AMA Arenacross Championship – Round 2 – DCU Center, Worcester, MA
X-Trial World Championship Round 2 – Sud de France Arena in Montpellier
2018 Dakar Rally
Sam Masters to undergo surgery
Sam Masters will undergo surgery for a broken bone at the base of his tibia, which he suffered in practice for the final round of the Australian Championship, forcing him to withdraw.
Following the discovery of the break Masters was scheduled for surgery, where a screw will be inserted to speed up the recovery process. He has confirmed he’ll be ready for the Speedway GP season with the Wolverhampton Team.
“I could ride in a fortnight if I needed too because it’s nothing too serious even though I need surgery. The fact they are putting a screw into the damaged area means they are strengthening it and I’ll be right and good to go pretty quickly. I’d like to thank everyone over in the UK for their messages. I appreciate it very much and I’m looking forward to a big season in Europe. The Wolverhampton team looks good and I’m really excited about everything. This is only a minor blip in my season prep and I could be back on a bike in two weeks.”
AMA Supercross Injury Up-Date
The opening two rounds of the AMA Supercross Championships has already seen Marvin Musquin, Eli Tomac, Dean Wilson, Alex Martin and Benny Bloss all hitting the deck while taking a severe loss in the championship points chase.
After winning A1 Musquin took a trip over the bars while trying to traverse a tricky set of whoops during his heat race at Houston which forced the French star to miss the rest of the night due to a damaged shoulder and wrist.
Marvin Musquin posted this on social media
“After qualifying third today, I went down hard in the whoops in my heat race. I landed on my left shoulder and felt really beat up. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to line up for the rest of night. I’m really disappointed about that given the team and I were in a good place after our win last weekend. But I will get checked up as soon as I get home and will know more in the next few days. Supercross is a longer season so I’m hopeful I will be able to line up in Anaheim 2.”
Tomac was winning the main event at A1 before he crashed and injured his shoulder which forced him to miss Houston and at the time of writing the Kawasaki rider was weighing up when he was going to return to racing but with zero points after two rounds Eli is out of the championship as a contender.
“As of now I’m out for the night and then we’ll be on a day by day basis to see if we can make it back for the next one.”
Wilson also sailed over the bars at A1 and suffered serious bruising and here is what he wrote on social media:
“Seen the Dr yesterday. The man upstairs was looking after me. Nothing torn I got very lucky. The MRI report is I got a bad contusion in my shoulder a strained rotator cuff and bone bruising also a sprained wrist. Dr said my muscles in my shoulder are so beat up it’s like someone took a meat hammer and battered them. So anyways I’m lucky nothing is torn. I will be doing therapy every day with @teamdrg and doing everything in my power to be back. It’s not likely I will make Houston as I still can’t lift my arm up but I will just take it day by day. Thank you everybody for the get well wishes and prayers sent I appreciate you all? We will be back. Thanks to all for sticking with me.”
Bloss cartwheeled during the LCQ at A1 and here is what he had to say on Instagram:
“Bit of a rough night Saturday, was feeling really good in the night show and then ended up coming up short on a rhythm I had been doing all day. I ended up with a small fracture in my sternum and some bruised lungs. Just going to take it day by day and try to get back out there as quick as possible, we’ll be back! Thanks to everyone for the texts and calls.”
Early reports had Alex Martin out with a broken collarbone after a crash in the 250SX main event at A1 but the good news is that it was misdiagnosed but according to the team Martin’s shoulder copped a pounding and he was forced to miss Houston.
Anderson Commits to Husqvarna
Jason Anderson has signed a four-year deal to stay with the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Team and continue his long relationship with manager and mentor Bobby Hewitt.
“I am beyond excited to extend my contract with the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing team. They are like family, and being with the brand for such a long time makes me feel very fortunate. I look forward to continuing my career with Bobby Hewitt, since he has been such a huge support since the beginning.”
Anderson, who turned pro in 2011, has only ridden for team manager Bobby Hewitt during his professional career.
“Jason and I have been together for eight years now, he has always believed in me and I have always believed in him. Having this long-term contract shows that Husqvarna and everyone who supports our program believes In Jason. It’s really a great partnership between us and I’m grateful that we will be able to complete his entire career together. Now the focus can be on winning a Championship for Rockstar Energy Husqvarna!”
Husqvarna Factory Racing Announced 2018 American Off-Road Team
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing has announced their 2018 Off-Road team featuring Colton Haaker, Josh Strang, Thad Duvall, and newest member Dalton Shirey.
