Steel City Race Report

Coming into the season-finale Steel City MX National, Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey perhaps had less to worry about than his team did, as for Dungey, all he had to do was not lose more than 17 points to Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Christophe Pourcel over the course of two motos in order to secure his championship. However, for his Rockstar/Makita Suzuki team, Steel City marked an opportunity to win both the 250 and 450cc championships for the first time ever, having already clinched the 450cc title with unlikely outdoor star Chad Reed.


  • Justin Barcia led the first 250cc moto early, but eventually finished third in the moto.
  • Christophe Pourcel went 1-1 on the day, but it wasn't enough for the title.
  • Ryan Dungey went 2-2 for second and the 2009 250cc National Championship.
  • Pourcel (377) and Dungey (10) were this close for most of the first moto.
  • But Dungey refused to pass Pourcel and risk being knocked down.
  • Blake Wharton finished third overall on the day, his second podium finish of the year.
In the first 250cc moto, Muscle Milk KTM’s Ryan Sipes got the holeshot but was quickly passed by GEICO Powersports Honda’s Justin Barcia, the winner of the last event at Southwick. Barcia led the first couple of laps before being overtaken by Pourcel, and Dungey was in hot pursuit. As Dungey moved into second, Pourcel slowed up a bit and the two began a cat-and-mouse game at the front of the pack, although they continued to pull away from Barcia in third.

A couple times during the race, Dungey actually made a pass on Pourcel, only for Pourcel to move back by immediately. Dungey did the smart thing, settling for second behind Pourcel. Pourcel took the win, Barcia was third, followed by Pourcel’s teammates Jake Weimer and Austin Stroupe, Sipes, Pourcel’s other teammate Ryan Morais, Barcia’s teammates Blake Wharton and Brett Metcalfe, and Brit Steven Clarke.

In moto two, Dungey needed a finish of 10th or better to secure the title, and Pourcel again snatched the early lead, but this time he ran and hid from the field. It took until lap four for Dungey to move into second, and by that point, Pourcel had two full straightaways on Dungey, and Wharton ran third for the entire race after that point, too, followed by Blake Baggett, fresh out of the Loretta Lynn’s Amateur National Championships, then Sipes, his teammate Tommy Searle, Metcalfe, Weimer, Broc Tickle and Stroupe.

With his 1-1 score, Pourcel took the overall, while Dungey ended up second on the day but clinched his first-ever AMA National Championship. Blake Wharton was third overall on the day.

250cc O/A:
1. Christophe Pourcel (Kaw)
2. Ryan Dungey (Suz)
3. Blake Wharton (Hon)
4. Ryan Sipes (KTM)
5. Jake Weimer (Kaw)
6. Justin Barcia (Hon)
7. Austin Stroupe (Kaw)
8. Brett Metcalfe (Hon)
9. Tommy Searle (KTM)
10. Blake Baggett (Kaw)

250cc Final Points Standings:
1. Ryan Dungey (503/4 wins)
2. Christophe Pourcel (492/4 wins)
3. Brett Metcalfe (378)
4. Jake Weimer (353/3 wins)
5. Justin Barcia (340/1 win)
6. Tommy Searle (332)
7. Broc Tickle (285)
8. Blake Wharton (273)
9. Tyla Rattray (236)
10. Matt Lemoine (189)


  • Jeff Alessi got the first-moto 450cc holeshot but was not a factor at the finish.
  • Tommy Hahn went 1-4 for his first-ever AMA National victory.
  • Ivan Tedesco (9) was second overall on the day, but finished third in points. Andrew Short (29) was second in points on the year.
  • Justin Brayton took his KTM to the second-moto win and third overall.
MCRMX Honda’s Jeff Alessi got the holeshot in the first 450cc moto and led the first two go-arounds until Canidae/Motosport Kawasaki’s Tommy Hahn went by both Honda Red Bull Racing’s Andrew Short and Alessi to take the lead on the third lap. The lead was short-lived, though, as Short passed Hahn for the lead, and Short’s teammate Tedesco also got Hahn for second. However, soon after taking the lead himself, Tedesco went down, handing the lead back to Short, at which point it seemed Short began to fade.

Hahn took the lead back from Short at the halfway point and never looked back, eventually winning with room to spare over 2009 champ Chad Reed, who was running the number-one plate outdoors for the first time ever. Following Reed was his Suzuki and Team Australia teammate Michael Byrne, then Tedesco, Short, their teammate Davi Millsaps, Yamaha’s Southwick winner Matt Goerke and the rest of the field.

In moto two, Jagermeister KTM’s Justin Brayton got the holeshot over Kawasaki’s Jake Moss, and then Brayton immediately began to pull away. Moss hung on for second for the entire race, and he would gain and lose and gain and lose with Brayton, but never got close enough to strike. Brayton took his first-ever moto victory over Moss, Tedesco and Hahn, and with the 1-4 score, Hahn took his first-ever AMA National overall victory.

Short was fifth in the moto ahead of Valli Motorsports Yamaha’s Jimmy Albertson, Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Timmy Ferry and the rest of the field. Reed dropped out with a re-emergence of his stomach problem from earlier this year.

450cc O/A:
1. Tommy Hahn (Kaw)
2. Ivan Tedesco (Hon)
3. Justin Brayton (KTM)
4. Jake Moss (Kaw)
5. Andrew Short (Hon)
6. Michael Byrne (Suz)
7. Davi Millsaps (Hon)
8. Timmy Ferry (Kaw)
9. Matt Goerke (Yam)
10. Chad Reed (Suz)

450cc Final Points Standings:
1. Chad Reed (481/5 wins)
2. Andrew Short (388)
3. Ivan Tedesco (376/1 win)
4. Michael Byrne (348)
5. Tommy Hahn (302/1 win)
6. Josh Grant (280/1 win)
7. Justin Brayton (249)
8. Nick Wey (200)
9. Cody Cooper (191)
10. Jimmy Albertson (185)