Moto News Wrap for January 31, 2017 by Darren Smart
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News Headlines:
  • Ken Roczen Injuries Worse Than Expected
  • Herlings Injured
  • Mellross Injured
  • Bogle Injured
  • Russian Racer to MX Nationals?
Race Reports:
  • AMA Supercross Championships – Round 4 – Pheonix
  • AMA Arenacross Championship – Round 4 – Nashville, TN.
  • UK Arenacross Series – Rounds 4 & 5 – The SSE Arena, Belfast
  • Italian MX Championships – Rd 1 – Riola Sardo, Italy
  • New Zealand Grand Prix of Motocross – Woodville
  • Deep Well Motocross – Alice Springs, NT
  • Australian Under 21 Speedway Solo Championship

The Latest on Ken Roczen’s Injury

Ken Roczen’s injuries are worse than initially thought and according to a post on his Instagram account recently the German wrote that he sustained a dislocated wrist, dislocated elbow, and a compound fracture to his radius in his crash at Anaheim 2.

Ken Roczen
Ken Roczen

Roczen wrote on social media that he is ‘gonna need a few surgeries to get all this dialled’ but the factory Honda star is already keeping fit on a stationary bike which has been brought into his hospital room.


Herlings Injured

Jeffrey Herlings was scheduled to compete in the first big race of the European season being round one of the Italian Motocross Championship but the Red Bull KTM rider was forced to withdraw from the event due to a stretched wrist tendon sustained while testing in Sardinia. Herlings has been advised by doctors to rest and is back at his home in Holland to recuperate.


Mellross Injured

Hayden Mellross was involved in an unavoidable first turn crash at the third round of the AMA Supercross Championship at Anaheim and sustained a hand injury which forced the Aussie out of the fourth round held in Phoenix last weekend but the Yamaha star is set to return to action this weekend at Oakland.

Australian Supercross 2016 - Round One- Image by Marc Jones - Hayden Mellross
Image by Marc Jones – Hayden Mellross
Hayden Mellross

“Each week my heat races have been going really well, and I’m showing these guys that I can run up front. Unfortunately, in the main, we collided and I went down hard on my hand and my bike was pretty bent.”

Dunlop Geomax MX3S
Dunlop Geomax MX3S

Bogle Injured

Justin Bogle suffering a hard crash while leading his heat race two weekends ago at Anaheim and the RCH Suzuki pilot decided to sit out Pheonix to recover from injuries to his lungs and upper chest area. Bogle will remain in California this weekend to receive treatment and therapy and is expected to return for Oakland this weekend.

Justin Bogle

Justin Bogle

“Anaheim was a rough one. I had a rough crash during practice earlier in the week and then I had an issue, not sure exactly what happened, but I came up way short on a jump and ended up going down during the first lap of the heat. I slammed my chest pretty good and ended up having some trouble breathing. I tried going back out in the semi and just feel things out but I didn’t feel good at all. I felt kind of like a hazard out there. I went back to the truck and decided to go to the hospital and get checked out. I wasn’t sure what was going on. I ended up spending the night in the hospital and luckily it wasn’t anything major. I’m blessed to be up and walking around. It could have been a lot worse. I’m hoping some rest and a little extra therapy will do the trick so I can be ready for Oakland next weekend. No sense in being out there if I’m not 100 percent.”


Russian Racer to MX Nationals?

The rumour has been around for a while now but in a recent interview with MXLarge, Russian rider and former MX2 GP winner Aleksandr Tonkov has confirmed that he has signed a contract to race the 2017 Australian MX Nationals for the Monster Energy Kawasaki team alongside Nathan Crawford.

Aleksandr Tonkov
Aleksandr Tonkov

Tonkov has had problems with his Visa to race in Europe and has had to drop a Yamaha ride in the MXGP class for 2017 so Troy Carroll has thrown the Russian a lifeline to potentially race in Australia – here are extracts from Tonkov’s interview with MXLarge last week.

Aleksandr Tonkov

“The guys from Monster Energy Kawasaki contacted me with a proposal. It was very interesting and pretty good. I already signed the contract, but I still need to fix some things before I go. I decided I am not going to come back to the GP’s this year, because I am so far behind and the season started already. I thought go to Australia and then maybe do the GP in US and see what is possible for 2018.”

Aleksandr Tonkov
Aleksandr Tonkov

“Australia is difficult, it takes a long time to organize the visa. It takes more than six weeks. That is why I am still waiting for this. I had surgery on my knee, so I still can’t ride. I will fly to the south of Russia and ride. Where I live its -20 degree, so impossible to ride a bike. I have some friends who live in the south and they have bikes, so I will take my gear and see how it goes. Last time I rode a bike was Mantova and I was getting my feeling back. I don’t know my back will be, because as you know I broke two vertebrae in my back. Since then I haven’t ridden, so we will see. I hope it feels good.”

Aleksandr Tonkov
Aleksandr Tonkov

“I look forward to going there, because I have always wanted to go, and I have never been. I think Australia is a nice place. Better sit on the Sunshine Coast than in Russian winter. I have spoken to Dean Ferris and Todd Waters and they told me they have a good championship there. And if you see Ferris at the MXoN he was riding top three, top five. The level is good there.”


