Moto Media

Altherm JCR Yamaha wraps up NZ MX Champs

With the threat of wet weather staying just that, Taupo Motorcycle Club prepared a scintillating race circuit that proved technical for competitors and brilliant for spectators as the pumice-based track was saturated by autumn sun all day long.

In the MX125 class, Logan Blackburn (YZ125) started his day with a fighting second in the opening race. However this proved to be Logan’s only appearance for the Round after going down hard during the start of the second moto and suffering a broken collarbone. Fortunately, his consistent results from previous rounds ensured he maintained his third placing in the overall series classification.

In the quarter-litre division, defending MX2 champion, Scott Columb (YZ250), (above) was on track for the class overall, but suffered a minor set-back in the final moto to end the day third on the podium. As he has shown all season, it was true grit and sheer determination that paid off for Columb who closed the series fourth overall.

"My day started off really well with a third in the first moto, followed up by a second in the second race,” explained Columb. "Then I grabbed the holeshot in the final moto of the season and put the hammer down.

"Unfortunately a mistake on my part shunted me backwards to finish the race fifth; claiming third for the day and fourth in the Championship.

"It’s frustrating, but I gave it my all and I was happy with my riding. However, luck was not on my side this year,” ended Columb.

Also in the MX2 class, Jay Wilson (above) put on another strong display aboard the all-new Yamaha YZ250F, ending the day in fourth and solidifying his third place overall ranking for the series.

"I have been sick this last week with an infection, so it was a battle all day,” commented Wilson. ”I was pretty happy to be able to ride this weekend, and to finish the series in third is great for the whole Altherm JCR Yamaha team.”

For the MX1 class, Billy Mackenzie (above) carried the confidence he gained from battling for victory at Round 3 in Pukekohe to take his championship-challenge to the final moto; finishing third for the day, and edging rival Brad Groombridge by a single point to claim second in the championship.

"I’m pleased to finish the day on the podium after some drama in the second race,” said Mackenzie. "The goal for today was to secure second in the championship, and I’m delighted to achieve that for the team. It means a lot!”

Team Manager Josh Coppins can be a tough man to please, but was proud of his team’s efforts across all three championship classes; taking their respective title challenges to the very end.

"Apart from Logan, it was a good day for the team,” reflected Coppins. "Scott rode very well, and was unlucky not to win the day.

"Also, I’m really proud of Jay after what he had to go through this week, and Billy was great as well.

"Overall, after a tough season, we have three riders on the podium, and lay claim to the first four-stroke in MX2 with Jay, which is great for us and says a lot about Yamaha’s new YZ250F.”

Team Altherm JCR Yamaha will now take a break from racing duties before re-grouping ahead of the Taupo Extravaganza at Labour Weekend in June.

To follow the Altherm JCR Yamaha team on Facebook; or on Instagram: @joshcoppins

1st – Cody Cooper
2nd – Brad Groombridge
3rd – Billy Mackenzie - Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ450F

1st – Hamish Dobbyn
2nd – Rhys Carter
3rd – Scott Columb - Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ250
4th – Jay Wilson – Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ250F

1st – Josiah Natzke
2nd – Aaron Wiltshier
3rd – Ben Broad - Yamaha YZ125
15th – Logan Blackburn – Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ125

1st – Cody Cooper – 287pts
2nd – Billy Mackenzie – 236pts – Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ450F
3rd – Brad Groombridge – 235pts
8th – Ethan Martens – 149pts

1st – Kayne Lamont – 254pts
2nd – Hamish Dobbyn – 243pts
3rd – Jay Wilson – 216pts – Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ250F
4th – Scott Columb – 209pts – Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ250

1st – Josiah Natzke – 289pts
2nd – Hadleigh Knight – 215pts
3rd – Logan Blackburn – 190pts – Altherm JCR Yamaha YZ125

Words and images: Chris Ritchie Foto