Australian Motorcycle Festival also set for Wollongong
Smektala Scores Warsaw Wildcard
Paulo Goncalves joins Hero Motorsports
Dakar Rally moves to Saudi Arabia
Treloar crowned 11-time Australian Speedway Sidecar Champion
Kulas and Barr Rip Hawkstone MX Nationals
Hawkstone Park hosted the second round of the British MX Nationals and it was Harri Kulas who earned maximum points in the MX1 class while Martin Barr put in an identical performance in the MX2 class.
Kulas won the opening MX1 moto from Gert Krestinov and Mel Pocock then Pocock and Lewis Tombs finished behind Kulas in the second moto so Kulas has opened up an 18-point lead over Pocock in the championship points.
MX1 – Hawkstone Round Top 10
MX1 Points after Round 2
Harri Kulas – 100
Mel Pocock – 72
Gert Krestinov – 70
Ryan Houghton – 64
Lewis Tombs – 59
Barr comfortably won the opening MX2 moto from Josh Gilbert and Ashton Dickinson then backed that up with another win over Gilbert and Todd Kellet so after two rounds Barr has a six-point lead over Gilbert while the rest of the field are almost two motos in points behind.
MX12– Hawkestone Round Top 10
MX2 Points after Round 2
Martin Barr – 97
Josh Gilbert – 91
Ben Franklin – 55
Glenn McCormick – 52
Carlton Husband – 49
Wageman Wins World Two-Stroke Championships
It is one of the most sought after ‘sub culture’ championships in the American motocross scene and this year is was second generation motocross rider and Glen Helen regular in Robbie Wageman who has taken out the premier Open Class at the annual World Two-Stroke Championships at Glen Helen Raceway.
Wageman overcame pre-race favourites and former champions in Mike Alessi, Zach Bell, Ryan Surrat, Carlen Gardner, Mike Brown and Tyler Bowers to take both moto wins
Defending AFT Twins champion Jared Mees has bounced back from a difficult start to the 2019 season to deliver a vintage performance at the Texas Half-Mile at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, to score his first victory of the season.
AFT Twins Report
Right from the start Mees found himself embroiled in a one-on-one shootout with his fellow Indian rider and championship leader Briar Bauman and the two immediately broke free from the pack and traded the lead back and forth multiple times with a series of slick overtaking moves.
On lap 22 of 25 Mees pushed out just enough of a gap to breathe a bit easier over the race’s final circulations, claiming his 27th Half-Mile victory by 1.316-seconds over Bauman and Brandon Robinson to complete an all Indian podium while Sammy Halbert (HD) and Larry Pegram (Indian) rounded out the top five.
When asked if he expects Saturday’s win to reopen the floodgates Mees said:
“That would be the goal — that is the goal — and we’d love to do that, but this year is tougher. The guys are better, and they’ve got their machines figured out better. I’ve got to dig down deeper. Last year, I basically got a good start, went by Briar when he was on the Kawasaki, and took off. This time, I had to wear the boy out. He rode so good. He was better than me in Turns 3 and 4 early in the race. I saw what he was doing and moved down to his line, and that allowed me to maintain a little bit of a gap.”
KTM’s Shayna Texter has the most wins in the history of the AFT Singles and she added to the tally in Texas with a hard fought ride to victory over Mikey Rush and 16-year-old phenom James Ott who was making his professional debut.
The battle at the front went right to the final lap where Ott made one final lunge to overtake Rush as Rush did the same to Texter on the race’s final corner but in the end, their positions remained unchanged with Texter winning by a scant 0.129 seconds over Rush with Ott another 0.125 seconds back in third.
“It’s awesome to get the first win behind us. To give Red Bull KTM its first win in American Flat Track is awesome. Hats off to my partners… To be able to win in Roof Systems’ backyard is incredible.”
Last year’s Texas Half-Mile winner, Morgen Mischler finished fourth, followed by championship leader Dalton Gauthier in fifth while Aussie Max Whale went down hard in the first corner but is fit and ready for next weekend’s Super TT in Arizona.
