Steel City MX: Pre-Race Notes & Stats

Motocross Preview

The world’s most prestigious motocross championship is closing in on the conclusion of yet another memorable season of American motocross.

On Saturday, the world’s best riders head to Steel City Raceway in Delmont, Pa., for the 11th round of the 2010 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship for the annual Labor Day tradition just outside downtown Pittsburgh.

Last weekend in Southwick, Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey solidified his historic rookie season in the premier class of the sport by capturing the 450 Class title with his ninth consecutive victory.

The championship caps off what has been a record-setting year for the 20-year-old rider who becomes the first rookie in history to capture both the AMA Supercross and AMA Motocross titles.

Additionally, Dungey has surpassed legend Ricky Carmichael for the most successful rookie season in the premier class outdoors.

In the 250 Class, the continuing battle between Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Christophe Pourcel, who currently leads the division, and GEICO Powersports Honda’s Trey Canard is heating up after an up and down day for both riders at Southwick. Currently, only 13 points separates the duo, but Canard has gained on his rival at every round since grabbing his first win back at Round 6.

Additionally, the Women’s Motocross Championship will compete in its seventh round of the season, led by points leader and DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha rider Jessica Patterson, who raced to her fifth overall victory at the previous stop.

450 AMA Motocross Class

Rockstar/Makita Suzuki
Even though he’s wrapped up the premier class title, Ryan Dungey is still going to approach the final two rounds of the season with the same mindset – to win. His nine wins this season tie Ricky Carmichael for the most ever by a rookie and the opportunity to break the record of the greatest motocross rider of all time is something Dungey won’t want to pass up.

Honda Red Bull Racing
Southwick was arguably the worst race of the season for Andrew Short. After misfortune forced him to make the field with a provisional, Short never had the chance to get in a groove and found himself coming from behind in each moto, posting a season-worst 18th-place finish. With Brett Metcalfe only three points out of second place, Short will look to fend off his Honda counterpart at Steel City.

Southwick marked one of the strongest outings for Kevin Windham in his return to the outdoor nationals, posting a fifth-place finish thanks to seventh and fifth-place moto scores. Despite missing the majority of the season, Windham continues his gradual climb through the standings, currently sitting in 16th place with only four rounds of racing to his credit.

GEICO Powersports Honda
Heartbreak is the way to describe Brett Metcalfe’s day at Moto-X 338. The Australian rider looked to be on his way to his first career 450 Class moto win only to run out of fuel on the final lap. The bad luck continued to Metcalfe in Moto 2 when he found trouble off the gates, but a determined effort through the field helped him garner seventh-place finish and secure some valuable points in his quest to overtake Andrew Short in the standings.

Jagermeister KTM
If there was ever a weekend to turn an entire season around, Mike Alessi experienced it at Southwick. The runner-up from the opening round of 2010 hadn’t been on the overall podium since Round 1, but a pair of stellar motos helped Alessi grab his second runner-up effort of the season while also vaulting him into fourth place in the standings with two rounds remaining.

Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil Honda
The fastest practice time of the day suggested Ben Townley would be a threat to take the win in the 450 Class at Moto-X 338 and the New Zealander was in the thick of the battle early on in each moto, only to encounter trouble and lose valuable ground. After a DNF in Moto 1, he overcame an early fall in Moto 2 to fend off his challengers and secure second place, helping him to a seventh-place finish overall.

Muscle Milk/Toyota/JGR
Josh Grant’s day at Southwick came to an end before it really ever had a chance to begin. The sophomore 450 Class rider fell on the first lap of practice and injured his right shoulder. As a result, he was forced to sit out the remainder of the day and could end up on the sidelines for the final two rounds as well.

Rockstar Energy Suzuki
Southwick was more of the same for Tommy Hahn. A promising start to the day was highlighted by a stellar runner-up effort in Moto1. However, he experienced trouble in Moto 2, posting a DNF and dropping him to eighth overall.

Monster Energy Kawasaki
After a short hiatus from the top 10, Nick Wey made a return at Southwick, using solid eighth and ninth place moto scores to finish sixth overall.

"Southwick went well for me," said Wey. "Steel City should be even better. Everything is sort of clicking right now and I’m having fun riding for the Monster Energy Kawasaki team."

Joining Wey under the Monster Energy Kawasaki tent this weekend at Steel City is Scottish rider Billy McKenzie. McKenzie rode for factory Kawasaki in Australia this summer and he is ready to race in America.

