Moto News Wrap for January 15, 2019 by Darren Smart

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Smarty's Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax
Smarty’s Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax

Moto News Latest

  • Baggett and Cianciarulo Take Glendale AMA SX
  • Latest on Dakar Rally after Stage 7
  • Fricke Wins Aussie Speedway Solo Championship
  • Waters Wins Coffs Harbour Stadium
  • Bowers Wins German Supercross
  • ‘Sir’ Jeffrey Herlings is a Knight
  • MXGP of Patagonia – Argentina Entry Lists
  • Watson Wins Gurp TT Beach Race
  • 2019 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship Up-Date
  • Kirkness to Star at Old Bar Dirt Track This Weekend
  • 2020 Aussie Speedway Championship hosting EoIs open

Baggett and Cianciarulo Take Glendale AMA SX

The second round of the AMA Supercross Championship was filled with great racing and drama but when it was all said and done Blake Baggett won his first 450SX main event after Adam Cianciarulo completely dominated the 250SX main.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Pits Track JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2

450SX Report – Start 1

There were two starts to the 450 main so let’s start with the original gate drop where Ken Roczen outsmarted his competitors by breaking ranks to position himself on the third farthest outside gate away from all of the contenders who were on the middle to inside gates, to earn the holeshot from Marvin Musquin, Blake Baggett, Jason Anderson, Vince Friese, Malcolm Stewart, Eli Tomac, Justin Barcia, Dean Wilson and Justin Brayton while Chad Reed continues to struggle with his starts to be back in 14th place.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Rear Starts JK COVER
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2

Anderson moved to second place and all of the places were remaining predominantly the same for the first four minutes when Stewart spewed over the bars in the tough whoop section and didn’t move off the track so the race was stopped – news on Stewart’s status below.

Start 2 – Staggered Start

With Roczen at the front, the whole field sat single file from 1st to 21st on the main straight for the remaining 16 minutes of the main event and after a confusing drop of the flag Roczen led the field from Anderson, Musquin, Baggett, Friese. Tomac and the rest of the star studded field.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Roczen JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Ken Roczen

The first couple of laps were enthralling as Roczen held Anderson at bay but then the defending champ ran out of patience and drove hard into the right hand berm at the end of the whoops and thanks to their alternate lines coming together Roczen was dropped off his Honda.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Anderson JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Jason Anderson

All bets would have been on Anderson taking off for an easy win but Baggett, who had already passed Musquin was looking mighty comfortable on the hard packed, slippery surface and it wasn’t long before Anderson and Baggett were in a battle for the lead just as Roczen and Tomac moved into third and fourth with easy passes on the struggling Musquin.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Reed JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Chad Reed

Out front Baggett was all over Anderson for the lead for several laps and it looked like a cat playing with a wounded mouse for some time before Baggett literally rode around the outside of the defending champion as they entered a right hand berm before taking off for his maiden 450SX class main event win.

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Blake Baggett

“I have had weekends where I have had to run the pace with those guys, Kenny as well, then some weekends they leave me in the dust, so it feels good to finally get my whole program together and win a round against those guys.”

AMASX Rnd Glendale Baggett JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Blake Baggett

Anderson’s title defence is back on track with a solid second place.

Jason Anderson

“This was a good weekend, I was able to ride the Main better than last week. I had a section that I didn’t think I was great in, so I didn’t want to put myself in a position to go down and lose points. I took the second and I’ll go from there.”

AMASX Rnd Glendale Pits Anderson JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Jason Anderson

Eli Tomac didn’t get the best start and was right in the mix when Stewart went over the bars but the Kawasaki ace battled through to fourth place.

Eli Tomac

“I was feeling confident coming into the weekend and also felt good in qualifying. The track was massive and different from most of the tracks in the series. It’s never ideal to have to go to the LCQ but we got it done and stayed focused on the Main Event. We’ll be focusing on our starts this week and look to apply that practice to the race next weekend. We’re still third in points and in a really good position so we’ll come out swinging for the second go-around in Anaheim.”

AMASX Rnd Glendale Eli Tomac J K
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Eli Tomac

Last week’s winner Justin Barcia didn’t get the starts he needed to contend for another win but the Yamaha rider is just one point off the championship lead.

