Moto News Weekly Wrap
March 6, 2018 – By Darren Smart
Proudly brought to you by Dunlop Geomax
- Great Weekend for Yamaha at SSMX
- Richardson and Webster Sign with Honda
- AORC Hits Gympie this Weekend
- WP Suspension Launched into Australia and NZ
- Harley Davidson Invest in Alta
- Hill Injured at Atlanta
- Baggett Injured at Atlanta
- Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations Calendar Announced
- Entries for the 93rd FIM ISDE in Chile Are Open!
- Husqvarna Confirms 2018 ISDE Support Packages
- Dmitry turns the ISG screw
- 2019 Australian Speedway Championships Calendar released
- AMA Supercross Championships – Round 9 – Atlanta
- FIM World Motocross Championships – Round 1 – Argentina
- SuperEnduro World Championship – Round 4 – Bilbao, Spain
Great Weekend for Yamaha at SSMX
Yamaha has been at the front of the pack throughout last weekend with CDR Yamaha’s Dean Ferris dominating the MX1 class at the second round of the Sunshine State Motocross Championship held at Coolum Motocross Facility in Queensland last weekend while Serco Yamaha’s Wilson Todd and Nathan Crawford went 1-2 in the MX2 class and Jimboomba Yamaha’s Barry Surawski won the competitive Vets Class.
Meanwhile, over in Adelaide it was Dan Reardon on his Oilfield Piping Systems Yamaha YZF450 who dominated the New Holland Split Rhythm event which was, for the first time, held alongside the Adelaide 500 Supercars event in South Australia last weekend.
Kade Mosig dominated the 450 class on his YZF450 at the opening round of the Gippsland Motocross Series held at Maffra last weekend while Yamaha’s GTR YJR riders were out in force and it was Levi Rogers who won his class up at Coolum, Queensland as did Ryder Kingsford at the opening round of the NSW state title at Clarence.
Richardson and Webster Sign with Honda
Honda Motorcycles Australia have announced an increase in support of satellite MX/SX team, the Penrite Pirelli CRF Racing Team which will represent Honda in the 250cc class in Motocross and Supercross in 2018, welcoming two-time 250cc champion Jackson Richardson to the team to ride with continuing CRF Racing rider Kyle Webster.
Team owner Mark Luksich is very happy for the increased support and looks to secure top results right from the start.
“Honda has released an all new bike this year, the CRF250R and we have already achieved great success with it at the Coffs Harbour stadium cross. We feel Honda have provided us with the foundation to win and we appreciate the increased support.”
Richardson expressed his satisfaction with the teams’ pre-season preparation and the new bikes impressive capabilities.
“We have been working hard during preseason; we’ve raced in two events and achieved some outstanding results with the production bike. For the past three months, we have focused on the suspension and chassis and I believe it is capable of winning, as we have already proven. We are now focused on the development of the engine and come round 1 we will be hard to beat.”
After sustaining a back injury at the end of the 2017 Australian Supercross season, Kyle Webster is back on the bike and making very positive progress. Team owner Mark Luksich is confident he will be ready for round 1 of the MX Nationals in April.
AORC Hits Gympie this Weekend
Rounds One and Two of the 2018 Yamaha Australian Off-Road Championship (AORC) will roar to life this weekend at Gympie, QLD, March 10-11. This season is expected to be one of the most fiercely contested in recent memory with newcomers, returning stars and champions swapping classes to fight for their coveted class trophies!
Competitors will fight for victory in two sprint format rounds this weekend and there is plenty of anticipation to see how the AORC competitors will duke it out in brand new classes.
With last year’s E1 Champion Wil Ruprecht on the move to E2, this class is wide open for 2018 with plenty of talent. After an injury riddled last year, 2016 E1 Champion Jack Simpson on his privateer KTM, will be one to watch.
Graduating from the AORC’s EJ class will be factory Husqvarna Enduro Racing Team’s Fraser Higlett. Last season was a strong one for Higlett, finishing second in the Enduro Junior (EJ) category of the AORC with several victories to his name. He will be out to atone for just missing out on the EJ championship at the final round last year.
Former MX Nationals champion, Luke Styke, will make the switch to off road racing for the 2018 season, joining Active8 Yamalube Yamaha team. Styke is energised and ready to take a crack at the title.
Another contender could be Jeremy Carpentier, who hails from France. Carpentier has raced enduro all of his life and has won the 2011 French Youth Championship and the 2014 and 2015 Junior Championnat de France d’enduro, while last year saw him finishing in third place in the E1 French enduro series racing for the Yamaha Ridercamp enduro team. Can he adapt to the Aussie terrain for a crack at the title?
The E2 class was dominated by the hard charging Daniel Milner in 2017, but its sure to be a far more competitive class this season with Milner moving to E3.
Daniel ‘Chucky’ Sanders, makes a return to the AORC with the Husqvarna Enduro Racing Team. He was crowned AORC champion in 2016 and will be aiming to regain the number one plate on his ‘Husky’ machine.