"These last two rounds should be a lot of fun," said McKenzie. "I was planning on racing in the States at least once this year and getting the chance to race for Monster Energy Kawasaki is incredible."

Christophe Pourcel looks to get back atop the podium this weekend.

250 AMA Motocross Class

Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki
While he still sits atop the 250 Class standings, Christophe Pourcel’s advantage over Trey Canard is dwindling. Currently, his advantage sits at 13 points and Steel City, where he took the overall win last season, could serve as the ideal place to get back atop the podium.

"I feel like there is less pressure when you’re leading the points," said Pourcel. "I am just going to go out and ride fast. I won Steel City last year so I am confident going into this weekend."

The series most recent winner and newest father, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Tyla Rattray has mixed emotions heading into Steel City, but he is still running off the high off the happiness he experienced at Southwick. Hopefully, it carries over to his performance on the track.

"I want to get back to racing, but I don’t want to leave home right now," said Rattray. "This week has been great and the family is fantastic, but it is time to get back out there and race."

Dean Wilson is looking to improve upon his Southwick finish with a strong ride at Steel City.

"This week at Steel City should be good," said Wilson. "We only have two races left and I want to get more wins."

GEICO Powersports Honda
While his four-race winning streak may have come to an end, Trey Canard still carries considerable momentum coming into Steel City. After a tough second moto hurt his chances at gaining even more ground on Pourcel, Canard will be hungrier than over to bounce back and make it known that the final four motos of the season will have to go through him.

Justin Barcia experienced a much-needed boost at Southwick, thanks to a strong runner-up effort. The New York native, who considers Moto-X 338 to be one of his favorite tracks, took his second moto win of the season and hopes that momentum will carry over to Steel City this weekend.

Tyla Rattray looks for two-in-a-row at Steel City on Saturday.
Courtesy Steve Cox/Racer X

WMX Class

With a significant 22-point lead over her rival and Honda Red Bull Racing rider Ashley Fiolek, Jessica Patterson appears to be in control of her own destiny over the final two rounds of the season. However, Steel City has proven to be a wild card race in the WMX Championship in the past and could once again change the landscape of the title fight. Both riders are hungry and want to add another coveted championship to their collection and will likely put on a show for the fans on Saturday.

Series Statistical Report
FMF Steel City National
Steel City Raceway – Delmont, Pa., September 4

* Steel City is the second of two rounds held in the state of Pennsylvania.

* The renowned facility has hosted an AMA Motocross event since 1989.

* The Steel City track is one of the most picturesque on the circuit and features one of the most technically challenging layouts of the 12 national events.

* Ryan Dungey and Ashley Fiolek clinched their respective 250 and WMX Class titles at Steel City last season.

* Ryan Dungey’s nine straight victories are the most ever by a rookie and the most ever by a rider that didn’t achieve a sweep of all 12 rounds.

* Dungey’s nine wins ties the rookie record set by Ricky Carmichael.

* Dungey has swept both motos at the last five rounds and has captured 16 of the last 18 motos. He boasts an average finish of 1.9 and remains the only rider in the class to capture more than one moto win.

* With his ninth win in the 450 Class, Dungey sits 13th on the all-time wins list and has more 450 Class victories than he did through three years of 250 Class competition.

* Dungey possesses the best average finish of any rider in the 450 Class at 1.9 and best average start at 3.0.

* Andrew Short has the most holeshots in the class with eight.

* Through 10 rounds of his rookie season, Ricky Carmichael had seven overall wins. He went on to win the final three rounds to bring the total to nine.

* Through 10 rounds of his rookie season, Ricky Carmichael had 12 moto wins. Dungey has 16.

* Dungey currently boasts an 11-moto winning streak. Carmichael’s longest in his rookie season was five.

* Throughout his entire rookie season, Carmichael had five moto sweeps. Dungey has seven through 10 rounds.

* Only Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki and GEICO Powersports Honda riders have won 250 Class motos in 2010. Each team boasts five overall victories.

* Tyla Rattray has only one moto win this season, and has surprisingly has led just one lap. Both of his overall wins have come from a pair of runner-up efforts.

* Of the five different winners in 10 rounds of the 250 Class, four were first-time winners in 2010.

* Three of Mitch Payton’s four Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki riders have won an overall in 2010.

* Canard possesses the best average finish of any rider in the 250 Class at 4.1. Pourcel holds the best average start at 4.5.

450 MX Class Stats

* The first 450 Class race held at Steel City was September 4, 1994. Mike LaRocco won on a Kawasaki.

* This will be the 17th time the gate will drop for a 450 Class race at Steel City.

