Josh Coppins on route to victory at the Woodville GP in New Zealand

Yamaha Lays Wood at Woodville

31 Jan 2011

A trio of MXDK Rockstar Yamaha riders won all the main classes at the 50th annual Woodville Motocross on Sunday.

Motueka’s Josh Coppins (Yamaha YZ450F) won both MX1 (open class) races and the main race as well, the 10-lap Invitation International feature, the former Grand Prix star adding three more domestic titles to the three New Zealand supercross crowns he picked up just a few weeks earlier. 

He did not have it all his own way, however, with Mount Maunganui’s Cody Cooper, Rotorua’s Michael Phillips and Christchurch’s Justin McDonald applying some pressure, but Coppins has been in tough situations before and lessons learned on the GP circuits of Europe gave him the edge in the end. 

It turned out to be a very special day for Coppins.

Back in the pits immediately after winning the Invitation International feature race, Coppins took a cell phone call from his partner Lisa, not so much to inquire about how the racing was going, but for her to report that she had just given birth, only 50 minutes earlier, to their second daughter, Elsie. 

The smile on Coppins’ face therefore had double significance. It was therefore something of an understatement when he put down the phone and remarked to a crowd of well-wishers “this is my lucky day”. 

"I thought I might get this weekend's racing done before the birth ... it didn't happen that way in the end," he shrugged. 

"As for the big race here, I just keep the pressure on Mike (Phillips). He was making a few mistakes and I thought that if I applied pressure right to the end, it might work in my favour. That's all it took." 

Meanwhile, MXDK Rockstar Yamaha team boss Darryll King, only an occasional racer these days, was not asking Coppins to do anything he wouldn’t or couldn’t do himself. 

The Hamilton 42-year-old father-of-two took his Yamaha YZ250 two-stroke out of the practise shed and then served notice on the sport’s rising stars that he’s still the reigning royal in the MX2 (250cc) class, winning the day with 3-1 results, enough to edge out Taupo’s Cameron Dillon and Mangakino’s Kayne Lamont for the overall win. 

Just for good measure, King also scored back-to-back wins in the Veterans’ class, the team manager superbly juggling duties in the pits with four stints on the race track on his way to winning two of the day’s four big classes. 

The youngest member of the MXDK Rockstar Yamaha team then joined the party. 

Waitakere teenager Ethan Martens (Yamaha YZ125) dominated the 125cc GP class, winning both races in style and completing the team’s remarkable hat-trick.

Just to put icing on the cake, Hamilton’s Josiah Natzke led a Yamaha 1-2 in winning the junior 11-12 years’ 85cc class ahead of fellow YZ85 rider Wyatt Chase (Taupo), while Cambridge’s Ashton Grey (YZ85) wrapped up the junior 8-10 years’ 85cc title.

Andy McGechan
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