Nothing, or nobody was going to stop Davin Cocker from storming to a double Trademore South African Cross Country Championship desert race victory to wrap up the 2023 OR2 title at Excelsior Farm at Ganyesa near Vryburg over the weekend. Cocker, Masters rider Pieter Holl and 85cc Junior lad Murray Smith all emerged as new champions after a fast and exciting weekend in the Northwest Province,
Cocker opened the weekend with a dominant 2 minute 12 second Friday win aboard his OR2 Husqvarna to break his overall championship tie with OR1 rival, and second on the day, Bradley Cox’s Brother Leader Tread KTM. Kerim Fitz-Gerald continued his sensational Seniors form in third aboard his Red Bull KTM ahead of ever-present Franchise Co Tork Craft Honda rider Michael Pentecost.
OR2 man Scott Heygate rode home fifth on his KTM in spite of a broken thumb, ahead of OR1 duo, Ian Rall’s MCA Fast GasGas, and Dakar hero Michael Docherty’s Husqvarna. The 250cc OR3 top four followed, with Matthew Wilson taking that class win for Brother Leader Tread KTM from Honda lad Erik Merry, Peter Karam’s Roost KTM and Haydn Cole’s Franchise Co Tork craft Honda. Brother Gareth’s OR1 Honda followed from OR3 teammate Tyron Beverly and 125 High School winner Derek Karam’s Motors Klerksdorp Yamaha.
Pieter Holl’s Pepson Plastics Kawasaki continued his unbeaten Masters record with another win with Wayne Farmer’s Biker’s Warehouse Husqvarna close behind from Mielies Le Roux on a KTM and Kobus Jonck’s Honda. Louwrens Mahoney’s Honda was second in Seniors from teammate Wynand Delport and Yamaha man Marco Cocci. And Luke Walker’s ASP KTM was second in High School from TRP lad Blake Young and Thomas Scales’ Rid Durban KTMs.
Murray Smith’s Franchise Co Tork Craft Husqvarna topped Friday’s 85cc Junior action from KTM trio, Bruno Niebuhr, Drikus van der Merwe and Franco Fourie, John-Baird Maritz on a Kawasaki and AJ Louw’s Husqvarna. GJ Coetzee’s EMD Husqvarna took 65cc honours from Ruald Potgieter’s Kawasaki, John-Luke van der Westhuizen on a Husqvarna and Mackenzie Bam’s KTM.
Saturday dawned a brand new race, but that did not stop Davin Cocker from storming to back to back victories as he wrapped up the 2023 South African OR2 championship on his Factory Husqvarna. Michael Pentecost was second, 44 seconds behind on his Honda, and a healthy 10 minutes clear of third-placed with OR1 rival, Bradley Cox’s KTM.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald had to work for once for his Seniors win in fourth overall on his KTM, just a minute and a half clear of an on-form Louwrens Mahoney’s Franchise Co Tork Craft Honda. Ian Rall’s GasGas had another good day on sixth ahead of OR3 trio, Matthew Wilson’s KTM, Honda duo Erik Merry and Tyron Beverley, and Ryan Pelser on a Husqvarna.
Blake Young turned the 125cc High School tables on Luke Walker, Thomas Scales and Brandon Clarke’s similar KTMs, while Kobus Jonck celebrated his Franchise Co Tork Craft Honda debut with the Masters win by all of six seconds over Pepson Plastics Kawasaki’s new 2023 Masters champion, Pieter Holl. Wayne Farmer and Mielies Le Roux followed in close pursuit.
Murray Smith was the third rider to wrap up a championship in 85cc Juniors on his franchise Co Tork Craft Honda, once again ahead of Bruno Niebuhr and Franco Fourie’s KTMs, JB Maritz on a Kawasaki and AJ Louw and Nicol Smit’s Husqvarnas. GJ Coetzee also did a 65cc double on his Husqvarna from Ruald Potgieter’s Kawasaki, and Wilco Du Plooy’s Yamaha.
So, Davin Cocker, Pieter Holl and Matthew Wilson returned from the Northwest double header as South African Cross Country champions. The 2023 Trademore South African Cross Country Championship wraps up at its fifth and final round at Behuman in Bloemfontein on Saturday 9 September, where the overall champion and the rest of the class champions will be crowned.