Coming to E2 in 2017 is Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Off-Road Team’s Wil Ruprecht who is coming hot off two titles in a row. Gunning for a third title in a row won’t be easy, but Ruprecht’s consistency and drive will put him in the mix.
Ruprecht’s teammate Josh Green, will be as hungry as ever to claim the E2 title. Green was consistent in 2017, but couldn’t find the extra pace to hunt down Milner in any of last year’s rounds. Expect him to be a force in this year’s championship.
Another major contender will be KTM Enduro Team’s Lyndon Snodgrass who won last year’s E3 Championship. Snodgrass has been training hard and is adapting well to the higher capacity 450 EXC bike.
Yamaha mounted, Riley Graham who came second in last year’s E2 Championship will also be a major contender.
All eyes will be on KTM Enduro Racing Team’s, Daniel Milner for this class as he makes the jump to E3 after an impeccable 2017 season. It’s fair to say he was just about unbeatable last year, so there will be plenty of pressure on Milner to maintain his form. Milner has never had the opportunity to ride in the E3 class and he claims that the extra torque from the 500, suits his riding style to the tee.
Lachy Stanford for the Husqvarna Enduro Racing Team fell devastatingly short of the E3 championship last year and will remain aboard the Husqvarna FE 501 for the new year, determined to capture the elusive crown that he has finished runner-up in during his past two attempts. Could this be the year Stanford makes the jump to champion?
Andrew Wilksch of the Motul Pirelli Sherco Enduro Racing Team could be a big mover in 2018. He showed signs in 2017 of making steps forward, so keep an eye out for him under the guidance of Team Manager Derek Grundy.
Motocross convert turned 2017 EJ Champion, Michael Driscoll will be a huge chance to go back to back for this year. Driscoll has been hitting the gym hard and using his weekends to get on the bike. After making a big statement last year, he will be one to watch for the future on his Yamaha machine.
The greatest threats to Driscoll could come from Junior class graduates Joshua Brierley and Corey Hammond. With his new MotoHub Husqvarna Off-Road Team, Brierley is tipped to be one of the Enduro stars of the future and don’t count him out winning the EJ title first time out. Hammond who came third in last year’s J4 class, could also perform in his first year in EJ.
Stay tuned throughout the racing year in 2018, for all the thrills and spills of the Yamaha AORC, be sure to stay tuned to AORC.org.au to see what surprises lay in store.
WP Suspension Launched into Australia and NZ
2018 marks a change in the way WP Suspension products are distributed in Australia and New Zealand with WP Performance Sports GmbH choosing the KTM Group Australia to distribute the latest range of WP Suspension products.
Jeff Leisk, the General Manager of the KTM Group Australia will manage the establishment of the network of Authorised Centres to sell and service both WP OEM equipment and Pro Components parts.
Jeff Leisk – General Manager of the KTM Group Australia
“This is an opportunity to realise potential, both for riders and WP. For customers, the fitment of WP Pro Components or honing of their OEM suspension is a chance to enhance their riding and results – regardless of the badge on the tank. The move to establish a network of WP Authorised Centres enables us to concentrate pockets of expertise around the country and for them to develop close relationships with their riders so that they can deliver their services effectively. And for WP it better allows the distribution of knowledge gained in world level racing to reach the customer, either through products or through factory training.”
In addition to the Off Road Pro Component products available from WP there is also a range of On Road Competition Cartridge Kits, Competition Shocks and steering dampers, as well as forks, shocks and steering dampers for Road Racing Bikes. Both Off Road and On Road products will be available from all Authorised Centres.
Harley Davidson Invest in Alta
Harley-Davidson Inc. has invested in Alta Motorcycles as it steps up development for future electric motorcycles.
Alta Motors, whose factory is in Brisbane, Calif., designs and produces electric motorcycles, including the Redshift platform available in 19 states. A Harley-Davidson news release called Alta “a leader and innovator” in lightweight electric vehicles. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.
Matt Levatich – Harley-Davidson president and CEO
“Earlier this year, as part of our 10-year strategy, we reiterated our commitment to build the next generation of Harley-Davidson riders, in part, by aggressively investing in electric vehicle (EV) technology. Alta has demonstrated innovation and expertise in EV and their objectives align closely with ours. We each have strengths and capabilities that will be mutually beneficial as we work together to develop cutting- edge electric motorcycles.”
Marc Fenigstein – Alta Motors’ chief product officer and co-founder
“Riders are just beginning to understand the combined benefits of EV today, and our technology continues to progress. We believe electric motorcycles are the future.”
Milwaukee-based Harley-Davidson (NYSE: HOG) said in January that it is planning to roll out its electric motorcycle to the public in about 18 months.
Hill Injured at Atlanta
Autotrader/Yoshimura Suzuki’s Justin Hill has informed his fans on Instagram that he sustained ‘broken toes and is bruised as heck’ following a scary crash in the second 450SX main event at round nine of Monster Energy Supercross in Atlanta.
