After narrowly missing out on the win in moto one at the third round of 12 in the United States motocross nationals at Thunder Valley in Denver, Colorado, on Saturday, Germany’s Ken Roczen bounced back in moto two, taking the win and earning his second straight overall victory in the process.
Trey Canard continued his impressive day by grabbing the holeshot to start the race, followed closely by Ryan Dungey and Josh Grant. The holeshot put Canard in great position for the overall win, as he would have been the victor had the running order held up. The Honda rider would be unable to hold the position though.
Roczen started the race in fourth but soon got around both Grant and Dungey. He attempted to make the move on Canard, briefly getting out front before being passed right back. The two went back-and-forth a few times with Canard emerging in the lead at the conclusion of that duel. Roczen would not back off though, continuing to battle Canard over the next five minutes or so before finally setting himself up for the pass.
A few minutes later, Canard found himself under siege from Dungey for second-place, and after another back-and-forth battle, Dungey grabbed the spot from him.
Up front, Dungey would try to chase down Roczen, and although he would stay within three seconds of his team-mate for much of the race, he could not match Roczen’s pace. The young German’s fastest lap was more than a half-second faster than Dungey or anyone else in the field.
Wrapping up the moto win with a 6.5 second margin of victory, Roczen also took the overall win and extended his points lead to 12 after picking up an extra seven points on Dungey today.
After giving up the top two spots, Canard would then have to deal with Moto 1 winner James Stewart. Stewart nearly crashed 13 minutes into the moto but saved it before going down, and although he lost a little ground to Canard, he eventually caught and passed him with less than 10 minutes left on the countdown clock. It helped a secure second-overall for Stewart.
The battle for fifth came down to Josh Grant and Brett Metcalfe. Although Grant ultimately yielded the position, his 5-6 results still put him inside the top-five overall for the day.
Jake Weimer was running in sixth midway through the race when he crashed and got stuck underneath his bike. He struggled to get the bike going again and would end up finishing 12th.
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Thunder Valley 450 class overall results
1. Ken Roczen (2-1)
2. James Stewart (1-3)
3. Ryan Dungey (4-2)
4. Trey Canard (3-4)
5. Josh Grant (5-6)
6. Brett Metcalfe (9-5)
7. Malcolm Stewart (7-8)
8. Andrew Short (6-9)
9. Weston peick (10-7)
10. Jake Weimer (8-12)
450 class points standings
1. Ken Roczen, 141
2. Ryan Dungey, -12
3. James Stewart, -30
4. Trey Canard, -31
5. Brett Metcalfe, -52
6. Malcolm Stewart, -63
7. Weston Peick, -64
8. Josh Grant, -67
9. Jake Weimer, -67
10. Chad Reed, -80
THE 250cc CLASS
After Blake Baggett exited the second moto last weekend with bike problems, he made it clear that he was determined to break up the Yamaha party sooner rather than later.
Thanks to a vintage moto from the 2012 champion and an atypical performance from the points leader, Baggett finally ended Jeremy Martin’s winning streak in the second moto at Hangtown – taking the moto and securing the overall victory.
For the third time in six motos, the holeshot went to Zach Bell, but Jason Anderson and Christophe Pourcel were close behind. The trio went back and forth a bit with Bell emerging ahead of Pourcel. Pourcel was persistent though and overtook the young Honda rider for the lead.
While Bell would fade back through the field, Pourcel would run up front for about ten minutes until Baggett caught him. The Kawasaki rider overtook him and then opened up a lead on the field, winning by 6.5 seconds.
Justin Bogle would catch Pourcel and pass him for second-place with under seven minutes to go, making some contact in the process. It capped off a career day for Bogle, as his 3-2 moto finishes put him one point behind Baggett for the overall win on the day.
Pourcel would hold off fellow Frenchman Marvin Musquin for third place, but thanks to his 11th place finish in Moto 1, he winds up just seventh overall on the day. Fourth-place in the moto and fifth-overall mark season highs for Musquin as he continues to find form after recovering from ACL surgery.
One of the big stories from this moto though, was the absence of Martin and Cooper Webb up front. Neither of the Yamaha sophomores got off to a great start, with Webb and Martin riding sixth and seventh, respectively, early on. The two riders were left to battle each other, with Webb refusing the yield the position even as the two made contact. A great three-way battle ensued once they caught up to Zach Bell for fifth, and Martin ended up getting past both of them and then overtaking Jason Anderson for fourth.
At the very least, Martin looked to be in position for an overall win if he could just pass one more rider, but an uncharacteristic crash in the second half of the moto ended those chances. He remounted in the eighth position but could only re-gain two more spots. It was enough to land him third overall on the day but brought an end to his winning streak.
As for Webb, he wasn’t able to crack the top-five either and ends the day with 9-7 moto scores, putting him eighth overall.
Jessy Nelson was unable to repeat his magic from the first moto, as another bad start – uncharacteristic for him, but seemingly common this year – held him back. He cracked the top-ten by the end of the race though, which gets him up to fourth overall on the day and helps him set a new career-best for the second week in a row. Despite the career day, he fell from fourth to sixth in the point standings.
Bell was fighting to stay in the top-ten but crashed and went off the course with two laps to go, putting him back in 34th for the moto.
Thunder Valley 250 class overall results
1. Blake Baggett (4-1)
2. Justin Bogle (3-2)
3. Jeremy Martin (1-6)
4. Jessy Nelson (2-9)
5. Marvin Musquin (7-4)
6. Jason Anderson (5-5)
7. Christophe Pourcel (11-3)
8. Cooper Webb (9-7)
9. Cole Seely (8-8)
10. Justin Hill (10-10)
250 class points standings
1. Jeremy Martin, 140
2. Cooper Webb, 114
3. Christophe Pourcel, 93
4. Blake Baggett, 91
5. Justin Bogle, 90
6. Jessy Nelson, 85
7. Marvin Musquin, 82
8. Jason Anderson, 81
9. Justin Hill, 65
10. Matt Bisceglia, 63