Whibley Wraps Up NZXC Series For 2107

Taikorea's Paul Whibley created the NZXC cross-country racing series three years ago and he celebrated it's incredible growth with an outright win at the final round of the 2017 edition of the series on Sunday.

The 39-year-old, a two-time former Grand National Cross-country Championships (GNCC) winner in the United States (in 2009 and 2012) and a record six-time winner of the parallel Off-Road Motorcycle and ATV (OMA) series, was keen to put something back into the sport he loves so much.

Hence the NZXC series was formed by him in 2015, designed as a contest that would help to prepare intrepid Kiwis for their own overseas racing missions.

Howick's Liam Draper is one such young New Zealand rider who has benefited from the NZXC series and he'll shortly be heading to the US, where he hopes he can follow in the wheel-tracks laid down by Whibley a few years ago in the GNCC competition there.

Also the New Zealand cross-country champion in 2015, Whibley was probably always going to be among those favoured to win the NZXC series this year.

Whibley won the inaugural running on the NZXC series "by accident" in 2015, despite him not racing the final round – the rider who had been expected to wrap up the series crashed out of the points that day, leaving the trophy in Whibley's hands.

Whibley again did not contest all the NZXC rounds last season and this time it was Coatesville's Sam Greenslade who took the main trophy.

This year Yamaha stalwart Whibley just dived right in and, with five wins and two runner-up finishes in the seven starts, including his victory at Sunday's final round near Pahiatua, he couldn't be touched.

Riders were to count just six of the seven rounds, discarding their one worst result, and, even then, Whibley had wrapped it up with a round to spare.

Draper was the only rider to beat Whibley in the NZXC this year, the Aucklander winning round five at Matata and round six in the Woodhill Forest, but these were the only races he attempted and so he had no chance of winning outright.

"Callan May (of Titirangi) was the rider most likely to challenge me for the outright win, but he didn't show up at Pahiatua," said Whibley.

"I didn't know what the points situation was before racing on Sunday, but I thought I'd done enough to win with my consistency throughout the series anyway."

In the meantime, Whibley is hoping to entice a handful of leading Yamaha factory team riders to come over from the United States in the New Year, to come under his wing and prepare for their own 2018 GNCC campaigns.

"It will be exciting for everyone. It will be great for them to have training here in a different environment and for the Kiwis too who might get to race against them while they're here.

"I'll run a training camp in Rotorua and Taupo, as well as training them here in the Manawatu.

"They will be here for three weeks and hopefully they'll get to race a proper New Zealand event too."

Whibley is supported by Yamaha Motor New Zealand, PWR Yamaha, Arai, TCX, Oakley, G2, Asterisk, MotoSR, Vortex Ignitions, EC3D, Bush Riders MCC, Rossco's Start Up Services, Dirt Guide, Tire Balls, Renthal, Bikesportnz.com, CarbSport, FMF, Michelin, Yamalube CV4 GYTR, IMS, Rekluse, Workshop Graphics, Silverbullet.co.nz, Motomuck and O'Neal.

Words and photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com

Maidstone Yamaha

30 Goodshed Road
Upper Hutt, Wellington, 5018

Telephone: (04) 528 9395
Facsimile: (04) 528 9375
Email: info@maidstoneyamaha.c...

Trading Hours

Monday to Friday : 08:30am - 5:30pm
Saturday : 09:00am - 01:00pm
Sunday : Closed

 (04) 528 9395

Our News

29th October 2014
6th March 2014

About Us

Maidstone Yamaha is proudly owned by Michael McLeod (Big Mac). Mac has owned and operated his Goodshed Road premises since 1996.

Mac has been involved in Motocross for nearly 35 years, and still competes a couple of times a year. 

Yamaha Hot News

8th October 2018
27th September 2018
19th September 2018
11th September 2018
11th September 2018
Yamaha Motor Finance
Yamaha Motor Insurance