Quinn Cody to race Australasian Safari
The 2012 Australasian Safari is heating up with TransMoto.com.au discovering earlier this week, that four-time Baja 1000 champion and top-10 Dakar Rally finisher, Quinn Cody, will join the CPW KTM Rally team for the eight-day endurance event.
|Originally Posted by zenjen |
What is going to be sweet, will be watching him bring his high-speed skills to battle the Aussies in the Australasian Safari. - - He will be on a top tier team with CPW.
What are your thoughts on the Baja Ace's chance of a podium finish in this year's Safari?
Quinn has some solid nav skills from his past 1.25 outings at the Dakar and various training/nav rides he has completed at home in the US over the last two years.
He is fast, smooth (generally) and has plenty of speed/experience from riding/racing/winning in the desert/Baja offroad scene in the USA.
The CPW team is at the top tier of the Aussie offroad/rally/desert racing scene down under, having provided it's top riders Ben Grabham, Matt Fish and (before he went to GHR) Todd Smith with bikes capable of podium placings/victory at both the Safari and major Aussie desert racing events....
So those three things (on paper) would put him up as a top ten start number/seeded rider for the 2012 Australasian Safari, I would think.
Quinn has - however - no racing experience in Australia. The terrain, some of the rules/navigation subtleties AND the level of commitment with which the current crop of the the top five or six Aussie Safari riders attack the seven race days of the rally (at sprint pace!), will mean that Cody will have a very short period of time to adapt/find a pace at which to run with the locals in the opening two/three days of the rally.
He is capable of top ten times out of the gate... but to achieve top five times from the outset, on debut (without any prior Oz safari/terrain experience)... that is a big ask for ANY rider - no matter how big a name they are. (Just look back at the 2011 result sheets
First time out in Oz... I would think that by the end of the rally QC would be up on the pace... a top five finish is achievable and with some good management/relatively problem free run with the CPW/KTM outfit behind him, a podium placing is not out of reach... however (I believe) unlikely.
There are at least seven or eight (fast/experienced) local Oz riders shaping up this year, all with past podium pedigrees, ALL on top tier teams from three different supported brands of machine... and ALL are gunning for the top podium spot this year... It should make for a great race at a blistering pace!