Justin Barcia

“It was a really difficult day for me. The track was really high speed. It had some really technical rhythm sections. For some reason, I could never get a good flow on it. It was a little bit frustrating I would say, but I felt like every time I went on the track I kind of got better and better and made some really good bike changes. I wish I could have gotten more comfortable right off the bat. I just never felt comfortable today. It was definitely a frustrating day compared to my win last weekend. But all in all, the team really worked their butts off today to get me as comfortable as I could on the bike on this tricky track. It was really hard packed, really slick. The team went above and beyond and did a good job on the bike. The track was just a difficult one for me. So I’m moving on this week. Will work on a few things and then back to Anaheim. Looking forward to that. I’m really excited for A2.”

AMASX Rnd Glendale Barcia JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Justin Barcia

Rookie Aaron Plessinger struggled with the track conditions to end the night just outside the top 10 in 11th.

Aaron Plessinger

“Phoenix Supercross was a little rough for me. I was struggling with the bike all day. I had a big crash in practice and then changed a lot on the bike for the heat race. The track was really, really getting slick in the heat race. I got a pretty good start in the heat race but just made a couple little mistakes and it cost me third and ended up fifth. In the main event, I didn’t really get a great start. Then we had to do a restart, a staggered start. That didn’t really play into my favour. I went from 12th to 13th, I think. Then about halfway through I started feeling really good and started flowing with the track and made a few passes and was catching another rider and just ran out of time. I think A2 will be a lot better. It will be the first triple crown, so I’m coming in with high hopes.”

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Chad Reed was dead-set on fire in his heat race to pass the likes of Roczen and Baggett on his way to second place but the final did not go Chad’s way with a poor start and a few small mistakes leaving the multi champion back in 14th place at race end.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Reed JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Chad Reed

Joey Savatgy’s night ended with a concussion after crashing during his heat race.

Joey Savatgy

“I was feeling really comfortable on the bike all day. The team and I were prepared to redeem our results from last week, but unfortunately, I made a mistake in my heat race, which caused me to sit out the rest of the night. It’s only the second round of a long season and I’m looking forward to using the experience and improving each week.”

450 Main Event Overall Results

  1. Blake Baggett
  2. Jason Anderson
  3. Ken Roczen
  4. Eli Tomac
  5. Marvin Musquin
  6. Justin Barcia
  7. Justin Brayton
  8. Dean Wilson
  9. Cole Seely
  10. Cooper Webb
  11. Aaron Plessinger
  12. Vince Friese
  13. Justin Hill Suzuki
  14. Chad Reed Suzuki
  15. Justin Bogle
  16. Kyle Chisholm
  17. Alex Ray
  18. Carlen Gardner
  19. Ben Lamay Honda
  20. Ronnie Stewart
  21. Cheyenne Harmon
  22. Malcolm Stewart
AMASX Rnd Glendale Podium Baggett Anderson Roczen JK
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – 450 Podium – Anderson, Baggett, Roczen

450 Supercross Points (Round 2 Of 17)

  1. Ken Roczen – 44
  2. Justin Barcia – 43
  3. Eli Tomac – 40
  4. Blake Baggett – 37
  5. Dean Wilson – 34
  6. Marvin Musquin – 33
  7. Jason Anderson – 32
  8. Cooper Webb – 31
  9. Aaron Plessinger – 29
  10. Justin Brayton – 28
  11. Cole Seely – 27
  12. Chad Reed – 23
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250SX Report

The fifteen minute 250SX main saw Cianciarulo take the holeshot ahead of Shane McElrath, Jimmy Decotis, Colt Nichols and Dylan Ferrandis who was on a mission as he passed Nichols but the Frenchman high-sided on a left hand sweeper which dropped him to 16th.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Cianciarulo JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Adam Cianciarulo

As Cianciarulo pulled away, Decotis and Nichols were going toe to toe for several laps before Nichols eventually won the battle and then demoted McElrath to third place but he was 10 seconds back from Cianciarulo and never looked like catching the flying Kawasaki pilot.

R.J Hampshire was another on the move and had moved up from a bad starting position to 5th by lap eleven and then quickly demoted Decotis to take 4th.

AMASX Rnd Glendale McElrath JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Shane McElrath

Cianciarulo secured maximum points with his 7th career victory, almost 12 seconds ahead of Nichols who retained his championship points lead with a five point advantage heading into the third round while McElrath held off a charge at the flag from Hampshire who finished well ahead of Decotis and Ferrandis who came home 6th after his crash.

Adam Cianciarulo

“I got through the first corner, unlike last week. I’m really tired of being the guy that just has potential. We just went back to the drawing board this week,”

AMASX Rnd Glendale Cianciarulo JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Adam Cianciarulo

Garrett Marchbanks struggled on the hard packed surface to end the night in 9th place.