Smarty’s Race Reports:
AMA Supercross Championships – Round 4 – Phoenix

Ok, Supercross is an unpredictable sport and at an elite it is even more so but if I told you last week that Eli Tomac was going to win Phoenix by a country mile and that Chad Reed was going to catch, pass and pull away from Ryan Dungey to earn second place you would have thought I was back on the rum and cokes – well, that is exactly what happened in the 450SX class while in the Western Regional 250SX Class Justin Hill made it back-to-back wins following a late-race pass on championship leader Shane McElrath.

Tomac enjoyed arguably the most dominant outing of the 2017 season. Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
Tomac enjoyed arguably the most dominant outing of the 2017 season.
Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
450SX Main Event:

The 117 meter start straight was followed by a left hand corner into a rhythm section that could be attacked with a triple-triple-triple effort and Eli Tomac absolutely nailed both to pull the holeshot then hit the rhythm section perfectly to open an immediate lead over the rest of the field who were left to flounder their way through a very crowed opening lap which saw Justin Brayton, Cole Seely, Ryan Dungey, Malcolm Stewart, Davi Millsaps and Chad Reed all battling hard for position.

While the pack behind banged bars, Tomac checked out on the field and found himself five seconds ahead within the first couple laps while Seely was able to pass Brayton for second at the end of the opening lap.

Ryan Dungey
Ryan Dungey

Just a couple laps later Dungey passed Brayton for third and set his sights on Seely for second while behind them Reed was mounting a run to the front to slot in behind Dungey in fourth on lap four. It was during this time that Millsaps bumped Stewart off the track and out of contention.

Reed spectacularly passed Dungey for third but the defending champion responded and fought his way back around Reed to start the next lap and soon found himself on Seely’s rear fender for second. It wasn’t long before it was a three way battle for second place between Seely, Dungey and Reed and the Aussie took full advantage of the fierce fight in front of him to pick off both Dungey and Seely at once and move into second.

At this point Reed was some 18 seconds down on Tomac while Dungey made the pass on Seely for third and mounted a charge towards Reed but the factory Yamaha rider was clicking off laps that were the fastest on track so when the chequered flag dropped Tomac celebrated his fifth career win by almost 12 seconds ahead of Reed while Dungey followed in a distant third but well ahead of Seely, Millsaps, Brayton, Blake Baggett, Cooper Webb, Marvin Musquin and Jason Anderson.

Eli Tomac

“The only thing I can say is I’ve been in a funk lately. It’s been a bummer, and it’s been tough mentally, too. All I can say now is I feel like I’m back. I was able just to ride [tonight]. The past three weeks it wasn’t me, and it was pretty scary at one point, but we’re here [on top of the podium].”

Reed has been steadily gaining momentum since suffering a DNF at the opening round, claiming ninth in San Diego, seventh at Anaheim 2 and now the podium in Phoenix which was the record-setting 131st of his career, now placing him seventh in the 2017 standings – 40 points behind Dungey.

Reed made his long-awaited return to the podium. Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
Reed made his long-awaited return to the podium.
Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
Chad Reed

“You’re happy, obviously, but a little frustrated to be honest with you. The season should have started like this and we just, we missed our calling for Anaheim 1. Finally we’re on the right track and just happy. I know that Ellie’s at home cheering, so just happy. You work way too hard… my performance is there, my fitness is there – you’re only as good as what you’ve got to work with. We’re in the window now and I’d like to thank everybody at Monster and Yamaha for helping that. I’m a Fox guy now, best dressed every weekend, and you want to be on the podium! So, yeah, just happy, but mad to be honest. More in the future is the plan.

Dungey’s third-place finish was the 92nd podium result of his career. He’s finished on the podium in all but two races since the start of the 2015 season, 38 races ago.

Ryan Dungey

Ryan Dungey

“It was a good night. We’re up here on the box, but I really would have like to have been up front. Chad was on my heels and no matter what I did I couldn’t seem to open up the gap. He was riding really good. No excuses, tonight was a little bit of an off night. I wish I could have just been a little bit better.”

Even with the third-place finish Dungey still added to his advantage in the championship. He now holds a 15-point lead over teammate Marvin Musquin, who finished ninth. Tomac’s victory vaulted him into a tie with Seely for third in the standings, 20 points out of the lead.

The 450SX Class podium - Tomac (center), Reed (left), and Dungey (right). Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
The 450SX Class podium – Tomac (center), Reed (left), and Dungey (right).
Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
450SX Class Results
  1. Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki
  2. Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha
  3. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM
  4. Cole Seely, Sherman Oaks, Calif., Honda
  5. Davi Millsaps, Cairo, Ga., KTM
  6. Justin Brayton, Mint Hill, N.C., Honda
  7. Blake Baggett, Grand Terrace, Calif., KTM
  8. Cooper Webb, Newport, N.C., Yamaha
  9. Marvin Musquin, Corona, Calif., KTM
  10. Jason Anderson, Rio Rancho, N.M., Husqvarna
Ryan Dungey
Ryan Dungey
450SX Class Championship Standings
  1. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM – 89
  2. Marvin Musquin, Corona, Calif., KTM – 74
  3. Cole Seely, Sherman Oaks, Calif., Honda – 69
  4. Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki – 69
  5. Davi Millsaps, Cairo, Ga., KTM – 55
  6. Ken Roczen, Clermont, Fla., Honda – 51
  7. Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha – 49
  8. Jason Anderson, Rio Rancho, N.M., Husqvarna – 47
  9. Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Kawasaki – 46
  10. Cooper Webb, Newport, N.C., Yamaha – 44

Western Regional 250SX Class Main Event:

Rookie Austin Forkner earned his second straight holeshot and this time it was Jimmy Decotis, Hill, McElrath, Phil Nicoletti, Dan Reardon, Martin Davalos and Josh Hansen in tow but it wasn’t long before McElrath was able to pass Hill for third and together he and Hill both made their way around Decotis to move into second and third, respectively.

