Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway more than 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.
Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.
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Dungey Posts Most Dominant Effort of 2014 at Washougal, Gains Considerable Ground in Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship Fight
The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, returned to the west coast on Saturday afternoon with its annual visit to the Pacific Northwest and Washougal MX Park for the Motosport.com Washougal National, presented by Peterson CAT. For the second time in the last three rounds, Red Bull KTM's Ryan Dungey topped the 450 Class, posting his first 1-1 sweep of the season for his third overall victory of 2014 and gaining significant ground in the championship standings. In the 250 Class, Red Bull KTM's Marvin Musquin duplicated the efforts of his premier class teammate, earning the first 1-1 sweep of his career en route to his first win of the season.
Washougal's trophies are always in the spirit of the Pacific Northwest.
Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X
Toyota/Yamaha/N-FAB/JGRMX's Justin Brayton was first out of the turn in the opening 450 Class moto, securing the Motosport.com Holeshot Award just ahead of Dungey. The KTM rider wasted little time in making his move on Brayton and took over control of the lead on the opening lap while his closest rivals, Red Bull KTM teammate Ken Roczen and GEICO Honda's Eli Tomac, battled from behind. With a clear track ahead of him, Dungey was able to consistently pull away but the battled behind him proved to be the highlight of the moto.
Roczen was able to pass Team Honda Muscle Milk's Trey Canard for second on Lap 4 and looked to settle into the position, but Tomac was on a charge through the field following an 11th-place start. The Honda rookie and winner at the previous round methodically moved his way forward and had Roczen in his sights after taking over third on Lap 5. In the ensuing laps Tomac steadily closed the gap on his fellow rookie and after about five laps of pursuit, made the move for the runner-up spot on Lap 10.
Out front, Dungey took the moto win by nearly 14 seconds with Tomac second and Roczen third. Canard followed in fourth while Monster Energy Kawasaki's Brett Metcalfe rounded out the top five.
Dungey's best outing of 2014 came at the right time, gaining 10 points in the championship.
Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X
Brayton once again put himself at the forefront of the field at the start of Moto 2, sweeping the afternoon's Motosport.com Holeshot Awards. Metcalfe and BTO Sports KTM's Andrew Short rounded out the top three off the start, with Dungey in fourth. Tomac slotted in a few spots behind Dungey in about seventh, while Roczen was forced to battle his way from a start outside the top 10.
As he did in the first moto, Dungey seized the opportunity on the opening lap and jumped from fourth to first in one corner, immediately pulling away. Tomac wasted little time following Dungey through, moving into the top three, picking off multiple riders to secure second by Lap 2. While the lead duo checked out, Roczen was doing his part by fighting his way into a podium position. While he had to do battle with Metcalfe over the course of several laps for third, Roczen eventually made the pass stick and asserted himself in the final podium spot.
The top three stayed the same through to the finish, with Dungey crossing the line over eight seconds ahead of Tomac. Roczen was a distant third.
"Today was just about coming in and not worrying about the championship. There's a lot of racing left [this season]," said Dungey, who won for the fourth time in five tries in the 450 Class at Washougal. "We just tried to put out our best effort and we did that. We got great starts and Eli [Tomac] kept us honest in that second moto, but I just really tried to put the hammer down and extend the gap. Fortunately we did that. I love it here [at Washougal] and this just feels awesome."
Dungey's win was a landmark one, marking the 30th of his 450 Class career and his 37th combined victory (including the 250 Class) in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship. Tomac followed in second (2-2) with Roczen completing the podium in third (3-3). Metcalfe posted a season-best finish in fourth (5-4), while Short rounded out the top five (6-5).
"You always want to be up front, but it was another weekend of work for us," said Roczen. "It'll be good to have an off weekend and recharge the batteries. Ryan [Dungey] rode really well today and congrats to him. I'll take some time to regroup and get some rest in. I really want to keep that red plate [as the points leader]. All that matters is who's on top in the end, and we aren't there just yet."
With 10 points in Dungey's favor on Saturday, Roczen's lead in the 450 Class standings now sits at 14 points. Canard sits third, 77 points behind.
Tomac and Roczen went bar-to-bar in the first moto.
Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X
In the 250 Class, Valli Motorsports Yamaha's Christophe Pourcel led the field into the first turn in Moto 1, claiming the Motosport.com Holeshot Award ahead of Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha's Jeremy Martin. The French rider fended off the current championship points leader for a brief period, but Martin soon made his way around and set a solid pace. Behind them, Red Bull KTM's Marvin Musquin took advantage of a third-place start to challenge the two Yamaha's ahead of him. He passed his fellow Frenchman Pourcel on Lap 1 and went to work on Martin for three laps before ultimately moving into first. Once out front, Musquin pulled away and was never threatened.
