Yeah I’ve broken the 4th place deal I’ve had going at the last couple of rounds. Thirds good, I’m happy. We’re on the box. We come to all these races to be on the box and I just want to win. I felt like I was really close today but I buggered up my start in the last moto and it let me down. I’ve just got to stay at it. I feel like we’re making really good progress. I’ve just got to stay in my routine and keep doing what I’m doing. I just want to win some motos but I feel we’re on the right track.”

MX1 rider Billy Mackenzie knew that he was facing an uphill battle at Appin, returning to racing after a lengthy break due to injury. Running back up the front at times throughout the day, Mackenzie showed that the valuable race time clocked at Appin should have him challenging again for moto wins at Moree. The tiring back to back opening motos took their toll on Mackenzie as he finished in 9 & 10th however he started to return to form in the final race, running in 2nd place for a large part of the moto. Mackenzie’s KX450F was performing superbly and the Dunlop tyres provided outstanding grip on the difficult hard-packed track however a small crash relegated Mackenzie back to 6th by the time the chequered flag came out and he came away with 9-10-6 results for 8th overall.

Billy Mackenzie say’s, “I’m not happy with my results. I’m satisfied.. We got the bike working a lot better. I just wish we had more time to test in more hard pack conditions. By the final race we found a set-up that worked. It was nice to show that I’ve still got the speed. It’s good to be back racing. It’s good to cut some laps. My hand’s getting stronger and it’s not a problem anymore. I’m looking forward to the next one so we can progress again.”

Having won the last 4 Australian MX championships in a row, Jay Marmont does not rely on luck. He works hard for his victories…however a little bit of luck in 2012 would not be unwelcomed. With his body now healthy and his KX450F working superbly, Marmont was quietly confident heading to Appin and looking forward to a successful home round. It wasn’t to be his day though with a crash in the second turn of the opening moto breaking his clutch lever, forcing him back to the starting gate where he had to patiently wait for the next race. Then loose spokes in his rear wheel in the second moto did not have his KX450F responding as it should have. Although he fought back well later in the day to take 3rd in the final race, the damage was already done. Marmont’s DNF-7-3 results left him in 9th for the round.

Jay Marmont say’s, “It was a pretty miserable day. The first two races didn’t go to plan. I ended the day on a positive note though with a third. I’ve just got to put this day behind me and look forward to the next round.”

The Kawasaki KX250F enjoyed success at Appin not only in the MX2 class thanks to Kade Mosig’s podium but also in the MXD class with new Axis Motorsports Kawasaki signing Dylan Leary taking the final moto win.

Australian Women’s Champion, Meghan Rutledge, recently returned from a successful racing stint in the USA and she wasted no time implementing skills and knowledge gathered on the international stage to her racing back home. As the only female in the MXD class, 17 year old Rutledge beat more than half the field in the second moto, finishing inside the top 20 from 40 starters.

Monster Energy Kawasaki is confident of a successful final two rounds of the championship next month. Showing good speed, Kade Mosig is on track for a solid finish to the series in the MX2 class. Jay Marmont will as always dig deep to do what he has to do to be back on top of the box again and the race time gathered at Appin will set Billy Mackenzie back on the path to moto victories.