Coppins Strikes Back to Win Italian GP

New Zealand’s MX1 star, Josh Coppins, has bounced back to win both moto’s of the Italian GP in Mantova. The Factory Yamaha Rinaldi rider used good starts and smart riding to extend his lead in the FIM MX1 world championship series.

With arguably one of the most exciting MX1 opening laps in history, the sellout Italian crowd were on their feet. Coppins lost some positions while the dog fight ensued up front and smartly kept out of trouble. Crowd favourite, David Philippaerts and Marc de Reuver, tangled in the fight and went down, allowing Coppins to make a move on Belgians Strijbos and De Dyker to take the lead. De Dycker retaliated but Coppins quickly stamped his authority on the race and took control to the checkered flag.

Track conditions were considerably tougher in the second moto but Coppins was placed well at the start and took his time in getting past, fast starter, Mike Brown. “Lizzard seemed to be settling into a good rhythm when a challenge from Ken De Dycker caught him off guard. Using his head, the Kiwi regrouped and re-passed the Belgian with five minutes left on the clock to cruise to a double victory, his second of the season.

“It’s no secret that I don’t like this track and it was pretty obvious yesterday. I worked really hard with the team. The Yamaha Rinaldi guys were very smart in making some decisions for me. We really improved the bike over the two days. I knew my race pace was good — I just couldn’t go that little bit extra to put the whole lap together so I had to be a little bit smart and fight to the end. The first moto was crazy — a lot of guys were trying to win the race in the first ten minutes but I just let them do their own thing. This is probably my best win ever. I kept a cool head and played it smart and did better than ever expected. commented Coppins.

Coppins heads round 5 in Teutschenthal, Germany next weekend, with a 36 point advantage over championship rival Kevin Strijbos.

Race Results:

MX1 Race 1
1 Coppins, Joshua NZL Yamaha
2 Leok, Tanel EST Kawasaki
3 Strijbos, Kevin BEL Suzuki
4 Pourcel, Sebastien FRA Kawasaki
5 Noble, James GBR Honda
6 Mackenzie, Billy GBR Kawasaki
7 Ramon, Steve BEL Suzuki
8 Crockard, Gordon IRL Honda
9 Philippaerts, David ITA KTM
10 Nemeth, Kornel HUN Suzuki
11 Desalle, Clement BEL Suzuki
12 Priem, Manuel BEL TM
13 Leok, Aigar EST Yamaha
14 Brown, Mike USA Honda
15 Bill, Julien SUI Kawasaki

MX1 Race 2

1 Coppins, Joshua NZL Yamaha
2 de Dycker, Ken BEL Honda
3 1de Reuver, Marc NED Yamaha
4 Pourcel, Sebastien FRA Kawasaki
5 Ramon, Steve BEL Suzuki
6 Leok, Tanel EST Kawasaki
7 Noble, James GBR Honda
8 Strijbos, Kevin BEL Suzuki
9 Brown, Mike USA Honda
10 Barragan, Jonathan ESP KTM
11 van Daele, Marvin BEL Honda
12 Crockard, Gordon IRL Honda
13 Leok, Aigar EST Yamaha
14 Renet, Pierre A. FRA Honda
15 Pyrhonen, Antti FIN Kawasaki

MX1 Championship standings:
1 Coppins, J. NZL 194
2 Strijbos, K. BEL 158
3 Ramon, Steve BEL 116
4 de Dycker, Kenn BEL 106
5 Pourcel, S. FRA 103
6 Barragan, J. ESP 100
7 Leok, Tanel EST 98
8 Noble, James GBR 91
9 Brown, Mike USA 81
10 de Reuver, M. NED 80
11 Philippaerts, D. ITA 74
12 Priem, Manuel BEL 70
13 Nagl, M. GER 63
14 Nemeth, Kornel HUN 62
15 Mackenzie, B. GBR 61