* Ricky Carmichael, Kevin Windham, Jeff Emig and James Stewart have won at Steel City in both classes. Ryan Dungey will look to join that group.

* Ricky Carmichael won five consecutive races at Steel City from 2002 to 2006.

* From 1989-1993, Steel City hosted the 500cc National Championship. Kawasaki won all five races with Jeff Ward winning from 1989-1992.

* Suzuki and Kawasaki have swept Steel City in both the 450 and 250 classes twice, Honda has done it once.

* After an eight year drought at Steel City, Kawasaki has gone back-to-back with wins and stands as the winningest manufacturer at the track.

* Tommy Hahn became just the second first-time winner at Steel City last season.

Wins by brand at Steel City
Kawasaki – 6
Suzuki – 4
Honda – 4
Yamaha – 2

First Time Winners at Steel City
Grant Langston, 2007 – Yamaha
Tommy Hahn, 2008 – Kawasaki

Last win by brand at Steel City
Kawasaki – 2009
Yamaha – 2007
Suzuki – 2006
Honda – 2004

Riders to win Steel City in both classes
James Stewart
Ricky Carmichael
Kevin Windham
Jeff Emig

Brand Sweeps at Steel City
Kawasaki: Mike LaRocco, Robbie Reynard – 1994
Honda: Jeremy McGrath, Steve Lamson – 1995
Suzuki: Ricky Carmichael, Broc Hepler – 2005, 2006
Kawasaki: Tommy Hahn, Christophe Pourcel – 2009

Past Winners at Steel City
September 5, 2009 Tommy Hahn, Decatur, TX Kawasaki
August 31, 2008 James Stewart, Haines City, FL Kawasaki
August 26, 2007 Grant Langston, South Africa Yamaha
September 3, 2006 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Suzuki
September 4, 2005 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Suzuki
September 5, 2004 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Honda
August 31, 2003 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Honda
September 1, 2002 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Honda
September 2, 2001 Kevin Windham, Centreville, MS Suzuki
September 3, 2000 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Kawasaki
September 5, 1999 Greg Albertyn, South Africa Suzuki
September 6, 1998 Doug Henry, Oxford, CT Yamaha
August 31, 1997 Jeff Emig, Riverside, CA Kawasaki
September 1, 1996 Jeff Emig, Riverside, CA Kawasaki
September 3, 1995 Jeremy McGrath, Murrieta, CA Honda
September 4, 1994 Mike LaRocco, South Bend, IN Kawasaki

2010 450cc MX Stats

450 Class Point Standings – After 10 of 12 rounds

1. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki, 468
2. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, Honda, 317
3. Brett Metcalfe, Australia, Honda, 314
4. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., KTM, 273
5. Ben Townley, New Zealand, Honda, 271
6. Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Yamaha, 260
7. Kyle Chisholm, Valrico, Fla., Yamaha, 216
8. Chad Reed, Australia, Kawasaki, 204
9. Kyle Regal, Kemp, Texas, Honda, 201
10. Ryan Sipes, Vine Grove, Ky., Yamaha, 194
11. 450 Class Overall Wins
12. Ryan Dungey – 9
13. Chad Reed – 1

450 Class Moto Wins
Ryan Dungey – 16
Mike Alessi – 1
Josh Grant – 1
Chad Reed – 1
Andrew Short – 1

450 Class Wins by Brand
Suzuki – 9
Kawasaki – 1

450 Class Laps Led
Ryan Dungey – 157
Andrew Short – 56
Brett Metcalfe – 25
Ben Townley – 20
Mike Alessi – 19
Josh Grant – 19
Chad Reed – 16
Kevin Windham – 7
Clement Desalle – 4

450 Class Holeshots
Andrew Short – 8
Brett Metcalfe – 3
Ryan Dungey – 2
Kevin Windham – 2
Mike Alessi – 1
Justin Brayton – 1
Chad Reed – 1
Ryan Sipes – 1

2010 250cc MX Stats

* The first race was held at Steel City on October 1, 1989. Jeff Matiasevich won on a Kawasaki.

* This will be the 22nd time the gate will drop at Steel City for a 250 Class race.

* Three riders have won back-to-back races at Steel City: Robbie Reynard (93-94), Kevin Windham (96-97), and Broc Hepler (05-06). James Stewart won three in a row (2002-2004).

* Robbie Reynard and James Stewart are the winningest riders at Steel City with three victories each.

* Suzuki has won three of the last five races at Steel City. Kawasaki has won two of the last three.