Garrett Marchbanks

“Round 2 is done and I’m proud of our ninth-place position. I’m still learning each week, working on my starts and building my confidence. I’m so grateful for all the hard work my team has put in and all the support they continue to provide me with. This track was a lot different from the others I’m used to but I’m using everything as experience and applying it to each round.”

AMASX Rnd Glendale Marchbanks JK SX Glendale
2019 AMA SX – Glendale Round 2 – Garrett Marchbanks

Tomas Ravenhorst had an up and down heat race with the Australian privateer running as high as 7th before dropping to 11th then back to the final qualifying spot only to drop back to 10th and a trip to the LCQ where he never figured to finish 15th.

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250 Main Event Overall Results

  1. Adam Cianciarulo
  2. Colt Nichols
  3. Shane McElrath
  4. RJ Hampshire
  5. James Decotis
  6. Dylan Ferrandis
  7. Chris Blose Husqvarna
  8. Sean Cantrell
  9. Garrett Marchbanks
  10. Michael Mosiman
AMASX Rnd Podium Cianciarulo Nichols McElrath
AMA Supercross 2019
250 Western Round Two Main Event Results
Adam Cianciarulo – Kawasaki
Colt Nichols – Yamaha +9.557
Shane McElrath – KTM +13.919

250 West Coast Points (Round 2 Of 9)

  1. Colt Nichols – 49
  2. Adam Cianciarulo – 44
  3. Shane Mcelrath – 42
  4. Dylan Ferrandis – 40
  5. RJ Hampshire – 38
  6. James Decotis – 34
  7. Garrett Marchbanks – 31
  8. Chris Blose – 30
  9. Michael Mosiman – 24
  10. Jess Pettis – 24

Latest on Dakar Rally after Stage 7

Sam Sunderland came out on top in the loop around San Juan de Marconae and now stands less than 10 minutes behind the new overall leader, Ricky Brabec who has a six minute lead over Toby Price who moved up to second place overall after stage 7.

Dakar Stage Sam Sunderland
Sam Sunderland

Still suffering with his injury, Toby Price battles on in third overall. Of the other Aussies in the event, Rodney Faggotter dropped out with a mechanical issue early in the event while James Ferguson is down as a DNF during stage six but Ben Young sits in a more than credible 63rd outright despite suffering six-minutes’ worth of penalties.

Price Update

Toby Price was given a 1 minute and 33 second penalty for some form of misdemeanor during stage 7 which drops the Aussie to third overall and eight plus minutes behind the leader with three stages to go.

Dakar Stage Toby Price
Toby Price takes a 1m33s penalty

See the full Round 7 report here (link)

Standings after Stage 7 (Bike class, Top 10)

  1. Ricky Brabec – Honda – 24h48m02s
  2. Adrien Van Beveren – Yamaha – 7m47s
  3. Toby Price – KTM – 8m 28s
  4. Sam Sunderland – KTM – 9m58s
  5. Pablo Quintanilla – Husqvarna – 9m59s
  6. Kevin Benavides – Honda – 16m15s
  7. Matthias Walkner – KTM – 16m16s
  8. Stefan Svitko – KTM – 37m09s
  9. Xavier De Soultrait – Yamaha – 39m08s
  10. Andrew Short – Husqvarna – 39m17s

2019 Dakar Rally remaining stages

  • Stage 8 – Tuesday, January 15, 2019 –
    San Juan de Marcona > Pisco, Total 575 km | Specials 360 km
  • Stage 9: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 –
    Pisco > Pisco, Total 409 km | Specials 313 km
  • Stage 10: Thursday, January 17, 2019 –
    Pisco > Lima, Total 359 km | Specials 112 km
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Fricke Wins Aussie Speedway Solo Championship

Despite Rohan Tungate winning the final round on his home track at Kurri Kurri, Max Fricke has been crowned the 2019 Australian Speedway Solo Champion thanks to three round wins and two podium finishes over the five hard fought rounds.

Only a handful of points separated Fricke, former World Champion Chris Holder and defending champion Tungate going into the final round at Loxford Park Speedway, Kurri Kurri on Friday night but the fans didn’t need to wait for the final to see Fricke win the championship after the former World Under 21 Champion produced enough points in his heats to clinch the title.

The 22-year-old from Mansfield finished the final round with four wins and one second place finish during his heats, and a second-place finish in the A Final to end the championship with 83 points.

Max Fricke

“It’s been a really close championship between myself, Rohan and Chris right from the get-go. It’s been a great Championship and I am unbelievably happy to now be named the Champion. All the clubs have done such a great job this championship and everything has worked out really well! I hope to look to add a GP World Championship but I think that’s a long way into the future, so I just need to continue improving and hopefully a goal like that can be achievable.”

