The Notebook: Unadilla

The Notebook: Unadilla

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  • For the second straight week GEICO Honda rookie Zach Bell showed astonishing speed mixed with a propensity for tossing it away with crashes. Bell grabbed his second straight holeshot in the first moto before crashing and having to fight back to eighth. The second moto proved a lot worse for the rookie. Once again Bell would run up front early but suffered a big get-off. Bell pulled out of the second moto with an undisclosed injury. In a statement released by the team, GEICO Honda team manager Mike LaRocco said they were having Bell checked out, but were “optimistic that he’ll be okay.” We will provide more information as soon as it becomes available.
  • Star-Valli Rockstar Yamaha rookie Jeremy Martin made his highly anticipated debut at Unadilla after missing Loretta Lynn’s and Southwick with a shoulder injury. Jeremy showed the speed that made him one of the most highly sought after amateurs in 2012, but had his share of problems in his debut. Martin would finish the day 24th overall via 18-27 scores.

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Zach Bell (167) got off to a hot start at Unadilla but was plauged by crashes.
Simon Cudby photo

  • In other Martin news, Jeremy’s older brother, Alex, had a mechanical issue in the first moto relegating him to a 37th. “My bike started cutting out on the fourth lap. It ended up being an electrical problem. We swapped everything for the second moto and it ran great,” said Martin. Alex would bounce back in the second moto with an 11th to salvage 18th overall on the day.
  • MotoConcepts’ Jake Canada rode to a hard earned 12th overall at Unadilla. Canada crashed in the first moto but clawed his way back from 27th to finish the moto 12th. Buried deep in the pack in the second moto as well—20th after the first lap—Canada sliced through the field to finish 13th.
  • After battling a should injury suffered in a mountain bike crash before RedBud—which lead to him missing Washougal and Southwick—Star-Valli Rockstar Yamaha’s Kyle Peters returned at Unadilla. Peters struggled to a 33rd in moto one and then had to pull off mid-way through the second moto due to his lingering shoulder problem.

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A second moto crash derailed Wharton's chances at an overall podium.
Simon Cudby photo

  • Since returning from an early season knee injury, GEICO Honda rookie Justin Bogle has struggled getting acclimated to the talent laden 250 Class. Returning to the track where he burst onto the scene last year in his pro debut, the 2011 AMA Horizon Award winner had his best finish of the season with a 6th overall via 11-4 moto scores.
  • Rockstar Energy Racing Suzuki’s Blake Wharton positioned himself nicely to secure his first overall podium of the year with a fourth place in moto one. But Wharton had a big crash in the second moto and was unable to finish. There is no word on Wharton’s status at this time.
  • Native New Yorker Phil Nicoletti returned to Unadilla for the first time since 2010 when he filled-in for an injured Tommy Searle on Factory KTM. Nicoletti finished a seasons best seventh overall.
  • After a rough start to the season, followed by solid rides at RedBud and Millville, Team Honda Muscle Milk's Justin Brayton has had a bunch of bad motos in a row. He crashed out of Washougal's second moto, had a crash-filled day at Southwick, and a crash-filled first moto at Unadilla. He bounced back with a solid 10th in moto two. "There was a pack right in front of me and I was gaining on them, but I couldn't make it happen," explained Brayton. He also indicated that he had a practice crash during the break between Washougal and Southwick, and missed some riding and training time with a foot injury. It's been a long, rough season for just about everyone this year.

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Jake Canada rode to a hard earned 12th overall at Unadilla.
Simon Cudby photo

  • Star-Valli Rockstar Yamaha’s Nico Izzi was back on the gate after being sidelined since RedBud with a back injury. Returning to his early season form, Izzi was spectacular in his comeback going 6-8 for 6th overall.
  • Minnesota native Jesse Wentland scored his first career national points, and top 20 overall, at Unadilla with 19-19 moto scores. The 2012 Loretta Lynn Open Pro Sport Champion, and 450 A runner-up, missed qualifying in his pro debut at Southwick.
  • After his Cinderella run at Southwick in 2011, where he qualified first overall, Massachusetts native Mike Sottile shockingly was unable to qualify for Southwick in 2012. But Sottile returned at Unadilla and qualified for his first National of the year. Sottile finished 30th overall via 28-28 moto scores.
  • In other Massachusetts news, Munn Racing/Ankle Savers KTM’s Robby Marshall suffered a flat tire while running inside the top ten in the first moto. Marshall regrouped in the second moto with a 13th to salvage a spot inside the top twenty (17th overall).
  • Langston-Witt KTM’s Les Smith, as reported yesterday, suffered a broken fibula in the first moto at Unadilla when he planted his foot in a corner. “It’s definitely a bummer. I feel like I was riding a lot better, and the bike has been continuing to get better and better,” said Smith. After seeing Dr. Augustine (the same doctor that is treating Michael Byrne) in Florida, Smith will undergo surgery on Wednesday to have a plate and screws inserted. Initial reports are that Smith will miss six weeks. That's the bad news, but the good news is that Smith has re-signed with the team for 2013, so he'll have a job waiting when he returns.

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Kiniry put together another "Ironman" weekend.
Simon Cudby photo

  • Robby “Ironman” Kiniry continued his torrid schedule this weekend. Kiniry, for the second straight week, raced both the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship (Saturday) and the Monster Energy Canadian Nationals (Sunday). The Star-Valli Rockstar Yamaha rider finished 11th overall at Unadilla and 3rd overall at the final round of the Canadian Nationals on Sunday. Kiniry finished runner-up behind Matt Goerke in the final MX1 Class standings in Canada.
  • DNA/Jeff Ward Racing’s Josh Grant continues to quietly piece together a consistent season. Grant has managed to stay healthy all season and put together one his best results of the year at Unadilla—finishing 6th overall.
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