AFT Singles Points after 3 of 18 Rounds
Dalton Gauthier – 59
Mikey Rush – 48
Jesse Janisch – 47
Dan Bromley – 44
Morgen Mischler – 40
Shayna Texter – 35
Oliver Brindley – 30
Max Whale – 22
Tristan Avery – 22
Michael Inderbitzin – 21
Weekly Up-Date on Our Aussies Abroad
Jed Beaton – Rockstar Husqvarna
Championship: World MX2 Motocross Championship
Current Standing: 13th after Round 4 of 17
Notes: Thanks to some niggling injuries Jed sat out the opening round but has scored solid points in the next three rounds while still nursing a few aches and pains – the four week break from rounds 4 to 5 will do him no harm. The next round will be the MXGP of Lombardi in Italy on the 12th of May.
Mitch Evans – 114 Honda
Championship: World MX2 Motocross Championship
Current Standing: 8th after Round 4 of 17
Notes: Mitch sensationally started the season with a podium finish but since then it has been a bit of a roller coaster with great speed let down by two mechanical DNFs. The next round will be the MXGP of Lombardi in Italy on the 12th of May.
Tayla Jones – Rockstar/Husqvarna/Moose Racing/Shaw Wines
Current Standing: 1st after Round 4 of 13
Notes: Tayla has only lost one round so far this year and is looking as good as ever. Next round will be the ‘X Factor Whitetails’ at Peru near Indianapolis on May 4 and 5
Caleb Grothues – SDM Corse Yamaha
Current Standings: 16th after Round 2 of 8
Notes: The former Australian and World Junior Motocross Champion rode well at the opening round but was forced to sit out the second round due to injury but the West Aussie should be back for the next round in France on the 26th of May.
Hunter Lawrence – Geico Honda
Championship: AMA Motocross Championship
Current Standings: TBA
Notes: Hunter was looking sharp heading into the supercross championship before he crashed right before the opening round so he is now healed and by all accounts 100 per cent ready for the outdoors which kicks off at Hangtown on May 18.
Jett Lawrence – Geico Honda
Current Standings: TBA
Notes: Jett joined the Geico Honda amateur program for 2019 and to date he has raced a handful of events like the Mini-Os etc – as soon as he races and there are results it will be right here.
Tahlia ‘TJ’ O’Hare – KTM DIGA Racing Team
Championship: MXW World Motocross Championship
Current Standings: 13th after Round 1 of 5
Notes: Tahlia’s initiation into the world motocross scene was at the toughest track on the circuit in Valkenswaard but she managed to get through with a solid 13th but look for TJ to move up the points standings at the second round in Portugal on May 19.
Chad Reed – JGR Suzuki
Championship: AMA Supercross
Current Standing: 11th after Round 15 of 17
Notes: Chad was part of a multi bike crash at Seattle when he was sitting seventh in the championship and if a few things go his way Chad will be on the line at the final round of the championship at Vegas in two weekend’s time.
Wil Ruprecht – Johansson MPE Yamaha
Championship: EnduroGP – Junior Class
Current Standing: 2nd after Round 1 of 7
Notes: Wil proved his worth at the opening round in Germany with a solid weekend on the only Yamaha in the field. The next round will be at Valpaços in Portugal on May 3-4.
Meghan Rutledge – Bud Racing Kawasaki
Championship: MXW World Motocross Championship
Current Standings: 8th after Round 1 of 5
Notes: Meghan sat out the World Championships for four years and her first round was marred with some minor mistakes but there was no mistaking her speed so look for Meghan to have a much better round in Portugal on the 19th of May.
Championship: GNCC / AMA Enduro
Current Standing: 6th after Round 4 of 13
Notes: New team for Josh and he is gaining confidence at every round – Josh sat in second place for the early part of round 4 before dropping to fifth overall. Next round will be the ‘X Factor Whitetails’ at Peru near Indianapolis on May 4 and 5
Mackenzie Tricker – KTM/MEPMX/Fly Racing
Current Standing: 3rd after Round 4 of 13
Notes: Mackenzie is not far off cracking a win at the GNCC level but the pace is red hot out front between Jones and Becca Sheets. Next round will be the ‘X Factor Whitetails’ at Peru near Indianapolis on May 4 and 5
Max Whale – Weirbach Racing Kawasaki
Championship: AFT Singles
Current Standings: 8th after Round 3 of 18
Notes: Max scored 5th at the opening round before struggling to an 11th at round two but it got worse at the 3rd round with a crash in the first corner that could have ended with a season ending injury but the plucky Queenslander has already stated on Facebook that he made a mistake but will be back next weekend’s Super TT in Arizona.