While Musquin established his dominance, the battle behind him turned into a captivating five-rider battle between Pourcel and Martin, in addition to Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki's Blake Baggett, Rockstar Energy Racing's Jason Anderson and Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha's Cooper Webb. A mistake forced Martin to drop from second to fifth, putting the battle for second between Pourcel and Baggett. Eventually Baggett made the pass on Pourcel, but gave the position back just one lap later.
Anderson began to put pressure on Baggett for third but suffered a big crash and dropped deep into the field. That allowed Webb to assume the position after passing his teammate and soon all four riders were separated by just over a second. As he looked to close in again on Pourcel, Baggett went down and fell to fifth, while the Star Yamaha teammates of Webb and Martin swapped third on multiple occasions.
In the end, Musquin cruised to his first moto win of the season by over eight seconds ahead of Pourcel while a late pass by Webb with two laps to go awarded him third over Martin. Baggett soldiered home to finish fifth.
Musquin's win ends a 16-race drought for the Frenchman.
Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X
Pourcel raced to his fourth straight Motosport.com Holeshot Award in the final moto, with GEICO Honda's Justin Bogle on his rear fender. Bogle took advantage of the strong start to pass Pourcel on the opening lap and assume control of the moto. Behind them, Musquin and Baggett also were looking to make the most of their strong starts, while Martin and Webb jockeyed for position deeper in the field.
While Bogle maintained a strong pace out front, Musquin made the move on Pourcel for second and set his sights on the lead. Pourcel continued to lose positions and eventually dropped out of contention up front. Bogle was impressive in his defense of the position and was able to keep Musquin at bay for the majority of the moto. However, on Lap 9 the Frenchman made his move and easily pulled away once out front. Bogle then fell into the clutches of Baggett, who rebounded from his misfortune in the opening moto to put himself in podium contention. Baggett methodically wore Bogle down and the Honda rider soon tipped over to put Baggett into second. Bogle quickly recovered to hold on to third, but then had to fight off Martin for the position in the final stages of the moto.
Musquin maintained his lead on Baggett through to the finish, while Bogle was able to hold on for third. The victory was Musquin's first since the fourth round of the 2013 season and comes off his best finish of the season a week ago. He now has four career wins in the 250 Class.
"I'm so glad, that was a perfect day. I was fastest qualifying and got both moto wins," said Musquin. "It was my first time in American going 1-1 [in motos]. My teammate Ryan [Dungey] went 1-1 and I wanted to join him. I found an outside line that helped me make passes all day and I'm really happy to know I got some good starts and was able to make the passes I needed to get into the lead."
Baggett's runner-up effort in the final moto helped him finish second overall (5-2), while Martin (4-4) edged out his teammate Webb (3-5) for third, needing a tiebreaker to finish on the podium. Bogle completed the top five (7-3).
Martin was steady all afternoon and retained his comfortable points lead.
Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X
"I'm pumped," exclaimed Martin. "Last year I went 29-12 at Washougal and this year I went 4-4, so I'm super, super happy. I was able to get some good starts, find some good lines and get into a rhythm."
Martin retained control of his lead in the 250 Class standings, with a 43-point lead over Webb. Baggett sits third, 54 points back.
The 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship will take a week off before returning to action on Saturday, August 9, with the 10th round of the season from Unadilla in New Berlin, N.Y. Action for the Red Bull Unadilla National begins at 1 p.m. ET.
Baggett made his return to the forefront of the field.
Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X
Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship
Motosport.com Washougal National
Washougal MX Park - Washougal, Washington
July 26, 2014
Round 9 of 12
450 Class (Moto Finish)
450 Class Championship Standings
250 Class (Moto Finish)
250 Class Championship Standings
MX Sports Pro Racing
MX Sports Pro Racing manages and produces the world's most prestigious professional motocross series - the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing. The industry leader in off road power sport event production and management, its mission is to showcase the sport of professional motocross competition at events throughout the United States. Through its various racing properties, partnerships and affiliates, MX Sports Pro Racing organizes events for thousands of action sports athletes each year and attracts millions of motorsports spectators. Visitwww.mxsportsproracing.com.
Alli Sports is a media, event and branded content company that specializes in action, adventure, and adrenaline based sports. Alli Properties include the Dew Tour, Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, the Red Bull Signature Series and World of Adventure Sports presented by Go Pro. Alli Sports is a division of the NBC Sports Group. More information can be found at www.Allisports.com.
