BUSHFIELD water-skier Matt Cozens reckons he’s going out on a high.
Cozens added a second South Australian title to his trophy collection with a successful cross-border raid and this week revealed the race would likely be his last for at least a year.
The 32-year-old won the 100km/h social class at Murray Bridge on the long weekend, completing three laps of an eight-kilometre course in 18 minutes, 50 seconds.
His win had a dose of good fortune — a rival skier beat Cozens by less than a metre, but was later disqualified for exceeding the 100km/h speed limit. Cozens said he was still proud of his achievement.
Cozens, a six-year veteran of racing, won the Southern 80 100km/h title earlier this year and said that success was the biggest of his career.
But he said he had a burning desire to succeed at Murray Bridge to thank boat driver and mentor, Mount Gambier’s Andrew Donohue.
“I’m pretty laid back. I just love the social side of it more than anything else,” he said.
“But because I think this could be my last year of ski racing for a few years, I wanted to win for Andrew Donohue.
“Andrew has been there for me from the get-go. He’s helped me train, he’s been the one to tell me when I’m doing stuff wrong.
“He always encourages me. He’ll ring me up and say ‘what are you doing Saturday? Let’s go training’.
“As a race it’s not the one I wanted to win the most but because it was the last race I’ll do behind him, I really wanted to win.”
Cozens said Donohue played a vital part in the title win, resisting the urge to drive above 100km/h despite the competition closing in on the pair.
“It’s really cut-throat. You have to be in the high 58s (miles per hour), low 59s the whole way without going over,” he said.
“It’s really hard on the driver.”
Cozens takes a break from the sport with an impressive resume. He also has three Victorian titles to his name.
Hamilton siblings Mason and Clancy Vaughan also enjoyed wins at the SA titles.
Mason placed first and Clancy was second in the men’s open social class — a family quinella.