Suzuki second in Pro Open Championship
Team Shift Motul Suzuki star, Daryl Hurley defied the odds to claim second place in the 2007 Australian Motocross Championship at Coolum (QLD), this weekend, despite contesting the final three rounds of the series with a broken collarbone.
With the 2007 Australian Motocross title decided in the penultimate round, all eyes turned to the red-hot battle for second place in the championship during the season's final showdown at Coolum. With second, third and fourth places separated by a mere five points at the beginning of the final round, Hurley entered the event in third place, just two points in arrears of fellow New Zealander, Cody Cooper and three points ahead of Jay Marmont.
Unable to ride in preparation for the final round having broken his collarbone just five weeks ago, Hurley was at long odds against in-form Cooper and Marmont. Taking the holeshot in the first moto, Hurley held the lead for the first third of the race before being passed by his main rival for second in the championship, Cooper.
Following his compatriot to the chequered flag, Hurley remained in second spot for race one, but now faced an even greater points deficit to claw back in the second moto. Seventh at the start of race two, Hurley catapulted his Suzuki RM-Z450 into third place and held the position for the majority of the 30-minute moto. With the circuit becoming rougher and more challenging throughout the event and Hurley's shoulder strength flagging, he dropped a position each lap in the final two laps to cross the finish line in fifth place.
While difficulties plagued Marmont in race one and Cooper suffered a DNF in race two, Hurley's consistent and tenacious performance secured second overall for the day and a hard-earned second place in the series. Impressively, Suzuki concluded the 2007 Pro Open series as the only manufacturer with two riders in the top five, as RM-Z450-mounted racers Hurley and Troy Carroll finished second and fifth respectively.
In the Under 19's class, Lawson Bopping matched his impressive raw talent with rapidly increasing maturity as he raced his Suzuki RM-Z250 to fourth and second in the day's two motos, scoring third place in the round and fifth overall for the championship.
DARYL HURLEY – TEAM SHIFT MOTUL SUZUKI
"My shoulder felt okay; I'm not taking painkillers this weekend for the first time since I broke it so that's a good sign. "I've been riding conservatively as my racing fitness has suffered; I haven't been spending any time on the bike in between races in order to reduce the chances of crashing and further injuring my shoulder. "I just wanted to ride well this weekend and try to finish in the top three for Suzuki. the most important thing to me was not to give up."
JAY FOREMAN – TEAM SHIFT MOTUL SUZUKI TEAM MANAGER
"With the title decided last week, we came to Coolum chasing second in the championship, so we're really pleased with today's result. "It's been a tough end to the series for Team Shift Motul Suzuki with Daryl riding with a broken collarbone, but today's outcome made it worth all the hard work and pain that he went through to salvage points; it's been a gutsy effort and it all paid off. "In the Under 19's, Lawson was strong again on the RM-Z250, scoring yet another podium finish for the weekend and grabbing fifth overall for the series."
2007 AUSTRALIAN MOTOCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP – ROUND 10: PRO OPEN
1 Daniel Reardon 426,
2 Daryl Hurley 367 (Suzuki RM-Z450),
3 Cody Cooper 356,
4 Jay Marmont 350,
5 Troy Carroll 260,
6 Kade Mosig 206,
7 Nathan Crawford 185,
8 Nathan Brochtrup 179,
9 Ford Dale 157,
10 Cheyne Boyd 153