AMA National Motocross Preview – Southwick, MA – Round 10
Hurricane Irene. As of this writing (8pm Eastern Time), the MX races are scheduled to be run tomorrow just like normal. But the area near the race is already bracing for the huge storm, although the weather currently is fine. Racing is planned to go on just like normal, and coverage will be here on Supercross.com of 250’s, 450’s and Women’s.
Here below is info from MXSports – only seven points separate Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto and Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey in the 450 Class, while TwoTwo Motorsports/Bel-Ray Racing’s Chad Reed sits 25 points out of the RV’s lead. In the 250 MX Lites Class, the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki trio of Dean Wilson, Blake Baggett and Tyla Rattray continue to sit atop the standings, with Wilson holding a 25-point margin over Baggett, and 43 over Rattray.
Monster Energy Kawasaki – Ryan Villopoto took advantage of his first opportunity to wear the red number plate as the current points leader, by sweeping both motos of the day at the previous round from Unadilla.
(See Unadilla’s results and point standings here)
The race marked the debut of the 2012 Kawasaki KX450F, and was also Ryan’s birthday.
“I felt like the bike was great for the amount of testing we did on it,” said Villopoto. “Although it wasn’t much, it was more than we had been able to do on the 2011 model. I think the KX450F is a great bike, and Kawasaki continued to improve on an already solid motorcycle.”
Jake Weimer “I think that my results showed that I adapted to the new bike,” said Weimer. “We definitely had some great days of testing, and the team put in a lot of work to make sure we were ready at Unadilla. Now, I’m looking forward to finishing out the rest of the season on it.”
Rockstar/Makita Suzuki – With the momentum of back-to-back victories coming into Unadilla, many though Ryan Dungey would have the opportunity to claim a third consecutive win. However, Dungey was not able to keep the early pace set by his championship rival in either moto, and ultimately engaged in an impressive battle with Justin Barcia for second overall. Dungey prevailed, securing the runner-up finish, and minimizing the points he lost in the championship. Now, he heads to the site where he claimed the 2010 title one year ago, and will look for even more success at Southwick.
“Overall, I’m happy with the way we rode at Unadilla,” said Dungey. “We’ve had a short break before Southwick, and I’ve focused on training and getting ready for this weekend. I won both motos there last year, and I’m hoping to do that again this season.”
TwoTwo Motorsports/Bel-Ray Racing – Feeling fully recovered from the effects of his crash at Spring Creek in July, Chad Reed was looking to challenge for the win at Unadilla, but ultimately, was not able to make his way to the lead pack with his championship rivals. Reed posted 4-5 moto scores to finish fourth overall, but lost valuable ground in the championship. With three races remaining, Reed will look to add to his four-race win total and get back into the title fight.
American Honda – Justin Barcia made his 450 Class debut in a substitute role for American Honda at Unadilla. With the chance to compete in front of his hometown crowd, Barcia took advantage of the opportunity, and parlayed a pair of strong starts into 3-3 moto finishes, ultimately placing him third overall. Barcia even led a significant portion of the opening moto, gaining valuable experience in learning the pace of the premier class. With a 250 Class win at Southwick in 2009, Barcia will look for an upset victory on Saturday.
Red Bull KTM – The Red Bull KTM team suffered the loss of Andrew Short for the remainder of the 2011 season during the week break from competition. The veteran rider, who had gained tremendous ground in the standings, suffered a pair of broken arms while testing, and will surely be missed the rest of the summer.
Mike Alessi had a solid outing at Unadilla, posting 7-4 moto scores to finish fifth overall. The consistent effort helped Alessi move past his teammate in the 450 Class standings, now occupying fifth. Alessi garnered a podium result at Southwick last season, and will look to replicate that effort this weekend.
Muscle Milk/Toyota/JGR – Justin Brayton led the way for Joe Gibbs Racing at Unadilla, and was in the midst of a strong effort before encountering misfortune in the final moto. Despite that, Brayton continued to push forward, ultimately finishing with 8-7 moto scores, landing him seventh overall.
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki – With another dominant outing at Unadilla, Mitch Payton’s team still boasts an undefeated record in the 2011 season. Adding his name to the list of overall winners this summer was current 250 Class points leader Dean Wilson. Despite being the most consistent rider in the entire series, Wilson had yet to break thorough for a win. However, at Unadilla, he relied on strong starts to sweep both motos in convincing fashion, and extend his points lead to 25 coming into Southwick.