McElrath (38) and Hill (46) put on a show for the Glendale fans. Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
McElrath (38) and Hill (46) put on a show for the Glendale fans.
Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.

Forkner was able to lead for three laps, but McElrath eventually seized control of the race and quickly opened a gap over his competitors that surpassed three seconds. Hill was patient behind his teammate and waited for his opportunity to attempt a pass and on lap six the door opened and Hill easily took over second, but he faced a seemingly insurmountable deficit to McElrath.

McElrath started to lose time to Hill thanks to lapped riders and it wasn’t long before the lead duo were going toe-to-toe and with two laps to go Hill made his move and grabbed the lead which he carried through to the finish. It was the fifth win of Hill’s career and the landmark 250th victory in supercross and motocross for the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team.

Justin Hill

“It was just heart tonight. Shane was riding awesome. He got around Austin and just pulled away from us. When I finally got around Austin I had so much ground to make up. Shane made me earn it, all the way to the end. When I saw the white flag I thought to myself, ‘no way did I just do this.’ I’m just so happy.”

McElrath’s runner-up finish makes him the only rider in the Western Regional Championship to finish on the podium at all four rounds while Forkner earned his first career podium result in third but well ahead of Aaron Plessinger who came from the back of the pack to finish ahead of Davalos, Reardon, Hansen, Decotis, Nicoletti and Cole Martinez.

Shane McElrath

Shane McElrath

“We overcame a lot of adversity tonight, and that’s kind of what woke me up a little bit. It’s a championship and I’ve been sort of riding a little cautious. I’m just ready to have that fire again. I felt good the whole race, and that [win] should have been mine. But Justin [Hill] was right there the whole time and he earned that one.”

Forkner (24) parlayed his second straight holeshot into his first career podium result. Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.
Forkner (24) parlayed his second straight holeshot into his first career podium result.
Photo: Feld Entertainment, Inc.

Forkner told RacerX:

“My starts are dialled. I’ve holeshot the past four races that I’ve been in, so it’s been good. I really like how I rode tonight and just that I was calm. Even though those guys got me I just kind of tried to latch onto their back wheel and figure out what they were doing faster than me and try to fix it. It kind of worked out. I just kind of latched onto them and tried to ride my own race and not really worry about anybody else. Just tried to avoid making the big mistakes kind of like I did in the heat race.”

McElrath continues to lead the Western Regional Championship, but his lead over Hill now sits at just four points while Aaron Plessinger, who finished fourth after starting ninth, sits 10 points out of the lead in third and Aussie Dan Reardon had his best finish of the year with a solid sixth place in the main event to sit seventh in the championship.

The 2017 Monster Energy Supercross season continues next Saturday, February 4, with the fifth round from Oakland Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, California. It will mark the first afternoon race of the championship.

Western Regional 250SX Class Results
  1. Justin Hill, Yoncalla, Ore., Kawasaki
  2. Shane McElrath, Canton, N.C., KTM
  3. Austin Forkner, Richards, Mo., Kawasaki
  4. Aaron Plessinger, Hamilton, Ohio, Yamaha
  5. Martin Davalos, Clermont, Fla., Husqvarna
  6. Dan Reardon, Menifee, Calif., Yamaha
  7. Josh Hansen, Elbert, Colo., Husqvarna
  8. Jimmy Decotis, Peabody, Mass., Honda
  9. Phil Nicoletti, Cohocton, N.Y., Suzuki
  10. Cole Martinez, Rimrock, Ariz., Yamaha
Western Regional 250SX Class Championship Standings
  1. Shane McElrath, Canton, N.C., KTM – 92
  2. Justin Hill, Yoncalla, Ore., Kawasaki – 88
  3. Aaron Plessinger, Hamilton, Ohio, Yamaha – 82
  4. Martin Davalos, Clermont, Fla., Husqvarna – 70
  5. Austin Forkner, Richards, Mo., Kawasaki – 67
  6. Jimmy Decotis, Peabody, Mass., Honda – 55
  7. Dan Reardon, Menifee, Calif., Yamaha – 47
  8. Jeremy Martin, Millville, Minn., Honda – 40
  9. Phil Nicoletti, Cohocton, N.Y., Suzuki – 38
  10. Josh Hansen, Elbert, Colo., Husqvarna – 37
Dunlop Geomax MX3S
Dunlop Geomax MX3S

AMA Arenacross Championship – Round 4 – Nashville, TN.

The fourth round of the 2017 AMSOIL Arenacross season featured arguably the most competitive battle for the championship thus far inside Bridgestone Arena where Jace Owen extended his 250AX Class points lead with an overall win while Jacob Williamson became the third winner of the Eastern Regional AX Lites Class.

