For nearly a year, nearly everything Team Honda HRC has touched has turned to gold. That was definitely not the case, though, in the mud of San Francisco, where Jett and Hunter Lawrence slithered to ninth and tenth, respectively, in the 450SX main event (which knocked Jett from the 450 points lead) and Jo Shimoda went out early in the 250 main event with a bike problem.
“This is the first time that we haven’t been on the podium with any of our riders since Anaheim 3 2022, which is an incredible record, I think," said Team Manager Lars Lindstrom in a team statement. "As everyone knows, mud races can really shake things up, which can be the exciting part of them. They’re also a great teacher, and we’ll take this opportunity to learn instead of sulking about our results.”
Sounds like Jett and Hunter are not over thinking this one, either.
“The main takeaway from tonight is that the heroes of our sport are the mechanics," said Hunter Lawrence. "They had to work incredibly hard all day to make sure our bikes were running smooth. A huge pat on the back to the team overall in these conditions. Other than that, I’m ready to move on to round 3.”
“Nothing too exciting to talk about after the main event," said Jett Lawrence. "We’re just happy to get out of here with some points. We aren’t many points behind, so we’re going to get some good races in before the break and hopefully get some wins.”
As for Shimoda, Honda would only explain it this way: "Shimoda started in fourth in the 250SX West main event but immediately went down. He remounted but came to a halt a few turns later with a technical issue that seemed to have resulted from the fall."
Shimoda quickly finds himself 13th in 250SX West points, 29 marks down on series leader Jordon Smith.
“It was nice to get a good start in the heat race, get some battles in and still get the win," said Shimoda, who won his heat. "Obviously, the main event didn’t go how I imagined. I got a good start but tipped over on the straightaway. Two turns later, I had a mechanical and couldn’t finish the race. It’s not where we wanted to be after tonight, but I’m looking forward to next weekend.”
You can read more rider quotes from throughout the paddock in our Rider Quotes compilation.