Hill was seat-bouncing a difficult triple but opted to eject over the bars once he knew he was going to come up short. Hill landed feet first and was attended to by the Alpinestars Mobile Medical Unit at the track before being forced to miss the final main event.
Baggett Injured at Atlanta
Rocky Mountain ATV/MC-WPS-KTM’s Blake Baggett will undergo more tests on his wrist following a crash in the third 450SX main event at round nine of Monster Energy Supercross in Atlanta last weekend.
Baggett was at the pointy end in all three races and had achieved third and fourth in the opening two main events and was running strong in the final main event before casing out in a rhythm section and crashing out of the race.
Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations Calendar Announced
Motocross has it, Trials has it and now Track Racing is launching its new flagship competition for national teams, the Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations to be held involving four meetings over eight days in June. The calendar has also now been announced.
FIM along with partners BSI/IMG is now associated with this new major competition which promises to be an exciting addition to the Track Racing schedule.
This tournament will feature 15 teams with two Race Off meetings to determine the six qualifiers who will join host nation Poland in the Final. Each meeting will involve seven teams and the draw will be announced shortly. The Final itself will be a unique two-day event with cumulative scores counting towards qualification to the Grand Final race the winners of which will be crowned champions.
The competition starts in Teterow, now in its third year as host to the German Speedway Grand Prix and the second Race Off will see a return to Britain’s National Speedway Stadium in Manchester before the successful teams move to the magnificently refurbished Olympic Stadium in Wroclaw for the two-day final.
Each team will consist of two riders plus one under 21 reserve intended to encourage federations to develop young talent. This is optional for this year but will be compulsory from 2019 onwards. Teams will ride as pairs and it is expected that team riding skills will be an important element of the racing.
In the Race Off events there will be 21 qualifying heats with two additional races for the top scorers. There will be a ’last chance’ heat for the second, third, fourth and fifth placed teams with the winner joining the top scoring team in a final race to determine the winner. The top three teams from each Race Off will be seeded directly to Finals 1 & 2 in Wroclaw.
There will be a similar race format at the end of Final 2 with the top scoring team meeting the winners of another ‘last chance’ eliminator between the second, third and fourth placed teams to reach the Grand Final.
This new competition is the result of a lengthy collaboration between BSI/IMG the promoters, and the FIM Track Racing Commission which have worked hard to construct an event which it is hoped will generate great interest within as well as outside the sport. If this format is a sporting and commercial success, then the opportunity can be taken to expand the tournament to include some of the lesser known speedway nations who have not had the riding resources to enter previous team championships.
Entries for the 93rd FIM ISDE in Chile Are Open!
After the huge success of the 2007 edition in Chile, the FIM International Six Days of Enduro (ISDE) is returning to that magnificent country later this year for the 93rd edition of what remains the oldest event in the FIM international calendar.
Riders from all over the World will converge on the city of Viña del Mar, Chile from 12 to 17 November to be part of this unique competition that can see up to 700 riders from over 30 nations test both themselves and their machines over six tough days of motorcycle riding at its rugged best.
Professional and amateur riders compete alongside each in teams other across a range of different classes from the World Trophy, Junior World Trophy, Women’s Trophy to the Club teams. And for those nostalgic for days gone by, the 3rd edition of the FIM Enduro Vintage Trophy will be staged during the last three days of competition.
Entries for all classes are now open (only team entries will be accepted through national motorcycling federations) and will close on 30 March. Interested riders should liaise with their national federation, which can access the secured online registration platform (code provided), using the official website link:
The Local Organiser is laying on some logistics facilities for riders and teams to help with lodging, accommodation and travel, as well as bike transportation (containers). All riders engaged in the Motorex Challenge will benefit from a free supply of lubricant and cleaning products for their race.
Further information and updates are provided online, with a “SIXDAYS Teams’ riders Info Guide” to be released in March.
Husqvarna Confirms 2018 ISDE Support Packages
Husqvarna Motorcycles are pleased to announce full details of the Bike Rental, Race Service and Spare Parts packages that will be offered during this year’s International Six Days Enduro in Chile.
Kicking off on November 12 in the city of Viña de Mar, the upcoming 93rd edition of the prestigious annual event returns to Chile 11 years after the race was last held in the country, in La Serena, 2007. An exclusive partner to the competition, Husqvarna Motorcycles will be on site to offer a comprehensive range of services to satisfy the needs of both professional and amateur competitors, as well as teams from all around the world.
Husqvarna Motorcycles’ experienced personnel will be on hand in Viña de Mar to support all Husqvarna mounted riders contesting the week-long event. The range of services on offer will include: Husqvarna Bike Rental, Race Service and Spare Parts.
Husqvarna ISDE Bike Rental
Husqvarna Motorcycles offer an exclusive rental program of Husqvarna motorcycles.