250SX Class:

Before the Main Events got underway, defending champ Gavin Faith earned his third Head 2 Head Challenge win of the season, defeating Chris Blose to earn two championship bonus points.

Faith was able to carry that momentum into the first 250AX Class Main Event, securing the holeshot ahead of Ben Lamay and Matt Goerke while Owen slotted into fourth. Faith and Lamay set the pace out front and on lap 13 Lamay successfully made the pass for the lead and held on for his first main event win the season while Faith followed with a close second, with Owen finishing third. Goerke was fourth, with Blose in fifth.

Jace Owen
Jace Owen

The start of the second 250AX Class Main Event saw Owen put his Honda into the lead, edging out Goerke, Steve Mages, Blose and Faith while Lamay was able to move into sixth at the end of lap one.

Owen was able to open a comfortable gap in the opening laps and went on to take his seventh main event win of the season, finishing nearly two seconds ahead of Goerke who in turn finished ahead of Blose, Faith, Gared Steinke and Lamay.

Gavin Faith
Gavin Faith

When the overall results were tallied Owen’s (3-1) finishes were enough to give him the edge over Faith (2-4) by just a single point. Goerke rounded out the overall podium in third (4-2) while Lamay finished fourth (1-6), with Blose fifth (5-3).

Owen was able to add one point to his lead in the 250AX Class championship standings, which now sits at 21 points over Faith in second. Goerke sits third, 25 points out of the lead.

250AX Class Results – Main Event 1
  1. Ben Lamay, Forney, Texas, Honda
  2. Gavin Faith, Fort Dodge, Iowa, Kawasaki
  3. Jace Owen, Matoon, Ill., Honda
  4. Matt Goerke, Lake Helen, Fla., Yamaha
  5. Chris Blose, Phoenix, Yamaha
  6. Gared Steinke, Woodland, Calif., Kawasaki
  7. Steven Mages, Sardinia, Ohio, Kawasaki
  8. Cory Green, Nowata, Okla., Suzuki
  9. Cody VanBuskirk, Harvard, Ill., KTM
  10. Josh Osby, Valparaiso, Ind., Kawasaki
Jake Owen
Jace Owen
250AX Class Results – Main Event 2
  1. Jace Owen, Matoon, Ill., Honda
  2. Matt Goerke, Lake Helen, Florida, Yamaha
  3. Chris Blose, Phoenix, Yamaha
  4. Gavin Faith, Fort Dodge, Iowa, Kawasaki
  5. Gared Steinke, Woodland, Calif., Kawasaki
  6. Ben Lamay, Forney, Texas, Honda
  7. Daniel Herrlein, Bethesda, Ohio, KTM
  8. Steven Mages, Sardinia, Ohio, Kawasaki
  9. Cody VanBuskirk, Harvard, Ill., KTM
  10. Josh Osby, Valparaiso, Ind., Kawasaki
250AX Class Overall Results (Main Event Results)
  1. Jace Owen, Matoon, Ill., Honda (3-1)
  2. Gavin Faith, Fort Dodge, Iowa, Kawasaki (2-4)
  3. Matt Goerke, Lake Helen, Florida, Yamaha (4-2)
  4. Ben Lamay, Forney, Texas, Honda (1-6)
  5. Chris Blose, Phoenix, Yamaha (5-3)
  6. Gared Steinke, Woodland, Calif., Kawasaki (6-5)
  7. Steven Mages, Sardinia, Ohio, Kawasaki (7-8)
  8. Cody VanBuskirk, Harvard, Ill., KTM (9-9)
  9. Cory Green, Nowata, Okla., Suzuki (8-11)
  10. Daniel Herrlein, Bethesda, Ohio, KTM (12-7)
Gavin Faith
Gavin Faith
RMATV/MC Head 2 Head Challenge Results (Bonus Points)
  1. Gavin Faith, Fort Dodge, Iowa, Kawasaki (2 points)
  2. Chris Blose, Phoenix, Yamaha (1 point)
  3. Ben Lamay, Forney, Texas, Honda (1 point)
  4. Cody VanBuskirk, Harvard, Ill., KTM (1 point)
  5. Matt Goerke, Lake Helen, Florida, Yamaha (1 point)
  6. Jace Owen, Matoon, Ill., Honda (1 point)
  7. Cory Green, Nowata, Okla., Suzuki (1 point)
  8. Josh Osby, Valparaiso, Ind., Kawasaki (1 point)
250AX Class Championship Standings
  1. Jace Owen, Matoon, Ill., Honda – 161 (7 Main Event Wins)
  2. Gavin Faith, Fort Dodge, Iowa, Kawasaki – 140 (2 Main Event Wins)
  3. Matt Goerke, Lake Helen, Florida, Yamaha – 136
  4. Gared Steinke, Woodland, Calif., Kawasaki – 119
  5. Ben Lamay, Forney, Texas, Honda – 111 (1 Main Event Win)
  6. Chris Blose, Phoenix, Yamaha – 106
  7. Daniel Herrlein, Bethesda, Ohio, KTM – 95
  8. Steven Mages, Sardinia, Ohio, Kawasaki – 74
  9. Heath Harrison, Silverhill, Ala., KTM – 69
  10. Cody VanBuskirk, Harvard, Ill., KTM – 69

Eastern Regional AX Lites Class Main Event

The 15-lap Eastern Regional AX Lites Class Main Event saw Williamson get out to an early lead ahead of Broc Gourley and Keith Tucker while title contender Justin Cooper rounded the first lap in last place, 16th, aboard his Yamaha.

