Freestone Raceway in Wortham, Texas hosted round number two of the 2012 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on Saturday, and Red Bull’s James Stewart rode flawlessly in both 450 motos aboard his Yoshimura Suzuki to narrowly hold off Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey as he secured his second-straight overall win.
After two epic battles with Dungey under the warm Texas sun, JS7 prevailed in both motos, remaining perfect thus far in the outdoor series (4-for-4). Despite coming up just a few bike lengths short of challenging for the win, Dungey’s ride at Freestone was impressive, to say the least, as he never let Stewart gain more than a two-second advantage in either of the 450 motos.
In the WMX class, defending series champ Ashley Fiolek overcame the lingering effects of food poisoning to claim her first overall win of 2012 with 2-1 moto finishes.
Another successful outing for Red Bull’s motocross athletes; read on for the moto play-by-play from the Freestone National…
450 Moto 1
- When the gates dropped for the first moto of the day, Dungey jumped out to a third-place start with Stewart close behind in fifth.
- Before the end of lap one, JS7 had made quick work of the riders ahead as he ripped around the Freestone circuit and claimed the top spot.
- On lap three, Dungey got by Nico Izzi and set his sights on Stewart just a second ahead.
- Halfway through the 30-minute-plus-two-lap moto, Stewart and Dungey were separated by a mere 1.5 seconds, as the two riders opened up a 10-second gap over third-place Izzi.
- With two laps to go, Stewart held onto a slim lead but Dungey continued stalking him just a half-second back as they weaved their way through lapped traffic.
- Despite pressure from Dungey for the majority of the moto, JS7 kept his composure and rode a near-flawless race to take the first moto win by just over two seconds.
“It was tough out there,” Stewart said from the podium. “It was really slippery the first few laps, but I just worked on my lines and was able to stay out front. Ryan is riding great… We were pretty even in that one. I feel good today, though, so I’m looking forward to next moto.”
Though happy with his performance, Dungey appeared somewhat frustrated on the podium that he was unable to make a pass on Stewart. “I tried my best to set up a pass in one of the sections that I was feeling the best in, but just couldn’t make it happen,” Dungey commented. “It’s gonna be rough out there second moto, so we’ll go back, regroup, and see what we can do.”
450 Moto 2
- The second and final 450 moto of the day got started just like the first, as Stewart battled his way into the early lead with Dungey close-in-tow.
- In a near carbon-copy of moto one, Stewart and Dungey pulled away from the rest of the field as they battled within a second of each other for the first 30 minutes of the race.
- On lap 13, Dungey began showing JS7 a wheel, and actually made a brief pass for the lead just before crossing the finish line with two laps to go.
- Stewart immediately retaliated, however, and with the enthusiastic Texas crowd cheering him on, he began stretching out a two-second lead.
- At the checkers, JS7 took his fourth-straight moto win to capture the Freestone overall, stretching his points lead to 14 over Dungey in second.
- Dungey’s 2-2 moto finishes secured second overall honors for the day, and Mike Alessi rounded out the top three with 5-3 moto finishes.
“Man, that was a great battle,” Stewart said after the race. “I could hear Ryan back there the entire time, but I just stayed focused, concentrated on my lines and pulled it off. Of course it feels great to win, but seeing all of these fans out here cheering us on is what it’s all about.”
|450 MOTO 1 RESULTS||450 MOTO 2 RESULTS||OVERALL RESULTS|
|1.||James Stewart||1.||James Stewart||1.||James Stewart|
|2.||Ryan Dungey||2.||Ryan Dungey||2.||Ryan Dungey|
|3.||Jake Weimer||3.||Mike Alessi||3.||Mike Alessi|
|4.||Nico Izzi||4.||Josh Grant||4.||Jake Weimer|
|5.||Mike Alessi||5.||Andrew Short||5.||Josh Grant|
|6.||Josh Grant||6.||Jake Weimer||6.||Andrew Short|
|7.||Brock Tickle||7.||Tommy Hahn||7.||Tommy Hahn|
|8.||Ryan Sipes||8.||Kyle Regal||8.||Brett Metcalfe|
|9.||Tommy Hahn||9.||Derek Anderson||9.||Nico Izzi|
|10.||Andrew Short||10.||Brett Metcalfe||10.||Ryan Sipes|
250 Moto 1
- After making his Pro Motocross debut last weekend at Hangtown, TLD Honda Red Bull’s newest recruit, Jessy Nelson, grabbed the holeshot to lead the opening lap of 250 moto 1.
- Behind Nelson, Red Bull KTM’s Marvin Musquin sat in third early on, with teammate Ken Roczen close behind in fourth.
- After losing his lead midway through lap one, Nelson stole the top spot back at the beginning of lap two.
- As the lead pack shuffled back and forth during the opening few laps, Eli Tomac worked his way into the lead to start lap four, with Nelson, Roczen, Musquin, and Phil Nicoletti rounding out the top-five.
- Late in the moto, the top-two of Tomac and Blake Baggett were on a rail as they pulled away from the rest of the pack, but Roczen held strong in third to finish the moto on the podium.
- Behind Roczen, Musquin finished the opening moto in fifth just a few seconds behind Justin Barcia, and Nelson wrapped up the race with an impressive seventh-place effort.
250 Moto 2
- Nelson (pictured above) grabbed yet another holeshot to kick off the second moto.
- Behind Nelson, a massive first turn pile-up claimed several of moto one’s frontrunners, leaving Nelson, Blake Wharton, Wil Hahn, Jason Anderson, and Eli Tomac to battle it out.
- At the end of lap two, Roczen and Musquin sat in sixth and ninth, respectively.
- Late in the moto, Roczen went down while trying to make an inside pass on Anderson for third, but got up quickly to rejoin the race in fifth.
- After a gutsy effort to reel the lead pack back in, Roczen was able to climb back into fourth place but the top-three were unfortunately too far out of reach.
- Roczen’s 3-4 moto finishes were good for third-place overall -- a solid podium performance in the challenging Texas conditions.
- Musquin and Nelson finished the moto inside the top-ten with eighth and ninth-place finishes, respectively.
|250 MOTO 1 RESULTS||250 MOTO 2 RESULTS||OVERALL RESULTS|
|1.||Eli Tomac||1.||Eli Tomac||1.||Eli Tomac|
|2.||Blake Baggett||2.||Blake Baggett||2.||Blake Baggett|
|3.||Ken Roczen||3.||Blake Wharton||3.||Ken Roczen|
|4.||Justin Barcia||4.||Ken Roczen||4.||Blake Wharton|
|5.||Marvin Musquin||5.||Justin Barcia||5.||Justin Barcia|
|6.||Blake Wharton||6.||Wil Hahn||6.||Marvin Musquin|
|7.||Jessy Nelson||7.||Jason Anderson||7.||Jessy Nelson|
|8.||Jake Canada||8.||Marvin Musquin||8.||Wil Hahn|
|9.||Kyle Peters||9.||Jessy Nelson||9.||Jake Canada|
|10.||Gareth Swanepoel||10.||Travis Baker||10.||Kyle Cunningham|
WMX Moto 1
- Leading into the race weekend, American Honda’s Ashley Fiolek suffered a bout of food poisoning which forced her to sit out of the first practice session of the day in order to conserve energy.
- When the first WMX moto hit the track, however, Fiolek jumped out to a great start to take the early lead.
- Unable to push hard thanks to the lingering affects of her illness, Fiolek gave way to a hard-charging Jessica Patterson on lap two.
- Despite a courageous effort to stay with Patterson, Fiolek eventually began fading late in the moto, but held strong to finish in second ahead of Australia’s Meghan Rutledge.
- While running fourth early in the moto, TLD Honda Red Bull’s Tarah Gieger crashed hard but regrouped to finish the race in the seventh spot.
WMX Moto 2
- With a couple hours to rest and rehydrate, Fiolek came out swinging in moto two, capturing the holeshot and immediately opening up a comfortable lead.
- By the halfway point of the race, Fiolek extended her lead to over 10 seconds ahead of Rutledge and Patterson, and looked to have the moto well within her control.
- After cruising on the eighth and final lap, Fiolek took the checkers with a comfortable five-second gap between herself and rival Patterson, capturing the overall win with her gutsy 2-1 performance.
- Banged up from her first-moto crash, Gieger rode a conservative race to finish in the fourth spot behind Rutledge.
- After trading moto wins at Freestone, Fiolek trails Patterson by a mere three points in the championship standings as the series moves on to the Thunder Valley National in Lakewood, Colorado next weekend.
|WMX MOTO 1 RESULTS||WMX MOTO 2 RESULTS||OVERALL RESULTS|
|1.||Jessica Patterson||1.||Ashley Fiolek||1.||Ashley Fiolek|
|2.||Ashley Fiolek||2.||Jessica Patterson||2.||Jessica Patterson|
|3.||Meghan Rutledge||3.||Meghan Rutledge||3.||Meghan Rutledge|
|4.||Kasie Creson||4.||Tarah Gieger||4.||Tarah Gieger|
|5.||Jacqueline Strong||5.||Sayaka Kaneshiro||5.||Sayaka Kaneshiro|
|6.||Sayaka Kaneshiro||6.||Mariana Balbi||6.||Kasie Creson|
|7.||Tarah Gieger||7.||Jacqueline Strong||7.||Jacqueline Strong|
|8.||Manana Balbi||8.||Kasie Creson||8.||Mariana Balbi|
|9.||Sara Pettersson||9.||Sara Pettersson||9.||Sara Pettersson|
|10.||Lindsey Palmer||10.||Sade Allender||10.||Sade Allender|
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