AMA Pro Racing
AMA Pro Racing is the premier professional motorcycle racing organization in North America, operating a full schedule of events and championships for a variety of motorcycle disciplines. Learn more about AMA Pro Racing at www.amaproracing.com.
Lucas Oil Products
Based in Corona, Calif., Lucas Oil Products, Inc is the world leader of High Performance Lubricants and Problem Solving Additives and produces and markets 272 unique formulations in thirty four countries around the globe and is growing country by country, market by market every year. Through innovative product research and development, along with progressive marketing programs, Lucas Oil Products has established itself as the top-selling additive line in the American truck-stop industry. Lucas Oil is involved in an array of motorsports sponsorships, including the "Official Motor Oil of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship." Visit: www.lucasoil.com.
MAVTV is a television network with its roots deep in the automotive world. With an unparalleled line-up of motorsports events and exclusive automotive reality shows, MAVTV is the answer for motor-heads from all walks of life. But MAVTV is much more than a motorsports destination, with original action/adventure programming, live MMA and an unbelievable library of blockbuster movies - MAVTV is a network the whole family can enjoy. A network by the people and for the people, made in America and American Real. Visit: www.mavtv.com.
(Lucas Oil Pro Motocross PR)
On Saturday, July 26, Ken Block earned the second win of his Red Bull Global Rallycross career at The Dirt Track at Charlotte. Block, driving the #43 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST, earned the victory on a mostly dirt course over Subaru Rally Team USA’s Sverre Isachsen and SH Racing Rallycross driver Nelson Piquet Jr.
“For me, most of my career has been on gravel and dirt,” said Block. “We were very quick to get the car set up right, to get my Ford Fiesta out to the front and from there be able to find the right lines. The gravel gives us so much more of an opportunity to find different lines and try different stuff. The track constantly changed, and I love that.”
For Piquet and Block, Charlotte marked their second podium finishes in two weeks, as both drivers also made their way to the podium at last weekend’s Volkswagen Rallycross NY. Despite having to race in the last chance qualifier, Piquet, a Charlotte native also extended his provisional championship lead to 46 points over Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross driver Scott Speed.
“It was good to spend a weekend here at home and see friends and family,” Piquet said. “I saw a lot of friends that I made last year in NASCAR around, and it’s good for them to see a new world and more open sport. The weekend had a lot of ups and downs—coming in with the points lead, we tried to eliminate all the risks we had, but until the final it was a rollercoaster ride of emotions. We were just up and down and running around.”
In GRC Lites, Mitchell DeJong won his third race of the season over Olsbergs MSE teammates and brothers Kevin and Oliver Eriksson. DeJong currently leads the GRC Lites championship by 10 points.
Results from Red Bull Global Rallycross Charlotte are as follows:
- Ken Block, #43 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST
- Sverre Isachsen, #11 Subaru Rally Team USA WRX STI
- Nelson Piquet Jr., #07 SH Racing Rallycross Ford Fiesta ST
- Joni Wiman, #31 Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST
- Scott Speed, #77 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Polo R
- Bucky Lasek, #81 Subaru Rally Team USA WRX STI
- Steve Arpin, #00 Royal Purple Racing/OMSE2 Ford Fiesta
- Tanner Foust, #34 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Polo R
- Brian Deegan, #38 Rockstar Energy Drink Ford Fiesta ST
- Austin Dyne, #14 Barracuda Racing Ford Fiesta
- Rhys Millen, #67 Hyundai/Rhys Millen Racing Veloster Turbo
- Emma Gilmour, #27 Hyundai/Rhys Millen Racing Veloster Turbo
- Patrik Sandell, #18 Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST
Provisional point standings are as follows:
- Nelson Piquet Jr., 227
- Scott Speed, 181
- Steve Arpin, 164
- Joni Wiman, 162
- Ken Block, 155
Red Bull Global Rallycross resumes its 2014 season on August 22-23 at Daytona International Speedway. Tickets are available athttp://www.redbullglobalrallycross.com/DIS. The Red Bull Global Rallycross Midseason Recap will be broadcast on NBC on Sunday, August 3, at 4PM ET.
Scuderia Corsa took its second TUDOR United SportsCar Championship victory of the year on Friday at the racing capital of the world - Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In winning the Brickyard Grand Prix in the GT-Daytona class, Alessandro Balzan and Jeff Westphal scored their second win of the season and the third in North American endurance racing for the no. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia.
