HURRICANE MILLS, Tenn.—Following a memorable week showcasing the world’s finest amateur motocross talent the 2020 Monster Energy AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship came to an exciting conclusion on Saturday. The final motos of an action-packed week of racing resulted in the crowning of AMA National Champions across the remaining 17 classes.
Open Pro Sport
The final day of racing for the week was headlined by Open Pro Sport, where Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Stilez Robertson had an opportunity to wrap up the championship in the two most high profile divisions. Robertson wrapped up the title in 250 Pro Sport on Friday and entered Saturday tied with Yamaha/Rock River/bLU cRU Amateur Motocross Team rider Mason Gonzales atop the Open Pro Sport classification.
All week long Gonzales has had his starts dialed in and in the biggest moment he rose to the occasion, emerging with the early lead ahead of Robertson in second. Gonzales dropped the hammer and successfully put some distance between himself and Robertson, but soon the Husqvarna rider closed back in. Just before the halfway point of the moto Robertson applied heavy pressure on the lead and made the pass for the lead stick. Once out front Robertson continued to add to his lead and charged home to take the moto win and clinch the title by six seconds over Gonzales.
With his AMA National Championships in both 250 Pro Sport and Open Pro Sport Robertson was named the 2020 Nicky Hayden AMA Motocross Horizon Award winner, the highest honor in amateur motocross.
Open Pro Sport Overall Results (Moto Finishes)
Stilez Robertson, Bakersfield, Calif., Husqvarna (1-2-1)
Mason Gonzales, Fort Walton Beach, Fla., Yamaha (2-1-2)
Dilan Schwartz, Alpine, Calif., Suzuki (3-4-3)
Vincent Luhovey Jr., Greensburg, Pa., KTM (5-6-7)
Austin Black, Lake Elsinore, Calif., KTM (6-8-5)
Stilez Robertson is the 2020 Nicky Hayden AMA Motocross Horizon Award winner.
After a pair of wild motos in 250 B, Monster Energy/Star Racing Yamaha's Matt LeBlanc entered Saturday’s final moto in control of his own destiny. With a lead of four points LeBlanc enjoyed a comfortable cushion, which allowed him to take a more conservative approach once the gate dropped.
LeBlanc settled into fourth on the opening lap, behind early leader and Moto 2 winner Nate Thrasher aboard his Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing’s Nick Romano, and EBR Performance KTM’s Kaeden Amerine. The clear track allowed Thrasher to quickly open up a big lead on the field, leaving the Yamaha duo of Romano and Amerine to battle for second. LeBlanc continued to lose touch with the lead trio, and eventually gave up fourth to Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Green’s Chance Hymas.
The momentum Thrasher gained from his Moto 2 victory carried over into the final moto, where he continued to pull away en route to securing back-to-back wins. He took the checkered flag 11 seconds ahead of Amerine, who battled his way around Romano for second in the closing laps. LeBlanc came through a distant fifth.
LeBlanc's consistency proved to be the difference maker in the overall standings, as Thrasher’s ninth-place finish in the first moto was simply too much to overcome despite securing a pair of moto wins. LeBlanc's title is his second of the week, to go along with a 450 B championship.
250 B Overall Results (Moto Finishes)
- Matthew LeBlanc, Breaux Bridge, La., Yamaha (1-2-5)
- Nate Thrasher, Livingston, Tenn., KTM (9-1-1)
- Chance Hymas, Pocatello, Idaho, Kawasaki (2-5-4)
- Kaeden Amerine, Great Bend, Kan., Yamaha (7-4-2)
- Nick Romano, Bayside, N.Y., Yamaha (12-3-3
Nate Thrasher won the final 250 B moto, but Matt LeBlanc prevailed as champion.
Schoolboy 1 (12-17) B/C
On the heels of a three-moto sweep in 125cc B/C, Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM’s Max Vohland had the opportunity to wrap up an undefeated week at Loretta Lynn’s with another victory in Schoolboy 1 B/C. He carried a two-point edge over Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Talon Hawkins, where the second generation racer was once again on point aboard his KTM.
When the gate dropped on the final moto the two championship combatants put themselves at the front of the field, with Vohland leading Hawkins. The impressive speed Vohland has displayed all week saw him establish a near two-second lead at the conclusion of the opening lap, which proved to be all the advantage he needed. Vohland continued to build on his lead and rode to a stress-free moto win by almost 13 seconds, securing his undefeated record and a second AMA National Championship. Hawkins earned his third runner-up result, while Yamaha/Rock River/bLU cRU Amateur Motocross Team rider Larry Reyes Jr. rounded out the podium.
Schoolboy 1 (12-17) B/C Overall Results (Moto Finishes)
- Max Vohland, Granite Bay, Calif., KTM (1-1-1)
- Talon Hawkins, Temecula, Calif., Husqvarna (2-2-2)
- Larry Reyes Jr., Houston, Texas, Yamaha (3-3-3)
- Avery Long, New London, Minn., KTM (8-5-5)
- Gage Stine, Woodsboro, Md., KTM (4-11-4)
Max Vohland completed a perfect week, going a total of 6-0 in motos.
Schoolboy 2 (12-17) B/C
Parity defined the first two motos of Schoolboy 2 B/C, as three riders entered Saturday’s final moto with a shot at taking home the title. With 1-2 finishes coming into the deciding moto Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Green’s Jett Reynolds was in the favorable position, but both KTM Orange Brigade’s Nate Thrasher and Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Green’s Chance Hymas were right in the hunt.