Ferris to Raceline KTM
Dean Ferris has signed to ride for Raceline KTM and will potentially line-up for the Murray Bridge double-header in two weekend’s time – this is what Dean wrote on his Facebook page:
‘Stoked to announce my partnership with RaceLine Performance and Recover8. Massive thanks to everyone involved in getting me hooked up, all Raceline partners included. If you are wondering what Recover8 is, it’s a sport supplement about to hit the Market. TOP STUFF! Looking forward to ripping on this KTM 450.’
As far as Dean’s aspirations to race in America go it appears that the Raceline KTM/Recovery8 relationship may play a part in achieving that goal – more news to come.
Clement Desalle Injury Up-Date
Just a few weeks after celebrating his first podium of the season at the Dutch GP, Kawasaki’s Clément Desalle is recovering well at home from a minor surgery on his right knee after barely surviving a tough GP of Trentino.
During his charge to second place in the opening moto at Valkenswaard the Belgian felt pain in his leg and after several examinations between the GPs of Valkenswaard and Pietramurata, Clément knew that the Italian race would be difficult as he was unable to train during the week and had some pain in his knee.
“The examinations revealed that the meniscus was affected, and that some little pieces of bones were broken so we scheduled surgery for Monday after the race. This round was really difficult due to the pain and the crash in the second race; immediately after I retired I left with my father for Dr Claes’ clinic where I had surgery early last Monday (April 9). As soon as my knee had deflated after surgery I could start this week to work on a daily basis with my physiotherapist, mainly in the swimming pool at the moment but I have also started some bicycle exercises. We expect to do even more later this week, and for sure I’m pretty lucky that there is a break in the championship at the moment. The plan is to spend a few hours on the bike before Mantova, and so far everything has gone as we could expect.”
One week after surgery, Clément has already started the recuperation process and has a further three weeks to recover before Mantova on May 11th and 12th.
Currently sixth in the MXGP standing after his DNF in the second race in Trentino, Clément will be back racing in Italy, while teammate Julien Lieber will enter a French championship round during this spring break of the FIM Motocross World Championship.
Dean Wilson joins the injured list
Like many before him, Dean Wilson’s 2019 AMA Supercross Champion has ended prematurely after crashing out of the main event at Denver last weekend – here is what Dean wrote on Instagram:
“Such a massive gut punch on Saturday. Just as I was gaining good momentum riding well, feeling good and chasing my first win things turned in the blink of an eye. Started off Denver topping free practice then went on to qualify P1 in qualifier 1. Qualifier 2 didn’t get the cleanest laps but ended with a 4th. On to the main event I was running around 7th on lap 7 moving forward and as I came around for the rhythm section I tripled in and something freak happened causing the bike to nose dive after I tripled in and pile driving me into the ground. The tough part of this is I have been trying so hard this year to be back where I need to be trying to get a job for next year. It’s tough just hoping to have a ride each year. 2nd part is people saying, ‘Wilson’s hurt again, big surprise there’ when it was something that wasn’t my fault. It’s a tough pill to swallow. I injured my shoulder and got a contusion on my kidneys. Got MRI and good news is I dodged a bullet on my shoulder and I am just going to give it a few weeks of rest and therapy and see where we are at. Huge disappointment to end my SX season like this. Thanks to my whole team for everything and everybody checking in on me. I really appreciate it. I will be back.”
In just the 450-class alone Chad Reed, Justin Brayton, Malcolm Stewart, Justin Barcia, Aaron Plessinger, Vince Friese, Benny Bloss, AJ Catanzaro, Tyler Enticknap, Cole Martinez and Ronnie Stewart all missed rounds or were forced out of the series with crashes at the races while Justin Hill and Joey Savatgy are riding injured and hanging in there.
Supercross returns to Wollongong in 2019
Troy Bayliss Events have confirmed that the third round of the 2019 Australian Supercross Championship will be held at Wollongong’s WIN Stadium on Saturday the 9th of November giving fans the opportunity to see Australia’s best racers take on some international riders on a full-size track while racing the exciting Triple Crown Format in both SX1 and SX2 premiere classes.
Three-time Superbike World Champion and Event Organiser Troy Bayliss said the stadium layout will be unique with a section of the track heading up onto the iconic hill.
