News 30 Mar 2016

New Zealand champion Cooper absent from MX Nationals

Well-credentialled Kiwi won't be behind the gates at Horsham.

Image: Andy McGechan (

Image: Andy McGechan (

After beating Australian internationals Dean Ferris and Todd Waters to a fourth-straight New Zealand Motocross Championship premier class title, Cody Cooper will be absent from this year’s MX Nationals series when it begins at Horsham on Sunday.

Cooper has been a mainstay in Australian racing during his professional career, but hasn’t landed a factory ride locally in 2016. Instead, he plans to contest one-off rounds in preparation for a stint in the US and the Motocross of Nations later this year.

“No, nothing,” Cooper said when asked if he’d had any interest from teams locally. “And it’s not worth me going over there as a privateer pouring all my money into a campaign and getting nothing out of it.

“I’d rather go to the US and do a couple of races there – it’ll cost me less money but I’ll probably get more recognition out of it if I do well – and pick and choose other events around the world that I want to race on my own terms. I’m getting older now, so I want to have fun with my racing.

“I’m pretty keen get over there for a couple of weeks and race the opening two rounds of the AMA Pro Motocross Championship at Hangtown and Glen Helen. I’m trying to work it all out at the moment, but I know a lot of people over there who’d be happy to help me out from my days racing there.”

While Cooper has overcome a who’s who of top Australian-based factory riders in New Zealand, he’s largely struggled to convert that form into an MX Nationals title challenge over the years. It’s been a curious case for the now 32-year-old.

“I think I can be just as fast and motivated if I’d found the right structure over there,” he explained. “You’ve got to be happy with where you’re at and to be honest, I never really felt 100 percent settled and stoked with racing in Australia.

“Some of the tracks could be better, but I kind of got a bit bored with it. I might come back and use the final two rounds as preparation for the Motocross of Nations, and get some race-time under my belt but that’d be all I do this year, I think.”

For yesterday’s complete Catching Up interview with Cooper, visit this link to view it on now.