Yamaha’s Jay Marmont wrapped up his third Pro Opens Championship at the final round of the 2010 Rockstar Energy Drink Australian Motocross Nationals at Coolum on Sunday.
In the back-to-back Super Sprint format, Marmont – who had secured a 38-point lead in racing on Saturday — brought the title down to the wire with a 20-second penalty and protest during the second Super Sprint race, tightening the points even further.
Marmont ended the day with a scorecard of 5-7-2-3 earning him third overall – easily enough to take the championship.
Meanwhile, New Zealand’s Cody Cooper (Suzuki) crashed to the sideline at this final round, therefore slipping from fourth to seventh overall at the end of the championship.
It had been a mixed season for the Kiwi hero, who had won round six and been on the third step of the podium at round seven, and the final No.7 position was a long way short of the placing he deserved.
But consistency wins titles and that’s just how it panned out for Marmont, absent from the podium on only one occasion this season.
Marmont only took his first overall win at the seventh round of the series.
Finding form and working out bike setting towards the end of the series, Marmont became a dominant force, challenging for race wins and stamping his authority on the title.
It’s the first time a rider has won three consecutive titles since Marmont’s team boss Craig Dack won three back-to-back Mr Motocross Titles when he was racing.
Speaking after the final moto, Marmont was relieved to have taken the win following the drama of the second moto.
“I made the ultimate mistake out there,” Marmont said.
“I had Dean (Ferris) come up on me and I was going flat out racing him and wasn’t thinking about the jump, and then I couldn’t pull out – I was on the up-ramp and just committed to it.
“I had to try sprinting off but I paid a 20 second penalty and there was a bit of scrutiny over how long it was – but hey, what’s two seconds when you come in for 20, so it was a tough day.
“I had a lot of pressure on me and it was good to come away with a third for the round but still win the championship fairly easily in the end.
“It’s every riders’ dream to win a championship and the whole team have worked really hard – the bike was awesome the last few rounds, and I think we’re the first Yamaha team to win a championship in the world on the new 450 – so I’m pumped!”
Cool Air Kawasaki Racing Team’s Billy Mackenzie secured second place in the championship after a mixed season which included a broken wrist and a severe chest infection.
The Scottish rider looked to dominate the class, however a crash at the second round saw him desperately chasing points to claw his way back into the title fight.
“All I could do was just come into the last couple of rounds and try to win as many races as I could,” Mackenzie said.
“I made it really hard for myself last week; I was ill and had a bad chest infection which made for a horrendous weekend and pretty much lost me the Championship.
“But Jay is a strong rider and he’s been strong all year so he deserves the Championship thoroughly so I have to give it up to him.”
Both Marmont and Mackenzie faced stiff competition from Honda privateer Ferris, who, in his debut season in the Pro Opens class, impressed the field with his speed and consistency.
Ferris was blown away with his third overall and with the support he’s received throughout the season.
“It was a great day out there, it’s good to see all the supporters here – I didn’t even know they were coming and they came with Ferris shirts and I saw them swinging over the fence which was awesome!” Ferris said.
“It was a good day all round, I won a moto but I lost my brakes in the second race and Jay got me, but, overall I’m pretty happy, I’d like to thank my family and all my friends for coming.”
As the highest placed privateer in the Pro Opens class, Ferris also took out the 2010 Andrew ‘Sharky’ McFarlane Memorial Cup – in honour of the rider who passed away at the third round of the Championship.
Series Director Kevin Williams was blown away by the championship finale after a massive season.
“A championship that struggled to gain momentum following the tragic passing of Andrew McFarlane at the Broadford round, has certainly found its wheels and rolled into a massive final round,” Williams said.
“All the championship classes were decided at the final round, five new Australian champions – it has been sensational!
“Williams Event Management would like to extend a massive thank you to all the clubs, volunteers, and all the fans for coming out and all the teams for a great effort.”
Final championship points:
1. Jay Marmont (Yamaha) 495 points
2. Billy Mackenzie (Kawasaki) 482
3. Dean Ferris (Honda) 465
4. Tye Simmonds (KTM) 431
5. Cheyne Boyd (Yamaha) 416
6. Todd Waters (Honda) 365
7. Cody Cooper (NZ, Suzuki) 354
8. Daniel McCoy (KTM) 297
9. Lewis Woods (Honda) 255
10. Beau Ralston (KTM) 242
© Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com