With a solid 2-1 finish at Budds Creek and a poor finish by Andrew Short it gave the championship to Reed.
Well, scratch one championship chase off the calendar for ’09. Chad Reed
(Rockstar Makita Suzuki
) wrapped up the 2009 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross
450cc Championship with four motos to go after a 2-1 day at Budds Creek, combined with Andrew Short’s lackluster 7-10. Now the battle is between Short and his Honda
Red Bull Racing teammate, Ivan Tedesco for second overall in the championship chase.
Josh Grant (JGRMX Toyota/Yamaha
) came off the couch to try and do battle in an effort to maintain third overall, and was in some considerable pain. While there aren’t any displaced broken bits in his ankles, he does have some stress fractures, and was receiving treatment throughout the day on both of his feet and ankles.
Josh Grant tried to maintain his third place in points, but the pain was too much.
By wrapping up the championship, Chad filled one of the major gaps in his racing resume. To this point he’d never won an outdoor title, and while he does confess that his attention was more focused on guys like Jeremy McGrath and Supercross, you could tell that he was hungry for an outdoor title, which explains why he came back this year. It also accounts for why he hung in there during the season while struggling through health issues, even though he did say that he almost threw in the towel earlier in the year.
So will Chad try to jump down to the 250cc class to help his teammate, Ryan Dungey? Nope. He told us that he’s not that comfortable on the smaller bikes, and that Dungey will have to win that one on his own. Just speculating, but maybe he also watched Kevin Windham’s shot in that class last weekend.
Cole Seeley gave Dungey some backup at Budds Creek, borrowing Nico Izzi's idle RM-Z250.
There actually was a second Rockstar Makita Suzuki under the 250 awning this weekend, and nope, it wasn’t Nico Izzi, who’s still healing up from the heel that he broke at the Jacksonville Supercross. Instead, it was Suzuki support rider Cole Seeley, who got a shot at the once-idle bike. That was the good news. Unfortunately, it also happened to be on a weekend where it was a torrential downpour, and much of the advantage that he might have gotten from the bike was negated by puddles and ponds on the track.
So while Ryan Dungey will be a lone Suzuki effort in the 250s for the remaining two rounds, the Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki
truck is nearly back to full capacity. Both Tyla Rattray and Austin Stroupe returned last week, and we haven’t seen Stroupe try as hard all season as he did in the second moto on Saturday when he was behind Dungey. Jake Weimer (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki) did help out his teammate, points leader Christophe Pourcel in the first moto, putting himself between Pourcel and Dungey, but when Pourcel struggled with brake problems during the second moto (with Dungey even further back), Weimer did take the opportunity to go by early leader Brett Metcalfe (Geico Powersports Honda) for the win, and the overall.
What's going on with Kevin Windham? No one is quite sure...
was back on his familiar 450 this weekend, rather than the 250 experiment from Unadilla, but finished 22nd in the first moto. He then didn’t show for the second moto, and when we quizzed Geico Powersports Honda team rider coach Mike Larocco where he was, he said, “He didn’t ride.” When pressed a little further, Mike said something like, “He’s not ready to race.” We also got an email from JC Waterhouse after the race, saying that he’s no longer managing the team. While we’re not sure that the two items are related, you do get the impression that there are some changes underway over at Factory Connection Racing.
How about substitute news? Matt Goerke had a much better weekend in his substitute role with the Yamaha Factory Racing squad, finishing third in the first moto. We’re not sure what happened with him in the rainy second moto, but he finished in 27th spot there. When we talked to Yamaha Factory Racing team manager Jimmy Perry at Unadilla about how long Matt would be with the team, he said that Matt was guaranteed a spot for Unadilla and Budds Creek, and that the team would make a determination afterward as to whether he’d continue for Southwick and Steel City based on his results and Josh Hill’s recovery status. We’re hoping that we’ll see him on the bike again next weekend, as Matt’s always good in the sand at Southwick.
Speaking of Matt, we’re not sure what was happening with his gear, but he was sporting his normal Moose jersey, and some of Josh Hill’s Thor pants. That made for an unusual combo.
The guest rider circus continues for Monster Kawasaki as their 450 riders are out injured. Jake Moss filled in at Budds Creek and looked good in Moto 1 before suffering mechanical issues.
Jake Moss was found under the Monster Energy Kawasaki awning this weekend, making him something like the seventh different substitute rider that the team has used this season while Ryan Villopoto and/or Timmy Ferry were out of action. Moss looked good on the big KX450F
, running in third spot before Matt Goerke hit him during a pass attempt. That caused the header on Jake’s bike to come into contact with an oil line that runs to an external cooler. Well, it doesn’t take rocket science to figure out that’s not going to work, and soon there was oil and smoke spewing from the bike as the oil leaked out. Jake also had a loop out crash where his oil-coated boot caused him to miss the brake pedal. He finished 31st in moto one, and ninth in the second moto after charging from deep in the pack. (He was 22nd after the first lap.)