Looking to defend his 2017 FIM SuperEnduro Championship and contend the 2018 AMA Endurocross series is Colton Haaker while Aussie Josh Strang will be making his return to the Grand National Cross Country series riding the FX 450 alongside teammate Thad Duvall on an FX 350.
Strang will also be racing the Full Gas Sprint Enduro while Thad Duvall is looking to not only claiming a GNCC title, but an AMA National Enduro title as well.
Newest member of the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory racing team is Dalton Shirey who will be competing aboard the FX 450 while contesting the 2018 AMA National Hare and Hound and AMA Big 6 West Coast Grand Prix Series.
RIP to Bud Racing’s Sébastien Dassé
Sébastien Dassé, co-owner of the Bud Racing Kawasaki Team, sadly passed away last week and was buried at a ceremony attended by many riders and members of the motocross industry.
The Bud Racing Team has been involved in the sport for more than ten years, and has achieved many significant results in both the French, European and World Championships, including the MX2 podium of Gautier Paulin (2009), the European title of Brian Moreau last year and the French titles of Livia Lancelot, David Herbreteau, Valentin Teillet, Dylan Ferrandis, Maxime Desprey and Xavier Boog.
Since their debut in 2007 with Marvin Musquin the team has been supported by Kawasaki and in recent years has represented the brand in the European and French championships.
The long and rich history of the team started in 1995 when Stephane and Sébastien Dassé created Bud Racing and start working on engine and suspension development.
Each brother was racing motocross, but unfortunately Sébastien suffered a bad crash whilst practicing in 1998; a paraplegic, he then, together with his brother, put all his energy into the development of Bud Racing. Well-known as one of the best suspension technicians in France, Sébastien worked with many top riders through the years and was with his brother a key piece in the development of the company and the team.
His condition suddenly deteriorated last week, and at 37 years old this long-time member of the Kawasaki family tragically passed away. Kawasaki Motors Europe wished to thank Sébastien for the journey, his commitment to the brand and to the sport of Motocross in general, and expresses its sincere condolences to Stephane, the team, his family and friends for their loss.
Bobryshev Set for MXGP Return
Evgeny Bobryshev is set to race the upcoming 2018 FIM Motocross World Championship after agreeing to a deal with the BOS team. Bobryshev will ride the Suzuki RMZ450 for the team, while teammate Jordi Tixier will ride KTMs.
In November 2017, Borbyshev announced a deal with RFX Suzuki to contest the Arenacross World Tour, the Michelin MX Nationals, and ACU Championships after the Russian was not re-signed by Honda HRC.
The BOS team will make their MXGP debut in 2018 with Bobryshev and Tixier after parting ways with Benoit Paturel only a few months after announcing a deal with the French rider.
BOS is a suspension company, so they’re okay with having two different brands of bikes under their riders.
“The fact that Evgeny rides a 450RMZ does not bother us, it’s even better. We will be present [at each MXGP event] to show that our suspensions are great, so doing it on a European base and a Japanese base is perfect.”
2018 FIM Speedway GP riding numbers revealed
2018’s Speedway GP rider numbers have been announced, with Nicki Pederson picking personal digits for the first time ever, where in the past he’s opted to use his ranking number. For 2018 he’ll return to racing with #110, following his 2017 season ending prematurely with an injury.
GP Challenge winner Przemyslaw Pawlicki, who was born on September 5, brings No.59 into his SGP debut season, while, Artem Laguta returns to the World Championship after a seven-year absence with No.222 on his back, and Craig Cook has chosen No.111 for his maiden SGP campaign.
The other returning SGP stars retain their numbers from 2017, with world champ Jason Doyle keeping No.69, despite having the option to don the No.1 race jacket after his famous title win in Melbourne last October.
Meghan Rutledge took a dominant win in the 2018 Coffs Harbour Stadium Motocross event with her KX250F, winning all three races in the women’s class and improving during each session to make 10th position in the A Lites class.
“My 2018 season has started on a good note at Coffs StadiumX, I just want to say a massive thank you to all of the sponsors that have stuck by me over the last three years including Kawasaki Motors Australia, Shock Treatment, Kwala Racing, Rockwell Watches Australia, Unifilter Australia, Southern Highlands Motorcycle Centre, Scott Goggles, Dunlop Tyres Australia & New Zealand, Supersprox and EK Chains.”
The weekend’s win haul served as a motivation booster for Meghan who injured her hand in 2015 and has been recovering progressively ever since.
“After 3 years and the last 6 months of more treatment I can officially say last night was the first time I have been able to ride pain free and with no swelling to my thumb joint. Regardless of where I finished last night that alone was a massive achievement and relief.”
