AMA Supercross West Lites to Utah
Western Supercross Lites
The Seattle round of Supercross, two weeks ago, marked the resumption of the Supercross Lites Western Regional Championship.
The event saw a flip-flop of lead position for Broc Tickle and Josh Hansen, both riding on the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/ Kawasaki team.
Going into the race Josh Hansen was leading by three points, but by the end of the race Tickle found himself in the top spot with a third place finish. Hansen, slowed by a still healing broken hand, finished sixth, riding in obvious pain.
Hansen is determined to nail the championship. If he does, not only will it be his first AMA title, but perhaps more significantly, it will be the first time a father-son have won the title (Josh’s father, Donnie Hansen, won the title for Honda in 1982).
Josh Hansen says: “I really want to win the championship and I hope I’ve shown that I want it. I’m not giving up and I’ve been working hard to make sure I can be ready for Salt Lake City.”
Tickle is weathering his own injury. Two weeks prior to the Seattle race he broke his collarbone, which required plating. The injury is causing him a marked degree of discomfort. Regardless, Tickle has his eyes set firmly on the prize.
Broc Tickle says: “I am really looking for another win. I am definitely happy that I am in the points lead and that is the ultimate goal. I really liked Salt Lake City last year so I hope it’s a good chance for me to get another win and extend my points lead.”
Lingering in third position, just off the leader by seven points, is rookie sensation Eli Tomac with 138 points (to Tickle’s 145, and Hansen’s 143). The maturity this eighteen year-old, Geico/Amsoil/Honda Team rider has exhibited throughout the series suggests he may actually be Hansen’s and Tickle’s biggest concern, as opposed to each other.
Eli Tomac says: “I think this should be a really good race for me since I live and train at elevation. Plus, I’ll be practicing at my house in Colorado leading right up to the race so that will give me a little bit of on edge on the other riders. My goals are the same every weekend.”
“I want to get in there, ride hard, do my thing, and try to pick up some points. If I ride the way I’m capable of riding, good things will happen. It’s really exciting to even be in this position in my first year in Supercross so I’m enjoying the experience.”
Like the Supercross class, the Lites action looks to be going right down to the wire. The small margin of points separating the top riders in both classes is certain to make for some exciting racing in Salt Lake City Saturday night.
The Salt Lake City round airs Sunday evening at 6 p.m. (EDT) on SPEED TV.