Max Fricke Australian Speedway Solo Champion
Max Fricke – 2019 Australian Speedway Solo Champion

Tungate delivered an unforgettable performance at Kurri Kurri, winning all his respective heats and was just too fast for Fricke in the A Final to end the championship on 77 points, just six points shy of repeating his 2018 title win.

Rohan Tungate

“I came out with a plan and everything went to accordingly. I did everything I could and won all my races, so I achieved my goal in the end! Max rode well all meeting and all series, and you simply can’t take that away from him. I can sleep well knowing I rode him hard, and so did Chris. It’s been a hard Championship, and Max fought hard for it, so he deserves it.”

Chris Holder ended the championship on 70 points on the back of a round win and making it to the A Final at every round and despite a couple of mechanical issues Holder fought tooth and nail throughout the Championship to take out the bronze medal despite missing out on points in the A Final at Kurri Kurri.

Sam Masters closed off the championship on 53 points for fourth overall just ahead of Jack Holder on 52 points and Brady Kurtz on 51 points while Jaimon Lidsey and Nick Morris ended the series on 45 points apiece.

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Waters and Tanti Wins Coffs Harbour Stadium

Todd Waters and Aaron Tanti have added their name to the winners list when they won the Pro-Open and Pro-Lites classes respectively at the annual and highly rated Coffs Harbour Stadium Motocross last weekend.

Despite losing the opening moto to Luke Clout, Waters won the Pro-Open class over Connor Tierney and Joel Rizzo while Tanti scored the Pro-Lites class win over Mason Rowe and Rhys Budd.

Todd Waters to HRC
Todd Waters won the Pro-Open class

There were over 450 riders at the event and unfortunately Clout was forced from the final two Pro-Open motos with a mystery mechanical failure while the other class winners include:

  • Beau Price (7/u9 years 50cc),
  • Jake Cannon (10-11 years 65cc),
  • Hunter Collins (14-15 years 85cc/150cc 4st),
  • Taylor Thompson (Girls 85cc),
  • Jarrad Hardcastle (Vets Over 30),
  • Ashlea Bates (Women’s All Powers),
  • Chris Nichols (Vets Over 40),
  • Ryder Kingfsord (13 years 85cc/150cc 4st),
  • Ryder Creeke (7-9 Years 65cc),
  • Joshua Lea (C Grade Lites – Under 19),
  • Lachlan Burns (C Grade Lites – Over 19),
  • Hixson McInnes (11 years 85cc/150cc 4st),
  • Ryder Kingfsord (13 years 100-125cc 2st),
  • Charli Cannon (Girls Lites),
  • Jack Deveson (9-10 years 85cc/150cc 4st),
  • Reid Taylor (14-15 years 100-125cc 2st),
  • Connor Whitney (B Grade Lites),
  • Cody Kilpatrick (12 years 85cc/150cc 4st),
  • Connor McNamara (A Grade Lites),
  • Luke Holder (C Grade Open),
  • Harrison Reid (13-15 years 128cc2st/250cc4st),
  • Andrew Fuller (B Grade Open)
  • Jake Cobbin (A Grade Open).

Pro Open

  1. Todd Waters
  2. Connor Tierney
  3. Joel Rizzo
  4. Mason Rowe
  5. Robbie Marshall

Pro Lites – Top 5

  1. Aaron Tanti
  2. Mason Rowe
  3. Rhys Budd
  4. Jye Dickson
  5. John Bova

Bowers Wins King of Dortmund

American Tyler Bowers was in Germany last weekend contesting the final round of the ADAC Supercross Championship in Dortmund and it bore fruit with the former Arenacross Champ winning the first night on Friday before taking second on Saturday to capture the King of Dortmund crown ahead of Valentin Teillet and Cedric Soubeyras.

Gregory Aranda won the SX1 class overall thanks to his win on Saturday night while Teillet and Soubeyras finished third and fourth overall on the weekend.

Tyler Bowers won the German Supercross ImgJanBrucke
Tyler Bowers wins King Of Dortmund 2019 – Image by Jan Brucke

SX1 Overall

  1. Gregory Aranda
  2. Tyler Bowers
  3. Valentin Teillet
  4. Cedric Soubeyras
  5. Charles Le Francois
  6. Dominique Thury
  7. Fabien Izoird
  8. Adrien Escoffier
  9. Matthew Bayliss
  10. Nick Schmidt

King Of Dortmund

  1. Tyler Bowers
  2. Valentin Teillet
  3. Cedric Soubeyras
  4. Dominique Thury
  5. Charles Le Francois
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‘Sir’ Jeffrey Herlings is a Knight

2018 MXGP FIM Motocross World Champion Jeffrey Herlings, from Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, has become a Knight in the Order of Orange-Nassau.

