250 Words: RedBud

250 Words RedBud

July 8, 2013 3:30pm
There was a moment on Saturday afternoon at RedBud when Ken Roczen should have been a little happier than he looked. It came shortly after the first 250 moto, where he finished second to GEICO Honda's Eli Tomac. Obviously, a rider of Roczen's talent wants to win every time he's out there, but so does pretty much everyone else at this level. Still, while he waited for his teammate Marvin Musquin (third) to be interviewed, K-Roc seemed focus on something else, like maybe how to find another half-second or so a lap to stay with Tomac. His posture and demeanor were giving away the fact that he was obviously searching for an answer to his primary challenge so far this series.

Of course he found what he was looking for, with an assist from Tomac himself, who made an unforced error right after passing his teammate Zach Osborne, giving away his chance to win another moto. Roczen rode off with the win, and for the seventh straight race he holds on to the red plate.

Roczen was disappointed by his first moto at RedBud, but he bounced back in the second moto to capture the overall.
DC photo

Now we're starting to get down to the nitty-gritty of this title bout, and though there's a week off coming up, the last five races will seem like a sprint. The series ends in August, two weeks earlier than usual, and it's now coming down to Roczen and Tomac. Seven points separate them, with Musquin now two motos’ worth of points behind them. The championship is now a matter of math and mistakes between these two.

Ironically, this is the second race in a row where Tomac won the first moto and Roczen won the second—the exact opposite of how things were going earlier in the series. What does that mean? Maybe the fact that these two rivals—and they will be rivals for years to come—are in a constant state of improvement, always working on their race craft, always trying to find a new advantage, even in the moments after each checkered flag.

This is about to get even better.