MX Nationals

MX1 Riders Ready To Tackle Coolum This Sunday

Author: Aaryn Minerds

Posted:

Teams and Riders are ready to tackle Coolum this weekend when the 2015 MX Nationals heads to the Coastal Queensland town for the first of two rounds to be held on the black sand based circuit this year.

Read below what a selection of the teams and riders are thinking as they hit the final race before the mid season break.

KTM Motocross Racing

KTM motocross racing team rider Kirk Gibbs will look to continue tightening the screws on this year's MX1 championship as the Monster Energy MX Nationals series continues at Coolum on Queensland's Sunshine Coast this weekend.

In some ways it's a second consecutive home around for the Queensland-based South Australian, and Gibbs hopes to further increase the 39-point lead he currently holds, before the series takes its 5-week winter break.

The demanding black sand circuit is a stern test of fitness, creativity and line selection ability for competitors, and the KTM 450 SXF rider proved able to master the combination when he finished equal first on points at Coolum round last year.

‰ÛÏCoolum is going to be really good, it's going to be tough like always, but I feel like I‰Ûªve done some good prep and we have a good setting for there." Gibbs said. "We did a day‰Ûªs testing two weeks back and I'm just looking forward to it. Hopefully it gets rough, the rougher the better.

"For me I just want to keep chipping away at that championship lead, if I can take wins that's good, but if I can beat the closest championship contenders that‰Ûªs probably the biggest goal for me. Like always though I just want to ride my best and I feel like if I am I'll be doing that anyway.‰Û
Current number two in the championship, Gibbs‰Ûª KTM Motocross Racing Team mate Luke Styke will also relish the upcoming round - Credit: Aaryn Minerds
Current number two in the championship, Gibbs‰Ûª KTM Motocross Racing Team mate Luke Styke will also relish the upcoming round, partly because he craves the softer surfaces, and partly as a chance to make good for a disappointing showing at Murray Bridge a fortnight ago.

The outstanding premier class rookie was crestfallen at failing to meet his own high expectations when he finished sixth in South Australia, and will revert to a low pressure approach this time around.

‰ÛÏMy mind wasn't in the right spot at Murray Bridge." Styke admitted. "At the first three rounds where the tracks didn't suit me as well, I had no expectations and did really well. So I‰Ûªm going to go back to something like that in this round, I‰Ûªll just go in completely relaxed about it and just let it come to me, hopefully pull off some good starts and get on the podium again.

"I haven't raced at Coolum for two years but we‰Ûªve been up doing a bit of testing so I'm pretty familiar with the track.‰Û
The KTM pair will also have a fresh new look for the weekend
The pair will also have a fresh new look for the weekend, with factory team gear sponsor Lusty Industries having air-freighted out the first samples of the brand-new 2016 TLD gear for them to wear in Queensland.

‰ÛÏIt would be great to have a successful weekend, but we will just treat it as another round as we‰Ûªve been doing for the last four rounds." Team manager Rob Twyerould stated.

"The boys had a good solid couple of weeks since Murray Bridge, with a bit more testing with Luke and hopefully that will set him up better, and both boys are quite familiar with that track and will go there feeling pretty comfortable. I think it will be a great round, and hopefully it will be a successful one.‰Û
Team Motul Suzuki's Matt Moss is set to return to racing this weekend - Credit: Aaryn Minerds
Team Motul Suzuki's Matt Moss is set to return to racing this weekend as the 2015 MX Nationals hits the half way point in Coolum, Queensland this Sunday the 31st of May.

This weekends race marks the first of two events at the black sand based track that has been a happy hunting ground for Moss in recent years after he wrapped up both the 2013 and 2014 MX1 championships for Suzuki at the Coolum Pines venue.

For Moss this weekends sole focus is getting back up to race pace after being sidelined at Appin on the 12th of April, where he was involved in a first turn crash that forced him to take some time away from riding.

After throwing a leg over his bike for the first time in over a month two weeks ago, Moss has worked hard with his team, dialling in his Suzuki RM-Z 450 and is looking forward to mixing it up with the nations top riders this weekend.

"The body is feeling good and I have spent the past couple of weeks working with the team on the race bike and getting more comfortable." Moss commented.

"I am looking forward to getting back out on track at Coolum and seeing where we are at and mixing it up with the boys.

"We will be aiming to do the best we can on Sunday, then use the mid season break to continuing working hard heading into the second half of the season." Moss added.
Kale Makeham, the opening six motos of his rookie MX1 career saw him continuously improve from race to race - Credit: Aaryn Minerds
For team-mate Kale Makeham, the opening six motos of his rookie MX1 career saw him continuously improve from race to race with the 21 year old Victorian posting a top five moto result and a trip to the Go-Pro Superpole during the opening three rounds of 2015.

