Motul Pirelli Suzuki’s Matt Moss takes a 25-point lead into this weekend’s MX Nationals, Australian Motocross Championship, after claiming his fourth MX1 round win of the season ahead of Kirk Gibbs and Todd Waters at Toowoomba’s Echo Valley Raceway in Queensland on Sunday.
Moss, 25, rode the factory-supported 2013 Suzuki RM-Z450 to the overall victory after qualifying second in Super Pole and then winning the opening 30-minute moto of the weekend. Second in race two sealed the multiple-time national Lites champion the round win despite suffering the effects of the flu on race day.
“The first moto was good, but the second one I struggled a fair bit,” Moss explained. “I’ve had the flu all week, woke up feeling really bad this morning, but the guys at Suzuki RACESAFE did a great job looking after me. The plan was to maintain what we had today, so I was lucky enough to come away with the win.
“I just need to keep doing what I’m doing heading into Coolum, not try anything fancy. We can’t go there to finish fifth, we need to keep charging because otherwise that’s when things go wrong. We’ll just let it play out and be there at the end.”
Moss took over the series leader’s red plate at Hervey Bay’s seventh round and has steadily extended his lead since. He was Australian Motocross Champion in the MX2 division in 2009 with Motul Pirelli Suzuki and again in 2011.
Team-mate Cody Cooper, the current New Zealand MX1 Motocross Champion, endured an inconsistent day at Echo Valley. He was fastest in the first qualifying session and ended up third in Super Pole, but struggled to sixth and 10th positions in the motos. He now sits fourth in the championship standings with one round remaining.
“The day started positive when I was fastest in regular qualifying,” Cooper reflected. “But I got a bad start in the first moto. I was happy with how I rode, but I just couldn’t make the passes when I needed to.
“In moto two I got a good start, but went backwards and honestly couldn’t ride the pace of the other guys – they were riding the hard pack better than me. It’s one of my downfalls, so definitely need to work on that.”
Carlton Dry Honda Racing’s Gareth Swanepoel recorded two top ten MX1 race finishes (9th,8th) to end the round ninth overall.
Swanepoel said he was pleased with his starts but acknowledged he struggled to flow through some parts of the circuit. “My starts were a lot better today but I struggled all day to get a comfortable rhythm going,” Swanepoel explained. “I felt great through some parts of the track but didn’t flow through other parts.
“It was really frustrating, I gave it all I had and tried a lot of different things. I kept searching all day to get a good rhythm flowing but I couldn’t put it all together. I am looking forward to next weekend I have to write this one off as a disappointing day.”
The MX Nationals, Australian Motocross Championship, will conclude this weekend at Coolum on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, 31 August-1 September.
MX1 overall results
1. Matt Moss 71
2. Kirk Gibbs 68
3. Todd Waters 57
4. Jake Moss 56
5. Billy Mackenzie 55
6. Adam Monea 53
7. Jay Marmont 50
8. Cody Cooper 49
9. Gareth Swanepoel 45
10. Sam Martin 42
MX1 Championship Standings (after nine of 10 rounds)
1. Matt Moss 582
2. Todd Waters 557
3. Billy Mackenzie 516
4. Cody Cooper 478
5. Kirk Gibbs 475
6. Jake Moss 444
7. Lawson Bopping 407
8. Jay Marmont 383
9. Adam Monea 376
10. Sam Martin 294
MX2 – Styke Celebrates Championship Victory In Style
Luke Styke put the finishing touches on his season of domination in 2013 with another overall victory at round nine of the MX Nationals at Toowoomba’s Echo Valley, in the MX2 division.
As reported earlier, his thrilling race one victory was enough to secure the championship for Styke and his Serco Yamaha team with a round to spare. But not content with just winning race one and the championship, Styke was out to win the round and did exactly that as he charged his way to the lead on the opening lap of race two and never looked back.
It was a crushing win from Styke and the perfect example of how his 2013 season has gone.
“From the moment I left the final round at Coolum in 2012, I set out a plan to win the championship this year and it feels awesome to have achieved that goal.
“I surrounded myself with the right people, used the right products and I’m a part of the best MX2 team in Australia so to have everything fall onto place and make it happen in the last half a lap of the first race was unreal.
“Today was really special for me as I had a few of my mates up from up from home, my girlfriend was here as well as my Mum and Tobz, so it was really nice to get it done in front of them. I can’t thank everyone enough for their efforts and support this year and the Serco Yamaha team are awesome,” Styke ends.
To underpin the dominance of Styke in 2013, he has won eight out of the nine rounds contested so far this year, won 14 out of the 18 motos and took the championship with a round to spare. His worst result in any moto was a third, way back in round two at Murray Bridge.
Styke can now run the bold, red number 1 plate on his Serco Yamaha at the 10th and final round of the MX Nationals this weekend.
1. Luke Styke 70
2. Kale Makeham 64
3. Brock Winston 58
4. Dylan Long 58
5. Ryan Marmont 49
6. Beau Ralston 49
7. Kayne Lamont 49
8. Rhys Carter 45
9. Kieran Scheele 43
10. John Prutti 39
Championship Standings (after round nine)
1. Luke Styke 613 – Championship winner
2. Kale Makeham 504
3. Brock Winston 472
4. Ryan Marmont 398
5. Dylan Long 389
6. Takeshi Katsuya 362
7. Rhys Carter 351
8. Geran Stapleton 349
9. Kayne Lamont 347
10. Josh Cachia 305
Credit: Shayne Rice