The build-up to the Carlton Dry Pro Open final had it all. The hometown hero, Chad Reed, had the crowd on his side, but to beat the runaway points leader to the title he would need every piece of a complex puzzle to fall into place.
The TwoTwo Motorsports Honda rider set the early pace, unmatched in practice and qualifying.
He beat home Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Jay Marmont, the red plate holder, in the pair’s heat race, making his intentions crystal clear.
Carlton Dry Honda Thor Racing’s Ben Townley pulled the holeshot in a frenetic start to the 20-lap Main Event but within moments Reed had made his move to the lead.
Motul Pirelli Suzuki’s Todd Waters tailed Reed for a lap before CDR Yamaha’s Daniel McCoy took up the task.
McCoy was passed at mid-race distance by Marmont but no one had an answer for Reed who blazed into the distance to win by close to 25 seconds.
It was an emotional win for Reed who led every lap of each of the three Main Events he contested this season.
“I’ve really found my feet this past week, coming back home and getting settled in has made me really comfortable and I feel like I am back on track and ready for Anaheim 1 in January,” said Reed.
“The track was awesome, a credit to everyone involved. Like Toowoomba it was a long and challenging lap, and a rewarding one to get right.
“I can’t thank all of the fans enough for coming out to support the event tonight, it is great for the sport to have so many people trackside.
“It was always going to be a challenge to make up the points on Jay – he is a great racer and is a very deserving repeat Champion.”
Reed closed to within 12 points of the Pro Open Championship lead with three wins from three starts.
There was no stopping Marmont who finished a solid second to claim back-to-back Pro Open titles after his switch from Yamaha to Kawasaki.
Following a tough run of results during the national Motocross season, Marmont turned his attention early to defending his Supercross crown.
He opened his account with maximum points in Dubbo, and despite missing the podium in the Toowoomba mudfest, was able to maintain a comfortable points buffer.
Marmont admitted to some pre-race nerves and said he had to work hard to make the move on McCoy stick.
“I got a bit nervous off the start and Daniel got past me, I knew he would be going out hard to I planned to get in behind me, get into a race groove and see if he would make a mistake,” said Marmont.
“I can’t thank Monster Energy Kawasaki enough. They signed me believing we could win a Championship and we had a tough time in Motocross but the whole team worked together to fight back.
“We came out swinging each weekend and got the result we needed.
“I’m not the best mud runner but I still finished fourth in Toowoomba and I think that is where the Championship was won.”
He ended the season 9 points clear of McCoy who has raced with the best form of his career in 2012.
The factory Yamaha rider was satisfied with his result at the end of a hard-fought season.
“It was a crazy night going for the Championship,” said McCoy. “I had a great battle with Jay and passed him early in the night and then Todd (Waters) came up to me and we came together and we went down.
“I pushed on and tried to get back up on Jay as the laps ticked down.
“It’s hard to put four great races together back-to-back but second place is a really great result and a big step forward compared to some of my other seasons.
“I really need a good ride like CDR to prove myself in Motocross, I am going to be heading to the US to do a couple of Supercross races early in the year to give myself the best possible chance at retaining the seat.
Fourth place in the Championship went to Campbell Mining TLD Maxima Honda’s Jake Moss, who held off CDR Yamaha’s Lawson Bopping by a single point.
US standout Gavin Faith won his third Main Event from four starts to claim the Terex Pro Lites title from Ryan Marmont and Kade Mosig.
Faith qualified fastest and won his heat, and was never headed in a gate-to-flag win over the 15-lap duration.
It’s a deserved Championship for the rising star who returned with unfinished business after coming home second last year.
“It’s been a really good season and I’m thankful to have had this opportunity to return to ride with the Carlton Dry Honda Thor team,” said Faith.
“They put all of their belief in me and gave me a great bike.
“I was pushed the whole way, the wins didn't come easily and if some of the other main Championship contenders hadn’t been injured then it would have been even tougher.”
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Kade Mosig came home second behind Faith, with Erroll Willis making up lost ground to finish the final round on the podium.
Fourth place to JDR KTM’s Ryan Marmont was enough to seal second overall in the title, with Mosig left to rue a first-corner crash at Phillip Island which ultimately cost him the chance at the runner-up place.
The Unit Under 19s class title was decided by a single point, with KTM’s Kale Makeham undercutting Honda’s Hayden Mellross in the crucial stages.
Makeham had little choice but to win and hope that Mellross would fall short of his necessary points target, a scenario that did eventually play out.
It was a 1-2 finish for KTM in the 12-lap main as Makeham led home Dylan Long. Mellross needed fifth or better to keep his lead, and could only manage sixth.
Jay Wilson was consistent in third to claim third overall for the season.
In the Junior Lites class it was Aaron Tanti who was able to add a third win from four starts to his name to emerge a clear class Champion.
The KTM-mounted Tanti won by 24 points over Tim O’Brien and Brock McLeary.
The Terex Australian Supercross Championships will crown title recipients at the gala Night of Champions event at Crown Palladium on Friday November 23.
AUSTRALIAN SUPERCROSS C'SHIP at Newcastle Showgrouds, Newcastle. Rd 4:
Open: C Reed (Honda) 17m9.090s 1, J Marmont (Kawasaki) 17m33.544s 2, D McCoy (Yamaha) 17m43.518s 3, J Moss (Honda) 17m49.629s 4, L Bopping (Yamaha) 17m55.513s 5, C Boyd (Honda) 17m57.465s 6, T Simmonds (Honda) +1 lap 7, B Townley (Honda) +1 lap 8, T Waters (Suzuki) +1 lap 9, B Mackenzie (Kawasaki) +1 lap 10.
Lites: G Faith (Honda) 13m13.201s 1, K Mosig (Kawasaki) 13m17.551s 2, E Willis (Suzuki) 13m30.318s 3, R Marmont (KTM) 13m32.637s 4, J Richards (Honda) 13m35.203s 5, S Clarke (Suzuki) 13m47.406s 6, S Coloumb (Suzuki) 13m56.164s 7, N Sutherland (Kawasaki) 13m57.331s 8, T Potter (KTM) 14m10.272s 9, M Norris (Yamaha) 13m18.389s 10.
Open: J Marmont (Kawasaki) 87pts 1, D McCoy (Yamaha) 78pts 2, C Reed (Honda) 75pts 3, J Moss (Honda) 67pts 4, L Bopping (Yamaha) 66pts 5, T Waters (Suzuki) 62pts 6, C Boyd (Honda) 55pts 7, T Simmonds (Honda) 55pts 8, B Townley (Honda) 48pts 9, B Mackenzie (Kawasaki) 46pts 10.
Lites: G Faith (Honda) 95pts 1, R Marmont (KTM) 79pts 2, K Mosig (Kawasaki) 77pts 3, S Clarke (Suzuki) 69pts 4, S Coloumb (Suzuki) 54pts 5, N Sutherland (Kawasaki) 46pts 6, K Ashkenazi (Honda) 43pts 7, T Potter (KTM) 39pts 8, L Clout (Yamaha) 38pts 9, G Stapleton (Honda) 37pts 10.