As Williamson pulled away out front, Gourley and Tucker continued their fight for second but both riders went down in separate incidents on lap 12 handing Isaac Teasdale second place ahead of Justin Cooper who moved into third.

Williamson led every lap to take an easy win with Teasdale second and championship leader Cooper in third. Cooper’s third-place finish allowed him to maintain control of the Eastern Regional Championship. He now sits just four points ahead of Williamson, who moved into second. KTM rider Heath Harrison is third, 16 points out of the lead.

AMSOIL Arenacross continues next weekend with its fifth round of the 2017 season from Louisville, Kentucky’s Freedom Hall.

Eastern Regional AX Lites Class Results
  1. Jacob Williamson, Swartz Creek, Mich., Kawasaki
  2. Isaac Teasdale, Robbinsville, N.C., KTM
  3. Justin Cooper, Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y., Yamaha
  4. Broc Gourley, Boonville, Ind., Suzuki
  5. Jared Lesher, Ball Ground, Ga., KTM
  6. Dylan Greer, Summerfield, Fla., Yamaha
  7. Josiah Hempen, Argyle, Iowa, Yamaha
  8. Keith Tucker, Fuquay Varina, N.C., Yamaha
  9. Dylan Rouse, Florence, Ky., KTM
  10. Jerry Robin, Corcoran, Minn., Yamaha
Eastern Regional AX Lites Class Championship Standings
  1. Justin Cooper, Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y., Yamaha – 74 (2 Main Event Wins)
  2. Jacob Williamson, Swartz Creek, Mich., Kawasaki – 70 (1 Main Event Win)
  3. Heath Harrison, Silverhill, Ala., KTM – 58 (2 Main Event Wins)
  4. Isaac Teasdale, Robbinsville, N.C., KTM – 56
  5. Brandon Gourley, Boonville, Ind., KTM – 40
  6. Josiah Hempen, Argyle, Iowa, Yamaha – 31
  7. Scott Zont, Algonquin, Ill., Kawasaki – 30
  8. Broc Gourley, Boonville, Ind., Suzuki – 27
  9. Dylan Greer, Summerfield, Fla., Yamaha – 26
  10. Cody Williams, Barneveld, Wis., Kawasaki – 24
Dunlop Geomax MX3S
Dunlop Geomax MX3S

UK Arenacross Series – Rounds 4 & 5 – The SSE Arena, Belfast
Pro Class Main Event – Round 4:

Adam Chatfield stormed to a brilliant Pro class win, taking the red plate and championship lead in the process after he grabbed the holeshot and fended off a hard-charging Cedric Soubeyras and two-time AX Pro champ Thomas Ramette. The French riders threw everything they could at the Honda man, almost taking themselves out of the race at times, but the British rider held his ground and, to the cheers of the crowd, threw himself across the finish line to take a well-deserved win.

Adam Chatfield

“That was brilliant. Once I had the holeshot, I knew I could do it – I had to fight for it though. It could have been a very different story as, when the two laps to go came out, I rolled it on the finish line and Cedric briefly got me on the inside. It just feels so good to be back on top and to be leading the championship.”

Pro Class Main Event – Round 5:

The Pro class main event threw up plenty of surprises with Adrien Escoffier taking the win ahead of Ramette and Soubeyras while Chatfield floundered to a distant eighth place and the change of fortune has certainly shaken up the championship, with Soubeyras now leading the championship, team-mate Angelo Pellegrini in second and Ramette in third while Aussie Jay Wilson has finally found his feet I the series and ended the double-header with 7-5 finishes to sit 11th in the series with two rounds to go.

Pro Main Round 4:
  1. Adam Chatfield, #407, Buildbase Honda, 20 points
  2. Cyrille Coulon, #5, SR75 World Suzuki, 18 points
  3. Thomas Ramette, #1, SR75 World Suzuki, 16 points
  4. Angelo Pellegrini, #941, RFX St Blazey MX, 15 points
  5. Florent Richier, #2, Keystone Honda Racing, 14 points
  6. Jack Brunell, #155, Team Green Kawasaki, 13 points
  7. Jay Wilson, #6, I-Fly JK Yamaha, 12 points
  8. Hugo Basaula, #747, 11 points
  9. Matt Bayliss, #4, Buildbase Honda, 10 points
  10. James Dunn, #200, MVR-D Husqvarna, 9 points
  11. Cyrille Coulon, #5, SR75 World Suzuki, 8 points
Pro Main Round 5:
  1. Adrien Escoffier, #137, MVR-D Husqvarna, 20 points
  2. Thomas Ramette, #1, SR75 World Suzuki, 18 points
  3. Cedric Soubeyras, #85, RFX St Blazey MX, 16 points
  4. Angelo Pellegrini, #941, RFX St Blazey MX, 15 points
  5. Jay Wilson, #6, I-Fly JK Yamaha, 14 points
  6. Jack Brunell, #155, Team Green Kawasaki, 13 points
  7. Hugo Basaula, #747, Team Green Kawasaki, 12 points
  8. Adam Chatfield, #407, Buildbase Honda Racing, 11 points
  9. Ashely Greedy, #33, FRO Systems PAR Elite, 10 points
Pro Championship after Round 5 of 7:
  1. Cedric Soubeyras, 81 points
  2. Angelo Pellegrini, 77 points
  3. Thomas Ramette, 77 points
  4. Adam Chatfield, 75 points
  5. Jack Brunell, 72 points
  6. Florent Richier, 69 points
  7. Cyrille Coulon, 63 points
  8. Adrien Escoffier, 61 points
  9. Hugo Basaula, 53 points
  10. Matt Bayliss, 44 points
  11. Jay Wilson, 26 points
  12. Sulivan Jaulin, 13 points
  13. Gaeten Le Hir, 11 points
  14. Billy Mackenzie, 11 points
  15. Ashley Greedy, 10 points
  16. James Dunn, 9 points

