MNZ has today named the riders to represent New Zealand at the 2018 Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations, the MX equivalent of the Olympic Games. The three riders and one reserve, all with international racing experience, are:
• Cody Cooper (Mt Maunganui) – multiple-times NZ MX and supercross champion, currently competing in the 12-round Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship (USA) and sitting 9th in the premiere class standings
• Rhys Carter (Mt Maunganui) – currently 6th in MX1 class of the Pirelli MX Nationals (Australia)
• Dylan Walsh (Christchurch) – currently 5th in EMX250 class in the European Motocross Championship
• Reserve: Hamish Harwood (Takaka) – currently 3rd in MX2 in the Pirelli MX Nationals (Australia)
New Zealand has a strong record at this most prestigious of MX events, which attracts teams from almost 40 countries, having taken third on three occasions (1998, 2001 and 2006) and an eighth place finish in 2015.
Team managers Shayne King and Bevan Weal are well-placed to lead the NZ campaign: King is a former Motocross of Nations competitor and won the FIM World 500cc Motocross Championship in 1996, becoming New Zealand’s first MX world champion; Weal has been the Motocross of Nations team manager for the last two years and is President of Taupo Motorcycle Club.
Supported by major sponsor Penny Homes and supporting partner Best Builders, the team will travel to Red Bud, Michigan, in the United States to challenge for the Motocross of Nations crown the weekend of 6-7 October 2018.
Shayne King says: “I’m really excited that we have so many riders at the moment that could represent NZ at the MXON. I feel the team that has been selected is very strong for the race at Red Bud. It is such a demanding track and has the potential to be one of the toughest and best races this year in motocross around the world.
“To have John and Kelly from Penny Homes come on as our official team sponsor and Best Builders Construction as a supporting partner has given us the added tools to compete with the best teams in the world.”
Pic: Nigel McKinstry