Starting from the ninth position, Westphal moved the Ferrari through the field during the opening stages of the race. When an extended caution came out, the Scuderia Corsa team elected to stop at near the end of the caution period - giving up their leading position, but satisfying the minimum drive time requirement for Westphal. The strategy call would enable Balzan to challenge for the lead with an hour remaining. After executing a pass on the leading Porsche, Balzan had enough fuel to make it to the finish with a healthy advantage over the rest of the GT-Daytona field.
"Yesterday we had a hard day with some problems in qualifying," said Balzan. "But I knew the car could be really fast over a stint. And today, Scuderia Corsa gave me the perfect car, and it was a perfect race. The team strategy worked perfectly, and the car worked perfectly on the Continental tires. Jeff from ninth position, got up to first positon, and he did an incredible job. Coming from Italy, when I was a little baby I understood that Indianapolis is a very historic circuit. Now, I'm a little man, and I've won here. I think I will realize tomorrow where I won today."
The victory was Balzan's third, and Westphal's second, with Scuderia Corsa.
"First and foremost, a big thank you to the Scuderia Corsa team," said Westphal. "It is the 60th Anniversary of Ferrari racing in North America and we worked so hard to come back from a rough race at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park. Everybody in the team, Alessandro included, did a great job and we just tried to make our way up the field when we could. It was a really, really nice feeling to kiss the bricks."
The victory was especially satisfying for Scuderia Corsa team owner, Giacomo Mattioli. At last year's Brickyard Grand Prix, Mattioli's no. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia led but would ultimately finish in fourth position as another Ferrari won the race.
"When you lead the race, it stings when you don't win," said Mattioli. "But certainly, I remember the picture of another Ferrari team kissing the bricks last year, and I thought 'that is on the bucket list!' So, this victory today is really amazing. This is the racing capital of the world, and I wouldn't pick any other place to win. The team did an amazing job. We had some issues yesterday, but we worked through them and everything worked out great. Jeff did a very good job in his stint, as he's been doing all year long. Alessandro did a fantastic job - he pushed hard lap after lap and dealt with a lot of traffic and a lot of pressure. To win again this season is unbelievable."
Scuderia Corsa will next compete at the Continental Tire Road Race Showcase at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin on August 8-10.
Following a promising start to the weekend as the two fastest cars in opening practice and sweeping the front row in qualifying, Extreme Speed Motorsports’ (ESM) Brickyard Grand Prix proved to be challenging. With less than 10 laps to go, both Tequila Patrón-sponsored Honda Performance Development ARX-03b (HPD) pitted for a splash of fuel to reach the scheduled race distance. In the end, the ESM machines finished fifth and seventh.
In its Indianapolis Motor Speedway debut, ESM earned its first front row sweep in TUDOR United SportsCar Championship competition, appropriately on National Patrón Tequila Day. The team was confident it had exorcised the mechanical and electrical gremlins that arose in the two previous rounds of the TUDOR Championship. The front row start was a step in the right direction.
From the pole position, Scott Sharp led the field to green in the No. 1 Tequila Patrón HPD. Sharp battled with the leaders and settled into a steady second place pace. The second caution flag of the race took place on Lap 24, which started as a debris caution and turned into an extended caution in order to repair the race track from an earlier incident. Taking advantage of the caution, Sharp pitted for fuel, tires and a driver change to Ryan Dalziel. This stop was earlier than the team anticipated and altered fuel strategy for the balance of the race.
“We had a really good car; we had a great weekend," added Sharp. "We had great practice sessions and the front row for the start. We were a little bit worried. The long straightaways and the power advantage the DPs have, as usual, enables them get through traffic better. Somehow we used a lot of fuel on the No. 1 HPD in the middle of the race and made us have to pit early and take on more. A couple of the DPs didn’t pit and those that did, pitted later and took less fuel, which made for a shorter pit stop. Fifth was the best we could do in that kind of scenario."
Dalziel began running lap times quicker than the leaders and reached a race-high of third place. He pitted again on Lap 65 and Lap 98, both for fuel and tires. The third and final pit stop, for seven seconds of fuel, took place with less than 10 minutes left. Dalziel was running fourth at the time of the stop and returned in seventh position. In the end he was able to improve two positions and finish fifth.
“When we run the same top speed as the GT cars, we have to take bigger risks on the brakes to pass them," commented Dalziel. "It’s risk the DPs don’t have to take because they can pass them in a straight line. It is the nature of the rules and the P2. We have to pass them on the straights and that’s been the struggle for us this year. I think today was probably one of the harder ones to take based on the potential we had. If the whole race was green, maybe that would have helped us a little bit. That first long yellow really hurt us.”