Pro-Lites – Round 4:

The highly-competitive Pro Lite class saw the rejuvenated Brit Chris Bayliss earn an impressive race one win for third overall on the night and second in the championship while championship leader Yannis Irsuti won the night from Dylan Woodcock and Bayliss.

Pro Lites Overall Round 4:
  1. Yannis Irsuti, #170, 36 points
  2. Dylan Woodcock, #60, 34 points
  3. Chris Bayliss, #259, 34 points
Pro-Lites – Round 5:

Bayliss and Woodcock were locked in battle for the lead throughout the night just ahead of Irsuti, Joe Clayton and Jason Meara but when the points were tallied it was Woodcock who won the overall on a countback while Clayton, Meara and Irsuti rounded out the top five BUT Irsuti continues to lead the championship by 14 points over Bayliss with two rounds remaining.

Pro Lites Overall Round 5:
  1. Dylan Woodcock, #60, 34 points
  2. Chris Bayliss, #259, 34 points
  3. Joe Clayton, #14, 34 points
  4. Jason Meara, #10, 30 points
Pro Lites Championship after Round 5 of 7:
  1. Yannis Irsuit, #170, 151 points
  2. Chris Bayliss, #259, 137 points
  3. Dylan Woodcock, #60, 133 points
  4. Joe Clayton, #14, 158 points
Dunlop Geomax MX3S
Dunlop Geomax MX3S

Italian MX Championships – Rd 1 – Riola Sardo, Italy

Eight times world motocross champion Antonio Cairoli of the Red Bull KTM Factory team put his stamp on the opening race of the 2017 season with 1-1 results in the Italian International championship, held in Sardinia last weekend while fellow KTM rider Jorge Prado took out the MX2 class overall.

Tony Cairoli
Tony Cairoli leads the Italian MX Championships after Round 1

Fellow MXGP competitors Jeremy Van Horebeek, Tim Gajser and Evgeny Bobryshev all finishing inside the top five in both motos but Romain Febvre crashed out of the second moto and looked groggy as he walked off the track.

Tony Cairoli

Tony Cairoli

“I’m very happy because we now start to adjust the bike to suit my riding style and we’ve done a lot of testing, which wasn’t possible last year because of my crash. Now I am more at peace with the bike so I can express myself better. The last two years we struggled a bit with the starts, but it sees now I’m pretty fast right from the first race. This was a sand race and that’s easy for me, so it will be interesting to see what its like on the hard pack at Malagrotta. That’s our home track and I know it well. But they always prepare it very well so it will be different on race day. Here we missed Jeffrey Herlings because he’s one of the best in the sand and it would have been interesting to race against him on this track. Hopefully he will be back soon and we can all race together again. There were a lot of GP riders here so it was a very good test.”

Jorge Prado
Jorge Prado

Of the MX2 stars Prado looked fast and in shape to finish ahead of Benoit Paturel, Alvin Ostlund, Pauls Jonass, Michele Cervellin, Brian Bogers and Davy Pootjes but it was Jonass who was the best of the MX2 riders in the combined MX1/MX2 ‘Superpole’ event to finish well among the top MX1 riders in sixth place.

Pauls Jonass

“My main goal was always going to be the elite race because that was going to be when the track got rough and heavy and that was better for me. Overall it’s better to start (the season) slowly and build up to Qatar (the opening GP – February 25), because there are 19 GPs and it is a long season. I just want to stay positive, stay calm and enjoy every race.”

The next hit out for the GP riders will be the Hawkestone Park International Motocross this coming weekend.