“In 2018, Troy Bayliss Events took the big step to put Supercross back into a stadium in Australia with Geelong’s GMHBA Stadium round, now Troy Bayliss Events is thrilled to be taking the NSW event back to an outdoor stadium. WIN Stadium is the perfect size with the crowd so close to the action and the location is second to none. I am really excited about the track layout. This event will be like no other with the track winding up onto the iconic hill. We would like to thank Destination Wollongong, Wollongong City Council, WIN Stadium and Yamaha for the support to allow Supercross to take place In Wollongong and within WIN Stadium. The Illawarra is rich with motorcycle champions and fans and we can’t wait until the gates drop on November 9.”
Yamaha Motor Australia will be a major sponsor to Round 3 of the 2019 Australian Supercross Championship. Wollongong’s WIN Stadium is the perfect venue to showcase our race teams as they battle for supremacy in the VictorYZone.
In addition, this round will host another YZ65 Cup event – the grassroots race series designed to give young guns their first taste of the big time by racing in front of their Supercross heroes and up to 20,000 fans.
Australian Motorcycle Festival Also set for Wollongong
Troy Bayliss Events have also confirmed that the Australian Motorcycle Festival will take place right next door to WIN Stadium at Lang Park on the same weekend as the Australian Supercross Championship over the weekend of November 9 and 10.
Formally known as the Sydney Motorcycle Show, Australia’s largest Motorcycle Show is also set to expand with massive trade displays featuring motorcycles, scooters, ATV’s, SxS’s, trikes and jet skis as well as related products and services while visitors to the event will have the opportunity to test a huge range of motorcycles and jet-skis.
Mark Sleigh, General Manager, Destination Wollongong said the city is excited to host the Australian Supercross Championship and Motorcycle Festival in November.
Mark Sleigh – Destination Wollongong
“Wollongong makes for the perfect road trip with stunning coastline taking in Sea Cliff Bridge as well as the winding escarpment which will put all your motorcycle skills to the test. The combination of the Championship and the Motorcycle Festival make for the perfect weekend away so we encourage everyone to stay a little longer and enjoy the attractions, natural assets and cafes and bars on offer in Wollongong.”
Tickets will go on sale Monday 29th April via Ticketmaster with tickets starting from $30.00. A full line up of support classes and live entertainment will be released in the coming weeks.
Smektala Scores Warsaw Wildcard
FIM Speedway Under-21 world champion Bartosz Smektala is set to done the famous #16 race jacket for his full FIM Speedway Grand Prix debut after earning a wildcard for the opening round of the FIM Speedway World Championship at PGE Narodowy on May 18.
The 20-year-old was crowned World Under-21 champion last season after seeing off a huge challenge from 2017 champion Maksym Drabik before winning a second straight PGE Ekstraliga title with Leszno.
Smektala rode in his first SGP heat as a track reserve at the 2017 Nice Torun SGP of Poland, before serving as a stand-in rider again in Warsaw last year where he raced in heat 14 that night, finishing second to Chris Holder and beating eventual World Championship bronze medallist Fredrik Lindgren and Craig Cook.
The Srem-born racer represents Leszno once again in this year’s PGE Ekstraliga as well as Swedish Elitserien club Vastervik.
He’s joined in Warsaw by track reserves Dominik Kubera and Rafal Karczmarz, who line up at No.17 and No.18 respectively. Kubera races alongside Smektala with Leszno, while Karczmarz rides for Gorzow.
Paulo Goncalves Joins Hero Motorsports
The Indian off-road team Hero Motorsports have confirmed that former Dakar runner up and 2015 FIM Cross-Country Champion Paulo Gonçalves will be joining the team as they continue their quest for Dakar glory.
Created in 2016, Hero Motorsport Rally Team has been gaining experience competing in some of the most demanding off-road races, especially the Dakar Rally where Hero Motorsports have finished inside the top-10 twice, and the best result came at the Merzouga Rally where they won.
Paulo Gonçalves has been racing for the factory Honda Dakar team but decided it was time to change and try new challenges.
“From my side, I promise to give my everything to be ready and fit to be able to fight for the top positions for my team. Hero MotoSports has been doing a really good job in the last couple of seasons and this young team has shown, that it has the potential to win big. I would like to play my part in bringing these wins to the team. With lots of passion and emotions, my thanks again to the team and I am excited to begin.”
