Zach Osborne takes his fourth 250MX win for season
Eli Tomac entered today with momentum in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, and he is showing no signs of relinquishing it any time soon. He swept both motos at Southwick, giving him five straight moto wins and three consecutive overall wins. Tomac now has four overall wins in total, including three 1-1 sweeps. He also extended his points lead to 19 in the process.
“I love this track, I had fun all day, blasting sand burms and railing corners. My starts weren’t the best, but we managed to still come out with the win. The break will be nice, but all I want to do is race right now.”
With Jason Anderson out of action at Southwick, the field of top contenders was thinned out a bit. But he still had to contend with Marvin Musquin (who seems to be much healthier after struggling with a knee injury for a few weeks) and Blake Baggett (who says that he’s being bothered by a thumb injury he just picked up). In both motos, Tomac would have to chase down and pass at least one of those two riders, and that’s exactly what he did.
Baggett secured a pair of second-place finishes to take second overall and lose just six points to Tomac, but Musquin was less fortunate. The Red Bull KTM rider spent the first moto salvaging as many positions as possible after going down on the opening lap, then dropped out of the second moto after a big crash.
“I was really excited for Southwick race. We had a good week training and my knee has healed and improved a lot this week. We knew the key to this race was going to be a good start. In the first moto I wasn’t bad off the start but I went down in the third corner with a few others and had to restart from way back. I made a good comeback and by the end of the race I was 4th, so I was happy about that because it proved we had the speed to run up front. In the second moto I got a really good start and got the holeshot, and I felt really good battling with Eli up front for the lead. Eli had gotten by me and I was pushing hard right behind him when I cross rutted and had a big crash. I tried to get going again but the bike was too banged up, and unfortunately I had to pull off. It’s such a bummer because I felt like everything was getting back on track and I was back to being up front again. But it is what it is and we will be back to fight up front in Millville.”
The series will take a week off before resuming for Spring Creek, and the break comes at a good time for Baggett. He’s headed for an MRI on Monday but says that early indications point to a ligament tear in his thumb.
Joining Tomac and Baggett on the podium was a newcomer, Dean Wilson. The Rockstar Husqvarna rider has been remarkably consistent all season (top 10 in every moto) but 6-3 moto finishes for third overall marks the best race of his career.
“I had an awesome day, I was a little disappointed that I fell in the first moto, but I got up and charged to sixth. I ended up with a third in the second moto, which gave me third overall and my first career podium. I’m very happy and I just want to thank the whole team for believing in me. I’m having so much fun and I’ve been working hard with Tyla—I’m looking forward to the next few races.”
That podium spot nearly went to Cooper Webb though. The 450MX rookie, who won at this track on a 250 last year, finished third in Moto 1 (a career-best moto result) but went down while running third in Moto 2. Although he finished tied with Wilson in points for the day, the tiebreaker (best Moto 2 result) kept Webb off what could have been his first career 450MX podium.
Davalos (7-4) took fifth overall, while Cole Seely (5-5) rode a pair of top-five finishes to sixth overall.
“The weekend was pretty good. The track obviously developed the fastest times during the first practice, and I wanted to get adjusted to the sand and get a good bike setup for racing. I didn’t feel like I got the greatest start in the first moto, but I worked my way through and finished seventh. I got a great start in the second moto and rode a solid race. I was very patient with myself and I feel like I rode to my full capability. The track was really rough, but I did the best I could do and came out with fifth overall—which is my best of the season so far. I’m really looking forward to letting my body heal up during the break before getting back in the swing of things at Millville.”
One of the most head-turning results came courtesy of a privateer from Minnesota, Henry Miller. Miller, who rides the No. 81, finished an incredible ninth overall thanks to 13-9 moto scores.
Meanwhile Justin Barcia (12-12) had one of the most deceiving scores of the day. He was on his way to a top-five finish in Moto 1 before his bike started having problems on the last lap of the race. He had another great shot at a top-five (possibly even top-three) result in Moto 2 but crashed early in the race and lost a lot of spots.
One of the stars of practice in the morning was Ryan Dowd, who came out of the B Group to qualify seventh overall. Ryan is, of course, the son of local legend John Dowd. In his second-ever race at Southwick, Dowd (18-16) earned the first AMA points of his career and finished 18th overall.
The first 450 race began with Blake Baggett powering his way to a holeshot and opening up a gap on the rest of the field. Weston Peick, Fredrik Noren and Isaac Teasdale (a privateer from North Carolina) all got strong starts to put themselves up near the front, while Eli Tomac and Marvin Musquin were lurking not far behind.
