TWMX Race Report: AMA Toyota National Motocross Championship Presented by FMF: Motocross 338, Southwick, Massachusetts

This weekend, the AMA Toyota National Motocross Championships traveled to Southwick, Massachusetts for the third round of competition. The Motocross 338 facility celebrated 30 years of AMA Pro Racing on its grounds by hosting climactic battles in all four motos of racing. Of course, Southwick is known for its deep, beach-like sand, meaning that series rivals and fellow Floridians Ricky Carmichael and James Stewart would both enjoy a strong advantage over the rest of the field, thanks to years of sand riding experience. In the end, it was Carmichael who prevailed, furthering his points lead by grabbing his second overall victory in a row and his ninth career win at Southwick.

“It really just comes down to how strong you are here,” said Carmichael at the press conference following the second moto. “You gotta have speed, obviously, to win, but how strong you areā€¦ That was my strong point today.”

Don’t think that Southwick was another RC runaway, however; Carmichael finished 2-1 to earn the win. James Stewart beat out the G.O.A.T. himself for the top spot on the podium in moto one after Carmichael threw his Suzuki away with just four laps remaining. In moto two, the pair scrapped once again before RC finally pulled out a healthy lead. With just one lap to the checkers, second-place rider Stewart’s motor blew up on one of the fastest sections of the track, sending the Kawasaki rider over the bars and out of the race in a violent crash that kept Stewart down for some time before he was finally able to make it off the racetrack on his own. “I felt like I was riding pretty good, but we had a problem with the motor and it quit off the face of the jump on the fastest part of the track, and that was the end of the story. Everything’s fine, I didn’t hit my head, so that was good. I’m going to go get checked out by the doctor tomorrow, and go from there,” Stewart said in the pits following the crash.

Stewart’s crash left the door wide open for Team Yamaha’s Chad Reed to take home another second-place finish, while Team Honda’s Davi Millsaps secured his second-ever trip to the podium in the MX division with a third overall.

In the Lites division, the racing was just as exciting. When the final moto scores were tallied, there was a three-way tie for the overall win between Andrew Short, Brett Metcalfe, and Mike Alessi. Due to Short’s first moto win, however, it was his day to take home the top honors, via a 1-4 score. Metcalfe was awarded second thanks to his second-place finish in the second moto, while Alessi rounded out the top-three. “Today was a great day of racing, and a good way to turn my season around,” said Short after grabbing the overall victory. “There’s a lot of racing left, and I’m looking forward to the rest of the series.”

MOTOCROSS LITES MOTO ONE

When the gate dropped for Southwick’s first moto of the day, it was the #732 Kawasaki of Kyle Chisholm that took the holeshot, followed closely by Red Bull KTM’s Mike Alessi and Yamaha of Troy’s Andrew McFarlane. Alessi made quick work of Chisholm, though the privateer was hanging tough on Alessi’s rear fender, leaving McFarlane, Short, and Josh Grant to duke it out for third. The pack stayed tight for the first three laps, but on lap four Team Honda’s Andrew Short began a maniacal charge to the front, going by both McFarlane and Chisholm, and finally setting his sights on Alessi. Shorty finally made his move on lap six, and eventually checked out for the moto win.

Alessi held on for second place at the checkers, but behind him was Brett Metcalfe, who charged from just outside of the top-10 to the third spot. Star Racing’s Matt Goerke moved by McFarlane for fourth position, while McFarlane rounded out the top-five.

MX LITES MOTO ONE RESULTS:

  1. Andrew Short (Hon)
  2. Mike Alessi (KTM)
  3. Brett Metcalfe (Yam)
  4. Matt Goerke (Yam)
  5. Andrew McFarlane (Yam)
  6. Jason Lawrence (Suz)
  7. Kyle Chisholm (Kaw)
  8. Josh ant (Hon)
  9. Billy Laninovich (Hon)
  10. Paul Carpenter (Hon)

MOTOCROSS MOTO ONE

Yet another privateer took the first MX division holeshot of the day; this time around it was MDK Motorsports rider Jacob Saylor. Saylor’s lead didn’t last very long, however, as James Stewart and the rest of the pack quickly took control of the sandy Southwick course. By the end of lap one, it was Stewart followed closely by Carmichael, with “The Duke” Davi Millsaps behind them in third, and Reed and Windham in fourth and fifth, respectively.

