2019 Australian Supercross Championship
Round Two – Gillman Speedway
Words & Images by AM
Brayton Makes It Two From Two
Oldenburg Makes It A Honda Double
Penrite Honda’s American duo of Justin Brayton and Mitchell Oldenburg claimed maximum points at the second round of the 2019 Australian Supercross held at the Gilman Speedway in South Australia on Saturday the 19th of October.
One what was widely regarded as the biggest Supercross track built on Australian shores, Australia’s best and a handful of international stars tamed the U.S spec track and put on a show for the large crowd.
Brayton once again showed his class in SX1, making it two round wins in a row, as the CDR Monster Energy Yamaha team riders again completed the podium. However this round the results were reversed, with Luke Clout standing on the second step ahead of team-mate Daniel Reardon.
In SX2 Oldenburg proved to be the best 250F racer on the night, leading home fellow American Joshua Osby from the Raceline KTM team. Aaron Tanti was the best of the Aussies rounding out the podium and in the process gaining the championship lead and red plate for his Serco Yamaha YZ250F.
With racing turning back to the more traditional 20-lap main event format, and even more importantly for riders a 20 gate start, there was a little less pressure on riders to make the night show straight from qualifying.
On a track that was close to twice the size of that seen at the Brisbane season opener (Link), Brayton topped the timesheets with a 45.012-second lap time but was closely followed by Clout on 45.226s. Reardon was only three one-thousandths of a second further back in third.
Hometown hero Brett Metcalfe, racing for Penrite Honda, was the fourth fastest followed by the Empire Kawasaki’s of Lawson Bopping and Dylan Long.
While practice and qualifying was smooth for most, Davey Motorsports KTM and SB Motorsports ECSTAR Suzuki riders Caleb Ward and Cody Dyce both had big crashes that they were lucky to walk away from. Husqvarna MPE privateer Jesse Dobson, who was already suffering from an ankle injury and a cold, had a rear shock collapse on him early in the qualifying session. All three would return for racing later in the night.
SX1 HEAT 1
With only 21 riders entered in the SX1 class the top ten from both heats were guaranteed a spot in the nights main event, with no LCQ to be raced.
Metcalfe had the crowd on their feet when the gate dropped for heat one, leading the field through the first turn followed by Yamaha Yamaluabe’s Richie Evans and Ride Red Honda privateer Joel Wightman.
Clout quickly made his way around both Wightman and Evans and worked his way onto the back of Metcalfe’s rear wheel, the duo then going head to head for a couple of laps until Metcalfe crashed heavily in the whoops.
With a clear track in front of him, Clout raced away to a comfortable race win ahead of SX1 rookie Evans. A resilient Metcalfe wa able to re-mount and finish the race in third.
DPH Huqvarana’s Todd Waters worked his way up to 4th place with Wightman holding on to 5th just head of SB ECSTAR Suzuki’s Jayden Rykers.
SX1 HEAT 2
Reardon jumped out of the gates with cat-like reflexes in heat two, leading Long and Brayton through the first turn.
Brayton then quickly moved his way into second spot and went to work on finding a way around Reardon. The Queenslander was able to hold off the American’s advance for the opening half of the race before Brayton took control and continued his unbeaten run in this year’s championship.
Reardon crossed the finish line in second position as Bopping moved around his team-mate Long to claim third.
British racer Gradie Featherston aboard his KSF Yamaha rounded out the top five, finishing just ahead of Dobson who rebounded from his earlier qualifying troubles.
For the first time this season, Brayton was beaten to top spot, Reardon able to lay down a faster time in the nights Superpole which set the gate pick for the nights’ main event.
With the sun down and the track lit up by the surrounding speedway lights, Reardon posted a lap time of 44.336s to better Brayton’s time of 44.390s. Clout had to settle for third with a time of 44.481s.
Reardon once again stole the lead when the nights’ main event started, sneaking up the inside of Long to grab the all-important holeshot.
By the end of the opening lap, three of the four favourites for the night we up front were they were expected to be, Brayton moving around Reardon for the lead while Clout held down third.
Crowd favourite Metcalfe finished the opening lap down in 6th place but his night quickly hit a snag as he crashed two turns into lap two, seeing him slip well outside the top ten.
On lap two a rare mistake by Brayton allowed Reardon to regain the lead, luckily for Brayton; he was able to save what could have been a massive crash and quickly regain his composure.
After another skirmish with Reardon on lap three, Brayton again took control of the race and set about building himself a handy lead.
On lap six Clout made a nice move on Reardon to take second position. Further behind the lead trio, Evans worked his way by Featherston for fourth and Bopping held down 5th, followed by Wightman and a fast-charging Metcalfe.
By mid-race both Featherstone and Bopping hit a wall and fell back through the field. Bopping eventually pulling out the race on lap 12, allowing Metcalfe to work his way into 5th position, then with seven laps remaining the veteran moved into fourth.