Wins by brand at Steel City
Kawasaki – 10
Suzuki – 6
Yamaha – 3
Honda – 2

First time winners at Steel City
Jeff Matiasevich, 1989 – Kawasaki

Last win by brand at Steel City
Kawasaki – 2009
Suzuki – 2008
Yamaha – 1997
Honda – 1995

Past Winners at Steel City
September 5, 2009 Christophe Pourcel, France Kawasaki
August 31, 2008 Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, MN Suzuki
August 26, 2007 Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, WA Kawasaki
September 3, 2006 Broc Hepler, Kittanning, PA Suzuki
September 4, 2005 Broc Hepler, Kittanning, PA Suzuki
September 5, 2004 James Stewart, Haines City, FL Kawasaki
August 31, 2003 James Stewart, Haines City, FL Kawasaki
September 1, 2002 James Stewart, Haines City, FL Kawasaki
September 2, 2001 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Kawasaki
September 3, 2000 Travis Pastrana, Annapolis, MD Suzuki
September 5, 1999 Ricky Carmichael, Havana, FL Kawasaki
September 6, 1998 Robbie Reynard, Norman, OK Suzuki
August 31, 1997 Kevin Windham, Baton Rouge, LA Yamaha
September 1, 1996 Kevin Windham, Baton Rouge, LA Yamaha
September 3, 1995 Steve Lamson, Pollock Pines, CA Honda
September 4, 1994 Robbie Reynard, Moore, OK Kawasaki
September 5, 1993 Robbie Reynard, Moore, OK Kawasaki
September 27, 1992 Jeff Emig, Highland, CA Yamaha
September 29, 1991 Guy Cooper, Stillwater, OK Suzuki
September 30, 1990 Mike Kiedrowski, Canyon Country, CA Honda
October 1, 1989 Jeff Matiasevich, La Habra Heights, CA Kawasaki

250 Class Point Standings – After 10 of 12 rounds

1. Christophe Pourcel, France, Kawasaki, 399
2. Trey Canard, Shawnee, Okla., Honda, 386
3. Tyla Rattray, South Africa, Kawasaki, 364
4. Dean Wilson, Scotland, Kawasaki, 363
5. Justin Barcia, Ochlocknee, Ga., Honda, 291
6. Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Honda, 262
7. Blake Wharton, Pilot Point, Texas, Honda, 259
8. Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Yamaha, 232
9. Martin Davalos, Ecuador, Yamaha, 210
10. Jake Weimer, Rupert, Idaho, Kawasaki, 195

250 Class Overall Wins
Trey Canard – 4
Christophe Pourcel – 2
Tyla Rattray – 2
Eli Tomac – 1
Dean Wilson – 1

250 Class Moto Wins
Christophe Pourcel – 9
Trey Canard – 6
Justin Barcia – 2
Tyla Rattray – 1
Eli Tomac – 1
Dean Wilson – 1

250 Class Wins by Brand
Honda – 5
Kawasaki – 5

250 Class Laps Led
Christophe Pourcel – 101
Trey Canard – 91
Dean Wilson – 40
Justin Barcia – 35
Eli Tomac – 35
Wil Hahn – 13
Tommy Searle – 2
Tyla Rattray – 1

250 Class Holeshots
Eli Tomac – 5
Christophe Pourcel – 4
Trey Canard – 3
Wil Hahn – 3
Dean Wilson – 3
Justin Barcia – 1
Nico Izzi – 1


2010 WMX Class Stats

WMX Class Point Standings – Thru 6 of 8 Rounds

1. Jessica Patterson, Tallahassee, Fla., Yamaha, 288
2. Ashley Fiolek, St. Augustine, Fla., Honda, 266
3. Tarah Gieger, Winter Gardens, Fla., Honda, 229
4. Vicki Golden, El Cajon, Calif., Yamaha, 190
5. Sara Price, Canyon Lake, Calif., Kawasaki, 180
6. Sarah Whitmore, Cheboygan, Mich., KTM, 176
7. Mariana Balbi, Brazil, Yamaha, 169
8. Alexah Pearson, Rocklin, Calif., Yamaha, 138
9. Tatum Sik, Temecula, Calif., Yamaha, 135
10. Erica Cook, Natalia, Texas, Yamaha, 113
11. WMX Class Overall Wins
12. Jessica Patterson – 5
13. Ashley Fiolek – 1

WMX Class Moto Wins
Jessica Patterson – 8
Ashley Fiolek – 4

WMX Class Wins by Brand
Yamaha – 5
Honda – 1


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.