Dungey Wins 450 Opener: 2014 Glen Helen MX

Photos: Donn Maeda/Brendan Lutes

With defending National champion Ryan Villopoto sitting out the 2014 season, the door to this year’s title was left wide open with a handful of riders as championship favorites, but it was Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey who came out on top at the end of the day in San Bernardino, California. Despite a first moto win from Josh Grant and a second moto that was led by Ken Roczen for practically every lap but the last, Dungey stole the overall on the final lap in the hills of the historic Glen Helen Raceway.

Ryan Dungey | 1st Overall

Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey rode well in moto one, earning a third-place finish after a fourth-place start. But it was Dungey’s performance in moto two that lifted him to the top of the podium. The former National champion got a great jump off the gate and nearly grabbed the holeshot, but Dungey’s teammate Ken Roczen beat him to the first turn. The two pulled away, gapping the field while practically glued at the hip. Dungey pressured Roczen lap after lap but couldn’t close in enough to make a pass stick. With just a few corners to go, Dungey finally worked his way around his teammate, beating him to checkers and stealing away the overall with a 3-1 score on the day.

Ken Roczen | 2nd Overall

Despite his 2-2 scores on the day, Red Bull KTM’s Ken Roczen seemed like the rider to beat. A third-place start in moto one placed the rookie up front early, but race leader Josh Grant took advantage of his holeshot and pulled away with the clear track. As soon as Roczen made his way past Phil Nicoletti for second place, he put his head down and began to chip away at the lead that Grant had already built. Roczen took the race to the final corner, but Grant held on to take the win leaving the German to settle with second. In moto two after his lengthy battle with teammate Ryan Dungey, Roczen gave up the lead on the final lap leaving him with 2-2 scores and second place overall.

Trey Canard | 3rd Overall

Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Trey Canard was fast throughout the entire day, but while running in fourth midway through moto one, Canard slowed for a lapper while heading into a corner and James Stewart hit the back of Canard’s bike causing both riders to go down. Canard remounted after pulling the bikes apart and salvaged a seventh. The Honda rider was able to avoid trouble in moto two, and after moving into third on the second lap, he settled into the position and finished the race behind Roczen and Dungey. His 7-3 scores were enough to land him on the podium with a third overall.

Brett Metcalfe | 4th Overall

Brett Metcalfe’s return to racing full-time in the US on the Monster Energy Kawasaki squad was a success. In moto one, the Australian fought back from a mediocre start, working his way from outside the top ten to nearly onto the podium after he finished fourth. In moto two, a decent start placed him in sixth early on, and after a back and forth battle with James Stewart, Metty finished the moto in fifth for fourth overall.

Josh Grant | 5th Overall

In moto one, JGRMX/Toyota/NFAB/Yamaha’s Josh Grant rocketed off the gate to grab the first holeshot of the year, allowing him to pull away for an early lead. Despite the sizable gap back to second place, Grant’s lead would not go uncontested and a charging Ken Roczen closed the distance halfway through the race. Roczen’s efforts came up short, and Grant held on to take the moto win. Moto two turned out to be a completely different race for the rider, and a first-lap crash while charging through the sand section drove Grant hard into the dirt. Although slow to get up, Grant remounted in dead last and fought his way through the field for a hard earned 15th in the moto, and ultimately a fifth on the day.

Overall Results
1. Ryan Dungey (3-1)
2. Ken Roczen (2-2)
3. Trey Canard (7-3
4. Brett Metcalfe (4-5)
5. Josh Grant (1-15)
6. James Stewart (6-6)
7. Malcolm Stewart (8-8)
8. Jake Weimer (10-7)
9. Weston Peick (5-13)
10. Chad Reed (9-10)
11. Ivan Tedesco (13-9)
12. Phil Nicoletti (11-11)
13. Justin Barcia (34-4)
14. Kyle Chisholm (15-14)
15. Ben LaMay (20-12)
16. Sean Collier (12-38)
17. Jimmy Albertson (17-17)
18. Tommy Weeck (14-22)
19. Fredrik Noren (29-16)
20. Evgeny Mikhaylov (19-18)

Lucas Oil Pro Motocross 450 National Championship Points Standings (After 1 of 12 rounds):
1. Ryan Dungey (45/1 moto win)
2. Ken Roczen (44)
3. Trey Canard (34)
4. Brett Metcalfe (34)
5. Josh Grant (31/1 moto win)
6. James Stewart (30)
7. Malcolm Stewart (26)
8. Jake Weimer (25)
9. Weston Peick (24)
10. Chad Reed (23)