But Musquin ran into trouble on the opening lap, as he was part of a pileup several turns into the race. Struggling to get his bike loose, Musquin ended up falling back to about 18th place, and he would spend the rest of the moto trying to tear his way through the field and reclaim as many positions as possible.
Meanwhile Tomac marched to the front. He got around Peick to take second place, then tracked down Baggett. After making the pass on Baggett on Lap 3, Tomac quickly opened up a gap. With the fastest lap times by far, Tomac was untouchable, and he refused to let his foot off the gas (metaphorically speaking), building up a 15-second lead over Baggett by the time the checkered flag came out. Baggett was basically able to ride his own race after getting passed by Tomac, as no one really ever came close to challenging him.
Cooper Webb set a new career-high with a third-place finish. The factory Yamaha rider was fourth fastest in qualifying and won at this track last year aboard a 250, so it seems to favor him well. Like Baggett, Webb was essentially on an island throughout the rest of this race once he got into third. He finished 25 seconds behind Baggett and 5 seconds ahead of the next rider.
It’s been a promising turnaround for the JGR Suzuki squad over the past two weeks, as Justin Barcia and Weston Peick have finally started to turn in solid results. Peick entered the day with fourth-place finishes in three of the last four motos, and he looked like he might be on his way to a top-five finish at the very least until he started experiencing bike problems on Lap 9 and was forced to pull out of the race.
His teammate, Barcia, was also riding well in fourth place, even withstanding a late charge from Musquin, who had climbed his way back into the top five. But on the final lap of the race, Barcia started having bike problems of his own and could not finish. If there was any silver lining in that misfortune, it’s that enough riders were a lap down that a last-lap DNF only slid him down to 12th place.
Musquin ended up fourth, and Cole Seely rounded out the top five. Dean Wilson kept his streak of top 10s alive with a sixth-place result, Martin Davalos was seventh and Noren took advantage of his strong start to finish eighth. Justin Bogle and Christian Craig, who both had first-lap issues of their own in this race, bounced back to round out the top ten.
Henry Miller was one of the biggest movers in the race, moving from 35th to 13th over the course of the moto.
450MX Moto1 Results
Southwick 450 Moto 2
Baggett got another strong start in Moto 2 but lost out on the holeshot to Musquin. The two KTMs led the pack for awhile, but Tomac continued picking off riders until he worked his way up to third.
First, Tomac got around Baggett on Lap 5. The next few minutes saw Tomac and Musquin going all-out in a battle for the lead. Finally, on Lap 7, Tomac made a move as they went uphill into a corner and emerged with the lead, which he would once again never come close to relinquishing.
Musquin was positioned for a second-place finish but crashed hard shortly after losing the top spot. The incident required him to head to the pits, and he would not finish the race. That left Baggett to cruise to an easy second-place finish, but what about the final spot on the podium?
Barcia was running third early in the race but fell on a downhill section of the course and was shuffled back. He ended up finishing 12th — his same result from Moto 1 when he had bike problems on the final lap.
After Musquin’s crash, Webb was running in third for a bit. After finishing third in Moto 1, he could have landed on the overall podium if that result held up, but alas, he went down as well.
That meant that the third-place spot would be inherited by… Dean Wilson! The Husky rider has finished top-10 in every single moto this year but had no podiums and just one top-five finish before this moto. He locked down the third-place finish, finishing 15 seconds ahead of fourth-place Davalos. That result landed him on the overall 450 podium for the first time, as he tied with Webb but held the tiebreaking advantage (better Moto 2 finish).
Cole Seely rounded out the top five in the moto, while Webb managed to take sixth after his crash. Craig, Peick, Miller and Noren made up the rest of the top ten. Dakota Alix finished just outside in 11th after getting a good start that had him running up around the top five.
450MX Moto2 Results
Southwick 450 Class Overall Results
Eli Tomac (1-1)
Blake Baggett (2-2)
Dean Wilson (6-3)
Cooper Webb (3-6)
Martin Davalos (7-4)
Cole Seely (5-5)
Christian Craig (10-7)
Fredrik Noren (8-10)
Henry Miller (13-9)
Justin Bogle (9-13)
Justin Barcia (12-12)
Marvin Musquin (4-38)
Dakota Alix (17-11)
Weston Peick (36-8)
John Short (15-14)
Brandon Scharer (14-17)
Josh Grant (11-40)
Ryan Dowd (18-16)
Ronnie Stewart (33-15)
Josh Mosiman (19-18)
Already the most consistent rider in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship through the first six rounds, Zach Osborne continued the trend at Southwick. The Rockstar Husqvarna rider went 2-1 — splitting moto victories with Dylan Ferrandis — to earn his fourth overall win of the season.