Up front, Stewart and Carmichael battled fiercely, and just past the halfway point #4 finally made his move on Stewart. Ricky enjoyed five laps in the top spot, but with only four laps to go, RC made a very uncharacteristic mistake and handed Stewart both the lead and the moto win. “I made a stupid move, a mistake. I give it to him every time,” said an obviously frustrated Carmichael after the race. “But he was riding good. I felt pretty good, but I made a mistake, and he got the best of me. That’s the way it goes, that’s racing.”

Behind Stewart and Carmichael was Chad Reed, who rode to a distant third. “It was fun, I really enjoy riding the sand, but I need to get up there more from the start and keep that pace,” said Reed. “I picked up some lines, but I need to get a start and stay with those guys from the beginning.” Millsaps and Windham held on for the fourth and fifth spots, while local boy and former National Champion John Dowd came out of retirement to finish sixth.

MX MOTO ONE RESULTS

  1. James Stewart (Kaw)
  2. Ricky Carmichael (Suz)
  3. Chad Reed (Yam)
  4. Davi Millsaps (Hon)
  5. Kevin Windham (Hon)
  6. John Dowd (Suz)
  7. Travis Preston (Hon)
  8. Tim Ferry (Hon)
  9. Josh Demuth (Hon)
  10. Juss Laansoo (Hon)

MOTOCROSS LITES MOTO TWO

The second Lites start of the day at Southwick saw Mike Alessi take the holeshot around the very tight, 180-degree hairpin first corner, but it was extremely short-lived. Josh Grant made an aggressive move on Alessi and sent the #800 rider flailing sideways in the second corner approaching an uphill. With Alessi temporarily out of the way, Brett Metcalfe charged to the early lead ahead of Grant and Alessi. Mike later said that he was riding conservatively with the championship on his mind during the moto, which left Metcalfe and Grant to duke it out up front while Alessi paced himself in third. The two riders went at it hard, exchanging the lead well ahead of the rest of the pack. Meanwhile, behind them Grant Langston was putting on quite a charge of his own, chipping away at the leaders’ margin and putting himself in a legitimate spot to challenge for the top spot.

All of a sudden, on lap 11 Josh Grant threw out the anchor and dropped several spots, while Langston made his way by both Grant and Mike Alessi on the same lap. From there, Langston really started to drop the hammer, and before long he was nipping at the heels of Metcalfe. With just a little over three laps to go, Langston made his move and took over the lead position. From there, it was cruise control for Langston, who was still favoring his injured wrist but was also obviously the fastest rider on the track.

Langston, who pulled out of moto one after experiencing his first mechanical of the season, was extremely happy to take his first MX Lites victory this year. Metcalfe remained in second, while Alessi finished third ahead of first moto winner Andrew Short. This left a three-way tie for first overall amongst all of the podium finishers: Short had a 1-4, Metcalfe finished 3-2, and Alessi posted a 3-2, respectively.

MX LITES MOTO TWO RESULTS

  1. Grant Langston (Kaw)
  2. Brett Metcalfe (Yam)
  3. Mike Alessi (KTM)
  4. Andrew Short (Hon)
  5. Ryan Villopoto (Kaw)
  6. Andrew McFarlane (Yam)
  7. Josh Grant (Hon)
  8. Nathan Ramsey (KTM)
  9. Kyle Chisholm (Kaw)
  10. Jason Lawrence (Suz)

MX LITES OVERALL RESULTS

  1. Andrew Short (Hon)
  2. Brett Metcalfe (Yam)
  3. Mike Alessi (KTM)
  4. Andrew McFarlane (Yam)
  5. Josh Grant (Hon)
  6. Matt Goerke (Yam)
  7. Kyle Chisholm (Kaw)
  8. Jason Lawrence (Suz)
  9. Grant Langston (Kaw)
  10. Nathan Ramsey (KTM)
  11. Paul Carpenter (Hon)
  12. Ryan Villopoto (Kaw)
  13. Brian Gray (Suz)
  14. Matt Walker (Yam)
  15. Billy Laninovich (Hon)
  16. Danny Smith (Hon)
  17. Chris Pugrab (Kaw)
  18. Sean Collier (Yam)
  19. William Ainsworth (Kaw)
  20. Kelly Smith (Hon)