Meghan plans to attend a range events this year with her Kawasaki, including increasingly popular desert racing where she has made her mark as one of the most competitive female racers in the country over recent years.
Smarty’s Race Reports
AMA Supercross Championships – Round 2 – Houston
Images by Hoppenworld
On a demanding Houston layout Jason Anderson and Aaron Plessinger have won the 450cc and 250cc main events at a drama filled second round of the AMA Supercross Championships.
After a bit of scrapping with Justin Barcia in the early laps, Ken Roczen took over the lead of the main event and etched out a small lead and by the time Anderson made it into second place Roczen had a sizeable lead but nothing was going to deny Anderson this win as the Husqvarna rider sliced his way around the technical layout with ease.
“Tonight was pretty unreal, I honestly had the best night I have ever had in my career but at the same time it is about time for me to start being a championship contender. In the main event I got off to a good start and had a bit of a scary moment when Justin (Barcia) doubled the triple then had a good battle with Ken but just happy to come away with the win.”
Roczen’s pace is impressive considering this is only his second ride back from injury and the German fought hard to keep Anderson at bay but it was obvious that there some fatigue at the end of the race.
“This was a very good weekend for us, it was good for the HRC team to have Cole and I back on the track and to deliver a podium in just our second weekend back feels great. I had a good start in the heat and rode smart and I had a good start in the main as well before Justin and I had a good battle, it was clean and fun.”
Barcia was right in the hunt until he lost some rhythm mid moto when Cole Seely slipped into third place but the rejuvenated Yamaha pilot charged back into the final podium position on lap 19.
“Yeh, I was having a good ride, watching Kenny and adapting to the track that was changing every lap then I made s pretty big mistake before struggle a little mid race before charging towards the end to get back up to third.”
Seely scored 4th place ahead of Weston Peick who scored his second top five finish this season while two-time Australian SX Champ Justin Brayton came home in 6th ahead of Blake Baggett, Broc Tickle, Josh Grant, Jeremy Martin and Malcolm Stewart who was riding the JGR Suzuki in place of the injured Justin Bogle and finished 11th.
“I tell you, going eight months without a gate drop feels like forever! It’s great to be back doing what I love to do. I have to give a huge shout out to the Autotrader/ Yoshimura/ Suzuki Factory Racing Team for giving me the opportunity to race. I appreciate the fans for sticking by me through thick and thin. The Houston fans made me feel like I was home again, so thanks! I’m looking forward to getting more time on the bike and making a big impact at Anaheim 2.”
Chad Reed was as far up as 13th place early in the main event but a few mistakes cost the Aussie dearly before he came home in 16th place.
Round 2 – 450 Main Event Results
Jason Anderson (Hus)
Ken Roczen (Hon)
Justin Barcia (Yam)
Cole Seely (Hon)
Weston Peick (Suz)
Justin Brayton (Hon)
Blake Baggett (KTM)
Broc Tickle (KTM)
Josh Grant (Kaw)
Jeremy Martin (Hon)
Malcolm Stewart (Suz)
Cooper Webb (Yam)
Vince Friese (Hon)
Kyle Cunningham (Suz)
Ben Lamay (Hon)
Chad Reed (Huq)
Alex Ray (Yam)
A Catanzaro (Kaw)
Henry Miller (Suz)
Adam Enticknap (Hon)
Dakota Tedder (KTM)
Austin Politely (Hon)
450 Points after 2 of 17 Rounds
Joey Savatgy was the early leader with Shane McElrath and Adam Cianciarulo breathing down his neck while Aron Plessinger was as far back at 11th place in the opening laps but the Yamaha pilot was using lines and jumping one section that no-one else was doing and it wasn’t long before the lead pack got a shake-up.
It all started when Cianciarulo crashed while trying to pass McElrath handing Christian Craig the final podium position with the battle for second place now involving McElrath, Craig, Plessinger, Cianciarulo and Chase Sexton and as Plessinger blitzed into second place to set off after Savatgy, Cianciarulo and Sexton had worked their way into third and fourth.
Savatgy was no match for Plessinger with the Yamaha riding taking over the lead and the eventual win over Savatgy and Sexton after Cianciarulo crashed with two laps remaining.
“The first few laps after the bad start were pretty crazy, I am not sure how I managed to get up to the leaders but by lap three I was in fifth or sixth and catching the front runners significantly so I put my head down on a track that was sketchy but I had some good lines.”
