Tomac's First Win Adds Intrigue as Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship Travels to Minnesota's Spring Creek MX Park
Championship Leader Webb Chasing Four Straight in 250 Class
Championship Leader Webb Chasing Four Straight in 250 Class
MORGANTOWN, W. Va. (July 11, 2016) - The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, will make the annual visit to one of its most challenging and legendary venues this Saturday, July 16, as Spring Creek MX Park in Millville, Minnesota, hosts the eighth round of the 2016 season with the La Crescent Wine & Spirit Spring Creek National. Following his anticipated return to the top step of the overall podium this past weekend, Monster Energy
Kawasaki's Eli Tomac has added competitive intrigue to the 450 Class as he continues to chase RCH Soaring Eagle/Jimmy John's/Suzuki Factory Racing's Ken Roczen atop the championship standings. In the 250 Class, the midseason surge by Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha's Cooper Webb continued with yet another victorious outing, giving him a chance to chase four straight wins and continue to build on his current points lead.
Tomac had been knocking on the door of his first win of 2016 for several weeks. The Colorado native recorded five straight second-place moto finishes heading into last weekend's return to Southwick and finished runner-up to Roczen in the overall classification at Muddy Creek and RedBud, nearly stealing victory in Tennessee. It seemed like only a matter of time before he and his Kawasaki team hit the mark on their set up, and the sands of Southwick proved to be the ideal fit to put forth his most impressive performance in over a year. Ever since major shoulder injuries forced Tomac out of the 2015 title fight that he dominated up until his season-ending crash, fans have been patiently waiting for him to return to the form that cemented his status as a future star. He rose to the occasion at The Wick 338, tracking down and passing Roczen in both motos en route to a 1-1 sweep, and became the sixth rider in track history to claim victory in both the 250 Class and 450 Class.
Tomac was the last 250 Class winner at Southwick at the championship's previous visit back in 2013, and became its first 450 Class winner to usher in the track's new era in 2016. The win wasn't only a much-needed confidence booster for Tomac, it was arguably even more important to the Monster Energy Kawasaki effort, who has patiently waited for two-and-a-half seasons to get back atop the overall podium. Ryan Villopoto last won for the brand at the final round of his championship-winning 2013 season.
Despite missing out on a moto win for the first time this season, Roczen left Southwick with his head held high. The German rider acknowledged that the team's overall approach to the sands at The Wick 338 added to their challenge of chasing the win, but he hounded Tomac throughout the entirety of the second moto and was just over a second away from grabbing his sixth victory. Moreover, he minimized the damage done by Tomac in the championship by finishing second in each moto, giving up just six points. As a result, Roczen still holds a very comfortable lead in his quest for a second 450 Class title, currently sitting at 47 points.
Joining the championship's lead duo on the podium was Autotrader/Monster Energy/Yamaha's Justin Barcia, who broke through for his first overall podium finish of the season but probably left Southwick wondering what might have been. After posting the fastest overall lap of practice, Barcia was favored to contend for the win once the motos got underway. Unfortunately, adversity struck in the first turn and Barcia was left to pick his bike out of a pileup and start at the tail end of the field. He did well to recover and completed the first lap in 24th, eventually fighting back all the way up to sixth. He took advantage of a cleaner start in the second moto to finish third, ultimately landing him on the box in the overall classification. The 2016 season hasn't gone as well as Barcia would have hoped for thus far, especially considering his breakout 2015 campaign, but he's been trending upward and looks poised for more success.
With the dynamic challenges of Spring Creek on the horizon, Tomac enters Minnesota as the only past winner currently competing. He earned his first career victory in Millville in 2014, and his attacking approach to racing lends itself to the often-grueling conditions of Spring Creek. Roczen's career at the track is a mixed bag of results, but he's arguably the best he's ever been coming into Millville, which sets the stage for another thrilling battle between he and Tomac.
Ever since he broke through to claim his first win of the season three weeks ago, Webb has been perhaps the hottest rider in Lucas Oil Pro Motocross. Prior to Tennessee, Webb had led just five laps and earned just one moto win. Since then he's led 37 laps and has won four of the last six motos, with a pair of runner-up finishes. His 1.3 finishing average over that stretch is nearly two positions better than any other rider and has pushed him out to a 37-point lead in the championship.
Webb carried the red number plate for the first time in his career at Southwick and was clearly unfazed by the added pressure that comes with it. The North Carolina native overcame a ninth-place start in the first moto to claw his way to second and parlayed his second holeshot of the season in the final moto to a wire-to-wire effort that capped off his winning effort. For a rider who entered the season with a wrist injury that put his chances at contending in question, Webb has overcome any issues that plagued him to start the year and looks to be the rider to beat as the season hits its home stretch.
Webb was joined on the podium by his Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha teammate Jeremy Martin, the defending back-to-back champion, who is now just one point behind Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki's Joey Savatgy for second in the 250 Class standings. Savtagy has endured through two of his worst outings of the season the past two rounds, watching what was once a 20-point lead turn into a near 40-point deficit. Both Martin and Savatgy, along with Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha's Alex Martin, have been Webb's most consistent challengers this season and all three will need to continue to chase victory if they are to slow Webb's incredible run of momentum.