Tony Cairoli
Tony Cairoli
MX1 Overall
  1. Antonio Cairoli
  2. Jeremy Van Horebeek
  3. Tim Gajser
  4. Romain Febvre
  5. Evgeny Bobryshev
  6. Tanel Leok
  7. Max Anstie
  8. Glenn Coldenhoff
  9. Max Nagl
  10. Arnaud Tonus
  11. Gert Krestinov
  12. Jose Butron
  13. Alessandro Lupino
  14. Rui Goncalves
  15. Shaun Simpson
  16. Martin Barr
  17. Ken De Dycker
  18. Gautier Paulin
  19. Jonathan Bengtsson
  20. Klemen Gercar
Jorge Prado
Jorge Prado
MX2 Overall
  1. Jorge Prado
  2. Benoit Paturel
  3. Alvin Ostlund
  4. Pauls Jonass
  5. Michele Cervellin
  6. Brian Bogers
  7. Davy Pootjes
  8. Samuele Bernardini
  9. Morgan Lesiardo
  10. Brent Van Doninck
Max Anstie
Max Anstie
Superpole overall
  1. Antonio Cairoli
  2. Jeremy Van Horebeek
  3. Tim Gajser
  4. Evgeny Bobryshev
  5. Glenn Coldenhoff
  6. Pauls Jonass
  7. Max Anstie
  8. Alvin Ostlund
  9. Brent Van Doninck
  10. Shaun Simpson
  11. Alessandro Lupino
  12. Tanel Leok
  13. Jose Butron
  14. Brian Bogers
  15. Rui Goncalves
  16. Max Nagl
  17. Jorge Prado
  18. Arnaud Tonus
  19. Gautier Paulin
  20. Samuele Bernardini

Night of Jumps – Round 1 – Switzerland

10 riders from six nations battled in the St. Jakobshalle in the picturesque city of Basel last Saturday night for the first points of the FIM Freestyle MX World Championship in 2017 with was Pat Bowden (AUS) and David Rinaldo (FRA) who let loose in qualification with their Double Grab Flips while Petr Pilat (CZE), Mat Rebeaud (SUI) and Maikel Melero (ESP) unleashed the Flair in the qualifier.

2017 Night of the Jumps - Round 1 - Pilat, Melero, Bowden
2017 Night of the Jumps – Round 1 – Pilat, Melero, Bowden

Melero and Rinaldo both showed their Lazy Boy Flips. With Marc Pinyol (ESP) and Libor Podmol (CZE) spinning body varials with their version of the California Roll but it would be Brice Izzo, Pat Bowden, Libor Podmol, David Rinaldo, Petr Pilat and Maikel Melero who made it through to the final.

In the Best Whip competition, Pat Bowden, Marc Pinyol, Filip Podmol, Massimo Bianconcini, Leo Fini and Mat Rebeaud starred in the strongest Whip rider field in recent years and it was Rebeaud who took the win which was a small consolation for Mat after missing a finals berth in the Freestyle MX contest.

Defending champion Melero put pay to all contenders with an  incredible run in the final to take the win ahead of Pilat and Aussie young gun Pat Bowden.

Results Night of the Jumps – Final
  1. Maikel Melero – 431 Points
  2. Petr Pilat – 396 Points
  3. Pat Bowden – AUS – 375 Points
  4. Brice Izzo – 333 Points
  5. David Rinaldo – 320 Points
  6. Libor Podmol – 318 Points
Results Qualification
  1. Maikel Melero – 347 Points
  2. Libor Podmol – 345 Points
  3. David Rinaldo – 332 Points
  4. Petr Pilat – 331 Points
  5. Pat Bowden – AUS – 320 Points
  6. Brice Izzo – 301 Points
  7. Mat Rebeaud – 300 Points
  8. Marc Pinyol – 293 Points
  9. Leonardo Fini – 285 Points
  10. Filip Podmol – 19 Points
Results Best Whip Contest
  1. Mat Rebeaud
  2. Filip Podmol
Maxxis Highest-Air
  1. Massimo Bianconcini – 7,50 Meter
  2. Brice Izzo – 7,00 Meter
  3. Pat Bowden – AUS – 6,50 Meter
FIM Freestyle MX World Championship 2017 – Ranking (after 1st contest)
  1. Maikel Melero – 20 Points
  2. Petr Pilat – 18 Points
  3. Pat Bowden – AUS – 16 Points
  4. Brice Izzo – 14 Points
  5. David Rinaldo – 12 Points
  6. Libor Podmol – 10 Points
  7. Mat Rebeaud – 9 Points
  8. Marc Pinyol ESP – 8 Points
  9. Leonardo Fini – 7 Points
  10. Filip Podmol – 6 Points

New Zealand Grand Prix of Motocross – Woodville

The 56th New Zealand Motocross Grand Prix at Woodville was held last weekend and it was Aussie Yamaha star Dean Ferris who took out the event ahead of Todd Waters, Cody Cooper and Jed Beaton while Dylan Walsh won the MX2 class ahead of the much fancied Josiah Natzke who finished just ahead of Hamish Harwood and Wilson Todd.

Australian Supercross 2016 - Toowoomba - Image by Marc Jones - Dean Ferris
Image by Marc Jones – Dean Ferris
Dean Ferris

“It’s fantastic to win this trophy for a second time. My trip to New Zealand is all about building up for the Australian nationals and so this was a great way to start that. Lapped riders got in my way (while I was leading) in the final MX1 class race of the day. It was really hard to avoid them and Todd (Waters) got past me, so I had to accept second place. I’m happy with how I rode, but I always want to win and so I was disappointed with that.”

Aussie Cody Dyce took his Yamaha YZ250F to dominate the junior 14-16 years 250cc class at Woodville on Saturday and then he backed that up by finishing fifth overall – behind Walsh, Natzke, Harwood and fellow Australian Wilson Todd (Yamaha) – in the MX2 class on Sunday.

Altherm JCR Yamaha Racing Team boss Josh Coppins is looking forward to the opening round of the New Zealand Motocross Championships this coming weekend at Timaru.