Out front Brayton was never headed, running away to win by just under ten-seconds from Clout. Reardon just under three-seconds further back in third.
Metcalfe held on to salvage fourth position for the second round in a row, while both Evans and Wightman impressed with stand-out rides to finish 5th and 6th respectively.
Jesse Dobson had a disastrous opening round in Brisbane, and not much had gone his way earlier during the day in Adelaide, but managed to turn his season around with an excellent 7th place result, ahead of Todd Waters and Jackson Richardson who worked tirelessly after they both finished the opening lap near the rear of the field. Dylan Long held on after a great start to round out the top ten.
|6||Joel WIGHTMAN||Honda||+1 Lap|
|7||Jesse DOBSON||Husqvarna||+1 Lap|
|8||Todd WATERS||Husqvarna||+1 Lap|
|9||Jackson RICHARDSON||Honda||+1 Lap|
|10||Dylan LONG||Kawasaki||+1 Lap|
|11||Jayden RYKERS||Suzuki||+1 Lap|
|12||Justin CARAFA||Honda||+1 Lap|
|13||Caleb WARD||KTM||+1 Lap|
|14||Gradie FEATHERSTONE||Yamaha||+2 Laps|
|15||Dylan WOOD||KTM||+2 Laps|
|16||Cody DYCE||Suzuki||+2 Laps|
|17||Lochie LATIMER||Yamaha||+3 Laps|
|18||Joel CIGLIANO||Kawasaki||+4 Laps|
|DNF||Lawson BOPPING||Kawasaki||+12 Laps|
|DNF||Elijah WIESE||Yamaha||+14 Laps|
|7||Dylan WOOD /||KTM||+32.923|
|9||Lochie LATIMER||Yamaha||+1 Lap|
|10||Joel CIGLIANO||Kawasaki||+1 Lap|
|DNF||Jesse MADDEN||Honda||+6 Laps|
Unlike the opening round where only the top twenty from qualifying from the SX2 class advanced to the nights’ racing, the round two format allowed all 31 riders to head to the heat races.
Qualifying was again dominated by the American racers, with the five imports posting the top five fastest times on the tough and technical track.
Round one winner Serco Yamaha’s Jacob Hayes lead the way with a lap time of 45.935s, edging out the Penrite Factory Honda pairing of Chirs Blose and Mitchell Oldenburg who both posted times in the low 46’s.
Raceline KTM’s Joshua Osby and Empire Kawasaki’s Bradley Taft continued the American onslaught. Serco Yamaha’s Aaron Tanti led the way for the Aussies in 6th position on 47.227-seconds, well over a half a second down on 5th fastest Taft.
Current SX2 champion Jay Wilson finished 7th fastest. Young gun, Kaleb Barham aboard his Mat Mladin Racing Husqvarna impressed with the 8th best time.
SX2 HEAT 1
A revised racing format saw the top seven riders from each heat qualify directly to the 15-lap main event. The remaining riders from each heat then headed to the LCQ, where the top six would then advance to make a 20-rider field for the final.
Osby, who won one of the two double-header finals in Brisbane last week, again showed he has race-winning pace, sneaking under DPH Husqvarna’s Wilson Todd in the first turn to take control of the race lead. Hayes soon followed up into second position.
The race up front emained unchanged all the way to the finish, with the prime action happening behind the leading three.
Tomas Ravenhorst, who had a night to forget at round one, held down 4th for every lap bar the last when Raceline KTM’s Regan Duffy got the better of him. Qualifying standout Barham finished the race in 6th.
Taking the last direct qualifying spot for the nights main event was Taft who overcame a first-lap crash before dissecting his way through the field in order to bypass the LCQ.
Victorian privateer Geran Stapleton, who sat out the opening round, was the first rider through to the LCQ, finishing 8th.
SX2 HEAT 2
Penrite Pirelli CRF Honda Racing’s Rhys Budd gave in insight to his potential when he led the field for the entire opening lap of the second heat. In stark contrast, Chris Blose, one of the pre-race favourites, found himself in last position after going down early on the opening lap.
Budd’s race lead was short-lived, Tanti and Oldenburg both passing the Honda racer before putting on a show for the crowd, a back and forth battle ensued that saw the two pass each other on numerous occasions.
In the end though Oldenburg proved too good, edging out Tanti for the win. Jay Wilson coming home in third.
Round one qualifying stand-out Connor Tierney again impressed aboard his GPH Recruitment Yamaha to finish 4th, ahead of Budd and Davey Motorsports KTM racer Dylan Wills.
If the show out front for the lead was good, the race for the final spot direct to the main was a barnstormer. Blose making an amazing three passes on the last lap to cross the line in 7th spot, just over a half-a-second ahead of TLR Yamaha’s Ricky Latimer.
