Troy Lee Designs / Lucas Oil / Honda team has solid start to the season in Sacramento
It was a busy weekend for the TLD crew as they had riders in all three classes of competition at the season opening round of the AMA motocross championship. When the day was done every rider on the team had something promising to build from for the next eleven rounds.
Ben Townley fought through a case of nerves as the gate dropped for his first 450 national in two years. The former world champion ran near the front all moto long and gave up one spot near the end of the race when he stalled his bike in a tight corner. The second moto was even more encouraging as BT made a charge to the front of the pack that saw him pass into second and begin to close in on the race leader. A small mistake near the twenty-minute mark would cost him several positions and a shot at an overall podium finish. His 6-7 motos were good enough for a sixth place finish overall.
Ben Townley, Photo: Kardas
“I was quite nervous before the start of the race,” said Townley at the days end. “I’m feeling pretty good about my speed though and I think by the time I hit round two or three my fitness will be where it needs to be in order to race for wins. I’m really happy with the team at the moment and now that the first round is out of the way I feel like we can really focus on the task at hand. It was a good start for me.”
Wil Hahn, Photo: Kardas
Wil Hahn and Cole Seely represented TLD well in the 250 division. Cole spent much of the first moto in sixth position until a fall forced him out of the race. Wil suffered a bad start but fought all the way to 13th by the motos end. The second moto started with a big Wil Hahn holeshot. Wil led for a couple laps and then spent the race dicing with the worlds best 250 riders at the front of the pack. He would score a 6th in moto two giving him eighth overall on the day. Cole didn’t get the start he needed but he managed to work into 17th and earn a handful of points by the end of the race. Both 250 riders are looking fast and ready to race at the front, they just need to get good starts and stay on two wheels.
Cole Seely, Photo: Bob Weber
Tarah Gieger scored the team’s only podium finish of the day, a fact she was quick to point out to her male teammates. The star WMX rider rode consistently all day long and earned third overall with her 2-6 motos scores. Tarah was certainly not content with a third and she is already looking forward to another shot at a win in Texas.
Tarah Geiger, Photo: Bob Weber
“I really didn’t get a chance to ride the way I know I can,” Tarah explained. “I couldn’t get comfortable with the track all day and I hit a stalled rider in the second moto that knocked me down and had me riding from the back the whole race. Texas is a good track for me and I’m looking forward to getting out there.”
The TLD/ Lucas Oil/ Honda team will set up at Glen Helen Raceway this weekend for the GP round in California. Ben Townley will use the event as another stepping stone towards his goal of winning the 2010 AMA national championship. Look for the #101 flying around the hilly circuit in San Bernardino this weekend. The rest of the team riders will focus on preparing for the next round of the AMA series in Freestone, Texas in two weeks time.