For the Martin brothers there isn't a better place to turn the tide into their favor than Spring Creek. The facility is owned and operated by their parents and gives an entirely new meaning to the term "home field advantage." Both siblings have been riding countless laps at their track leading up to this weekend and both Jeremy and Alex will seek to claim their first ever win at Spring Creek. Webb spoiled their hopes one year ago and enters as the defending race winner, which is sure to make for an exciting battle on Saturday afternoon.
La Crescent Wine & Spirit Spring Creek National Round 8: Lucas Oil Pro Motocross ChampionshipJuly 16, 2016 - Millville, Minnesota
Race Day Schedule:
6:30 a.m. PT / 9:30 a.m. ET - Practice & Qualifying
10:30 a.m. PT / 1:30 p.m. ET - Opening Ceremonies
11:00 a.m. PT / 2:00 p.m. ET - First Motos (250 Class & 450 Class)
1:00 p.m. PT / 4:00 p.m. ET - Second Motos (250 Class & 450 Class)
July 16 - 11:00 a.m. PT / 2:00 p.m. ET (LIVE) - MAVTV - First Motos (250 & 450 Class)July 16 - 4:00 p.m. PT / 7:00 p.m. ET - NBC Sports Network - Second 450 Class Moto
July 16 - 8:00 p.m. PT / 11:00 p.m. ET - NBC Sports Network - Second 250 Class Moto
July 22 - 11:00 p.m. PT / 2:00 a.m. ET - NBC Sports Network - Highlight Show
**BOLD indicates live broadcast.***All times subject to change.
Previous Round Results
Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship
Red Bull Southwick National
The Wick 338 - Southwick, Massachusetts
July 9, 2016
Round 7 of 12
450 Class Overall Results (Moto Finish)
- Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki (1-1)
- Ken Roczen, Germany, Suzuki (2-2)
- Justin Barcia, Monroe, N.Y., Yamaha (6-3)
- Marvin Musquin, France, KTM (3-7)
- Weston Peick, Menifee, Calif., Yamaha (7-4)
- Christophe Pourcel, France, Husqvarna (5-5)
- Benny Bloss, Oak Grove, Mo., KTM (8-6)
- Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Suzuki (10-8)
- Justin Brayton, Fort Dodge, Iowa, KTM (9-9)
- Andrew Short, Colorado Springs, Colo., KTM (11-11)
- Ken Roczen, Germany, Suzuki - 337
- Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki - 290
- Marvin Musquin, France, KTM - 201
- Justin Barcia, Monroe, N.Y., Yamaha - 181
- Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Suzuki - 171
- Christophe Pourcel, France, Husqvarna - 168
- Cole Seely, Newbury Park, Calif., Honda - 151
- Justin Bogle, Cushing, Okla., Honda - 136
- Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM - 131
- Justin Brayton Fort Dodge, Iowa, KTM - 120
- Cooper Webb, Newport, N.C., Yamaha (2-1)
- Jeremy Martin, Millville, Minn., Yamaha (1-4)
- Austin Forkner, Richards, Mo., Kawasaki (5-2)
- Alex Martin, Millville, Minn., Yamaha (7-3)
- Aaron Plessinger, Hamilton, Ohio, Yamaha (4-5)
- Arnaud Tonus, Switzerland, Kawasaki (3-8)
- Zach Osborne, Abingdon, Va., Husqvarna (8-7)
- Luke Renzland, Hewitt, N.J., Yamaha (12-9)
- Joey Savatgy, Thomasville, Ga., Kawasaki (10-11)
- Martin Davalos, Ecuador, Husqvarna (16-6)
- Cooper Webb, Newport, N.C., Yamaha - 290
- Joey Savatgy, Thomasville, Ga., Kawasaki - 253
- Jeremy Martin, Millville, Minn., Yamaha - 252
- Alex Martin, Millville, Minn., Yamaha - 232
- Zach Osborne, Abingdon, Va., Husqvarna - 217
- Austin Forkner, Richards, Mo., Kawasaki - 202
- Aaron Plessinger, Hamilton, Ohio, Yamaha - 186
- Arnaud Tonus, Switzerland, Kawasaki - 138
- Shane McElrath, Canton, N.C., KTM - 132
- RJ Hampshire, Hudson, Fla., Honda - 132
- Mitchell Oldenburg, Alvord, Texas, KTM - 132
Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship
The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, features the world's fastest outdoor motocross racers, racing aboard the best bikes each factory offers, on the roughest, toughest tracks in the world. The 12-rounds series begins at Hangtown in May and ends at Indiana's Ironman Raceway in August. It includes stops at the premier motocross racing facilities in America, with events in California, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Michigan, Massachusetts, Maryland, Minnesota, Washington, New York and Indiana. The pro riders race on Saturday afternoon, with competition divided into two classes: one for 250cc machines, and one for 450cc machines. The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship is managed by MX Sports Pro Racing, the industry leader in off-road power sports event production. The series is televised on NBC, NBCSN and MAVTV and streamed live on NBC Sports Live Extra. Series partners include Lucas Oil (series title sponsor), Red Bull, GoPro, WPS, Fly Racing, GEICO Motorcycle, Kawasaki, Motorcycle Superstore, FRAM, KTM, Oakley, FMF, Deltran Battery Tender, Pirelli, Suzuki, Husqvarna, Pivot Works, Vertex, ProGrip, EBC Brakes, KMC Wheels, MotionPro, VP Racing Fuels, Acerbis and Racer X. More information can be found at www.ProMotocross.com.
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