Available will be 2019 enduro motorcycles for the following classes:
- 2-stroke: TE 250i, TE 300i
- 4-stroke: FE 250, FE 350, FE 450, FE 501
- The price for renting a Husqvarna motorcycle during the Six Days is:
- € 2.740,- (excl. VAT) for 2-strokes
- € 3.040,- (excl. VAT) for 4-strokes
The rental price includes:
- Husqvarna motorcycle for the period of the 2018 ISDE
- Bike transport costs to Viña de Mar, Chile
- Registration and insurance of the motorcycle for the event
Order deadline for the bike rental is June 30, 2018.
The number of rental bikes is limited and orders will be handled on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. No delivery guarantee can be given for orders received after the order deadline.
Husqvarna ISDE Race Service
Perfected over many years, Husqvarna Motorcycles’ International Six Days Enduro Race Service package ensures all Husqvarna riders (rental bike or privately owned) get the best equipment and professional support, allowing them to focus on racing and enjoying the event.
Husqvarna Race Service Highlights:
- Access to the Husqvarna Service Stations
- Technical instructions for all Husqvarna riders
- Technical assistance for the whole event as is permitted according to FIM rules
- Tools for the service
- Motorex Lubricants and liquids for servicing (engine oil, cooling liquid, chain spray, etc.)
- Petrol for race days
- Daily update for settings and race information
- WP suspension support
- Storage boxes for gloves, goggles, tyres, etc.
- Service Points Emergency Assistance (spares, tools, liquids, petrol, drinks, snacks, fruit)
- Spare Parts Service (cost of spare parts not included)
- Catering (drinks, snacks, fruit, etc.)
- One air filter every day for the race days per rider (up to six air filters in total)
- First bike service after pre-ride (before technical control)
The price for the Husqvarna Race Service during the 2018 ISDE is € 1.350 (excl. VAT). Unused fuel will not be reimbursed.
The Husqvarna ISDE Race Service must be ordered before September 30, 2018.
Riders interested in receiving further info should contact official Husqvarna Motorcycles dealers or importers.
The Husqvarna team will be in Viña de Mar to welcome riders to the ISDE and to guarantee they receive expert technical assistance during their time in Chile.
Dmitry turns the ISG screw
Once again Dmitry Koltakov’s superiority was evident as he produced another perfect score for the second day of the LUKOIL FIM Ice Speedway Gladiators World Championship in Berlin. In front of an admiring crowd he produced his second successive maximum and extended his lead at the top to an amazing 25 points having dropped only four points throughout the whole series so far.
Second in the Final was Dinar Valeev with a great improvement on his day one performance and his best result to date to beat Dmitri Khomitsevich and relegate Daniil Ivanov once again to fourth spot.
2019 Australian Speedway Championships Calendar released
Motorcycling Australia has announced the release of the 2019 Australian Speedway Championship Calendar, ahead of the Australian Speedway season.
With the exciting 2018 Australian Speedway Championship providing one of the best battles for the championship in recent times, the 2019 season is going to be bigger and better. The Australian Speedway Senior Solo Championship will be be extended from four rounds to five in 2019, with the addition of Albury.
Australian Speedway Senior Solo Championship
- Round 1 Thursday 3rd January Gillman Speedway.
- Round 2 Saturday 5th January Olympic Park Mildura
- Round 3 Monday 7th January Undera Speedway
- Round 4 Wednesday 9th January Albury
- Round 5 Saturday 12th January Kurri – Kurri.
Australian Speedaway Solo/Teams U16 & U21 Championships
- U16 125cc Practice & Qualifying 17th January Ipswich Speedway*
- U16 125cc Individual Championship 18th January Ipswich Speedway*
- U16 250cc & U21 500cc Championship 19th January Ipswich Speedway*
- U16 125cc Pairs Championship 20th January Ipswich Speedway*
- (*Subject to change)
Further calendar announcements regarding Supp regs, Australian Speedway Championship, FIM World Cup Speedway and FIM Oceania Speedway events will be made in due course.
Smarty’s Race Reports
AMA Supercross Championships – Round 9 – Atlanta
The second ‘Triple Crown’ round of the AMA Supercross Championship was held in Atlanta last weekend and it was Jason Anderson and Austin Forkner who managed to take out the overall after the three crash and incident infested main events.
Main Event 1
The opening race of the 450SX class saw HRC fill in rider Christian Craig take the holeshot with Blake Baggett, Chad Reed and Jason Anderson close by while fastest qualifier Marvin Musquin was back in mid field. Craig and Baggett lead the early laps until Anderson started to mix it up with Baggett and the duo went bar to bar for a few laps until Anderson got the upper hand.
Australian Supercross Champion Justin Brayton was a surprise packet when he snuck through and passed Anderson for the lead. With one lap to go the top 5 where all in close quarters with Anderson hounding Brayton for the lead, Tomac and Musquin had entered the fray also and had their own battle.
Brayton stayed strong though and took his first Triple Crown heat win while Anderson held on for second ahead of Baggett, Tomac and Craig.