Both Geran Stapleton and Ricky Latimer made up for missing a direct qualifying spot from the heats into the main event by one plac by making the most of the LCQ. Stapleton taking the win and Latimer in third, joining second-placed Morgan Fogarty of the Davey Motorsports KTM team in advancing to the nights big show.
WBR Yamaha’s Jack Kukas and Top Gun Motorcycles backed Jayce Gosford finished 4th and 5th respectively. Davey Motorsports KTM’s Chandler Burns finished 6th to take the last spot on the gate.
For round two, the top three SX2 racers from each heat also made an appearance in the nights Superpole competition to decide the first six gate picks for the main event.
Hayes topped the timesheet with a blistering 45.020s lap time, half-a-second ahead of Oldenburg and Osby as American riders filled the top three spots, followed by the Australian trio of Wilson, Tanti and Todd.
Wilson Todd jumped out to an early lead when the SX2 main event got underway, leading Joshua Osby and Mitchell Oldenburg through the opening two laps. Round one winner Jacob Hayes had his work cut out from 7th position.
Two other riders who also had some work to do were American’s Blose and Taft, as happened in each of their heat races they both suffered early race separate crashes again in the main event, leaving them at the back of the field. Blose crossing the finish line at the end of lap two dead last.
On lap three the race was turned on its head as both race leader Todd, and Hayes who was battling for 5th, both crashed at nearly the same time on the same straight, though in different spots and separate incidents.
The crashes were big enough to put both riders out of the event, Hayes eventually walking from the track, while Todd was left in the care of the Racesafe medics.
Out front Oldenburg took advantage of Todd’s misfortune, running away with the lead and quickly setting up an unassailable gap back to second position.
The fight for the final podium positions was where all the action unfolded, as Osby held down second place from Jay Wilson with Tanti in 4th.
Tanti first caught and passed Wilson on lap six, then with just five laps remaining made his way through on Osby to take over second position.
Osby was not done though, and on the final lap closed the gap to second placed Tanti.
Out front, Oldenburg was near faultless walking away from the field to win by six-and-a-half seconds, elevating himself to third positions in the championship standings.
Behind him, Osby not only passed Tanti on the final lap but found a way to gap the leading Australian by two-seconds to finish on the second step of the podium, moving into second position in the championship.
Tanti may have been relegated to third for the round, but it was still enough for him to take over the points lead. Tanti will now take hold of the red plate when the third round of the series heads to Wollongong on Saturday the 9th of November.
Jay Wilson finished 4th, 12-seconds ahead of Blose who put in a remarkable ride to keep his championship hopes alive, passing 15 riders in just 13 laps to finish 5th.
Regan Duffy continued his impressive foray into Supercross racing, building speed as the night went on to finish in a very respectable 6th position, ahead of Tierney in 7th and Ravenhorst in 8th, the leading two privateers.
Taft rebounded from his crash to finish 9th, while Rhys Budd continued his excellent form to round out the top ten.
|10||Rhys BUDD Honda Racing||Honda||+1 Lap|
|11||Dylan WILLS||KTM||+1 Lap|
|12||Geran STAPLETON||Honda||+1 Lap|
|13||Ricky LATIMER||Yamaha||+1 Lap|
|14||Kaleb BARHAM||Husqvarna||+1 Lap|
|15||Jayce COSFORD||Yamaha||+1 Lap|
|16||Chandler BURNS||KTM||+2 Laps|
|17||Jack KUKAS||Yamaha||+3 Laps|
|DNF||Morgan FOGARTY||KTM||+7 Laps|
|DNF||Wilson TODD||Husqvarna||+13 Laps|
|DNF||Jacob HAYES||Yamaha||+13 Laps|
|DNF||Hugh MCKAY||Yamaha||+2 Laps|
|DNF||Josh BREWSTER||Suzuki||+2 Laps|
|14||James BROWN||Yamaha||+1 Lap|
|1||Joshua OSBY / Raceline KTM Thor||KTM||4m24.739|
|2||Jacob HAYES / Serco Yamaha||Yamaha||+1.718|
|3||Wilson TODD / DPH Motorsport Husqvarna||Husqvarna||+7.679|
|4||Regan DUFFY / Raceline KTM Thor||KTM||+14.776|
|5||Tomas RAVENHORST / Alpinestars||KTM||+16.490|
|6||Kaleb BARHAM / Mat Mladin – Mladin Racing||Husqvarna||+19.346|
|7||Bradley TAFT / Empire Kawasaki||Kawasaki||+19.913|
|9||Cory WATTS / Scrivens Racing Honda||Honda||+39.031|
|10||Josh BREWSTER / Suzuki Australia||Suzuki||+39.852|
|11||Caleb GOULLET / Snapes Project Logistics||Honda||+48.815|
|12||Jack KUKAS / WBR Yamaha Bulk Nutrients||Yamaha||+1 Lap|
|13||Riley STEPHENS / Pro-Moto Suspension||Honda||+1 Lap|
|DNF||Jaxon HADLOW||Honda||+5 Laps|