One of the most impressive newcomers in recent weeks, though, is Kyle Regal. He’s come to life after jumping over to the Valli Motorsports Yamaha squad, he tied with Ivan Tedesco for a podium spot, unfortunately for Kyle, Ivan’s better second moto finish was the difference. Kyle did score a nice check from Monster for being the top finishing privateer, though. If he keeps turning in rides like that, he’s going to start getting a lot of attention from team managers looking to fill out their rosters for next season.
Kyle Regal logged a solid result and could be a top pick for teams in 2010 if he keeps the ball rolling.
The same goes for Tommy Hahn, who keeps putting up impressive moto finishes, like his second-place in moto two of the 450s. Now if he could just put back-to-back finishes in place…on the same day…
The pits were once again crowded, especially compared to Millville, where it was extremely lean. Unfortunately, the fields were so full a few hopefuls were locked out of the 250 class racing, like Michael Picone, Tevin Tapia, and a few others. One new rookie who did make the field was Blake Baggett. Nate Ramsey has been working with Blake, and though he did have a first-turn crash in moto one, he came back to 12th spot. In the unfamiliar muddy conditions of moto two, the Californian finished in 23rd spot.
How about a couple rumors before we wrap up this version of the Insider? Justin Brayton may be a fit with the JGRMX Toyota/Yamaha team for next season, though we’re hearing that he may be getting some attention from other factory squads as well. The MotoConcepts Racing squad will be Yamaha-mounted next year. We also hear that Roger Decoster finally got some budget to work with from Suzuki, and they’re in the hunt to try and keep Ryan Dungey. Where that leaves Chad Reed? We’re not sure. One thing that is interesting, though, Chad said to effectively defend his title in his Australian Supercross championship he’ll need to wrap up a deal in the next three weeks or so. Yikes!
Be sure to check back again next week to see what happens at the penultimate round of the series in Southwick, where the women will return to the mix.
1. Chad Reed (Suzuki) 2-1
2. Davi Millsaps (Honda) 1-6
3. Ivan Tedesco (Honda) 5-3
4. Kyle Regal (Yamaha) 4-4
5. Tommy Hahn (Kawasaki) 12-2
6. Michael Byrne (Suzuki) 9-8
7. Timmy Ferry (Kawasaki) 9-8
8. Andrew Short (Honda) 7-10
9. Matt Goerke (Yamaha) 3-27
10. Jimmy Albertson (Yamaha) 11-12
11. Justin Brayton (KTM) 17-7
12. Tyler Bowers (Honda) 10-15
13. Cody Cooper (Yamaha) 16-11
14. Antonio Balbi (Honda) 14-14
15. Nick Wey (Yamaha) 8-21
16. Jake Moss (Kawasaki) 31-9
17. Christian Craig (Yamaha) 30-13
18. Josh Grant (Yamaha) 13-37
19. Shaun Skinner (Honda)
20. Jason Thomas (Honda) 39-16
450 Point Standings
1. Chad Reed 434
2. Andrew Short 330
3. Ivan Tedesco 322
4. Josh Grant 280
5. Michael Byrne 276
6. Tommy Hahn 229
7. Justin Brayton 201
8. Cody Cooper 176
9. Nick Wey 176
10. Jimmy Albertson 150
11. Mike Alessi 142
12. Davi Millsaps 141
13. Ricky Dietrich 136
14. Matt Goerke 91
15. Antonio Balbi 81
16. Tyler Bowers 80
17. Kyle Regal 78
18. Jeff Alessi 75
19. Jake Moss 72
20. Jarred Browne 72
1. Jake Weimer (Kawasaki) 2-1
2. Christophe Pourcel (Kawasaki) 1-3
3. Ryan Dungey (Suzuki) 3-4
4. Justin Barcia (Honda) 4-7
5. Austin Stroupe (Kawasaki) 8-6
6. Brett Metcalfe (Honda) 18-2
7. Matt Lemoine (Yamaha) 14-5
8. Ryan Sipes (KTM) 11-9
9. P. J. Larsen (Kawasaki) 10-10
10. Tyla Rattray (Kawasaki) 6-15
11. Darryn Durham (Yamaha) 5-35
12. Broc Tickle (Yamaha) 16-11
13. Tommy Searle (KTM) 7-21
14. Taylor Futrell (Honda) 23-8
15. Kyle Cunningham (Kawasaki) 9-34
16. Tucker Hibbert (Yamaha) 27-12
17. Alex Martin (Honda) 13-20
18. Blake Baggett (Kawasaki) 12-23
19. Willy Browning (Honda) 28-13
20. James DeCotis (Suzuki) 31-14
250 Point Standings
1. Christophe Pourcel 432
2. Ryan Dungey 419
3. Brett Metcalfe 312
4. Jake Weimer 302
5. Tommy Searle 282
6. Justin Barcia 267
7. Broc Tickle 242
8. Blake Wharton 214
9. Tyla Rattray 196
10. Kyle Cunningham 174
11. Matt Lemoine 174
12. Darryn Durham 150
13. Trey Canard 139
14. Ben Evans 124
15. Max Anstie 107
16. Wil Hahn 97
17. P. J. Larsen 96
18. Steven Clarke 94
19. Alex Martin 82
20. Austin Stroupe 77