MX LITES SERIES POINTS STANDINGS

  1. Mike Alessi (130/1 win)
  2. Andrew Short (105/1 win)
  3. Brett Metcalfe (101)
  4. Josh Grant (101)
  5. Ryan Villopoto (96/1 win)
  6. Andrew McFarlane (94)
  7. Nathan Ramsey (63)
  8. Grant Langston (61)
  9. Matt Goerke (60)
  10. Billy Laninovich (53)

MOTOCROSS MOTO TWO

James Stewart picked up right where he left off in the second moto, grabbing a fat holeshot and leading Ricky Carmichael and the rest of the 38 riders around the Southwick course on the opening lap. Once again, though, RC was hot on his tail and putting pressure on the Kawasaki rider in nearly every corner. Behind the two was Millsaps, who was hanging the pace quite well and keeping the leaders easily in sight and within striking distance. Before long, the three built a healthy lead over Chad Reed, Nick Wey, and Travis Preston, and checked out into a race of their own.

It didn’t take long, however, for Carmichael to make his move on Stewart, jumping over the top of Bubba with both feet off the pegs on the finish line jump. “I wanted to be a little more aggressive this moto, and I needed to make a pass a little earlier than I did in the first moto. I didn’t want to get caught up in his pace; I wanted a clear track so I could just kind of do my thing. I hung back a little bit because I didn’t feel like eating dirt again. When I did pass him, I had an awesome line around the corner before the finish line jump, and I just carried my speed over it to make the pass.”

Once RC made his move, the race was fairly uneventful, save for the last lap. All by himself in second, Stewart was flying down one of the roughest and fastest sections of the track when his motor blew up on the face of a tabletop, causing him to eject off the bike in yet another extremely scary crash reminiscent to his get-off at High Point. Though Stewart was unable to remount and continue the race, he still scored an 11th place finish in the moto due to the fact that he lapped most of the field; this was good enough for fourth overall. Reed held on for the second overall spot, while Millsaps grabbed the final position on the podium thanks to Stewart’s crash. Kevin Windham’s 5-4 scores combined for fifth overall, and much to the crowd’s delight, John Down finished sixth overall with consistent 6-7 moto placings.

MX MOTO TWO RESULTS

  1. Ricky Carmichael (Suz)
  2. Chad Reed (Yam)
  3. Davi Millsaps (Hon)
  4. Kevin Windham (Hon)
  5. Nick Wey (Hon)
  6. Tim Ferry (Hon)
  7. John Dowd (Suz)
  8. David Vuillemin (Yam)
  9. Ryan Clark (Hon)
  10. Travis Preston (Hon)

MX OVERALL RESULTS

  1. Ricky Carmichael (Suz)
  2. Chad Reed (Yam)
  3. Davi Millsaps (Hon)
  4. James Stewart (kaw)
  5. Kevin Windham (Hon)
  6. John Dowd (Suz)
  7. Tim Ferry (Hon)
  8. Nick Wey (Hon)
  9. Travis Preston (Hon)
  10. Ryan Clark (Hon)
  11. David Vuillemin (Yam)
  12. Kyle Lewis (Hon)
  13. Juss Laansoo (Hon)
  14. Josh Demuth (Hon)
  15. Josh Summey (Hon)
  16. Tony Larusso (Suz)
  17. Doug Henry (Yam)
  18. Jason Thomas (Hon)
  19. Mike Treadwell (Hon)
  20. Sean Hamblin (Suz)