“I made mistakes in the past, doing things on the track that I didn’t need to do and tonight I felt like I was riding as fast as I could comfortable and Aaron was obviously faster, I tried to stay with him but caught some lappers in a bad spot and the track was brutal tonight so happy with the second place.
“Last week I got an 8th and I wasn’t really happy with that so I was shooting for a top five tonight and spent a lot of time in sixth before making a few passes which put me into 4th then Adam (Cianciarulo) crashed with two laps to go so I just had to make it through those two laps, I am really happy to come away with the podium”
After scoring a credible 5th in his heat race, Hayden Mellross was involved in a nasty first turn crash in the main but the plucky Yamaha pilot worked his way from dead last up to 15th place to now sits 13th in the series points.
Rohan Tungate has won the four round Australian Senior Solo Speedway Championship after finishing in second position at the final round of the championship, Gillman Speedway South Australia last Saturday night
Heading into the final round of the championship, Tungate and Brady Kurtz were tied at 45 points apiece, meaning it was basically winner takes all at Gillman and the pair couldn’t be split after the heats, both finishing on 14 points, leaving the championship to be decided in the A-Final.
In the A-Final, all eyes were on the battle between Tungate and Kurtz, but it was Mildura winner, Jack Holder who went under the radar to claim the win while Tungate managed second which was enough to clinch the title with Kurtz finishing fourth behind Max Fricke.
Rohan Tungate – 2018 Australian Senior Solo Speedway Champion
“I feel awesome, I don’t think it has actually sunk in yet but we will have a party tonight to celebrate.”
Runner-up, Brady Kurtz scored heavily in the heats throughout the championship but will rue three fourth place A-Final finishes.
“We nearly took the championship, and Tungate just got the better of me in the final and was a deserving winner, making all A-Finals throughout the championship. For me after finishing 6th or 7th last season, almost being the champion was a great turn around.”
Race winner, Jack Holder finished the championship with a wet sail, claiming the last two A-Final wins to add to his third place at Undera in round two.
“It’s a good feeling winning two on the bounce, but I was probably a bit unlucky after the first round where I probably let my nerves get the better of me. It probably cost me a placing, but it was good to win at both Mildura and Gillman.”
A-Final Results: Holder, Tungate, Fricke and Kurtz
B-Final Results: Holder, Stewart, Lidsey and Campton
The Final Standings
Rohan Tungate 62
Brady Kurtz 60
Max Fricke 53
Jack Holder 51
Mason Campton – 39
Sam Masters – 37
Josh Pickering – 37
Jordan Stewart – 35
Jaimon Lidsey – 31
Jye Etheridge – 28
Matthew Gilmore – 21
Cooper Riordan – 20
Robert Medson – 16
Joel Coyne – 10
Declan Knowles – 9
James Davies – 4
Josh Coyne – 3
Brandon McGuinness – 2
UK Arenacross Tour – Round 2 – Newcastle
A packed Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle hosted the second round of the 2018 Power Maxed Arenacross Tour and it was Cedric Soubeyras who took the main event win over Fabien Izoird and Hugo Basaula.
Prior to the main final, a number of leading Pro riders such as Brits Adam Chatfield, Ashley Greedy and Matt Bayliss together with Aussie hotshot Dan Reardon, found themselves in the last chance eliminator.
Cedric Soubeyras earned an additional three points by cleaning up in the hot lap ahead of Fabien Izoird, and a rejuvenated Hugo Basaula and after eight riders automatically qualified through to the main event Greedy and Reardon were seeded through from the head-to-head chalenge whilst James Dunn and Luke Norris gained the recognition of the promoter to make their first appearance in the highly-prized end-of-evening finale.
The UK’s flu outbreak claimed an AX scalp in the form of former British MX champ Elliott Banks-Browne who, despite qualifying in 10th, was unable to make the evening’s races, leaving team-mate Norris to fly a solo Geartech Husqvarna flag.
MXGP hotshot Evgeny Bobryshev escaped the claws of the eliminator and, clearly enjoying the challenges of the harder-packed Newcastle circuit, put in some solid performances to take fifth in the main event and fifth overall.
For the second week running Reardon had a tough main event to finish in 10th place but expect Dan to get stronger as the series progresses.
