Codd On The Rise On NZ Cross-Country Scene

Napier's Bryn Codd (Yamaha YZ125), showing good form this year on the cross-country racing scene

Napier's Bryn Codd raced his Yamaha YZ125 to victory in the 90-minute junior grade at the fifth and final round of the Central Cross-country Series at Castlehill on Sunday, the farmland venue about 40 kilometres east of Pahiatua, and this was easily enough for him to wrap up the series trophy overall.

It is a result that has always been coming for the talented 15-year-old, a young man who has been featuring on the scene at national level too over the past few months. With a 1-2-3-1-1 score-card over the five-event Central series, Codd already held a commanding lead before the start of racing on Sunday and, although he was just three seconds ahead of Eltham's Adam Loveridge at the chequered flag, it was Hastings rider Adam Buck he was more concerned about. Buck had been Codd's main rival from the start of the series and he crossed the finish line third on Sunday, nearly four minutes behind Codd, Buck ending the series in runner-up spot and 27 points adrift of Codd. Codd is also leading the junior grade in the national series, that competition now with three of four rounds completed, and he now looks forward to perhaps wrapping it all up at the final round near Mosgiel in less than two weeks' time, on May 12. Codd leads Loveridge by just one point in the chase for national honours.

Codd has spent much of the past six months "under the wing" of former Kiwi international Paul Whibley, training and being coached by the Yamaha ace at his Manawatu base at Taikorea, near Himatangi. "That has helped a lot, but much of my success lately I feel is also just because I have more experience now and I'm getting bigger and stronger," said Codd, a year 12 pupil at Napier Boys' High School. "I raced this Central series for the first time last year, but then I was fresh off the 865cc bike and still getting used to the YZ125." Meanwhile, Sunday's two-hour senior race was won by 27-year-old Wairarapa rider Adam Easton. Easton took his Yamaha YZ250 to cross the finish line just short of a minute ahead of fellow Masterton man Allan Gannon, with Eketahuna's Daniel Christie finishing third, just 11 seconds further back. That was enough for Gannon to win the series' senior trophy, ending his campaign 11 points ahead of Marton's Ethan Breuer, who had finished fifth on Sunday. Easton contested just four of the five rounds in the series and had to settle for third overall.

Words and photo by Andy McGechan