Josh Coppins Shows Heart at 2008 GP Debut

April 7, 2008 6:36am

The 2008 FIM Motocross world championship kicked off at a demanding Valkenswaard sand circuit in the Netherlands this weekend.  Factory Yamaha Monster racer, Josh Coppins, showed true courage by posting a 6-7 result, only two weeks after recent surgery to repair two broken toes .  The injury sustained while practicing ,  threatened to put the New Zealander out of contention however Coppins put the pain and discomfort aside and salvaged valuable championship points in his quest for the MX1 world title. 

Having qualified 8th in the Saturday timed session, Coppins had a reasonable pick at the start gate and used that to his advantage as the first heat of the Sunday program got underway.  ‘Lizzard’ just missed out on the all important  ‘hole-shot’ but emerged 5th on the first lap.  He set consistent lap times and moved into a podium spot  when team-mate David Philippaerts miscalculated a passing move, putting Coppins down in the dirt with only a few minutes left on the clock.  Coppins quickly restarted his machine to finish 6th after a gutsy performance.

A well executed jump and start in the second moto had Coppins entering the first turn in front of the pack however a small slip saw the Kiwi having to give away the lead.  With track conditions deteriorating lap by lap, Coppins settled into 7th and rode his own pace to finish the grueling 35 minute moto safely.

“All in all this has been a pretty good weekend under the circumstances.  Qualifying went well with 8th place. My starts were good in both motos however I went a bit wide in the first one and slid out in the second but was up there. This weekend was just damage control really and I rode the best I could  within the pain, trying not to damage the foot at all.  I haven’t been able to do the work to be best prepared for this race.  I am quite happy with the result which is a relief after what I have gone through in the last two weeks.   I’m sitting in 6th overall now whereas two weeks ago I was looking at the bones sticking out of my toes so I’m happy with the position I am in.   I have the stitches removed from my toes tomorrow and then I plan to get some more time on the bike later in the week.  We’ll  head to France for some guaranteed better weather and hopefully with that time in the saddle I’ll be able to build back some strength for Spain and aim to be strong in Portugal.”

There will be a week  break before round 2 takes place at the spectacular hard-pack circuit of Bellpuig in Spain on the 19-20 April.

Copyright free image: CDS

Race results:

MX1 Race 1

1        de Dycker, Ken         BEL     Suzuki

2        Nagl, Maximilian        GER     KTM

3        Ramon, Steve BEL     Suzuki

4        Philippaerts, David     ITA     Yamaha

5        Priem, Manuel BEL     Kawasaki

6          Coppins, Joshua       NZL     Yamaha

7        Strijbos, Kevin          BEL     Kawasaki

8        de Reuver, Marc       NED    Honda

9        Nemeth, Kornel         HUN    KTM

10      Mackenzie, Billy        GBR     Honda

11      Leok, Tanel    EST    Kawasaki

12      Leok, Aigar     EST    Yamaha

13      Verhoeven, Bas        NED    Kawasaki

14      van Daele, Marvin     BEL     Suzuki

15      Brown, Mike   USA    Honda


MX1 Race 2

1        de Dycker, Ken         BEL     Suzuki

2        Mackenzie, Billy        GBR     Honda

3        Barragan, Jonathan   ESP     KTM

4        Ramon, Steve BEL     Suzuki

5        Nagl, Maximilian        GER     KTM

6        Philippaerts, David     ITA     Yamaha

7          Coppins, Joshua       NZL     Yamaha

8        Priem, Manuel BEL     Kawasaki

9        Nemeth, Kornel         HUN    KTM

10      Leok, Aigar     EST    Yamaha

11      Desalle, Clement       BEL     Suzuki

12      Schiffer, Marcus       GER     KTM

13      Brown, Mike   USA    Honda

14      Strijbos, Kevin          BEL     Kawasaki

15      Church, Tom  GBR     Kawasaki


MX1 World championship standings:

1        de Dycker, Ken         BEL     50

2        Nagl, M.        GER     38

3        Ramon, Steve BEL     38

4        Mackenzie, B. GBR     33

5        Philippaerts, D.         ITA     33

6        Priem, Manuel BEL     29

7          Coppins, J.    NZL     29

8        Nemeth, Kornel         HUN    24

9        Strijbos, K.     BEL     21

10      Barragan, J.   ESP     20

11      Leok, Aigar     EST    20

12      Brown, Mike   USA    14

13      de Reuver, M. NED    13

14      Schiffer, M.    GER     11

15      Leok, Tanel    EST    10