Ed Brown took the opening stint for the No. 2 Tequila Patrón HPD. Brown held his ground on the front row against the hard-charging field. In a similar strategy to the No. 1 machine, Brown pitted on Lap 26 for tires, fuel and a driver change to Johannes van Overbeek in hopes of setting a different fuel strategy from the rest of the field, yet similar to the sister No. 1 machine.
“It was a frustrating day," Brown added. "The team did a great job on both cars. We had a problem-free race, nerve-wracking because when you’re playing the fuel game that makes it even more intense. Both cars did really well. It is a hard fight out there on track."
During his stint, van Overbeek also needed to pit twice – on Lap 68 and then again on Lap 106. The last stop came with two laps to go and van Overbeek running second. Four seconds of fuel later, he returned to the track and finished seventh.
“Both cars finished the race, so that’s a step in the right direction," concluded van Overbeek. "It is still a bit frustrating. To have two cars on the front row and then to finish fifth and seventh is a little bit anticlimactic.”
Next up for Extreme Speed Motorsports is the Continental Tire Road Race Showcase at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisc. on Aug. 8-10.
David Ostella was poised for a podium finish but settled for fourth place in the Prototype Challenge class Friday in the Brickyard Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Ostella, from Maple, Ontario, qualified the No. 38 Dash Neighborhood/Phillips 66 car fourth Thursday after a strong last-lap effort. Due to a penalty assessed to another team, Ostella's co-driver, James French, started the two-hour, 45-minute TUDOR United SportsCar Championship race in third position.
"I have to work on getting quick times earlier, but I'm on pace with (pole sitter) Colin (Braun) both in qualifying, and then in the race we were right there," Ostella said.
French took the lead early in the race. After a quick pit stop for fuel, he re-entered the race in fourth and fought back to second before handing the car to Ostella. French was thrilled with his first performance with the team.
"Honestly, the moment I heard I was in the lead position I had a little celebration, but I still had a lot of pressure on me this race," French said. "There was a lot of pressure from the guy behind me, and I could tell he had more pace than I did. I was trying to hold him off the best I could. Then the long yellow flag came out, and David did an awesome job. It was an awesome first stint for me. Honestly, it was a lot of fun."
After the stop, Ostella returned to the track in fifth place. He then began what has become his trademark methodical climb through the field on the 14-turn, 2.435-mile road course that incorporates part of the famous IMS oval.
With no yellow flag in sight, the team went into fuel conservation mode to make it to the end of the race. Team officials thought rivals ahead on the track would need to make a late dash to the pits for fuel, enabling Ostella to drive past and deliver Performance Tech its second podium finish of the season. But all of those rival teams made it to the finish without stopping.
"We didn't really have any mistakes on track," Ostella said. "A few little ones, but qualifying was great, and I had no issues there. We're getting there, slowly but surely. By the end of the year, we should have a really good result."
The fourth-place finish was a better result than the last time Ostella ran at IMS during his Indy Lights career, when he crashed out of the 2012 Firestone Freedom 100 in a multi-car accident, suffering the hardest hit of his racing career.
"It's definitely a better memory from the last time I was here," Ostella said. "But I think it goes back to the beginning of the year. I think I put too much pressure on myself to do well, and I had a few mistakes at Sebring and Laguna. Working with Jonatan to get everything organized for myself and stay on pace has helped, and it's definitely starting to show. It showed at Watkins Glen and now here."
Team Principal Brent O'Neill was gutted the team strategy encountered a flaw but still was impressed with the effort of his team and drivers Ostella and newcomer James French.
"It was an awesome run by both of them," O'Neill said. "James' first time in the car, did a great job, kept us out front and led some of the race. We put David in, and he did a great job. We put ourselves in the position to be on the top step.
"We ran in conservation mode at the end because we thought two of the cars in front would have to stop for fuel. I guess we were wrong. We look forward to Road America and bringing James with us. It will be a good time."
Ostella and his Performance Tech crew will race next August 8-10 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, for the next round of TUDOR Championship competition.
Verizon IndyCar star Josef Newgarden, the only American to ever win in the famed Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch, has been confirmed to participate in the Sports Car Club of America Formula F 45th Anniversary at Barber Motorsports Park, August 9-10. Newgarden will race on Sunday in a Honda-powered Piper Formula F, and participate as a speaker in the Formula F birthday celebration on Saturday night.
The 2014 Saddlemen Rookie of the Year Award will go to the eligible rider who earns the most points in GoPro Daytona SportBike as well as the eligible rider who earns the most points in AMA Pro Flat Track's Grand National Championship.
