Yamaha's Brown too slick for the Kiwis
It was her first visit to New Zealand, but that did not deter Australian women's motocross champion Maddy Brown at the weekend.
Riding with support from the Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing Team, the 23-year-old Brown romped to three wins from three starts in the women's class at the 57th annual Honda New Zealand Motocross Grand Prix at Woodville.
She finished the day comfortably ahead of New Zealand women's motocross champion Taylar Rampton, of Opunake, and Te Awamutu's Rachael Archer.
"I'd love to come back and race here again," enthused Brown. "I have had such a good time. The people in New Zealand are so friendly and the tracks are great.
"My plans for 2018 are to defend my Australian women's title and then, hopefully, I can also race the women's world championships again.
"I finished 13th in the world overall last year, after suffering a couple of non-finishes."
Brown's mechanic for the Woodville weekend was Kiwi Graeme Deans, the spannerman for Otago's world women's championship contender Courtney Duncan when she is racing at home.
"I think is Courtney (Duncan) was here it'd have been much for difficult for me to win at Woodville, that's for sure," Brown laughed.
Kiwi international Duncan came frustratingly close to capturing the women's world crown in 2016 and last year as well – forced to settle instead for third overall – and she is again rated one of the favourites to win the title in 2018, as long as she can avoid the bad luck that's dogged her these past two seasons.
Duncan has recently undergone remedial surgery and will be based in Europe for the entire year, meaning her many Kiwi fans will have to travel abroad or resort to following her progress on the internet or via live timing screens.
The Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing team is supported by Altherm Window Systems, Yamaha, JCR, CRC, Ados, GYTR, Yamalube, bLU cRU, Fox Racing, Hollands Collision Centre, Star Moving, Ward Demolition, Pirelli, Akrapovic, DID, NGK, Renthal, Motomuck, www.workshopgraphics.co.nz, Motoseat, SKF, Vertex Pistons, Rtech Plastics and Etnies.