Things were continuing on the same path at round four held at Murray Bridge until a crash late in the opening moto of the day left Makeham dazed and with a slight concussion, forcing him out of the remainder of the days racing.

With two weeks to recover Makeham is 100% fit and ready for this weekends event and has his eyes set on once again reaching new milestones in the premier class of Motocross racing in Australia.

"I took a few days off after hitting my head at Murray Bridge, then headed up to Newcastle to ride with the team." Makeham explained.

"I have been out riding a fair bit and my mechanic has been swinging off the lap board every time I have been on track which has been a big help.

"Heading into this weekend I want to be inside the top five. I want to use what we have learned so far this season and have another solid round and continue pushing forward." Makeham concluded.

DPH Peter Stevens Motorcycles Yamaha
Lawson Bopping will be out to show his speed and potential, as he aims to secure his first podium finish of the season - Credit: Baker Photo
DPH Peter Stevens Yamaha will be looking for positive results this weekend, as the MX Nationals arrives in Coolum. In the first of two visits to the Sunshine Coast circuit, both Bopping and Boyd are aiming for race wins.

Lawson Bopping will be out to show his speed and potential, as he aims to secure his first podium finish of the season. As seen during the opening rounds, Lawson‰Ûªs lap speed is has been fantastic. Which has resulted in four consecutive GoPro Superpole appearances, although he is still on the hunt for his breakthrough Superpole victory. Bopping will be eager to see the gates drop on Sunday at the Coolum circuit.

‰ÛÏI‰Ûªm looking forward to Coolum it should be fun, with some warm whether up there, I‰Ûªm pumped for it.‰Û
This weekend will also see the return of Cheyne Boyd - Credit: Baker Photo
This weekend will also see the return of Cheyne Boyd, who has missed a handful of rounds, as he has been busy with work commitments at Melbourne's Yamaha Park4MX. Although with Boyd‰Ûªs return to the DPH Peter Stevens Yamaha team, he wont be seen in the MX1 class. Cheyne will be on track to defend his Australian Veterans 30+ MX Championship, at one of his favourite circuits.

‰ÛÏIt‰Ûªs been fairly crazy with business since the last round I raced. It‰Ûªs good to come into this weekend with not as much pressure on me, as racing in MX1 means you have to be fair more prepared.‰ÛÏ Boyd mentioned.

‰ÛÏWe‰Ûªre going to one of my favourite tracks in Australia, I‰Ûªve won a lot of times there including the last few years with the Veteran‰Ûªs Title. It is fun to go there as the whether is always nice, and the track is right up my alley being a sandy track, so I‰Ûªm really looking forward to it.‰ÛÏ

‰ÛÏBut in saying that, I‰Ûªm disappointed that I‰Ûªm not racing the MX1 Class.‰ÛÏ Boyd concluded.

Husqvarna Support
Husqvarna FC 450 rider Jesse Dobson should be a strong contender at his home round, - Credit: Aaryn Minerds
The riders of Husqvarna‰Ûªs factory support squad are relishing the challenge offered by Queensland's Coolum circuit on the Sunshine Coast as the 2015 Monster Energy MX Nationals approaches its halfway point.

Husqvarna FC 450 rider Jesse Dobson should be a strong contender at his home round, but as the 18-year-old is quick to point out, conditions in the National round will be very different to practice-day Coolum, and a smart head and dab hand will definitely be required.

‰ÛÏCoolum gets super rough and hopefully I can use that to my advantage. I ride Coolum a lot, but from a practice day to a national, it's not even the same track. It might look the same from the outside, but it's not. It's like last year when I went to Raymond Terrace - you go down there and do as many laps as you like, but come national time all those laps don‰Ûªt even matter, it's just totally different. You've just got to be on your A game. Have good fitness, be smart, and make sure your technique is right and you‰Ûªll go pretty well.‰Û
Craig Anderson Racing rider Aaron Tanti sees around as an opportunity to achieve the second top-10 finish of his rookie season - Credit: Aaryn Minerds
Craig Anderson Racing rider Aaron Tanti sees around as an opportunity to achieve the second top-10 finish of his rookie season, after the Husqvarna FC 350 pilot reached the milestone for the first time at Murray Bridge a fortnight ago.

‰ÛÏI'm feeling pretty good, after coming off that top-10 last round. It‰Ûªs boosted my confidence a little bit more. I like riding in sand and I like Coolum, so we‰Ûªll see how we go. Again my goal is to finish in the top 10, I just want to make that consistent and hopefully move my way down, and in the championship too.‰Û

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