250 Words: Satellite Rockets

250 Words Satellite Rockets

January 14, 2014 10:00am
It’s become a real rivalry in the class—red versus orange, fighting for titles. Last year, Honda men Eli Tomac and Wil Hahn squared off against KTM riders Ken Roczen and Marvin Musquin for the East and West Region 250SX championships, and then the trio, combined with Tomac’s teammate Zach Osborne, combined to take four of the top-five in the 250 National standings, with only the lone Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki of Blake Baggett jammed in the middle. For much of 2013, the 250 battle came down to Honda versus KTM.

Such a movement has continued now, but it’s no longer GEICO Honda and Red Bull KTM, the top-tier, full-factory efforts in the 250 class for both brands, doing the battling. It’s the support teams, Rockstar Energy Racing (with Jason Anderson) and Lucas Oil/ Troy Lee Designs Honda (Cole Seely), fighting for the W. Such success from satellite teams shows the depth of each brand’s support, and also the parity of the 250 class, which only a few years ago featured dominance under lock and key by the Kawasaki folks. In fact, things had grown so lopsided that many thought the expense of building 250F horsepower had unbalanced the playing field—Pro Circuit had the formula so dialed in that even the teams racing against it were generally using PC engine and exhaust work.

Jason Anderson's dramatic wins in Anaheim and Phoenix have Rockstar Energy KTM atop the 250SX point standings.
Simon Cudby photo

Today’s success is not surprising anyone inside the teams. The Rockstar effort is getting the Rockstar treatment from KTM. At 6 p.m. last Saturday, Red Bull KTM principals Roger DeCoster and Ian Harrison went on their evening walk, visiting the Rockstar team and the other support squad, BTOSports.com KTM. On a busy night where Roger and Ian’s factory Red Bull squad held the first and second position in points in the premier division, the factory bosses still carved out time for the other teams, too. Such support is reaping rewards.

A month ago, we wrote about the TLD team’s chances to unseat the GEICO squad as a title favorite, with author Chase Stallo penning: “Now, for the first time in the team’s history, the squad might have the out-and-out-favorite for a 250SX West Region Championship, with the GEICO powerhouse hoping it can come up with something to out duel their fellow Honda team.”

Cole Seely is at the helm of TLD Honda's title chances.
Simon Cudby photo

While Red Bull KTM’s Dean Ferris is a work in progress, GEICO Honda’s Osborne isn’t going to lay down for anyone. And while not a single PC pipe has visited the podium so far, the Monster (Pro Circuit Kawasaki) army is still capable of an attack. But for the moment, the Davids are taking it to the Goliaths.