Motocross

Cody Cooper departs for the USA

Author: Alan Henderson

Posted:

Cody Cooper and Jayden Gray at the Auckland International Airport last night. Photo: Shayne Rice
Victory at the prestigious Tarawera 100 in early July was no mean feat for Honda Racing's Cody Cooper for it was 100 miles (167klms) made up of 4 x 25 mile loops through the Matahina Forest. Cooper then went back to Australia, to Wonthaggi in Victoria, for Round 8 of the Nokia MX Nationals at Wonthaggi on Sunday to ride for his No Fear Honda Team. He took 1st overall in the Pro-Open Class on the day. It was Cooper's second victory of the year and his 47 points haul elevated him back up to 3rd overall in the Championship. Round 9 was on 05 August at LakeMacquarie, NSW. Riding superbly on the hard packed, rocky track, Cooper scored equal points with KTM's Jay Marmont on the day but under the points system was placed 2nd. Series leader, Kawasaki's, Daniel Reardon placed 3rd but earned enough points to make him unbeatable in the 2007 series with one round to go. Overall points with just one round to saw Cooper elevated to 2nd just 3 points in front of fellow Kiwi Shift Motul Suzuki's Daryl Hurley. The final, Round 10, was a week later at Coolum on Queensland'sSunshineCoast. In Moto 1 Hurley took the holeshot and to an early. Behind him, Cooper kept him in his sights and pushed hard to eventually take lead position which he retained until the end. The already crowned Champion Reardon had to pull off early with goggle problems and only made it back to 10th position by the finish. Hurley held on behind Cooper to finish 2nd. Cooper had extended his lead over Hurley to 6 points. In motocross it's never over until it's over and Moto 2nd saw Cooper crash and fail to finish. That cost him 2nd in the Australian Championship and he ended up 7th on the day. Hurley returned to 2nd overall with Cooper ending up 3rd ‰ÛÒ how cruel was that ? Cooper left last night for the USA to join up with Ben Townley. I caught up with him a few hours before departing and he had this to say. "Thursday their time we are sorting out my new Honda CR450Fs organised for me by Russell Burling from SSangYong and Clive Cooper-Smith from my Castrol Honda Racing Team here in New Zealand. Jayden Gray from Te Awamutu is travelling with me as my mechanic and Ben has organised the bikes to be looked after by ProCircuit. We then go across America to stay and train with Ben. I am going to race in the AMA Motocross Class at two rounds - Texas and Glen Helen." "After that Ben and I will join up with Josh Coppins at Budds Creek in Washington for the Motocross des Nations on 22-23 September. Russell Burling is the Team Manager and Daryl Hurley will also be there as reserve. Then I am coming back on 27 September in time for the first round of the NZ Senior Nationals" he added. "And next year ?" I asked. "I will wait and see how I go in the States" he responded guardedly. I took the 'clue' and rang Clive Cooper-Smith who just happened to be in New Plymouth meeting with Shayne King. "Shayne and I have been on the phone to a very important connection in the USA and feel things are looking good for Cody to get picked up by a team in the US next year. I can't tell you too much right now but both Shayne and I are very happy with what has developed." said Cooper-Smith. I say "watch this space!"

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