Reynolds was right where he wanted to be as Moto 3 got underway, initially sitting second behind KTM rider Wyatt Liebeck before taking over the lead on the second lap. Neither Hymas nor Thrasher were anywhere to be seen, slotting into seventh and 10th, respectively.
Reynolds was able to maintain his position out front, but he was facing heavy and persistent pressure from Monster Energy/Star Racing Yamaha's Nick Romano. Less than a second separated the lead duo, and as the moto reached its halfway point Reynolds faltered, giving up the lead to Romano and falling from first to fourth. As that sequence unfolded, both Hymas and Thrasher, who had fought their way into the top four, were able to take advantage of Reynolds’ misfortune, taking over second and third. On the ensuing lap Reynolds dropped another spot to fifth.
Realizing a championship was within reach, Hymas dug deep and went to work on Romano for the lead, successfully seizing control of the moto in the waning minutes. One lap later Thrasher moved into second. At that point the Kawasaki of Hymas had opened an insurmountable advantage and he became the class’ third different moto winner, crossing the line two seconds ahead of Thrasher, with Romano third and Reynolds fifth.
The victory was enough to vault Hymas to the top of the overall standings, where he earned a tiebreaker over Thrasher by virtue of Hymas’ Moto 3 win. The finish was undoubtedly one of the most dramatic and exciting of any class at this year’s event.
Schoolboy 2 (12-17) B/C Overall Results (Moto Finishes)
Supermini 1 (12-15) & Supermini 2 (13-16)
Like Haiden Deegan (Sr. Mini 1 & 2) and Max Vohland (125cc & Schoolboy 1), Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Green’s Ryder Difrancesco was one of a few riders chasing a perfect 6-0 run at Loretta Lynn’s. He entered Saturday in control of both the Supermini 1 and Supermini 2 classes, where another pair of good starts and consistent performances were all that separated him from perfection. Difrancesco rose to the occasion on each gate drop and brought home two impressive victories to wrap up a pair of titles on the final day.
The Kawasaki rider first took to the track to complete Supermini 2. Out of the gate, KTM rider Ben Garib continued his hot streak of stellar starts to lead Difrancesco through the opening couple laps. Not to be denied, Difrancesco powered his way into the lead and quickly began to put distance between himself and Garib. Soon enough, he enjoyed a comfortable multi-second lead. Difrancesco continued to charge and brought home the first of two wins by four seconds over Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Evan Ferry, who started sixth, with Garib in third.
As Difrancesco rolled out one last time for Supermini 1 he was determined to make the final moto as stress free as possible. When the gate dropped he seized the moment and emerged with the lead. A blistering opening lap helped Difrancesco put multiple seconds on Ferry in second, and from there the Kawasaki rider never looked back. He stormed to the sweep and a perfect week-long record by just under six seconds. Ferry finished the day with back-to-back runner-up finishes, while Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Green’s Gavin Towers finished third.
It capped off a banner week for Difrancesco, who will surely be one of the most talked about riders at Loretta Lynn’s in 2021.
Supermini 1 (12-15) Overall Results (Moto Finishes)
Ryder Difrancesco, Bakersfield, Calif., Kawasaki (1-1-1)
Gavin Towers, Venetia, Pa., Kawasaki (2-2-3)
Evan Ferry, Dade City, Fla., Husqvarna (4-5-2)
Jayden Clough, Elko, Minn., KTM (5-3-4)
Jordan Renfro, Lake Park, Ga., KTM (9-9-7)
Supermini 2 (13-16) Overall Results (Moto Finishes)
Ryder Difrancesco, Bakersfield, Calif., Kawasaki (1-1-1)
Evan Ferry, Dade City, Fla., Husqvarna (2-2-2)
Benjamin Garib, Chile, KTM (4-3-3)
Gavin Towers, Venetia, Pa., Kawasaki (3-5-4)
Jayden Clough, Elko, Minn., KTM (5-4-5)
Additional AMA Amateur National Champions from Saturday (Moto Finishes)
250 C Limited: Jacob Henry, Cortland, N.Y., KTM (3-1-3)
Junior (25+): Brandon Scharer, Hamer, S.C., Yamaha (2-1-1)
College (18-24): Michael Hicks, Fenton, Mo., KTM (9-1-1)
Girls (11-16): Katie Benson, Greer, S.C., KTM (1-1-3)
250 C Jr. (12-17) Limited: Dakota Bender, Winchester, Pa., Honda (1-1-2)
450 B Limited: Levi Kitchen, Washougal, Wash., Yamaha (1-1-1)
85cc (10-12): Luke Fauser, Midland, Pa., KTM (2-3-2)
65cc (7-9): Gage Dunham, Golden, Colo., KTM (5-1-2)
450 C: Cameron Horner, Bozeman, Mont., Kawasaki (1-1-1)
Senior (45+): Joe Buskirk, Hanna City, Ill., Suzuki (3-3-3)
65cc (10-11): Seth Dennis, Minneola, Fla., KTM (1-3-2)
For more information on the Monster Energy AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship, visit the series official website at www.mxsports.com or call (304) 284-0101. Join the conversation on the event’s social media channels, along with receiving the most up-to-date news and exclusive content.