With three rounds remaining in the 2015 Monster Energy Supercross Series – an FIM World Championship – Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey has clinched the 450SX title.
The KTM SX-F450 pilot entered round 14 at NRG Stadium in Houston with the chance to claim the title. If Dungey would win, or finish third or better if rival Eli Tomac won, he would complete the task.
The 25-year-old of Minnesota wouldn’t have to worry; he would finish second behind Team HRC Honda’s Cole Seely, who won his first-ever 450SX Championship, and ahead of Tomac. This was Dungey’s 13th-straight podium in 2015 Supercross, and allowed him to secure the title before over 48,000 fans.
“The team and I worked so hard to get to this point,” Dungey said from the podium. “There are hardly words to explain how good this feels. There were a lot of ups and downs along the way, but my team stood behind me through it all and provided me the best bike. I am so excited for this championship but am looking forward to the next goal. We aren’t done yet.”
Dungey did well in his heat, leading all laps after slipping into first on lap two. This gave him the top-gate pick for the main. During that main, Dungey would have a tough start, coming around the first corner outside of 10th.
Dungey began battling through the field, and was into sixth by mid-race. He then charged into second, where he finished behind Seely and ahead of Tomac. Rounding out the top five were Kawasaki’s Josh Grant and Kawasaki’s Chad Reed, respectively.
The major figures of KTM, which entered its first SX-F 450 in SX in 2011, also commented after Dungey earned the title.
KTM CEO, Stefan Pierer, says “To win any World Championship is an outstanding success and is of immense importance for KTM. But the US Supercross title is very special and highlights our huge commitment in the worldwide motocross sport. With tenacity we made it to the top in this sport, which releases a vast amount of emotions. I would like to thank all those that have been involved and helped to push forward this extremely important project, and of course, I’d like to thank Ryan who has had a great season in 2015.”
KTM Motorsports Director, Pit Beirer, says, “One of my personal dreams came true today. We started our Supercross race department completely from scratch in 2011, and what has been achieved in this very short time is outstanding. The key to everything, and I call it the best trip of my life, was my first meeting with Roger De Coster in the summer of 2010. Together with Roger we have formed the best and strongest team you can imagine.
“From there our worldwide race network has become stronger and it has been a 24-hour effort each day. With the full commitment of our R&D and Motorsports departments in Austria and the USA, we managed to create the best bike in a short time. However, we cannot perform without the best riders on our bike, which is why we are thankful to Ryan. He trusted us at a very early stage of the project.
“Ryan has set some major milestones for our company; first 450 SX win, first professional Motocross Championship title and now he has brought our final goal of the 450 Supercross title. I would like to say thank you “team” and thank you Ryan.”
The 2015 SX series heads directly to Santa Clara, Calif., for its inaugural stop at Levi’s Stadium Saturday, April 18.
2015 Houston Supercross Results, 450SX:
- Cole Seely, Laguna Beach, Calif., Honda
- Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM
- Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Honda
- Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Kawasaki
- Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Kawasaki
- Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, KTM
- Davi Millsaps, Murrieta, Calif., Kawasaki
- Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Suzuki
- Justin Barcia, Greenville, Fla., Yamaha
- Justin Brayton, Murrieta, Calif., KTM
450SX Class Season Standings (after 14 of 17 rounds):
- Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM, 318
- Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Honda, 236
- Cole Seely, Laguna Beach, Calif., Honda, 223
- Trey Canard, Edmond, Okla., Honda, 204
- Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Kawasaki, 199
- Blake Baggett, Grand Terrace, Calif., Suzuki, 175
- Jason Anderson, Edgewood, N.M., Husqvarna, 170
- Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Suzuki, 159
- Ken Roczen, Clermont, Fla., Suzuki, 156
- Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, KTM, 152