Duncan to make rare grand prix appearance

Courtney Duncan. Photo: ODT files
Courtney Duncan
Courtney Duncan is lining up to compete in Woodville at the end of the month.

Duncan, who is set to return to Europe for this year’s Women’s World Championships, will line up for the New Zealand Motocross Grand Prix, at Woodville next weekend.

She compete in the women’s grade, having previously raced against the men.

Duncan, from Palmerston, has not always been available to race at Woodville, as her international commitments have taken priority in recent years, but, fresh out of her Covid-19 quarantine, she is thrilled to be a drawcard rider at this year’s event.

She is sure to delight her many Kiwi fans with this rare appearance in New Zealand, a few days after she celebrates her 25th birthday.

Duncan will race the women’s class only at Woodville this time around, just to reduce any risk of injury before her 2021 campaign in Europe.

In 2016, she dealt severely to the men when she raced at Woodville and stunned the male stars of the MX2 (250cc) class, topping the podium that weekend ahead of national champions and fellow NZ internationals Josiah Natzke (Hamilton) and Hamish Harwood (West Auckland).

Manawatu Orion Motorcycle Club president Brad Ritchie said he was thrilled to welcome Duncan to the event.

"It is so exciting, for our 60th anniversary event, to have Courtney Duncan come and race here," he said.

"To have a two-time world champion at the event will be spectacular. We have been delving into the history of the event and recognising people who have played a part over the years. For them to be able to watch Courtney Duncan from the spectator embankment will be pretty special, I’m sure."

The event will have double the significance this year, as the opening round of four in the 2021 New Zealand Motocross Championships.

It is the first time that the New Zealand Motocross Grand Prix at Woodville — the largest stand-alone event on the New Zealand motorcycle racing calendar — has been afforded this honour and certainly appropriate when considering that this event already enjoys the status as the premier motocross event in this part of the world.


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