This honour is exclusively awarded in the Netherlands to people with outstanding achievements. A requirement which Jeffrey Herlings fits perfectly, after becoming 2018 MXGP World Champion, dominating the Dutch Masters of Motocross, and taking third as a part of the Dutch team at the 2018 Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations.

Jeffrey Herlings

“What a night… amazing. To receive this honour is something very special. One of the greatest things that has ever happened to me. I wasn’t prepared and didn’t see this coming. I’m speechless but will go home tonight with a big smile on my face.”

Jeffrey Herlings Dutch Royal Decoration ImgMarvinDuiker
Jeffrey Herlings – Image by Marvin Duiker

Herlings received the Royal decoration at the Motorsports gala of the Royal Dutch Motorcycle Federation (KNMV) from Dutch Minister of Sports Bruno Bruins who had nothing but kind words.

Bruno Bruins – Dutch Minister of Sports

“You’re a great champion and an inspiration to others. You’re an example of what it takes to be a true sportsman. Our king could not attend the Grand Prix in Assen but is well aware of your achievements. He’d like to honour you with this decoration.”

At the same event Jeffrey was also awarded the highest Dutch award in motorsports: the Hans de Beaufort trophy. KTM Motorsport’s Director Pit Beirer handed this to him saying:

Pit Beirer – KTM Motorsport Director

“This is for being an outstanding rider and a fighter for your country. You deserve it for being an ambassador of the sport and turning over your knowledge to young riders.”

Sir Jeffrey Herlings enjoyed the night but he is fully focused on the upcoming 2019 MXGP FIM Motocross World Championship season kicking off on the 2nd and 3rd of March in Patagonia-Argentina.


MXGP of Patagonia – Argentina Entry Lists

Youthstream have announced the official entry lists for the opening round of the 2019 FIM Motocross World Championship taking place at the Neuquen circuit in Patagonia-Argentina this 2nd and 3rd of March.

MXGP 2018 - Round One - Patagonia
MXGP of Patagonia

The MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina has made itself one of the most liked stops on the calendar since 2015 by both riders and industry members. The 2019 entry list showcases an impressive line-up with the best riders in the world. The combination of an amazing venue, stacked competition, and it being the first round of the season will leave all eyes watching in anticipation of the amazing racing which will surely be produced.

To see all those who will be lining up in Patagonia you can find both the MXGP & MX2 Entry Lists here below:

MXGP Riders

  • Team GBO Motorsport: Simon Furlotti
  • Team HRC: Tim Gajser/Brian Bogers
  • Monster Energy Factory MXGP: Romain Febvre/Jeremy Seewer
  • Hutten Metaal Yamaha Racing: Sven Van Der Mierden/Micha Boy De Waal
  • KTM Sarhotz Racing: Max Nagl/Tom Koch
  • Scandinavian Racing Sports: Jonathan Bengtsson
  • Team Gibben Van Venrooy Kawasaki Racing: Alessandro Lupino/Benoit Paturel
  • Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing: Pauls Jonass/Arminas Jasikonis
  • JD Gunnex Racing Team: Jose Butron
  • A1M Husqvarna: Tanel Leok
  • RFX KTM Racing: Shaun Simpson
  • Standing Construct KTM: Glenn Coldenhoff/Max Anstie/Ivo Montecelli
  • Team VHR KTM: Jordi Tixier
  • Hitachi KTM: Graeme Irwin
  • BOS GP: Tommy Searle/Evgeny Bobryshev
  • Monster energy Wilvo Yamaha Official MXGP Team: Arnaud Tonus/Gautier Paulin
  • Monster energy Kawasaki: Clement Desalle/Julien Leiber
  • NR83 Team: Nathan Renkens
  • JWR Yamaha Racing: Kevin Strijbos/Vsevolod Brylyakov/Anton Gole
  • Sixtytwo Motorsport Husqvarna: Klemen Gercar
  • Red Bull KTM Factory Racing: Jeffrey Herlings/Antonio Cairoli’
  • AG Racing: Guryev Artem
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MX2 Riders