Tomas Puerta has all but locked up the $5,000 prize Saddlemen generously provides that goes along with earning the award in AMA Pro Road Racing's GoPro Daytona SportBike class. The Colombian sits 11th in the standings and has accumulated 46 more points than the next best contestant, Tucker Lancaster. It would be a long-shot for Lancaster to make up the difference in points with just one round of GoPro Daytona SportBike action remaining, which is set to be held at New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville, N.J., Sept. 13-14, 2014.
For anyone remotely familiar with AMA Pro Road Racing, Puerta's success this season hasn't been that surprising. The 21-year-old is the reigning SuperSport national champion and rides for one of the most sought-after race teams in the business today - RoadRace Factory/Redbull - and plays teammate to Jake Gagne, the current GoPro Daytona SportBike points leader. He's likely already banking on his money for this year's Saddlemen Rookie of the Year Award, and there's no telling how far he'll go next year with a full season at this level under his belt.
In AMA Pro Flat Track Grand National Championship competition, Wyatt Maguire's 11th place finish at Grays Harbor Raceway last weekend was enough to put him ahead of Shayna Texter by a mere three points in the standings. If Maguire holds on to earn the most points out of all of the class-rookies this season, a lineup that features the likes of Texter, Justin Maloney, and Cody Johncox, he would be the recipient of the $5,000 award that goes along with winning the 2014 Saddlemen Rookie of the Year Award.
"I'm definitely striving towards the award and it would mean a lot to me if I were to win it," said Maguire. "It enables us rookies who are out of the championship chase to have something to compete for. There are a lot of battles going on right now. Week-in and week-out we're all competing for it. Last weekend's 11th place finish was pretty cool and I hope to keep the momentum rolling at Sacramento."
Maguire's main competition for the Rookie of the Year honor, Texter, won the Sacramento Mile in the Pro Singles class last year, so he will need to be on game in he wants to stay in front.
Saddlemen has been helping AMA Pro Racing reward some of the best up-and-coming stars of motorcycle racing by sponsoring the Rookie of the Year award for the last four seasons. Saddlemen is also the official seat and luggage of AMA Pro Road Racing and AMA Pro Flat Track.
Fans can watch the Saddlemen Rookie of the Year Award battle heat up in Grand National Championship competition this weekend when AMA Pro Flat Track heads to Sacramento, Calif. for the Sacramento Mile on July 26. For tickets and more information on the event, please visithttp://www.sactomile.com/tickets/ or call 1-844-722-6453. All of the action will be streamed LIVE onFansChoice.tv.
The next time AMA Pro Road Racing takes to the track will be August 8-10, when Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series competitors roll their thundering Harley's off the trucks at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Ind.
Extreme Speed Motorsports (ESM) threw down the gauntlet in practice and qualifying today at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. For the first time in ESM history, both of the Tequila Patrón-sponsored Honda Performance Development ARX-03b prototypes will start from the front row and side-by-side for Friday’s Brickyard Grand Prix.It seems appropriate that the Tequila Patrón-sponsored race cars qualified 1-2, especially on National Patrón Tequila Day.
Ryan Dalziel, co-driver of the No. 1 Tequila Patrón HPD set the qualifying track record with a 1:17.603 (113.145 mph) en route to the first pole position for the No. 1 team this year. Dalziel dominated in qualifying and led the entire 15-minute session. His closest competitor was teammate Johannes van Overbeek.
Scott Sharp, ESM owner/driver, will start the race in the No. 1 Tequila Patrón team. Sharp has 14 previous Indy 500 starts and two IROC starts at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
During his qualifying session, van Overbeek, co-driver of No. 2 Tequila Patrón, clocked a lap at 1:17.879 (112.744 mph), less than three-tenths of a second behind Dalziel. This marks the second front-row start for the No. 2 team. In May, van Overbeek was the pole winner at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca – the site of the No. 2 team’s first win.
Ed Brown is the starting driver for the No. 2 team for Friday’s race.
Friday’s two-hour, 45-minute Brickyard Grand Prix is the eighth race of 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. Green flag is 5:45 p.m. ET.
Television coverage of the Brickyard Grand Prix starts at 5:30 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1.
David Ostella put the Performance Tech Motorsports machine fourth on the grid in the Prototype Challenge class of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship on Thursday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
On his last lap, Ostella jumped from eighth to fourth with a lap time of 1 minute, 20.208 seconds. The quick lap continued a recent trend, as Ostella also posted his best time last month at Watkins Glen International with seconds remaining in the session. Ostella and new teammate James French will start from the second row of the PC class in the 49-car field.