Main Event 2
In race two it was championship leader Anderson who, surprisingly, pulled his first holeshot of the season ahead of Cooper Webb, Baggett and Eli Tomac with race one winner Brayton in 5th.
Things where sedate for the first five minutes with the only action being Tomac slipping past Baggett for third. By the chequered flag it was Anderson ahead of Webb, Tomac, Baggett, Musquin and Brayton.
Main Event 3
In the final moto of the three Anderson went in with a 4 point lead over Baggett and Brayton who were both tied on seven points. Eli Tomac was in 4th one point ahead of Musquin.
When the dust settled in the first corner it was Baggett with holeshot but he succumbed to Craig by the next turn. Contenders Musquin and Anderson where going bar to bar in 3rd and 4th. Musquin settled into 3rd while Anderson had his hands full with Webb and Tomac. In a night of heavy crashes Baggett added his name to the list when he cased a jump hard and crashed out, handing 2nd to Musquin.
With 10 minutes to go the Frenchman then moved into the lead. Anderson and Tomac ran 2nd and 3rd until Tomac made the pass with seven minutes to go. Webb then passed Anderson dropping him to 4th and making the overall a tight affair with Anderson now only having a three point advantage as they ran.
In the end it was Musquin with the win ahead of Tomac, Webb and Anderson. Anderson taking his second Triple Crown victory for the year with a 2-1-4 result. Musquin and Tomac tied on points for second with Musquin’s 4-5-1 result giving him 2nd over Tomac’s 5-3-2 finishes. Justin Brayton went 1-6-6 for 4th overall on the night and currently sits in 4th for championship standings.
“Tonight the track just broke down and it was so rutted, in that last moto it was crazy but my starts are better, I am putting myself into a better positions and this is my fourth year in the class so I have progressed with my race craft so I am putting myself in better situations.”
“For us we didn’t get the starts tonight and to be competitive that really hurt us but that’s racing and just happy to get away heathy, three starts with all of us out there is pretty gnarly so just glad to get through it.”
“Atlanta develops a lot of ruts so to run three main events on a track like that made it crazy, we made it through but there were a lot of crashes with some sections of the track being really sketchy so I am glad I ended up on a good note in that last moto to come away with a podium.”
Aussie Chad Reed was not part of the action up front for the night but he quietly toiled away and walked away from the night in 10th via a score card of 7-15-9 and his 201st top ten finish.
- Jason Anderson 2 – 1 – 4
- Marvin Musquin 4 – 5 – 1
- Eli Tomac 5 – 3 – 2
- Justin Brayton 1 – 6 – 6
- Christian Craig 6 – 7 – 5
- Cooper Webb 14 – 2 – 3
- Blake Baggett 3 – 4 – 18
- Dean Wilson 9 – 10 – 10
- Malcolm Stewart 8 – 9 – 12
- Chad Reed 7 – 15 – 9
450SX Points Standings
- Jason Anderson – 207
- Marvin Musquin – 165
- Blake Baggett – 150
- Justin Brayton – 144
- Eli Tomac – 137
- Weston Peick – 136
- Cooper Webb – 125
- Cole Seely – 124
- Broc Tickle – 118
- Justin Barcia – 113
…16. Chad Reed – 70
Main Event 1
Race one of the 250SX class saw Martin Davalos take the holeshot with defending champ Zach Osborne in close company, while Dylan Ferrandis and Jordon Smith battled it out for the podium as Austin Forkner had a bad start but worked his way forward.
Disaster struck Davalos mid-race when he suffered a strange crash where he jumped off the track after getting caught up and went over the bars. From then on Osborne, who won the season opener, continued on unchallenged for the win ahead of Ferrandis, Smith and Forkner.
Main Event 2
Race two saw Forkner out front from the gate drop with Davalos, Osborne, Smith and Ferrandis. Things ran in that order for the first few laps until Ferrandis had a massive crash when he hit a tough block and crashed superman style over a double.
With 3 minutes to go Osborne threw the challenge down to Forkner but two collided in the air with Osborne coming off second best but the Husqvarna rider re-mounted quickly back in third. Davalos snuck past him passed as he tried to regain his composure and deal with bike issues following the crash, Jordon Smith then snuck by into 3rd place.
Davalos put the pressure on his team-mate Forkner in the last two laps and in the end was too strong and grabbed the win in his 90th 250SX class start while Forkner finished second with Osborne holding on to third. Smith was 4th and RJ Hampshire took his second 5th for the night.
Going into the final heat Osborne had a slender 2 point advantage over Forkner with Smith and Davalos 3rd and 4th.
Main Event 3
After a 6th and a 10th in the first two races, Jeremy Martin took the holeshot in the final 250SX moto with round contenders Davalos and Smith following him around the first lap. Osborne was still in contention as he battled the traffic back in 6th then all hell broke loose when Osborne was then taken down after getting tangled in someone elses crash and dropped back to 16th and a lot of work to do.