  • Marchetti KTM: Iker Larranaga/Andrea Zanotti
  • Team HRC: Calvin Vlaanderen
  • Yamaha SM Action – M.C. Migliori/Michele Cervellin/Max Renaux
  • E2T – Racing Team: Enzo Toriani/Hampus Kahri
  • F&H Racing Team: Henry Jacobi/Adam Sterry
  • Team Diga-Procross Husqvarna: Davey Pootjes
  • Team Gibben Van Venrooy Kawasaki Racing: Marcel Conija
  • KTM Racestore MX2 Max Bart: Lesiardo Morgan
  • JD Gunnex Racing Team: Richard Sykina/Petr Polak
  • Bud Racing Kawasaki: Brian Moreau/Brian Hsu
  • A1M Husqvarna: Roland Edelbacher
  • Honda 114 Motorsports: Mitch Evans/Zach Pichon
  • STC Racing IXS: Loris Freidig
  • Hitachi KTM: Conrad Mewse/Bas Vaessen
  • Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha: Ben Watson/Jago Geerts
  • Team Honda Redmoto Assomotor: Brent Van Doninck/Mathys Boisrame
  • Red Bull KTM Factory Racing: Jorge Prado/Tom Vialle
  • Bike It DRT Kawasaki: Darian Sanayei/Gustavo Pessoa
  • Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing: Thomas Kjer Olsen/Jed Beaton
  • GT243: Maks Mausser
  • Revo Husqvarna UK: Dylan Walsh/Alvin Ostlund
  • Vamo Racing Team: Hakan Halmi

Watson Wins Gurp TT Beach Race

500 plus riders turned up for the Gurp TT de Grayan-Et-L’Hôpital which was round five of the France based beach race series called Championnat de France des Sables and it was Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Nathan Watson who claimed a hard-fought victory on the final lap of the two-hour 30-minute beach race over Husqvarna’s Yental Martens to record his third win of the series.

French Beach Race Rnd Gurp TT Yentel Martens
Yentel Martens – Gurp TT 2019

With championship leader Martens out front in the early laps, Watson settled into things and began to push the pace as the course roughened and by lap six worked his way up to the front of the field and into the race lead.

However, Martens didn’t want to give up without a fight and for the second half of the race the duo went head-to-head for victory. Finding the extra energy needed, Watson upped his pace aboard his KTM 450 SX-F during the closing stages of the event, overtaking Martens on the final lap to clinch a memorable race win.

Nathan Watson

“I’m really happy with that, I couldn’t ask for a better race. To finish on the top step of the podium again, for the third time in the championship, is awesome. The opening lap was fast, much faster than I expected it to be. I didn’t want to make mistakes and lose more places than I could gain, so I remained calm and let things settle. Then I began building my rhythm and made some really good passes to reach the front of the field. When I passed Yentel for the lead he stepped up his pace too and we were fighting hard until the end. It was a great battle – one I enjoyed a lot – so to end up on the top step of the podium feels amazing after such a great race. With another win it means my championship hopes are growing despite having missed round two. Now, with just Enduropale Le Touquet remaining, I’m just going there chasing victory because that’s a race I really want to win. If I can do that then we’ll keep our fingers crossed to see what happens regards the championship.”

French Beach Race Rnd Gurp TT Nathan Watson Image by Pascal Haudiquert
Nathan Watson – Gurp TT – Image by Pascal Haudiquert
Yentel Martens

“That was a really nice race. Although I didn’t manage to get the victory, as a racer it’s hard to be disappointed in a performance like that. Nathan and myself were battling all the time and we were pushing the pace a lot. He just had that little bit extra on me during the final lap, but I can’t complain because I gave it everything I had. I must give a big thank you to my team, they were awesome too. The bike was wonderful and our pitstops were very slick and fast. With two weeks to go until le Touquet the race is now beginning to build on our minds. Today I showed that I can go there and be a contender for the top step of the podium. Everything is working so well and there is a good feeling inside the team that we can deliver something special there.”

French Beach Race Rnd Gurp TT Yentel Martens
Yentel Martens – Gurp TT 2019

Martens takes a 15 point lead into the sixth and final round of the Championnat de France des Sables at Enduropale Le Touquet on February 3.

Results – Championnat de France des Sables, Round 5

  1. Nathan Watson, KTM, 12 laps 2:30:07.650
  2. Yentel Martens, Husqvarna, 2:30:51.180
  3. Milko Potisek, Yamaha, 2:32:38.110
  4. Jeffrey Dewulf, KTM, 2:34:25.190
  5. Jeremy Van Horebeek, Honda, 2:34:55.910

Championnat de France des Sables Points after Round 5

  1. Martens – 150
  2. Watson – 135
  3. Potisek – 125
  4. Dewulf – 115
  5. Ramon Steve – 110
Smarty's Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax
Smarty’s Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax

2019 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship Up-Date

MX Sports Pro Racing has announced the return of Fox Raceway in Pala, California, for the second round of the 2019 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on Saturday, May 25.