Pro Final and Points
Cedric Soubeyras, 23 points
Fabien Izoird, 20
Hugo Basaula, 17
Charles Lefrancois, 15
Evgeny Bobryshev, 14
Jack Brunell, 13
James Dunn, 12
Cyrille Coulon, 11
Ashley Greedy, 10
Dan Reardon, 9
Pro Championship after Round 2
Cedric Soubeyras, Team FRO Systems, 38 points
Charles Lefrancois, Buildbase Honda, 38
Fabien Izoird, Buildbase Honda, 34
Hugo Basaula, Shocktech Kawasaki, 30
Cyrille Coulon, SR75 World Suzuki, 29
Jack Brunell, Team Green Holeshot Kawasaki, 25
Thomas Ramette, SR75 World Suzuki, 23
Ashley Greedy, Team FRO Systems, 18
Dan Reardon, JK I-Fly Yamaha Racing, 18
Evgeny Bobryshev, RFX Suzuki, 14
AMA Arenacross Championship
Round 2 – DCU Center, Worcester, MA
In front of a packed house at the DCU Center in Worcester, Massachusetts, two-time 250SX AMSOIL Arenacross defending champion Gavin Faith captured his second-consecutive victory at round 2 of 2018 AMSOIL Arenacross.
Faith dominated the first 250AX Main Event with his teammate Jacob Hayes coming in second while Chris Blose, rounded out the podium. In the second Main Event, Faith grabbed the holeshot again and the 15-lap race turned out to be a carbon copy of the first with Faith taking a convincing victory again ahead of Hayes and Blose.
In the Lites East Class Main Event, Heath Harrison pulled the holeshot and led wire-to-wire to win his first overall of the 2018 season.
Amsoil Arenacross 250AX Class Main Event Results
Gavin Faith, Duncombe, Iowa, Kawasaki (1-1)
Jacob Hayes, Greensboro, North Carolina, Kawasaki (2-2)
Chris Blose, Phoenix, Arizona, Honda (3-3)
Kyle Bitterman, West Pelzer, South Carolina, Kawasaki (4-5)
Michael Mosiman, Sebastopol, California, Husqvarna (5-10)
Jacob Williamson, Swartz Creek, Michigan, Kawasaki (9-6)
Amsoil Arenacross AX Lites East Class Main Event Results
Heath Harrison, Silverhill, Alabama, Honda
Garrett Marchbanks, Coalville, Utah, Kawasaki
Isaac Teasdale, Robbinsville, North Carolina, Kawasaki
Dillon Cloyed, Papillion, Nebraska, Yamaha
Hunter Hilton, Youngsville, Louisiana, Husqvarna
Jordan Bailey, Orlando, Florida, Husqvarna
Jared Lesher, Ball Ground, Georgia, Honda
Josh Mosiman, Menifee, California, Husqvarna
Luke Neese, Jamestown, North Carolina, Yamaha
TJ Albright, Mount Marion, New York, KTM
X-Trial World Championship Round 2
Sud de France Arena in Montpellier
The second round of the X-Trial World Championship held at the Sud de France Arena in Montpellier was a productive one for Toni Bou who made off with an important victory that consolidates his position at the head of the championship table.
Bou was the strongest in the first qualifying round, where Toni’s Repsol Honda Team team-mate, Takahisa Fujinami – the organisation’s wildcard invite – failed to make the cut by a single penalty point. In the second round, in spite of a few mistakes, Bou was able to outride his group’s adversaries, finishing with a two and four point advantage.
The final meant a showdown with archrival Adam Raga, who the champion was able to defeat with a five-point advantage. Bou now comfortably leads the championship table with 40 points, thirteen more than second-placed Adam Raga.
“Today I had to suffer a lot in this race. I haven’t been physically at my best, my arms hurt a lot and I had a pretty tough time. Already in the section one I was starting to show signs of fatigue. I was able to get through each phase, but in the semi-final I got through by the skin of my teeth. In the end, it was a comforting victory after so much suffering, which is great because it gives us a good advantage in the championship. This week I will have to try to recover because immediately after we have another trial.”
The next date on the calendar for the FIM X-Trial World Championship will be the third round held next Friday, January 19th in Toulouse, France.
Round 2 Results
Rider Standings after Round 2
BOU Toni – 40
RAGA Adam – 27
DABILL James – 18
BUSTO Jaime – 15
BINCAZ Benoit – 13
FAJARDO Jeroni – 13
GELABERT Miquel – 6
CASALES Jorge – 2
FERRER Alexandre – 2
GRATTAROLA Matteo – 1
2018 Dakar Rally – Stage 8 Update
Stage eight of the 2018 Dakar Rally has been run and won with Antoine Meo claiming his second win in three stages this time ahead of Ricky Brabec who finished second while Toby Price finished a very strong third ahead of an unexpected day off with stage 9 being cancelled due to rain in the area. This leaves five remaining rounds.
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