It’s the final national ever here at Southwick, home of the bottomless sand and also round six of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship. It’s the only sand track of the series so it always produces surprises and we’re crossing our fingers here that the weather holds off.
The 450MX championship heated up a bit last weekend at Budds Creek with some terrific riding by Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey and he’s looking to keep the momentum going here and make up some points on leader Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto.
In the 250’s Budds Creek saw Monster Energy Pro Circuit rider (and defending champion) Blake Baggett get his first win of the season and close the gap up in the race for the title. We’re halfway through here when Southwick concludes and both titles appear to be very much in the air.
Some new faces here at the ‘Wick with John Dowd, former winner here, to race his farewell race. The locals will be cheering the 47-year old on as he tries to put it in the top ten. Also racing his first national is former winner Brett Metcalfe who’s been competing in Canada this year. Brett’s on his practice bike, supported by ADR, and looking to keep managers eyes open for next year. Also here is Tommy Hahn, making his first race of 2013 on a privateer Kawasaki.
Getting his second Oakley Bomb award presented to the rider with the fastest time in qualifying was Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart. As usual with Southwick, most riders set their best time in the first sessions as the track gets rougher and rougher with each lap around. Stewart set his time early in practice one and he was followed by Honda Muscle Milk’s Justin Barcia, Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey, Villopoto (his best time was in the second session-one of the rare ones) and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit’s Tyla Rattray. Dowd was in with a 28th, Hahn was 34th and Metcalfe was 16th.
In the 250MX class it was GEICO Honda teammates Eli Tomac and Zach Osborne going 1-2 in qualifying. Osborne hasn’t raced here in a while but he certainly seemed to remember the track well (he was also fastest in the second practice). Points leader Red Bull KTM’s Ken Roczen was third. He was followed by a pair of MyPlash/Star Yamaha riders in Kyle Cunningham and Jeremy Martin.
Despite the doom and gloom of the weather report, the sun is out here, the temperature is warm and it looks like we’re in for some great racing here. Stay tuned all day to RacerXonline.com for updates throughout the day and on Twitter as well @racerxonline
450MX Qualifying Results
1 7 James Stewart Jr. Suzuki RMZ 450 1:54.953
2 51 Justin Barcia Honda CRF450R 1:55.220
3 1 Ryan Dungey KTM 450 SX-F FE 1:55.538
4 2 Ryan Villopoto Kawasaki KX 450F 1:56.027
5 28 Tyla Rattray Kawasaki KX 450F 1:56.065
6 33 Josh Grant Yamaha YZ 450F 1:56.161
7 82 Robby Marshall KTM 450 SX-F 1:56.848
8 41 Trey Canard Honda CRF450R 1:57.203
9 20 Broc Tickle Suzuki RMZ 450 1:57.238
10 32 Malcolm Stewart Honda CRF450R 1:57.373
250MX Qualifying Results
1 17 Eli Tomac Cortez, CO Honda CRF250R 1:58.711 4 2:01.946
2 338 Zach Osborne Chesterfield, SC Honda CRF250R 1:59.255
3 94 Ken Roczen Germany KTM 250 SX-F 1:59.342
4 38 Kyle Cunningham Aledo, TX Yamaha YZ 250F 1:59.350
5 77 Jeremy Martin Millville, MN Yamaha YZ 250F 1:59.992 2
6 34 Justin Bogle Cushing, OK Honda CRF250R 2:00.416
7 21 Jason Anderson Edgewood, NM Suzuki RMZ 250 2:00.808
8 13 Blake Wharton Pilot Point, TX Suzuki RMZ 250 2:00.960
9 1 Blake Baggett Grand Terrace, CA Kawasaki KX 250F 2:01.068
10 292 Adam Cianciarulo Port Orange, FL Kawasaki KX 250F 2:01.191