Kiwi Josh Coppins has again shown remarkable powers of recovery to bounce back from a broken rib and snatch pole position at round three of the Italian Motocross Championships at Gallarate at the weekend.
The third round of the Internazionali d’Italia held at a sunny Gallarate circuit saw the man from Motueka take his first pole of the season aboard the factory MXV Aprilia.
Coppins finished 4th and 8th in his two races at Gallarate and is now fifth in the championship standings.
After suffering a broken rib at round two, three weeks prior, Coppins demonstrated that he was back to speed, in front of an enthusiastic Italian crowd.
Having first pick of the gate for race 1, Coppins grabbed a good start and emerged 4th on the opening lap behind David Guarneri, Manuel Monni and Jimmy Albertson.
With all four riders running a similar pace it was somewhat of an uneventful race with very few passes being made and Coppins having to settle for fourth.
A holeshot in race two would see Coppins rocket to the front of the pack. Two laps later he lost the front end and lost vital positions.
Coppins made a quick recovery and looked set to climb back to a podium spot when he tried to dive up the inside of fellow Aprilia team-mate Julian Bill.
An over-enthusiastic Guarneri ran into the back of Coppins sending both riders to the floor. Coppins rejoined the race and salvaged 8th spot.
“I’m really happy with the progress we have made with the bike” smiled Coppins. “I should not have made those mistakes in race two but I put that done to not having ridden in the last three weeks. I proved I have the speed by claiming pole position and with my second moto hole-shot I am confident we have found the right settings on the bike now.
“I still have some testing to do before the next round in San Severino next weekend but we have made leaps and bounds and still are improving so I’m looking forward to the next race and of course GP No.1 in Bulgaria.”
Race1: 1 Davide Guarneri), 2 Monni, 3 Albertson, 4 Coppins, 5 Salvini, 6 Priem, 7 Bill, 8 Lombrici, 9 Tanel Leok, 10 Dami
Race 2: 1 Tanel Leok, 2 Albertson, 3 Monni, 4 Bill, 5 Davide Guarneri ,6 Kohut, 7 Salvini, 8 Coppins, 9 Priem, 10 Schmidinger.
Overall classification: 1. Jimmy Albertson 42 pts, 2. Manuel Monni 42, 3. Davide Guarneri 41, 4. Tanel Leok 37, 5. Julien Bill 32, 6. Josh Coppins 31, 7. Alex Salvini 30, 8. Manuel Priem 27, 9. Roberto Lombrici 21, 10. Martin Kohut 20.
Championship standings: 1. Davide Guarneri 118 pts, 2. David Philippaerts 100, 3. Tanel Leok 95, 4. Manuel Monni 93, 5. Josh Coppins 92, 6. Alex Salvini 79, 7. Jimmy Albertson 76, 8. Manuel Priem 69, 9. Julien Bill 57, 10. Tony Cairoli 44.
© Photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com
MX1 race one:
MX1 race two: