Thunder Valley Motocross: Notes Package

Motocross Report

The exceptional rookie season for Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey continued last weekend at the Budds Creek National as the 2010 AMA Supercross champion captured his third consecutive overall victory in Southern Maryland to extend his early season points lead.

This weekend, round five of the 2010 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship commences with the Toyota Trucks Thunder Valley National from Thunder Valley Motocross Park in Lakewood, Colo. Dungey, along with rookie 250 Class competitor and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider Dean Wilson, who became the fourth different overall winner in the class last weekend, enter the Mile High City with the momentum from a pair of stellar performances. The world’s best attack one of the most visually stunning facilities on Saturday, June 26.

450 Class

Rockstar/Makita Suzuki
Since coming slow out of the gates to kick-off the 2010 season, Dungey and the Rockstar/Makita Suzuki squad have been virtually unstoppable. Dungey’s third place finish in the opening moto at Budds Creek was his first non-moto win in four motos, but he bounced back in the final moto to re-assert himself at the front of the field and take his fifth win in the last six motos. He currently sits 36 points ahead of Chad Reed and doesn’t appear to be slowing down.

"Budds Creek was a good weekend for me and for the team that’s for sure," said Dungey. "The bike has been set up perfectly the last three weeks and it is really paying off in our results. Moto 2 the bike kept getting better as the track kept getting rougher. Goose and the rest of the team have really put in their homework back in California. The bikes been good off the starts, in the rough stuff and especially the cornering. I crashed in the first moto and I don’t really know what happened. The next thing I know I was on the ground. I had to rip off my goggles and go at it without them after that. I got roosted a couple times pretty good once I got up to second place so I’m pretty lucky I didn’t take a rock to the eye or anything worse. We made up for it in Moto 2 and got our third overall in a row. We will go back to work this week and show up in Colorado looking to keep it going."

Matt Moss continues to improve in his first season on American soil and picked up his best effort of 2010 with a 16th-place finish last weekend. However, he is looking for more.

"This weekend was OK for me, but I wasn’t very happy with my starts and my position overall," said Moss. "It seemed that I was struggling to get where I was. This weekend in Colorado, I’m going there to get top 10 and nothing else! I know I can do it, I just have to get it done. I’m really looking forward to Thunder Valley."

Monster Energy Kawasaki
Monster Energy Kawasaki heads to Thunder Valley ready to stay on the podium with Chad Reed. After suffering from his worst career finish just two weeks ago, the Australian rider and reigning 450 Class champion finished third overall last weekend and is excited to head to the Denver area for this week’s event. His rebound effort last week helped return him to second in the championship.

"Thunder Valley is a good track," said Reed. "We keep making improvements on my bike and it’s getting better every week. Since the race is in the daytime this year, the heat is going to play a factor, but that is good for me."

Nick Wey is also ready for Thunder Valley. After working too hard during the week before Budds Creek, Wey has lightened his training program to make sure he is at his best on Saturday.

"I think I overdid it in the Florida heat last week," said Wey. "I hadn’t trained in the summer down there and I kind of wore myself out. This week I’m still going to work, but I’m going to make sure I don’t over do it."

GEICO Powersports Honda
Brett Metcalfe has been one of the most consistent riders in the premier class, putting together an impressive rookie 450 Class campaign to this point. At Budds Creek he ran among the top contenders in both motos before going 6-6 and finishing the round sixth overall. Despite dropping to third in the standings, he still sits just four points behind Reed for that runner-up position.

Jagermeister KTM
Mike Alessi returned to the podium last weekend in Budds Creek when he finished second in the opening moto. In Moto 2, he wasn’t able to maintain the momentum and fell back to a 12th-place effort. As a result, he finished fifth overall but still holds on to the fourth spot in the standings. Last season at Colorado, he attempted to return from a devastating knee injury only to find more trouble. He will be looking for much better luck on Saturday and the chance to turn his season around.

Honda Red Bull Racing
Andrew Short made a long awaited return to the top of the podium last weekend, taking the win in Moto 1. Despite missing an entire moto at Freestone, he has been exceptionally strong, sitting fifth in the standings. He returns to his hometown race this weekend and is eager to continue his stellar riding that has brought him a pair of runner-up efforts the past two weeks and perhaps grab his first career victory in front of family and friends.

"It’s awesome to win again," said Short. "The last time I won a moto was at the Colorado motocross race in 2007 so this has been a long time coming. I can’t wait to be on home soil this week and race in front of my Colorado home crowd. I’m feeling really motivated so it should be a lot of fun."

Muscle Milk/Toyota/JGR
Josh Grant put forth a solid effort at Budds Creek last weekend, finishing fourth overall with fifth and fourth place results. Last season at Thunder Valley, Grant went 5-5 on the evening and finished sixth overall.

In just his second race of the 2010 season, Justin Brayton improved with a 10th overall at Budds Creek and continues to get stronger as the season goes on.

Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil Honda
The bad luck that has characterized a significant portion of Ben Townley’s 2010 season returned at Budds Creek. The New Zealand native was running at the front of the field in Moto 1, only to encounter an issue with his motorcycle. He bounced back effectively in Moto 2 to salvage an eighth-place result.

Rockstar Energy Suzuki
Similar to Townley, Tommy Hahn’s strong riding hasn’t translated into accurate results for the Texas native. A tough weekend overall for the Suzuki rider resulted in a 17th place finish at Budds Creek, but he still secures the 10th spot in the standings.

250 Class

Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki
Mitch Payton’s Pro Circuit squad has been exceptionally strong so far in 2010. Dean Wilson earned his first career win last week on his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki and now that he has one win under his belt, he is ready to get his second.

"Winning really helps your confidence," said Wilson. "Even from Texas I knew I could win, but you’re not really certain until you do it. Now that I got one, I want to stay on the top of the box."

Wilson’s biggest challengers in becoming the first rider to repeat as a winner in the 250 Class are his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki teammates Christophe Pourcel and Tyla Rattray, who have also scored wins and several podiums.

"I fought hard to get on the podium at Budds Creek," said Rattray. "You always want to back up a win with another good result and I know I did. I’ve got a good bike and the endurance to handle the heat his weekend, so it should be a good race."

GEICO Powersports Honda
Justin Barcia showed he had the skills and speed to battle up front on a consistent basis aboard his GEICO Powersports Honda CRF250R, going 3-2 at Budds Creek and finishing the race second overall.

Trey Canard posted 7-8 moto results for seventh overall and teammate Blake Wharton, fresh off his first career podium at High Point, finished in ninth. Eli Tomac grabbed the Moto 1 holeshot at Budds Creek, but managed only a mid-pack start in the second moto and settled for 10th overall.

DNA Shred Stix/Star Yamaha
Broc Tickle quietly posted another solid sixth place finish at Budds Creek and currently sits fifth in the 250 Class standings. He is arguably the most underrated competitor in the class and will look to break onto the podium this weekend at Thunder Valley.

WMX Class

The women’s motocross class returns to action this weekend for round three of the 2010 Women’s Motocross Championship and the Able Planet National from Thunder Valley. DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha’s Jessica Patterson leads the way with an undefeated record through two rounds this season, but defending two-time champion and Honda Red Bull Racing rider Ashley Fiolek is hot on her heels. Additionally, Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil Honda’s Tarah Gieger, MotoConcepts Yamaha’s Vicki Golden and Mariana Balbi, as well as Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Sara Price have all run strongly this season and will be equally as eager to break Patterson’s run and make their presence felt in the quest for this championship.

The nation’s fastest females will lay it all on the line at the start of each moto in hopes of capturing the $250 Holeshot Award while Rekluse will provide its best sponsored female with the Top Rekluse Rider award and $100 in prize money.

Series Statistical Report

Toyota Trucks Thunder Valley National
Thunder Valley MX Park – Lakewood, Colo., June 26

* As always, the mile high altitude at Thunder Valley will provide an additional challenge for mechanics and riders alike in making the bikes perform at their peak and riders adjusting physically to the thinner air.
* Thunder Valley was the first and only motocross event to ever be held under the lights for 2008 and 2009. It returns to the original daytime format this season.
* Both of Ivan Tedesco’s inaugural 250 and 450 Class victories came at Thunder Valley, his self proclaimed home race.

* Ryan Dungey has captured five of the last six motos and is now averaging a podium finish this season.
* Andrew Short’s moto win was his first since 2007 at Thunder Valley.
* Short holds an average finish of 9.5, but sits fifth in the championship.
* The battle for the runner-up spot in the championship standings is tight as only 15 points separate second from fifth.
* Dungey possesses the best average finish of any rider in the 450 Class at 3.0. Andrew Short possesses the best average start at 3.1.
* Only Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki and GEICO Powersports Honda riders have won 250 Class motos in 2010.
* Christophe Pourcel has one at least one moto at each round this season.
* Dean Wilson became the first Scottish and Canadian winner in AMA Motocross history.
* Wilson became the 69th different winner in 250 Class history.
* Wilson has the second best finishing average in the class at 4.5, but sits third in the standings.
* The Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki trio of Pourcel, Rattray and Wilson are slowly gapping themselves from the rest of the 250 Class field.
* Three of Mitch Payton’s four riders have won an overall in 2010.
* Pourcel possesses the best average finish of any rider in the 250 Class at 2.8 as well as average start at 3.9.
* Pourcel has posted the fastest practice lap at all four rounds in 2010.

450 Class Stats

* The first Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship race was held at Thunder Valley on July 24, 2005, with Ricky Carmichael winning on a Suzuki.
* This will be only the sixth time the gate has dropped for the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship at Thunder Valley.
* Only three riders have ever won at Thunder Valley.
* Colorado-native Andrew Short has been on the cusp of achieving his first overall at this track and perhaps has his best opportunity to do so this season, coming off a pair of runner-up efforts the last two weeks.

Wins by brand at Thunder Valley
Kawasaki – 2
Suzuki – 2
Honda – 1

First time winners at Thunder Valley
Ivan Tedesco, 2009 – Honda

Last win by brand at Thunder Valley
Honda – 2009
Kawasaki – 2008
Suzuki – 2006

Riders to win Thunder Valley in both classes
Ivan Tedesco

Brand Sweeps at Thunder Valley
Kawasaki; James Stewart and Ryan Villopoto – 2008
Kawasaki; James Stewart and Ben Townley – 2007

450 Class – All-Time Winners at Thunder Valley
July 28, 2008 James Stewart (Kawasaki)
July 22, 2007 James Stewart (Kawasaki)
July 23, 2006 Ricky Carmichael (Suzuki)
July 24, 2005 Ricky Carmichael (Suzuki)

2010 Stats

450 Class Point Standings – After 4 of 12 rounds

1. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki, 171
2. Chad Reed, Australia, Kawasaki, 135
3. Brett Metcalfe, Australia, Honda, 131
4. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., KTM, 129
5. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, Honda, 120
6. Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Yamaha, 116
7. Ben Townley, New Zealand, Honda, 114
8. Ryan Sipes, Vine Grove, Ky., Yamaha, 81
9. Kyle Chisholm, Valrico, Fla., Yamaha, 81
10. Tommy Hahn, Decatur, Texas, Suzuki, 81

450 Class Overall Wins
Ryan Dungey – 3 Chad Reed – 1

450 Class Moto Wins
Ryan Dungey – 5
Mike Alessi – 1
Chad Reed – 1
Andrew Short – 1

450 Class Wins by Brand
Suzuki – 3
Kawasaki – 1

450 Class Laps Led
Ryan Dungey – 47
Andrew Short – 30
Mike Alessi – 19
Chad Reed – 16
Josh Grant – 9
Brett Metcalfe – 9

450 Class Holeshots
Brett Metcalfe – 2
Andrew Short – 2
ike Alessi – 1
Chad Reed – 1
Ryan Sipes – 1

250 Class Stats

* The first 250 Class race was held July 24, 2005, with Ivan Tedesco winning on a Kawasaki.
* Pro Circuit and Kawasaki have won every race at Thunder Valley in the 250 Class.
* Local rider Andrew Short was on the verge of claiming the 2006 event aboard a Honda before bike failure forced him out of the lead in the second moto.
* There as never been a repeat winner at Thunder Valley.

Wins by brand at Thunder Valley
Kawasaki – 4

First time winners at Thunder Valley
Ivan Tedesco, 2005 – Kawasaki

Last win by brand at Thunder Valley
Kawasaki – 2009

250 Class – All-Time Winners at Thunder Valley
July 28, 2008 Ryan Villopoto (Kawasaki)
July 22, 2007 Ben Townley (Kawasaki)
July 23, 2006 Ryan Villopoto (Kawasaki)
July 24, 2005 Ivan Tedesco (Kawasaki)

2010 Stats

250 Class Point Standings – After 4 of 12 rounds

1. Christophe Pourcel, France, Kawasaki, 129
2. Tyla Rattray, South Africa, Kawasaki, 102
3. Dean Wilson, Canada, Kawasaki, 100
4. Trey Canard, Shawnee, Okla., Honda, 93
5. Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Honda, 90
6. Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Yamaha, 89
7. Jake Weimer, Rupert, Idaho, Kawasaki, 80
8. Justin Barcia, Ochlocknee, Ga., Honda, 79
9. Wil Hahn, Decatur, Texas, Honda, 72
10. Tommy Searle, England, KTM, 60

250 Class Overall Wins
Christophe Pourcel – 1
Tyla Rattray – 1
Eli Tomac – 1

250 Class Moto Wins
Christophe Pourcel – 3
Justin Barcia – 1
Tyla Rattray – 1
Eli Tomac – 1

250 Class Wins by Brand
Kawasaki – 2
Honda – 1

250 Class Laps Led
Eli Tomac – 35
Christophe Pourcel – 32
Justin Barcia – 13
Dean Wilson – 8
Wil Hahn – 2
Tommy Searle – 2
Tyla Rattray – 1

250 Class Holeshots
Christophe Pourcel – 2
Eli Tomac – 2
Trey Canard – 1
Wil Hahn – 1

WMX Class Stats:

* The WMX Class has raced at Colorado since it became part of the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship schedule in 2005.

Wins by brand at Thunder Valley
Honda – 2
Yamaha – 2
Kawasaki – 1

Last win by brand at Thunder Valley
Honda – 2009

2010 Stats

WMX Class Point Standings – After 2 of 8 rounds

1. Jessica Patterson, Tallahassee, Fla., Yamaha, 100
2. Ashley Fiolek, St. Augustine, Fla., Honda, 86
3. Tarah Gieger, Winter Gardens, Fla., Honda, 77
4. Vicki Golden, El Cajon, Calif., Yamaha, 65
5. Mariana Balbi, Brazil, Yamaha, 56
6. Sara Price, Canyon Lake, Calif., Kawasaki, 51
7. Tatum Sik, Temecula, Calif., Yamaha, 48
8. Elizabeth Bash, Riverside, Calif., Honda, 46
9. Alexah Pearson, Rocklin, Calif., Yamaha, 44
10. Erica Cook, Natalia, Texas, Yamaha, 40
11. Sayaka Kaneshiro, Japan, Suzuki, 40

WMX Class Overall Wins
Jessica Patterson – 2

WMX Class Moto Wins
Jessica Patterson – 4

WMX Class Wins by Brand
Yamaha – 2

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