After a season opener of the 2018 NZ MX Nationals that saw a win by the contender, Kayne Lamont, there was no doubt that this season would have some surprises in store. The premier class star of Workshop Graphics-supported Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing had the first round sorted, taking all three wins, as well as the lead in the championship.
Heading into the second round in Rotorua, the focus was on the battle between Lamont and the six-times and reigning champion, Cody Cooper. When the chequers flew, Cooper had taken the win in one race, enough to finish on the podium in second. While he didn’t take any of the wins in Rotorua, Lamont was consistent, finishing in the top three in all three races. That consistency saw him take the third spot on the podium, enough to let him keep the championship lead, too.
Just off the podium, and rounding out the top five, was local hero John Phillips, riding for Workshop Graphics-sponsored Honda Racing Team. Being no stranger to the Rotorua Motocross Track, Phillips was another rider who kept it on two wheels and rode to consistent finishes, even when the track got rough and the roost was flying.
While MX1 is considered the premier class in New Zealand motocross, it was the class down in MX2 where some of the hottest racing took place. It saw Kea Suzuki Racing’s Brad Groombridge putting in one of the best rides of the weekend. The Workshop-supported rider was flying on his RM-Z250L8, easily battling with the two-strokes with more horsepower that are legal in the class, putting him on the final step of the podium for the day – and keeping him second overall in the championship (all while still running in the top ten in MX1). The second step was filled by Jay Wilson, the Australian import riding for Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing, who put in another consistent ride to stay in the running for the title.
In the National 125cc class, Maximus Purvis kept that momentum from the first round, with a clean sweep that had him easily running away with the overall in Rotorua. The Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing ripper went three for three, to keep hold of his lead in the hunt for the title, which would be his first in the senior ranks.
The second round of the NZ MX Nationals was the final round of the inaugural Woman’s Cup, the new cup class that crowned a new champion. On that podium at the end of the weekend was Roma Edwards, a young Workshop-supported rider out of Motueka, who took a win in Rotorua – enough to see her finish second overall for the day and third in the championship.
Round 3 of the NZ MX Nationals takes the moto community to Hawke’s Bay, where Ngaruroro Raceway will make its debut on the national circuit, and make for some great racing. If you can’t make it to Hastings on Saturday, March 11, you can still tune into the Workshop Graphics-supported live stream that has all the action covered.