Pala previously served as the season finale of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship for back-to-back seasons in 2010 and 2011, which signified the return of the sport to the San Diego area following an absence that spanned multiple decades after the closure of famed Carlsbad Raceway. During those two seasons, Ryan Dungey and Dean Wilson claimed back-to-back victories in the 450 Class and 250 Class, respectively, with Wilson amassing an undefeated record by winning all four motos.

AMAMX RNd Ironman Tomac Starts MX JK Ironman
AMA Motocross returns in 2019
Roy Janson – MX Sports Managing Director

“We are excited to keep the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship in Southern California, and it’s fitting that it comes with a return to Pala considering the overwhelming popularity of that event during our initial partnership. This region provides the pulse for the entire sport, so it is important that we provide our teams, riders, and fans with the best possible venue to showcase this championship. The Pala Band of Mission Indians has remained committed to enhancing their facility, and they have put their trust into a group of industry veterans to ensure the track’s presence continues to grow.”

“When MX Sports Pro Racing contacted us with the opportunity to bring the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship back to Pala we jumped at the chance,” said Myron Short, Founder and VP of Operations for 2X Promotions. “This is the most storied motocross championship in the world and Fox Raceway has grown to become what is arguably California’s premier motocross track. It’s fitting that these two entities are back together and we hope this is the beginning of a long and historic partnership.”

AMAMX RNd Ironman Pits MX JK Ironman
AMA Motocross returns in 2019

The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship has served as the preeminent motocross competition since 1972 and the 2019 season will kick off on Saturday, May 18, with the Hangtown Motocross Classic, where reigning back-to-back 450 Class Champion Eli Tomac will look to join elite company in his quest to win the Edison Dye Cup for the third straight season while in the 250 Class, the advancement of titleholder Aaron Plessinger into the 450 division means the Gary Jones Cup will be up for grabs, opening the door for the sport’s next star of the future to emerge.

2019 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship Schedule

  • Rd1: May 18, Hangtown Motocross Classic, Prairie City SVRA, California
  • Rd2: May 25, Pala National, Fox Raceway, Pala, California
  • Rd3: June 1, Lakewood, Colorado
  • Rd4: June 15, High Point National, High Point Raceway, Mt. Morris, Pennsylvania
  • Rd5: June 22, Florida National, WW Ranch Motocross Park, Jacksonville, Florida
  • Rd6: June 29, Soutwick National, Southwick, Massachusetts
  • Rd7: July 6, RedBud National, RedBud MX, Buchanan, Michigan
  • Rd8: July 20, Spring Creek National, Spring Creek MX Park, Millville, Minnesota
  • Rd9: July 27, Washougal National. Washougal MX Park, Washougal, Washington
  • Rd10: Aug 10, Unadilla National, Unadilla MX, New Berlin, New York
  • Rd11: Aug 17, Budds Creek National, Budds Creek MX Park, Maryland
  • Rd12: Aug 24, Ironman National, Ironman Raceway, Crawfordsville, Indiana

Malcolm Stewart Injured at Glendale

Malcolm Stewart broke his femur after crashing in the whoops during the 450 main event at the second round of the AMA Supercross at Glendale last weekend and was immediately taken to hospital where they operated on him on Sunday morning. This is what Malcom had to say on his Instagram account.

Malcolm Stewart

“Such a bummer on what happened last night. Surgery this A.M on femur! We will be back better than ever. Sorry I let you guys down! I appreciate all the prayers you guys sent me! I’ll give you guys a update soon.”

Malcolm Stewart broke his femur at Glendale
Malcolm Stewart

Interestingly, Smartop/Bullfrog Spas/MotoConcepts Honda team owner Mike Genova released a heartfelt statement regarding Malcolm’s injury – you can read it in full below:

Mike Genova – Smartop/Bullfrog Spas/MotoConcepts Honda Team Owner

“As most of you know, Saturday night in Glendale, while going Mach speed through the whoops pushing to catch the front runners, Malcolm had a big get off. While I am super bummed and disappointed for Malcolm, his family and our group, I am equally grateful and happy that Malcolm’s injury is limited to strictly a broken femur of which the doctors performed surgery on Sunday morning. My gratitude and happiness stems from the experience of having one of my guys lying virtually motionless for some twenty minutes, thirty feet away from me (I was in the managers tower) having no idea the extent of the injury, thinking the worst and having no way to be by Malcolm’s side to support and comfort him. Followed up by Tony [Alessi, team manager] and I going to the hospital after the race, only to find Malcolm alert and upbeat, (pain meds may have been working) preparing to eat an In and Out burger, insisting on how he will be back in no time, stronger and better than ever.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Malcolm Stewart J K
Malcolm Stewart before injury

“Unfortunately for Malcolm, his family, MCR, the fans and the whole race community, we are all going to have to patiently wait for Malcolm to recover from his injury and further pursue the excellence he displayed during the first two races of the 2019 season. I wanted to publicly acknowledge how proud I am of Malcolm for the level of commitment and work ethic he has invested into this years SX series. When looking for a ride this past September he gave Tony and I his word that he was ready to do whatever was required to be prepared to compete at the highest level in the 2019 SX series, all of which he has done to perfection — both on and off the track. To improve his overall fitness and endurance levels, Malcom hired a personal trainer, never missing a training session and constantly pushed himself to reach new fitness levels. Alongside focusing on improved fitness, Malcolm modified his diet and quickly dropped 25 pounds that improved his results on the bike. When it came to testing and riding days, Malcolm was often the first one to the track and handled the rigorous demands the team put on him with a positive and cooperative attitude. Malcolm has been very respectful to work with and brought a lift in our team.

AMASX Rnd Glendale Seely Malcolm Stewart J K
Malcolm Stewart before injury

“So Malcolm won’t get the chance to show the world how hard he worked and the results of his efforts, but I feel it’s only fair to Malcolm to let the world know how proud I am of him on how he chose to become a better racer, role model and man.”

Smarty's Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax
Smarty’s Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax

Kirkness to Star at Old Bar Dirt Track This Weekend

What was for many years a tradition will continue this Saturday (January 19) when the dirt track racing season opens with a twilight Dirt Track meeting at the Old Bar track near Taree and the star attraction will be former Troy Bayliss Classic winner and multi Australian Champion Michael Kirkness who will be the favourite to take the major class wins.

Reigning triple Australian Dirt Track champion Kirkness will take on another former champion in Marty McNamara while there is a strong contingent heading down the highway from the Macleay Club with the seasoned campaigners Jarryd Oram and Michael Booth joined by young guns Sam Davies, James Chapman and Alex Hurst.

Former Taree member Jared Myer has entered along with talented Queenslander Ben Montgomery and former junior stand-out Bayley James from the Hunter club.

Much interest will centre on two of the youngest senior entries in Taree rider Kye Andrews, a triple Australian champion in his last season in juniors, and Gunnedah rider Thomas Donnelly. Both have made a good impression in their limited senior outings to date.

The Over 35s class will take on added significance with the family of the late Peter Fahey sponsoring the class in his memory while Kempsey youngster Jayden Holder steps up to an older age bracket this year with Queenslander John Lytras and diminutive Beau Bailey from Forbes also among the best credentialed visitors coming to take on the strong entry of local riders in the junior classes.

All the juniors racing this weekend will be able to use the experience as a preparation for the New South Wales Junior Dirt Track Championship meeting which is to be held at the Old Bar track on the weekend of July 13 and 14.

This Saturday will see practice start at 12 noon followed by the first round of racing at 1pm and continue through to around 5.30pm.

Following a tea-break, the night-time session will finalise the program which will enable fans who cannot be there in the afternoon to still take in the action.


2020 Aussie Speedway Championship hosting EoI open

After the finish to the 2019 Australian Senior Solo Speedway Championship with a star-studded line-up, Motorcycling Australia has announce that opening of applications for qualified clubs and/or promoters to host Speedway Championships in 2020!
The relevant Australian Speedway Championships now accepting applications includes:

  • Australian Senior Solo Championship (One Round of Championship)
  • Australian U21 Championship, Australian U16 250cc, Australian U16 125cc Solo and Teams Championships.
  • Australian Senior and Junior Sidecar Championships

To apply for the opportunity to host a Championship in 2020, please click here (link).

Please note that all applications must be submitted before Friday 8th February 2019 in order to be reviewed with the opportunity of being accepted. All applications must be completed in full on the downloadable application form (link above), with a copy of the club’s track attached, and emailed to MA’s Track Event Manager, Sam Redfern, via track@ma.org.au.

Smarty's Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax
Smarty’s Weekly Moto News Wrap proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax