Race Report: 2007 Red Bull Motocross of Nations
Budds Creek, MD–USA

A warm and sunny day met capacity crowds as they poured into Budds Creek in droves on Sunday to welcome the Motocross of Nations back to the good ‘ol U S of A for the first time in 20 years. Just like during Saturday’s warm-up and qualifying races, Team USA, led by team captain Ricky Carmichael, set the tone early on during the morning’s practice sessions. Despite a slight mishap that sent the G.O.A.T. down in the Maryland soil midway through his A.M. warm up, RC still put down the fastest lap time of the morning. With the pride of a Nation resting on their shoulders, the fellas wearing the red, white, and blue rolled into their afternoon motos looking to capture Team USA’s third-straight Motocross of Nations title, which they did in dominating fashion.

Though a couple minor hiccups kept the U.S. squad from having perfect 1-2 finishes in the first two motos of the day, Carmichael, Ryan Villopoto, and Tim Ferry still dominated the event, taking all three individual class overall wins (MX1, MX2, and Open). In front of the largest crowd ever to assemble at a Budds Creek event, the 2007 Motocross of Nations went off without a hitch, and here are the details…

MOTO 1: MX1 + MX2

With a combined gate of MX1 and MX2 racers set to battle in moto number one, Team USA sent Ricky Carmichael and Ryan Villopoto to the line to join in the action. Using team strategy to help get the Lites-class bike through turn number one with the greatest advantage, RC gave Villopoto the first pick of the gate, leaving himself the 21st selection. Starting from the far inside, Villopoto took full advantage, as he rocketed out to an incredible holeshot ahead of a field half occupied by the more powerful 450s. Despite being relegated to a middle-of-the-pack gate pick, Carmichael got to turn number one just inside the top-ten. Just one turn later, however, RC got cross-rutted and went down while trying to squeeze by two fallen riders ahead of him. So, with teammate Villopoto already checking out up front, RC was forced to begin his charge from nearly dead last place.

Just as he did in yesterday’s MX2 qualifier, Villopoto absolutely decimated the rest of his competition, although a tangle with a downed rider midway through the moto sent him briefly to the ground. Remounting quickly, however, RV never looked back again, eventually winning by a landslide. Behind Villo, an early battle between Spain’s Jonathan Barragan, Italy’s David Philippaerts, France’s Sebastien Pourcel, and Australia’s Chad Reed kept things interesting for the second spot, but there’s no doubt that all eyes were on RC as he came through the field, passing riders by the dozen. With Reed eventually taking control of second about two thirds of the way through the moto, Ricky worked his way into the third spot, and had his eyes on the Aussie. With thousands of U.S. fans cheering him on, RC closed the gap on Reed, but was unable to challenge for the position before the wave of the checkers.

Despite a valiant, G.O.A.T.-like effort, RC was clearly disappointed with his third place finish. Still, with Villopoto’s win, Team USA finished the first of three MXoN motos with a commanding lead in the overall standings.

RESULTS

  1. Ryan Villopoto (USA)
  2. Chad Reed (AUS)
  3. Ricky Carmichael (USA)
  4. Sebastien Pourcel (FRA)
  5. Jonathan Barragan (ESP)
  6. David Philippaerts (ITA)
  7. Tanel Leok (EST)
  8. Steve Ramon (BEL)
  9. Tommy Searle (GBR)
  10. Nicolas Aubin FRA)

MOTO 2: MX2 + OPEN

With only 45 minutes of rest between motos, Villopoto rolled back out of the paddock for moto two, his last race of the day. This time out, however, it was Tim Ferry’s turn to join him, as “Red Dog went to the line for his first-ever MXoN moto. When the gate dropped, fans saw nearly a carbon copy of the moto one start, as went straight to the front aboard his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki. From the same gate as Carmichael the moto before, Ferry got a great jump on his factory Kawasaki KX450F, exiting turn number one in the eighth spot. Just moments later, however, disaster struck Ferry and Team USA, as the likeable Floridian got tangled with another rider and went down. In nearly the same predicament as RC, Ferry set sail from the back of the pack.

Out front, Villopoto made the rest of the world look like a bunch of Novice-class riders, as he checked out, finishing the race over a full minute in front of second place. Speaking of second, Belgium’s Ken De Dycker took that position after MX2 World Champion Antonio Cairoli crashed on the opening lap, and he never gave it up. Behind De Dycker, Great Britain’s Tommy Searle piloted his KTM 250SX-F in for a solid third, and Team USA’s Ferry rallied all the way through the pack to finish in an impressive fourth.

Though Team USA extended their overall points lead to 16 heading into the final moto of the day, the big news of the moment was Villopoto’s historical moto. That’s right, RV made history by becoming the first-ever MX2 (Lites) rider to win both of his motos in the history of the event. Capable of beating the best riders that the world has to offer (including those on 450s) while on a 250cc machine… Can you imagine what’s going to happen when he gets on a big bike?

RESULTS

  1. Ryan Villopoto (USA)
  2. Ken De Dycker (BEL)
  3. Tommy Searle (GBR)
  4. Tim Ferry (USA)
  5. Pierre Renet (FRA)
  6. Nicolas Aubin (FRA)
  7. Carlos Campano (ESP)
  8. Yoshitaka Atsuta (JPN)
  9. Martin Barr (IRL)
  10. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL)

MOTO 3: MX1 + OPEN

With a commanding overall lead for the MXoN title, Team USA’s Ricky Carmichael and Tim Ferry headed to the line with plenty of confidence for the final moto of the event. When the gate dropped, RC blasted into the lead from the far inside gate, and Ferry charged into the top-five from the team’s middle slot. At the end of the first lap, the G.O.A.T. began opening up a gap that would never be challenged, as he motored on to an easy moto win — said to be his last outdoor motocross win ever. RC’s win clinched the overall team win for the United States, but Ferry’s day would not be complete before piloting his KX450F into the second spot behind his teammate. Trying to prevent him from completing that task was none other than current MX1 World Champion Steve Ramon who sat in second early on, but Ferry went to work on him, making a pass stick about a third of the way through the moto. Once in second, Ferry put a comfortable gap between himself and Ramon, cruising in for second overall in the moto — first in the Open class.

Team USA’s victory was a triumphant one, as all three riders took the overall wins in their respective classes. “I would have liked to come into this race a little bit more prepared, but I rode as well as I could, RC said during the post-race press conference. “After the way things went the first moto, though, I was stoked to come back out to win the overall. When asked about his teammates’ performances, here’s what Ricky had to say. “I am really proud of Timmy (Ferry). A lot of people were talking trash about him and his ability coming into this race, and I think he shut them up today. He rode great, and I am really proud of him. And what can you say about Ryan (Villopoto)? He won both of his motos by a mile today. There was a lot of talk about Antonio Cairoli coming into this event, but I think Ryan proved that we run a different pace here.

RESULTS

  1. Ricky Carmichael (USA)
  2. Tim Ferry (USA)
  3. Grant Langston (RSA)
  4. Steve Ramon (BEL)
  5. Tanel Leok (EST)
  6. David Philippaerts (ITA)
  7. Yoshitaka Atsuta (JPN)
  8. Billy Mackenzie (GBR)
  9. Sebastien Pourcel (FRA)
  10. Julien Bill (SUI)

OVERALL MOTOCROSS OF NATIONS CLASSIFICATION

  1. USA
  2. France
  3. Belgium
  4. Italy
  5. Great Britain
  6. Spain
  7. Japan
  8. Switzerland
  9. Germany
  10. Canada

>Billy Mackenzie (GBR)

  • Sebastien Pourcel (FRA)
  • Julien Bill (SUI)
  • OVERALL MOTOCROSS OF NATIONS CLASSIFICATION

    1. USA
    2. France
    3. Belgium
    4. Italy
    5. Great Britain
    6. Spain
    7. Japan
    8. Switzerland
    9. Germany
    10. Canada