Coppins on the Podium in Portugal

April 28, 2008 6:00am

Great weather conditions have complimented a thrilling 3rd round of the FIM Motocross World champs held in Agueda, Portugal.  Factory Yamaha Monster racer, Josh Coppins, showed his fighting spirit to claim his first podium of the season with an outstanding final corner dash in the sweltering Portuguese heat.

Missing out on the hole-shot in Moto 1 to Spaniard, Jonathan Barragan, Coppins battled to find his rhythm in the opening laps and lost a few positions due to an aggressive pace.  After settling into his comfort zone he put in some consistent lap times and fended off an attack by nemesis Steve Ramon.  With five minutes to go on the clock, Coppins broke the Belgian and succeed in closing down fast starter Billy MacKenzie.  The Scotsman managed to hold onto his position with Coppins breathing down his neck at the checkered flag, finishing 5th.

The second moto seemed to be a carbon copy for the Kiwi as he settled into 5th position, again riding his own pace.  The lead changed hands when MacKenzie threw it away to Sebastien Pourcel, putting the Frenchman in virtual GP overall victory.  While the heat took it’s toll on the riders the pace started to slow however Coppins picked up his lap times and shut down Steve Ramon with two laps to go.  The Belgian let up his guard in the last turn before the checkered flag and Coppins pounced on him to snatch away third place and an overall spot on the podium. 

“I could see Steve was fading and I put in some extra effort to catch him on the last lap.” explained Coppins.  “He went wide and I couldn’t believe my eyes so I took the inside and made the pass right on the finish line.   It’s been a tough start to the season and I don’t have the speed at the moment.  All I have is consistency and I need to patient which is very hard at this time as I want to win.  I’m doing the best I can and I’m sure that the next race will be much better.”

Coppins has moved to third in the MX1 standings and has reduced the points deficit to 19 from fellow Yamaha Monster team-mate David Philippaerts.  Coppins will take advantage of a free weekend to gain some more bike time before heading to Bulgaria for round 4 on the 10-11 May.

Image: CDS

Race results:

MX1 Race 1

1        Philippaerts, David     ITA     Yamaha

2        Pourcel, Sebastien    FRA     Kawasaki

3        Barragan, Jonathan   ESP     KTM

4        Mackenzie, Billy        GBR     Honda

5          Coppins, Joshua       NZL     Yamaha

6        Ramon, Steve BEL     Suzuki

7        de Reuver, Marc       NED    Honda

8        Leok, Tanel    EST    Kawasaki

9        Brown, Mike   USA    Honda

10      Desalle, Clement       BEL     Suzuki

11      Bill, Julien       SUI     Honda

12      Nagl, Maximilian        GER     KTM

13      Schiffer, Marcus       GER     KTM

14      de Dycker, Ken         BEL     Suzuki

15      Noble, James  GBR     KTM

16      Salvini, Alex   ITA     Suzuki

17      Priem, Manuel BEL     Kawasaki

18      Nemeth, Kornel         HUN    KTM

19      Chiodi, Alessio ITA     TM

20      Renet, Pierre A.        FRA     Suzuki

21      Campano, Carlos       ESP     Yamaha

22      Leok, Aigar     EST    Yamaha

23      Melotte, Cedric         BEL     Aprilia



MX1 Race 2

1        Pourcel, Sebastien    FRA     Kawasaki

2        Philippaerts, David     ITA     Yamaha

3          Coppins, Joshua       NZL     Yamaha

4        Ramon, Steve BEL     Suzuki

5        Brown, Mike   USA    Honda

6        Mackenzie, Billy        GBR     Honda

7        Barragan, Jonathan   ESP     KTM

8        de Reuver, Marc       NED    Honda

9        Nemeth, Kornel         HUN    KTM

10      Leok, Tanel    EST    Kawasaki

11      Desalle, Clement       BEL     Suzuki

12      Nagl, Maximilian        GER     KTM

13      Campano, Carlos       ESP     Yamaha

14      Noble, James  GBR     KTM

15      Renet, Pierre A.        FRA     Suzuki

16      Schiffer, Marcus       GER     KTM

17      Goncalves, Paulo      POR    Honda

18      Salvini, Alex   ITA     Suzuki

19      van Daele, Marvin     BEL     Suzuki

20      Priem, Manuel BEL     Kawasaki

21      Freibergs, Lauris       LAT     Yamaha


MX1 Podium

1        Pourcel, Sebastien    FRA     Kawasaki

2        Philippaerts, David     ITA     Yamaha

3          Coppins, Joshua       NZL     Yamaha


MX1 Championship standings:

1        Philippaerts, D.         ITA     102

2        Ramon, Steve BEL     96

3          Coppins, J.    NZL     83

4        Mackenzie, B. GBR     79

5        de Dycker, Ken         BEL     77

6        Nagl, M.        GER     58

7        Barragan, J.   ESP     54

8        Pourcel, S.     FRA     52

9        Leok, Tanel    EST    50

10      Nemeth, Kornel         HUN    48

11      Desalle, C.     BEL     43

12      Brown, Mike   USA    42

13      Priem, Manuel BEL     40

14      de Reuver, M. NED    40

15      Strijbos, K.     BEL     36