After Osborne lost to Ferrandis in the first moto, the second moto quickly became another edition of the same battle — this time with the overall win on the line. But as the skies opened up at Southwick, and rain poured down on the sandy track, Osborne was able to hold him off and secure the win.
“Southwick was great for me today. I went 2-1 for the overall and qualified third. I didn’t get the best start in the first moto but I managed the race well and was able to take second. I got off to a perfect start in the second moto, took the holeshot, and never looked back. It was a great day and it’s nice to extend my points lead a little bit more. I just hope to keep this momentum going.”
Ferrandis (1-2) ended up second overall, a new career-high for him.
Although Alex Martin (3-3) was able to get a pair of top-three finishes (and even led a few laps in Moto 1), he finds himself in a deeper hole in the 250 Class points race. With the win, Osborne has bumped his advantage up to 45 points over Martin.
Southwick 250 Moto 1
The first 250 Class moto featured several lead changes, but in the end, it turned into a battle of former MXGP riders on the sandy Southwick track, with Dylan Ferrandis beating out Zach Osborne to secure his second moto win of the season.
Alex Martin set the pace by taking the holeshot, with Aaron Plessinger close behind. RJ Hampshire soon battled his way past Plessinger into second place, then tracked down Alex. Hampshire overtook him for the lead, but it wouldn’t last long — Hampshire ended up going down after leading just one lap, causing him to drop back to fourth.
With A-Mart and Plessinger back in the 1-2 spots, they were soon caught by Ferrandis, who turned it into a three-way battle for the lead. The trio of riders stayed close together for awhile, until Plessinger went over the bars and immediately bailed on his bike and jumped off the side of the track.
While Ferrandis pressed A-Mart for the lead, Hampshire was locked in a battle to hold off Osborne for third place. Hampshire held his own for awhile but eventually lost the spot to Osborne on Lap 7. With that roadblock cleared, Osborne began to move toward the leaders.
Up front, Ferrandis passed Alex to move into the lead, but then he went down. He remounted fairly quickly but had to track down Alex once more. On Lap 10, as the two riders headed uphill into a corner, Ferrandis dove inside of Alex and then accelerated past him on the downhill section to retake the lead.
On the next lap, Osborne caught A-Mart and passed him for second. But Osborne was unable to track down Ferrandis, who won by 7.9 seconds, and therefore had to settle for second.
Jeremy Martin overcame a poor start to work his way up to fourth place. At the end of the race he was all over the back of his brother, but Alex was able to hold him off for a spot on the podium. Hampshire set a new season-high by finishing fifth.
Mitchell Harrison and Joey Savatgy ended up sixth and seventh, respectively, after racing hard for a good portion of the race. At one point, the two riders almost crossed paths when trying to land a jump.
Colt Nichols, Chase Sexton (who had a rough-looking crash earlier in practice) and Luke Renzland rounded out the top 10.
Several notable riders failed to finish the race, including Aaron Plessinger, Austin Forkner and Justin Hill. Adam Cianciarulo, who entered as the top qualifier, went down on the opening lap and had to come all the way from dead-last to finish 15th.
250MX Moto1 Results
Southwick 250 Moto 2
The rain arrived at Southwick in time for the second 250 moto, though it was just a light rain at first. The top riders from Moto 1, Osborne and Ferrandis, got good starts in the second moto. Osborne led them to the line but had Ferrandis close behind him. After one lap, the top seven looked like this: Osborne, Ferrandis, Alex Martin, Hampshire, Savatgy, Jeremy Martin, Harrison.
Ferrandis pressed Osborne for the top spot but couldn’t quite reel him in. Once the rain began to pick up, the field got pretty stagnant. The top six remained completely unchanged throughout the rest of the race, while Harrison lost a spot to Chase Sexton for several laps before re-claiming seventh place before the end of the race.
“I had great starts all day, I wasn’t able to capitalize on the early opportunities. I’m looking forward to the break and to come into Millville swinging. I just wished I was able to take advantage of the opportunity to close to the front pack early on. I’ll keep working as we get a weekend off, but looking forward to getting back out on the track.”
After the race, Osborne said that the first rain wasn’t bad, but that the track became “tricky” once the second rain hit. Osborne (2-1) and Ferrandis (1-2) ended up tying for the overall win, though Osborne officially gets it because he had the better finish in Moto 2.
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