After a sedate four laps following Jeremy Martin, Davalos took the lead and looked set for the overall only to endo in the whoops and crash hard. This moved Martin into the lead with Colt Nichols second and Smith third, and now the best shot at the overall. Smith had heavy pressure from Hampshire though and eventually they collided in a corner and Smiths overall win chances went out the window.
Meanwhile Osborne had charged through the field but with the time disappearing fast it was Jeremy Martin who took the win ahead of Colt Nichols but all focus was on the round win battle and as Austin Forkner passed Hampshire on the last lap for third it put a rider between him and Osborne. This left both tied on points for the win with Forkner getting it on countback. Jordon Smith was third overall while RJ Hampshire and Jeremy Martin finished 4th and 5th overall respectively.
“I wasn’t that bumbed about the fourth in the first moto because I knew it was about consistency but then in the second moto I lost my rear brake and I knew that Zach (Osborne) was coming before we came together (where Osborne crashed).”
“I enjoyed the format, it’s a lot of change and a lot of racing, and unfortunately I crashed in the final moto which cost me the overall.”
“I didn’t really feel as comfortable as I would have liked but I got better starts than I usually do so to struggle and get away with a podium, I can’t complain.”
250SX East Results
- Austin Forkner 4 – 2 – 3
- Zach Osborne 1 – 3 – 5
- Jordon Smith 3 – 4 – 6
- R.J. Hampshire 7 – 5 – 4
- Jeremy Martin 6 – 10 – 1
- Colt Nichols 5 – 11 – 2
- Kyle Peters 11 – 7 – 7
- Martin Davalos 8 – 1 – 16
- Brandon Hartranft 12 – 8 – 9
- Jimmy Decotis 9 – 14 – 8
250SX East Points Standings
- Zach Osborne – 70
- Austin Forkner – 68
- R.J. Hampshire – 57
- Jordon Smith – 55
- Colt Nichols – 54
- Jeremy Martin – 47
- Jimmy Decotis – 47
- Luke Renzland – 42
- Kyle Peters – 34
- Martin Davalos – 34
FIM World Motocross Championships – Round 1 – Argentina
The opening round of the 2018 FIM Motocross World Championship season got under way in dramatic fashion in Argentina last weekend and it was the KTM duo of Jeffrey Herlings and Pauls Jonnas who took out the MXGP and MX2 classes respectively.
The MXGP field is a stacked one without doubt but one thing on everyone’s mind coming into this season was how the speed of a healthy Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings would compare to that of the reigning MXGP champion Antonio Cairoli.
When the gate finally dropped after months of training and preparation, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli took the FOX Holeshot and led the way for every lap of the 19 recorded.
Behind Cairoli was at first the newest recruit to the Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team, Julien Lieber, but he was eventually shuffled back to 8th in what would be his first MXGP Championship race. First to pass Lieber was Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP’s Romain Febvre who appears to have a successful bike setting at the start of the new year.
After the first laps of race one Herlings moved his way up from 4th to second passing both Lieber and Febvre. Herlings continued in pursuit of his teammate Cairoli who was out front. Herlings was able to catch up to Cairoli but unable to make an attempt at a pass as he crossed the finish line just barely over a second later than the #222.
Coming from 6th and putting in a strong race to move his way up to 3rd was Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Clement Desalle.
Race two started identical for Cairoli again taking the FOX Holeshot with a Monster Energy Kawasaki on his heels but it was the #25 of Clement Desalle the second time around as Lieber fell in the first turn along with Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Max Anstie and Bike IT DRT Kawasaki’s Tommy Searle.
Herlings came across the first complete lap in 5th place and seemed to struggle to find his rhythm early. Meanwhile Cairoli pulled away from Desalle up front as the two Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP bikes of Jeremy Van Horebeek and Romain Febvre battled in 3rd and 4th. Herlings split the Yamaha’s for 6 laps before finally finding his way past Van Horebeek and a lap later Desalle.
With 9 minutes remaining in race 2 Herlings was near 9 seconds of the lead of Cairoli. Herlings is known not to give up easy and as he found his groove he began chipping away at the lead. In the remaining laps the #84 inched his way forward and each second he gained his confidence doubled. In an amazing effort Herlings caught Cairoli with only one lap remaining and as the approached the first corner Herlings charged to the inside of the #222 much to the Sicilian’s surprise.
Though Herlings over shot the racing line allowing Cairoli to hold the position a slight bobble from the 9-time champ helped Herlings make a move stick only a few turns later. While Cairoli led every other lap of the weekend none proved more important than the very last which Herlings snatched.
“It was a good day. I made a charge in the first moto but couldn’t make the pass; Tony was riding really well and deserved to win. In the second race I got pushed wide at the start again and had some battles going on for fifth, fourth and third. I knew there was only ten minutes left in the moto but I worked on the gap and was really glad to make it happen. I’m blessed to have won the first GP of the year and the hard work of the winter is showing. This is only the first race of nineteen and there will be a lot of good competition ahead. I feel good on the bike, even better than the end of last year. I want to thank the team because they are always supporting me through thick-and-thin.”
