Jessica Patterson used the MotorcycleUSA.com holeshot to her advantage by jumping out front and sprinting away to the checkered flag for an opening-round victory at Hangtown. The former five-time Women’s Motocross champion switched teams in the offseason to ride for DNA Shred Stix Star Racing Yamaha and the move obviously paid off as she rode the new YZ250F into victory circle. Patterson, now running the Number 2 rather than her customary #250, has been working hard with renowned fitness and health freak/motocross star, Ryan Hughes, during the offseason. The mentoring and physical fitness guidance has obviously paid off as Patterson walked to a sweep in Rancho Cordova, California.
Jessica Patterson, shown here holeshotting during 2009, again took the MotorcycleUSA.com holeshot award and put it to good use in collecting the win at Hangtown.
Last year saw Fiolek and Patterson split wins, but Jessica had no interest in sharing this time around and the Yamaha rider pounced on the eight-round series lead right from the start. The factory Red Bull Honda racer landed on the podium in both motos, but Fiolek was unable to chase down the motivated Patterson. Florida’s Tarah Geiger put her Lucas Oil Troy Lee Designs Honda on the final overall podium step with 2-6 scores.
"I really didn't get a chance to ride the way I know I can," Tarah said in a press release. "I couldn't get comfortable with the track all day and I hit a stalled rider in the second moto that knocked me down and had me riding from the back the whole race. Texas is a good track for me and I'm looking forward to getting out there."
Brazilian import Mariana Balbi landed on the box in Moto 2 and could have been there in the overall if it weren’t for a ninth place in the opening circuit. She lead Alexah Pearson (5-5-5) and Honda-mounted Elizabeth Bash.
Patterson holds an eight-point lead heading into the holiday weekend. The Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship takes a week off for Memorial Day but resumes with Round 2 from Freestone Raceway in Wortham, Texas on June 5th. The women will again join the Saturday program for the second round as Fiolek looks to rebound and work her way into the championship lead. With only eight rounds, the women have less time to sort themselves out, so she who wins early has the best chance of claiming this title.
Fiolek took second and is eight points out of the overall lead heading into Round 2.
1. Jessica Patterson, Yamaha (1-1)
2. Ashley Fiolek, Honda (3-2)
3. Tarah Gieger, Honda (2-6)
4. Mariana Balbi, Yamaha (9-3)
5. Alexah Pearson, Yamaha (5-5)
6. Elizabeth Bash, Honda (8-4)
7. Vicki Golden, Yamaha (4-10)
8. Sayaka Kaneshiro, Suzuki (7-9)
9. Tatum Sik, Yamaha (10-7)
10. Jacqueline Strong, Yamaha (14-8)
WMX Overall Standings:
1. Jessica Patterson, 50
2. Ashley Fiolek, 42
3. Tarah Gieger, 37
4. Mariana Balbi, 32
5. Alexah Pearson, 32
6. Elizabeth Bash, 31
7. Vicki Golden, 29
8. Sayaka Kaneshiro, 26
9. Tatum Sik, 25
10. Jacqueline Strong, 20