“It’s definitely nice to have the points lead rather than be chasing it down with only a few rounds left,” said Wilson. “But it does put a lot of pressure on me to maintain it. I would like to just go out and ride like I did at Unadilla. I know that I can do it. Now I just have to prove it.”
Blake Baggett was looking to add to his series-leading win total at Unadilla, but ultimately relied on a consistent 2-3 effort to secure the runner-up spot overall. He now moves into second in the 250 Class standings, and will look to chip away at the deficit he faces.
“All I can do is go out and try to get the win each moto,” said Baggett. “That will be the only way I can guarantee that I have a chance in the final round. Anything can happen in motocross. That’s why we race until the checkered flag flies.”
Tyla Rattray experienced a tough outing at Unadilla. The three-time winner this season started the day off with a strong third-place finish in the opening moto, but following a crash in the early stages of Moto 2, was unable to finish, ultimately going 3-36 on the day for 11th overall. The misfortune dropped Rattray to third in the standings, and he’ll be looking to bounce back at a track he won at one year ago.
“Last year I won the race at Southwick, which was really special because my daughter was born on that day,” said Rattray. “It would be a great first birthday if I could do it again. I like that the track is rough, and you really have to be in shape to tackle it. I’m hoping that will give me the advantage over my teammates.”
DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha – Kyle Cunningham didn’t get his day off to the start he was hoping for at Unadilla, posting an eighth-place finish in the opening moto. However, Cunningham came back strong in Moto 2, finishing just off the podium in fourth, which ultimately landed him fourth overall. He maintains possession of fourth place in the 250 Class standings heading into Southwick. Gareth Swanepoel was looking to excel at Unadilla as well, and keep up his recent string of strong efforts. The South African started his day with a fourth-place effort in the opening moto, and was able to fight his way to 16th after a tough start in the final moto. In the end, Swanepoel secured eighth overall, and enters Southwick sixth in the championship standings.
GEICO Honda – Eli Tomac made his anticipated return to the overall podium at Unadilla, leading the way for the GEICO Honda team. After a solid top-five finish in the first moto, Tomac kept Dean Wilson within his sights throughout moto two, eventually recording a second-place finish. Thanks to his consistent efforts, Tomac finished third overall and has a firm hold on fifth in the 250 Class standings.
Justin Bogle’s professional debut was one to remember. Fresh off winning the AMA Horizon Award at the Amateur National Motocross Championships, Bogle was impressive against his much more experienced counterparts, and showed the speed necessary to be a regular contender at the front of the field. While he will continue to acclimate to the pace and endurance of the professional ranks, he is surely proud of his 6-6 moto scores that helped him finish fifth overall.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki – Martin Davalos was able to secure another top ten finish at Unadilla. The veteran rider got off to a slow start in the opening moto, finishing 14th, but bounced back in moto two with a solid fifth-place finish. As a result, Davalos finished seventh overall for the day, and heads into Southwick ninth in the 250 Class standings.
“Unfortunately my tooth got knocked out at Unadilla, and I had to endure some pain throughout the day,” said Davalos. “We had a weekend off to regroup and work on some things, and I went to see the dentist to get everything fixed up. So, I’m looking forward to Southwick – it’s one of the toughest races on the circuit, and I’m prepared for it.”
Women’s MX Class
The Motorcycle-Superstorecom Women’s Motocross Championship will resume its eight-race championship at Southwick as well. Saturday’s race will serve as the sixth round of the season, kicking off a three-week run to the finish. Currently, American Honda’s Ashley Fiolek holds an eight-point lead over her DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha rival Jessica Patterson. The pair have traded overall wins throughout the summer, and they will resume their closely-contested battle for the title this weekend.
Television coverage for Saturday’s Rockstar Energy Southwick National begins with a live broadcast of the opening motos for both the 450 and 250 classes on FUEL TV, beginning at 1 p.m. EST. SPEED will provide same-day, final-moto coverage of both the 450 Class and 250 Class, back-to-back at 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. EST.
Past Winners at Moto-X 338 in Southwick
August 28, 2010 / Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, MN / Suzuki
August 29, 2009 / Matt Goerke, Lake Helen, FL / Yamaha
August 24, 2008 / James Stewart, Haines City, FL / Kawasaki
June 10, 2007 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Suzuki
June 11, 2006 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Suzuki
June 12, 2005 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Suzuki
June 13, 2004 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Honda
June 8, 2003 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Honda
June 9, 2002 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Honda
June 10, 2001 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Kawasaki
June 11, 2000 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Kawasaki
June 13, 1999 / Ezra Lusk, Bainbridge, GA / Honda
June 14, 1998 / Doug Henry, Oxford, CT / Yamaha
June 22, 1997 / John Dowd, Chicopee, MA / Yamaha
June 23, 1996 / Jeremy McGrath, Menifee, CA / Honda
June 25, 1995 / Jeff Emig, Riverside, CA / Yamaha
June 26, 1994 / Mike LaRocco, South Bend, IN / Kawasaki
May 2, 1993 / Mike Kiedrowski, Canyon Country, CA / Kawasaki
May 17, 1992 / Jeff Stanton, Sherwood, MI / Honda
August 4, 1991 / Jeff Stanton, Sherwood, MI / Honda
July 22, 1990 / Jeff Stanton, Sherwood, MI / Honda
May 21, 1989 / Jeff Stanton, Sherwood, MI / Honda
May 22, 1988 / Jeff Ward, Mission Viejo, CA / Kawasaki
May 17, 1987 / Rick Johnson, El Cajon, CA / Honda
May 18, 1986 / Rick Johnson, El Cajon, CA / Honda
May 16, 1982 / Donnie Hansen, Canyon Country, CA / Honda
May 17, 1981 / Kent Howerton, San Antonio, TX / Suzuki
May 18, 1980 / Kent Howerton, San Antonio, TX / Suzuki
May 20, 1979 / Kent Howerton, San Antonio, TX / Suzuki
May 7, 1978 / Bob Hannah, Whittier, CA / Yamaha
May 1, 1977 / Marty Smith, San Diego, CA / Honda
June 6, 1976 / Pierre Karsmakers, Holland / Honda
August 28, 2010 / Tyla Rattray, South Africa / Kawasaki
August 29, 2009 / Justin Barcia, Monroe, NY / Honda
August 24, 2008 / Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, WA / Kawasaki
June 10, 2007 / Ben Townley, New Zealand / Kawasaki
June 11, 2006 / Andrew Short, Murrieta, CA / Honda
June 12, 2005 / Grant Langston, South Africa / Kawasaki
June 13, 2004 / James Stewart, Haines City, FL / Kawasaki
June 8, 2003 / Craig Anderson, Corona, CA / Yamaha
June 9, 2002 / Danny Smith, Middleton, ID / Suzuki
June 10, 2001 / Travis Pastrana, Annapolis, MD / Suzuki
June 11, 2000 / Travis Pastrana, Annapolis, MD / Suzuki
June 13, 1999 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Kawasaki
June 14, 1998 / John Dowd, Chicopee, MA / Yamaha
June 22, 1997 / Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL / Kawasaki
June 23, 1996 / Steve Lamson, Pollock Pines, CA / Honda
June 25, 1995 / Steve Lamson, Pollock Pines, CA / Honda
June 26, 1994 / Doug Henry, Oxford, CT / Honda
May 2, 1993 / Doug Henry, Oxford, CT / Honda
May 17, 1992 / Larry Ward, Society Hill, SC / Suzuki
August 4, 1991 / Mike Kiedrowski, Canyon Country, CA / Kawasaki
July 22, 1990 / Jean-Michel Bayle, France / Honda
May 21, 1989 / Larry Ward, Society Hill, SC / Honda
May 22, 1988 / George Holland, Kerman, CA / Honda
May 17, 1987 / Micky Dymond, Yorba Linda, CA / Honda
May 18, 1986 / Keith Bowen, Auburn Hills, CA / Yamaha
May 18, 1980 / Broc Glover, El Cajon, CA / Yamaha
May 7, 1978 / Broc Glover, El Cajon, CA / Yamaha
May 16, 1982 / Kent Howerton, San Antonio, TX / Suzuki
May 17, 1981 / Broc Glover, El Cajon, CA / Yamaha
May 20, 1979 / Danny LaPorte, Yucca Valley, CA / Suzuki
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Last AMA National MX at Unadilla results, point standings