Despite just missing the win Cairoli was still happy to start the season off at the front end of the pack and with the same points as the winner Herlings.
“We almost made it with the perfect weekend. In the second moto – I had a good start and made a good lead – but ran into some lappers and changed some lines. I made some mistakes and almost went out of the berm in some corners. I hit some kickers and had to slow down a little bit but if you do that then the seconds quickly go away. Jeffrey came closer and was stronger in the end. I was making mistakes and was tired and he took his chance to go around me: it was a good move. It is great for KTM to be 1-2 in both motos and I’m looking forward to continuing this championship. It will be an interesting season.”
While the top two spots were swapped between Cairoli and Herlings the final podium spot was secured by the consecutive 3-3 finishes of Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Clement Desalle.
“It was a strong weekend. We worked a lot on the bike in the winter and this weekend we saw confirmation that we did our job well. We have seen this weekend that there are still a couple of things we need to look at, but there were only two guys in front of us and they were both already very fast. We have a good base to work from.”
The Yamaha duo of Jeremy Van Horebeek and Romain Febvre finished 4th and 5th respectively and with both with 34 points.
Gautier Paulin kicked off the 2018 season with a strong sixth overall showing consistency in both motos.
“Last week I was sick so I guess my body has not fully recovered yet. There are no excuses and I am already looking forward to the next GP. My bike is awesome and the team do their best for us. We got some good points here in Argentina so now it’s over to the next one in Europe.”
MXGP Race 1 Top Ten
- Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 34:23.907
- Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:01.075
- Clement Desalle (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:30.101
- Romain Febvre (FRA, Yamaha), +0:32.081
- Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Yamaha), +0:34.491
- Gautier Paulin (FRA, Husqvarna), +0:39.338
- Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:44.786
- Julien Lieber (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:51.977
- Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:55.538
- Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), +0:56.248.
MXGP Race 2 Top Ten
- Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 34:56.319
- Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:02.051
- Clement Desalle (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:23.027
- Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Yamaha), +0:26.080
- Romain Febvre (FRA, Yamaha), +0:34.539
- Gautier Paulin (FRA, Husqvarna), +0:45.838
- Shaun Simpson (GBR, Yamaha), +0:58.958
- Maximilian Nagl (GER, TM), +1:01.409
- Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Suzuki), +1:15.786
- Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Kawasaki), +1:17.858.
MXGP Overall Top Ten
- Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 47 points
- Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 47 p.
- Clement Desalle (BEL, KAW), 40 p.
- Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, YAM), 34 p.
- Romain Febvre (FRA, YAM), 34 p.
- Gautier Paulin (FRA, HUS), 30 p.
- Shaun Simpson (GBR, YAM), 24 p.
- Julien Lieber (BEL, KAW), 22 p.
- Maximilian Nagl (GER, TM), 21 p.
- Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), 21 p.
MX2’s first race of the new season was reminiscent of the 2017 season and had the perfect start for Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Pauls Jonass with the defending MX2 World Champion ran his red number 1 plate with pride and did it justice as he won every race of the weekend from qualifying through to race 2.
“We did the pre-season races and I knew I had the speed and the fitness because I had worked hard in the winter time, I came into this race confident…but I did not expect to win every single session when we went on the track. It is a boost for us but we won’t let it get to our heads too much because there is still a long way to go. The new bike worked so well and we can see all that testing and work in the off-season paid off. I didn’t get any holeshots today so we still have something we can improve on!”
In race one the new Honda 114 Motorsports rider Hunter Lawrence took the Fox Holeshot but it was the Bike IT DRT Kawasaki of Darian Sanayei that took the early lead, and on the third complete lap Lawrence, seen as a title contender took the premier position and set himself up well for success.
Sanayei held second for another 2 laps before Jonass moved his way forward and set his sights on the bright yellow and black gear of Lawrence. After 7 laps in second Jonass chased down the Australian and made pass for the lead finishing just under 2 seconds ahead.
Team HRC’s Calvin Vlaanderen came together with Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jorge Prado early in the race costing both time and positions for each. Vlaanderen was able to salvage an 18th while Prado recovered to 16th.
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Thomas Kjer Olsen started the race around 5th position and after battling with Kemea Yamaha Official MX2 Team’s Ben Watson he would move to 4th. At the finish Olsen took 3rd with Watson 4th as Sanayei suffered a bike issue forcing him to pull out of the race.
Race 2 started with a FOX Holeshot from LRT KTM’s Davy Pootjes but by the end of the first lap Jonass was into the lead. Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Thomas Covington was third after the first lap but he made a mistake two corners before the finish line causing him to drop to 7th immediately before eventually finishing 18th.
Thomas Kjer Olsen put another stellar ride together in race two to finish second place in both the race and the overall.