"It was good; I'm happy with qualifying and being so close to the front," Ostella said. "Only four-tenths off Colin (Braun), who got the pole. I think I'm still struggling with qualifying. I'm not happy with how long it takes me to get up to speed. So I'll be working on that. I'm happy with the performance."
Ostella's best qualifying lap was more than a second quicker than his top practice time Friday. He qualified just .359 of a second behind Braun's track-record lap.
It was Ostella's best qualifying performance this season in the No. 38 Dash Neighborhoods/Phillips 66 car. Ostella competed on the historic IMS oval in the Firestone Freedom 100 for Indy Lights in 2011 and 2012, but this was his first day on the new 14-turn, 2.439-mile road circuit at IMS that incorporates part of the famous Indy oval. That mixture creates a complex setup challenge due to the circuit's intricate turns and fast straightaways, said Performance Tech Lead Engineer Ty Sayman.
"It's actually a very difficult track when it comes to setup," Sayman said. "You come off of straightaways into long turns, and you have to find where you can keep your speed. The track has a lot of nuances. I really wasn't too worried about the qualifying setup. I focus on the race. A pole would be nice, but a win is always better."
Team Principal Brent O'Neill joined his crew in applauding Ostella, 22, for his qualifying performance. This was the best qualifying result since the 12 Hours of Sebring in March, when the team started third.
"It was really good for us. The last lap, David was able to pull it out and put all the pieces together," O'Neill said. "David's still young. He's still getting it all together. That was a pretty stellar lap he put together at the end. He's never been a good qualifier. We're getting him to that point, and you're going to see him get better and better. We'll have a good start for tomorrow."
Ostella thinks he still has much to learn about qualifying but is happy to see most of the PC field behind him for the start of the race.
"I'm happy with the performance," Ostella said. "The Performance Tech team put together a great car. Now we just have to focus on race setup and get ready for tomorrow."
The Brickyard Grand Prix begins at 5:45 p.m. (ET) Friday with the live broadcast beginning at 5:30 p.m. on FOX Sports 1. Fans can follow live timing and scoring at IMSA.com and also race details on Twitter at @IMSALive.
For more information or to donate to Dash from Breast Cancer, click the following link: davidostella.com/dash-from-breast-cancer/. For updates on the team, follow Performance Tech Motorsports on Facebook.
AMA Pro SuperSport action from the Buckeye SuperBike Weekend a Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course was typical of the class for up-and-coming stars of tomorrow and fast club aces. In other words, it was a full grid's worth of battles and unpredictable skirmishes at the front.
Dustin Dominguez of Houston Superbikes took two wins as the Oklahoman's hot streak extended. Each time out, he topped TOBC Racing's Hayden Gillim as both races were held on Sunday due to track conditions unconducive to racing the day before. With the riders making their bids for the series championship, the New Jersey round will be another winner-take-all showdown in the final chapter of 2014.
The weekend began as a test for three men fighting for the points lead as Corey Alexander (HVMC/Celtic Racing) remained out in front as the teams entered Ohio. Alexander was great early in the season. The reigning East champion, looked nearly unbeatable at Daytona and was almost as strong at Elkhart Lake despite a training accident that put his participation in doubt. However, a subpar Alabama round left Gillim and Dominguez rallying closer.
Mid-Ohio would go be a turning point as Dominguez and Gillim left Alexander behind.
In Race 1, Gillim had the early lead but Dominguez made a great pass on lap two and made it stick. Gillim made a nice move to rip the lead away on lap four but Dominguez repeated his earlier ploy - outbraking Gillim on the main straight. He then cut a blazing lap and when Dominguez encountered lapped traffic, he didn't have Gillim's No. 69 machine directly on his Yamaha's tail anymore. From then on, the Oklahoman held the point position.
"With these races being so short and there's so many riders, I didn't know if there was going to be a red flag so I tried to lead every lap," said Dominguez. "We've finally got this thing the way we wanted it and have been getting good results ever since."
Dominguez had another good race in the second affair. He led Gillim, but the Kentuckian seemed poised on his tail and in good position to make a late-race move. Gillim nearly crashed with a lap and a half to go, avoiding a highside heading onto the main straight.
Gillim tried to rally on the final lap. He made an ambitious move and the two touched. Neither rider fell, and Dominguez pulled away for a 3.510-second victory after 11 laps.
"Mid-Ohio has always been one of my favorite tracks. I knew going into the weekend I had to win both races to have a shot at the championship," Dominguez said. "This was the biggest weekend for me not just because I won both races, but because now I'm two points out of the championship and have good momentum going into the last race of the year. All the glory to God and can't thank my team and sponsors enough for providing me a bike and opportunity to win races. I'm ready to prove I have what it takes to win this championship."
