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Yamaha's Wilsons Closes In On Another Title


AUGUST 23, 2015: Jay Wilson is just two races away from becoming a national motocross champion on both sides of the Tasman Sea.

The 21-year-old Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing Team rider from Tweed Heads, near Coolangatta, became New Zealand MX2 (250cc) motocross champion for the first time in March this year and now, after dominating the day at the ninth round of 10 in the Australian Motocross Championships at Toowoomba at the weekend, he is chillingly close to becoming the national No.1 in two separate countries in the same season.

Wilson took his Yamaha YZ250F  to finish 3-1 in his two MX2 outings at Toowoomba and is now a healthy 21 points in front of his nearest rival, fellow Yamaha ace and defending champion Luke Clout, who rides for the Australian Serco Yamaha Race Team.

Clout finished 6-9 in the two races on Sunday.

The riders now head to Coolum, in Queensland, for the final round next weekend, with Wilson looking almost untouchable.

And there is another significant Kiwi element to this story as well - his boss is Motueka's Josh Coppins, a Kiwi with a glittering motocross record of his own.

As the manager of the Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing Team, the 38-year-old Coppins, a two-time former world No.2 and former British, Australian and New Zealand motocross champion, is naturally overjoyed with the way the season is panning out.

"It was a great day for Jay and a great day for the team in Toowoomba," said Coppins.

"Jay qualified fastest, so he was off to a good beginning, but his start in race one was not so good and he was back in about eighth position out of the gate. He was into the lead within 10 minutes and looking good, until mud caused problems with his rear brakes and, with the course quite steep in places, he lost ground and finished third.

"We regrouped for the second race and he worked through from about fifth at the start to take the lead after about two laps. He extended his advantage from there and took the win.

"It's the first time he's won the overall at a round this season ... he's come close a few times, but this was a first.

"With just one round to go now, it is important to remain focussed. I'm staying with him in Australia this week as we will prepare together to try to stay sharp and figure out how to manage his lead and close out the championship."

The Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing team is supported by Altherm Window Systems, Yamaha, JCR, CRC, Ados, GYTR, Yamalube, Fox Racing, Hollands Collision Centre, Star Moving, Ward Demolition, Fulton Hogan, Pirelli, FMF, DID, NGK, Matrix, Renthal, Motomuck, Workshop Graphics, Motoseat, Hammerhead, SKF, Vertex Pistons, Rtech Plastics, Etnies, Biketranz and Fulton Hogan.

Words and photo by Andy McGechan,