Thomas Kjer Olsen
“It’s always great to start a new season with a podium result, I’ve done a good job with the team and myself this winter so I am feeling good at the moment. Things worked out quite well here in Argentina and I’m happy with my speed. My goal was to remain consistent throughout the day and I’m happy I made it happen. My starts were also good and this shows we’re in a good spot for the rest of the championship. I am really looking forward to the next GP in The Netherlands.”
Sanayei came back to racing with a point to prove after his race one DNF. Starting in 4th Sanayei made his way to third by the end of the race followed by Ben Watson who took his second 4th of the day.
Calvin Vlaanderen also bounced back from his race 1 mishap charging forward from a 10th place start to take 5th ahead of Hunter Lawrence who reached the overall podium in 3rd with 2-6 finishes.
“It is a lot better start than last year, for the team’s first race and being on a new bike this year it is cool and I look forward to what the rest of the season holds. I’m pretty happy with the weekend, we have a lot of positives to take out of this weekend. It would have been nice to get the win but it’s not my favourite track so I can’t be too disappointed. I prefer more technical tracks than this one as it was high speed and a bit flat but we know what we need to change and sort out and make sure I’m 100% for the rest of the rounds. It was a good start to the year though; third overall on a bad day isn’t too bad. I’m looking forward to getting back to Europe and having a safe journey home.”
Jed Beaton kept the Australian flag high in his debut with the Kawasaki F&H Racing Team finishing 5th overall just behind Brit Ben Watson after taking a 7th and an 8th.
“It was a good GP and I’m pretty happy with the result; my starts were not very good and that’s something we need to work on before Valkenswaard. It was my first time at this track which looked like it had a lot of grip but in fact it was hard and slippery and it took me a while to get used to it. It was difficult to feel the track, but Valkenswaard will be different as I raced there last year in the EMX 250.”
MX2 Race 1 Top Ten
- Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 34:44.373
- Hunter Lawrence (AUS, Honda), +0:01.993
- Thomas Kjer Olsen (DEN, Husqvarna), +0:12.509
- Ben Watson (GBR, Yamaha), +0:21.540
- Henry Jacobi (GER, Husqvarna), +0:39.686
- Conrad Mewse (GBR, KTM), +0:40.184
- Jed Beaton (AUS, Kawasaki), +0:41.891
- Michele Cervellin (ITA, Honda), +0:43.238
- Vsevolod Brylyakov (RUS, Yamaha), +0:44.951
- Thomas Covington (USA, Husqvarna), +0:52.725.
MX2 Race 2 Top Ten
- Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 34:00.087
- Thomas Kjer Olsen (DEN, Husqvarna), +0:05.260
- Darian Sanayei (USA, Kawasaki), +0:10.726
- Ben Watson (GBR, Yamaha), +0:13.864
- Calvin Vlaanderen (RSA, Honda), +0:13.993
- Hunter Lawrence (AUS, Honda), +0:14.909
- Jorge Prado (ESP, KTM), +0:33.086
- Jed Beaton (AUS, Kawasaki), +0:34.461
- Vsevolod Brylyakov (RUS, Yamaha), +0:40.040
- Jago Geerts (BEL, Yamaha), +0:41.654.
MX2 Overall Top Ten
- Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 50 points
- Thomas Kjer Olsen (DEN, HUS), 42 p.
- Hunter Lawrence (AUS, HON), 37 p.
- Ben Watson (GBR, YAM), 36 p.
- Jed Beaton (AUS, KAW), 27 p.
- Vsevolod Brylyakov (RUS, YAM), 24 p.
- Henry Jacobi (GER, HUS), 21 p.
- Darian Sanayei (USA, KAW), 20 p.
- Jago Geerts (BEL, YAM), 20 p.
- Calvin Vlaanderen (RSA, HON), 19 p.
The second round of the 2018 FIM Motocross World Championship will take place in a fortnight’s time in Valkenswaard, The Netherlands for the MXGP of Europe
SuperEnduro World Championship – Round 4 – Bilbao, Spain
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Taddy Blazusiak claimed his second overall victory of the 2018 SuperEnduro World Championship by winning the penultimate round of the series in Bilbao, Spain ahead of team-mate Jonny Walker who carded his second consecutive runner-up result with FMF KTM Factory Racing’s Cody Webb completing the all-KTM podium in third.
Prestige Class — Overall
- Taddy Blazusiak (POL), KTM, 54pts
- Jonny Walker (GBR), KTM, 48pts
- Cody Webb (USA), KTM, 47pts
- Billy Bolt (GBR), Husqvarna, 45pts
- Manuel Lettenbichler (DEU), KTM, 33pts
Championship Standings (After round 4)
- Cody Webb (USA), KTM, 202pts
- Taddy Blazusiak (USA), KTM, 185pts
- Billy Bolt (GBR), Husqvarna, 169pts
- Jonny Walker (GBR), KTM, 153pts
- Colton Haaker (USA), Husqvarna, 146pts