Wolfgang Fischer – Head of Hero MotoSports Team Rally
“We are very motivated by the entry of Paulo Gonçalves into our young set-up. To attract one of the most decorated and respected top rally athletes is a big boost for our team and an endorsement that we are being looked upon as one of the top teams in rally sport. His experience of numerous race victories and Dakar participation into our line-up will enable us to achieve the next level of competitiveness. We extend Paulo a very warm welcome and wish him a successful stint with Hero MotoSports Team Rally.”
The new Hero Motorsports Rally Team is now completed with Paulo Gonçalves joins his Portuguese compatriot Joaquim Rodrigues as well as CS Santosh and Oriol Mena.
The Hero Motorsports Rally Team is getting ready for the next race, the Silkway Rally, that will happen in July, covering some spectacular trails in Russia, Mongolia and China.
Dakar Rally Moves to Saudi Arabia
After 11 years of being based in South America, Dakar Rally organizers ASO have confirmed that the event will take place in Saudi Arabia beginning in 2020 and beyond.
The event was held solely in Peru earlier this year after the ASO was forced to hastily assemble a route in 2019 after the late withdrawal of Bolivia and Chile.
Dakar Rally Director – David Castera
“Looking back at my first memories of the Dakar and my first experiences as a competitor, I’ve always considered that this rally like no other carried a concept of discovery, a voyage into the unknown. By going to Saudi Arabia, it is, of course, that aspect that fascinates me. I’m convinced that such a feeling will be shared by all the riders, drivers and co-pilots. As the director of the event, it’s a massive challenge to be faced with a blank page with limitless possibilities. I’m already inspired and delighted to have to design a course in such a monumental geography, made for the most audacious itineraries. We are spoilt for choice. Sports, navigation, a will to surpass oneself: all these aspects will naturally be glorified on this territory made for rally-raids.”
More details regarding the event will be announced at a press conference on April 25 in Al-Qiddiya, near the Saudi capital of Riyadh.
As a point of interest, the Arabian desert is an area of 2,330,000 square kilometres, the fifth largest desert in the world, and the largest in Asia. At its centre is Ar-Rub’al-Khali (The Empty Quarter), one of the largest continuous bodies of sand in the world – GULP!
Treloar crowned 11-time Australian Speedway Sidecar Champion
Treloar Pioneer Park Speedway, Queensland played host to a momentous occasion in Australian Speedway Sidecar history, with spectators and riders alike witnessing Darrin Treloar’s 11th claim to the Australian Senior Speedway Sidecar Championship and the retirement of Andrew Buchanan.
Featuring in the Final was Monson/Summerhayes, Plaisted/Pitt, Harrison/McGrath and Treloar/Cox. With consecutive wins in the FIM Oceania Speedway Sidecar Championship and FIM 1000cc Speedway Sidecar World Cup under their belt, the dynamic duo that is Monson and Summerhayes were locked and loaded to blaze a trail into first place. After four exhilarating laps though, it was Treloar and Cox who stole the win, marking Treloar’s 11th Australian Speedway Sidecar title!
“2019 marks my 11th Australian Speedway Sidecar Championship and honestly it hasn’t sunk in yet. Nothing beats my first Championship win back in 1993 up in Darwin of course, but this win is definitely something else. Coming into this weekend I try and keep fit with 3-4 days spent in the gym, plus heaps of work in the garage developing the bike. As the Championship marks the end of the season, we as competitors were well into the swing of things [keeping fit and staying motivated] with most of us having already competed in 10-15 events prior. Andrew is a great bloke who is a fantastic addition to the sport. This weekend was emotional of course as he announced he was hanging up the boots, but as always Andrew was extremely competitive and didn’t give an inch. So you had to fight hard to push ahead of him.”
Running in conjunction with the Seniors at Pioneer Park across the Easter long weekend was the 2019 Australian Junior Speedway Sidecar Championship.
Arriving at the Final, fans had the privilege of witnessing the clear emergence of superb Australian Speedway Sidecar talent, as all three squads became demons behind the handlebars. Coming out on top to claim the 2019 Australian Junior Speedway Sidecar Championship was the Fewster team, ahead of Curran/Kerss and Milner/Niesche in second and third place, respectively.
Western Australia (WA) locals, Jack and Adam Fewster have taken out their second Australian Junior Speedway Sidecar Championship title. As they land back on WA soil, Jack explained that “The weekend’s racing was really great! The racing was super tough which really pushed us to try as hard as we could to win. The practice day prior to racing really helped us keep cool and collected.”
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