Josh Coppins

“This is just what we needed with the nationals set to kick off next weekend. I had let the riders know that I wasn’t pleased with our efforts at the Whakatane Summercross (just after Christmas) and this today was their response. It was a very difficult track today and all the riders suffered with ‘arm pump’. Across the board it was a great weekend for Yamaha. We are feeling very positive heading towards Timaru next weekend.”

2017 Woodville GP Final Results – New Zealand
Woodville GP Final
  1. Dean Ferris
  2. Todd Waters
  3. Cody Cooper
  4. Jed Beaton
  5. Rhys Carter
  6. Cody Dyce
  7. Hamish Harwood
  8. Wilson Todd
  9. Luke Styke
  10. Kayne LamonT
MX1
  1. Todd Waters – 67
  2. Dean Ferris – 65
  3. Cody Cooper – 56
  4. Rhys Carter – 50
  5. Hamish Harwood – 45
  6. Jed Beaton – 44
  7. Ben Townley – 43
  8. Kayne Lamont – 42
  9. Brad Groombridge – 34
  10. Luke Styke – 30
  11. Daniel Banks – 26
  12. Kieran Scheele – 26
MX2
  1. Dylan Walsh – 66
  2. Josiah Natzke – 65
  3. Hamish Harwood – 63
  4. Wilson Todd – 59
  5. Cody Dyce – 50
  6. Hadleigh Knight – 41
  7. Ethan Martens – 40
  8. Trent Collins – 39
  9. Benjamin Broad – 33
  10. Mason Semmons – 26
Dunlop Geomax MX3S
Dunlop Geomax MX3S

Deep Well Motocross – Alice Springs, NT

Husqvarna Factory Support racer Ivan Long has celebrated his recent signing with the brand in the best way possible, with a victory in the infamous Deep Well Motocross, south of Alice Springs in Australia’s Northern Territory.

The 27-year-old from Murray Bridge powered his Husqvarna FE450 to victory in the event ahead of Ricky Lane and James Heenan, while Peter Mayor and Steven Maddocks filled out the top five positions.

Long’s victory in the event came courtesy of a second in the opening moto, followed by back-to-back wins to wrap up the crown.

Ivan Long

Ivan Long

“I’ve only been back on the bike again for a couple of weeks, but sometimes you just need a little refresher, and it sort of clicks. Mentally I haven’t been strong enough in the past, and we’ve still got a lot to learn but we’re a lot better now. The mental game was huge out there because it is 45+ degrees. And it would have been close to 85, 90% humidity. It was hot as. It was a real test to mental strength.”

Deep Well Motocross, Pro-Open Points:
  1. Ivan Long (Murray Bridge) 102
  2. Ricky Lane (Healy QLD) 92
  3. James Heenan 80
  4. Peter Mayor (Humpty Doo) 79
  5. Steven Maddocks 74

Australian Under 21 Speedway Solo Championships

The 2017 Australian Speedway Under 21s Championship was held at Kurri Kurri last weekend and it was the capping of a sensational year for Max Fricke who added to his U21’s World Championship with an Australian Championship.

Fricke, Jack Holder and Brady Kurtz scored well throughout the heats but after Kurtz crashed out of the final heat the four-man final came down to a battle between Fricke, Holder, Jaimon Lidsey and Josh Pickering with Fricke gaining the lead over Holder to win the night while Lidsey snuck ahead of Pickering to take his first Australian Championship podium.

Max Fricke shared with Motorcycling Australia how he felt:

Max Fricke

Max Fricke

“It’s awesome to have done the double! We are heading back overseas now and it’s pretty cool to be finishing our Aussie season on a high. I have built some momentum going overseas which is great! I had some tough competition tonight with Jack and I can’t remember the last time I ran at full maximum! A big shout out to everyone who is involved in running tonight, the track has been awesome all weekend.”

As 2017 is Max’s last year in U21’s he confirmed that he would be back next year to contest in the Senior events. 

Motorcycling Australia spoke to Australian U21 Championship defending Champion and 2017 second place getter, Jack Holder. 2017 is also Jack’s last year in U21’s.

Jack Holder

“It was a good meet tonight and I got all the points I could get. I knew the last heat was going to be as tough as they come and that I had all the top guys in it! Unfortunately, BK (Brady Kurtz) crashed out and you don’t like seeing a mate get hurt like that. So, I tried my best in that final and made a good start, because you can’t give Max a head start!” Holder explained. “Of course I will be taking my position up in the World U21’s which is what I came here to do, and I really wanted to defend my title, but, I was second and that is second best. So, I can’t wait until the World season starts.”

Third place getter, Jaimon Lidsey has another three years left to race in Under 21 Championships and is touted to be stiff competition through those years.

Jaimon Lidsey

“With Max being the World U21 Champ and Jack winning it last year, it’s pretty cool to finish just behind them. To finish off the season with this is great.”

Chris Holder

“We have a bunch of young Aussie guys who are doing really well with a lot of guys also competing over in England with good results too which is great. Max is probably our best U21 at the moment and is our current World Champion too! So it was a good night for him to wrap up the title and for my younger brother, Jack to get second is a great effort.” 

Dunlop Geomax MX3S
Dunlop Geomax MX3S