Gillim took two second place finishes on the day. He was disappointed not to win but made the most of a day when he never really got his bike sorted.
"With us getting so little track time before the race, I really didn't have a good setup," said Gillim after Race 1. "I had hardly any weight on the rear so in every turn I was out sideways."
He clearly found some answers for Race 2 but wasn't totally satisfied.
"We were still having some issues with grip," said Gillim, pointing out his near-crash with two to go. "The last lap, I put my head down and pushed as hard as I could. (Dominguez) made a little mistake. Coming into Thunder Valley, I was right next to him I felt like I might have made the pass but I didn't want to risk taking us both out. I'm glad we could give the fans watching a good race. I'm looking forward to New Jersey and (I) have the points lead so it should be fun."
Gillim dueled with Alexander for the East crown at New Jersey last year and the outcome was in doubt until the checkered flag, so he has experience in a championship shootout. The Suzuki pilot holds a slim two-point margin after Ohio.
Alexander lowsided in the Keyhole on lap five of the first race - a tough blow for his championship hopes. In Race 2, he had to pull off before the race started due to an issue with his brakes.
"I guess bad luck comes all at once when it does come," said Alexander. "This weekend started off rough just from the weather alone, which cut down the whole weekend to essentially one day. With that said, I felt we had a really good bike and a lot of potential to do really well. Unfortunately the unpredictable track surface caught us out in Race 1 which ultimately caught us out in Race 2 with a brake failure induced by the crash. With such a short schedule it puts a lot of pressure on the whole team to get everything together in a big hurry, and very little time for the riders to get a feel for everything. It's unfortunate for the team, the sponsors and myself to be plagued with such bad luck especially with such high potential and a strong start to the season. The only thing we can do is move forward and hope to dominate at our home track, New Jersey Motorsports Park, in September. Thanks, to all of the sponsors and people who made this season possible. It is unfortunate when things don't go as expected as we owe it to all of you to get a good result."
Alexander dropped down to fourth in points after his troubles.
His teammate on the HVMC/Celtic Racing squad, Wyatt Farris, earned third in Race 1 after a duel with Conner Blevins. He leapfrogged his stable mate in the points, too. Farris was second in Daytona but off the podium since then.
"I'm happy to get back on the podium with a third, and bring home a fifth for the Celtic/HVMC Suzuki team and our sponsors," said the Californian. "Even though they may not be quite the results I'm looking for, or the results we know we can get, any time you're on the podium it's a good day. I'm going to use this seven-week break to work on a few things, and head to New Jersey looking to improve our results."
Conner Blevins (Excel Machine Racing) earned his first AMA Pro podium in Race 2.
"We had a rough start to the season, but my dad has gotten the bike working really well now," said Blevins, who battled with Farris in Race 1 and finished fourth. "Also, the new tires that Dunlop brought this weekend were great, lots of grip and they looked really good at the end of the races."
Kaleb De Keyrel had been building momentum and earned a double podium in Alabama. The De Keyrel Racing pilot was just a little short of repeating that pace but still earned two nice finishes with sixth and fourth.
J.C. Camacho showed nice speed once again, earning fifth and eighth. The Texan has been solid all year and spent most of the time in the top ten, showing he can duel with the best in class. The House of Paint Designs racer is a lock to do well in the final points standings and is seventh heading into the final round.
Tuned Industries' Jason Aguilar (9-6) and Harv's Harley-Davidson pilot Cody Wyman (7-9) also garnered a pair of top tens in Ohio. Two surprise finishers jumped up this weekend as well. Jimmy Merck (Merck Factory Racing) was seventh in Race 2 after bagging 11th in Race 1. Frankie Gillim, Hayden's older brother, made the most of his appearance in Ohio and took 10th in Race 2.
Youngster Nick McFadden (TOBC Racing) was tenth in the opener.
It's all on the line for New Jersey. It has been an unpredictable season, one that saw Alexander look like a lock to win the title while Dominguez and Gillim had some low moments. With two aggressive, tough riders going for the honor of the number one plate, expect fireworks.
Following the AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series' Indianapolis doubleheader Aug. 8-10, the AMA Pro Road Racing season will come to its conclusion and the 2014 champions will be decided at the Kawasaki Devil's Showdown at New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville, N.J., Sept. 13-14.
FansChoice.tv is the official home for live streaming coverage of AMA Pro Road Racing and AMA Pro Flat Track events in 2014. The site also provides coverage of IMSA's development and single-make series, and NASCAR's touring and weekly series.