MX SERIES POINTS STANDINGS

  1. Ricky Carmichael (142/2 wins)
  2. Chad Reed (12)
  3. Jason Lawrence (Suz)

MX LITES OVERALL RESULTS

  1. Andrew Short (Hon)
  2. Brett Metcalfe (Yam)
  3. Mike Alessi (KTM)
  4. Andrew McFarlane (Yam)
  5. Josh Grant (Hon)
  6. Matt Goerke (Yam)
  7. Kyle Chisholm (Kaw)
  8. Jason Lawrence (Suz)
  9. Grant Langston (Kaw)
  10. Nathan Ramsey (KTM)
  11. Paul Carpenter (Hon)
  12. Ryan Villopoto (Kaw)
  13. Brian Gray (Suz)
  14. Matt Walker (Yam)
  15. Billy Laninovich (Hon)
  16. Danny Smith (Hon)
  17. Chris Pugrab (Kaw)
  18. Sean Collier (Yam)
  19. William Ainsworth (Kaw)
  20. Kelly Smith (Hon)

MX LITES SERIES POINTS STANDINGS

  1. Mike Alessi (130/1 win)
  2. Andrew Short (105/1 win)
  3. Brett Metcalfe (101)
  4. Josh Grant (101)
  5. Ryan Villopoto (96/1 win)
  6. Andrew McFarlane (94)
  7. Nathan Ramsey (63)
  8. Grant Langston (61)
  9. Matt Goerke (60)
  10. Billy Laninovich (53)

MOTOCROSS MOTO TWO

James Stewart picked up right where he left off in the second moto, grabbing a fat holeshot and leading Ricky Carmichael and the rest of the 38 riders around the Southwick course on the opening lap. Once again, though, RC was hot on his tail and putting pressure on the Kawasaki rider in nearly every corner. Behind the two was Millsaps, who was hanging the pace quite well and keeping the leaders easily in sight and within striking distance. Before long, the three built a healthy lead over Chad Reed, Nick Wey, and Travis Preston, and checked out into a race of their own.

It didn’t take long, however, for Carmichael to make his move on Stewart, jumping over the top of Bubba with both feet off the pegs on the finish line jump. “I wanted to be a little more aggressive this moto, and I needed to make a pass a little earlier than I did in the first moto. I didn’t want to get caught up in his pace; I wanted a clear track so I could just kind of do my thing. I hung back a little bit because I didn’t feel like eating dirt again. When I did pass him, I had an awesome line around the corner before the finish line jump, and I just carried my speed over it to make the pass.”

Once RC made his move, the race was fairly uneventful, save for the last lap. All by himself in second, Stewart was flying down one of the roughest and fastest sections of the track when his motor blew up on the face of a tabletop, causing him to eject off the bike in yet another extremely scary crash reminiscent to his get-off at High Point. Though Stewart was unable to remount and continue the race, he still scored an 11th place finish in the moto due to the fact that he lapped most of the field; this was good enough for fourth overall. Reed held on for the second overall spot, while Millsaps grabbed the final position on the podium thanks to Stewart’s crash. Kevin Windham’s 5-4 scores combined for fifth overall, and much to the crowd’s delight, John Down finished sixth overall with consistent 6-7 moto placings.

MX MOTO TWO RESULTS

  1. Ricky Carmichael (Suz)
  2. Chad Reed (Yam)
  3. Davi Millsaps (Hon)
  4. Kevin Windham (Hon)
  5. Nick Wey (Hon)
  6. Tim Ferry (Hon)
  7. John Dowd (Suz)
  8. David Vuillemin (Yam)
  9. Ryan Clark (Hon)
  10. Travis Preston (Hon)

MX OVERALL RESULTS

  1. Ricky Carmichael (Suz)
  2. Chad Reed (Yam)
  3. Davi Millsaps (Hon)
  4. James Stewart (kaw)
  5. Kevin Windham (Hon)
  6. John Dowd (Suz)
  7. Tim Ferry (Hon)
  8. Nick Wey (Hon)
  9. Travis Preston (Hon)
  10. Ryan Clark (Hon)
  11. David Vuillemin (Yam)
  12. Kyle Lewis (Hon)
  13. Juss Laansoo (Hon)
  14. Josh Demuth (Hon)
  15. Josh Summey (Hon)
  16. Tony Larusso (Suz)
  17. Doug Henry (Yam)
  18. Jason Thomas (Hon)
  19. Mike Treadwell (Hon)
  20. Sean Hamblin (Suz)

MX SERIES POINTS STANDINGS

  1. Ricky Carmichael (142/2 wins)
  2. Chad Reed (128)
  3. Davi Millsaps (101)
  4. Travis Preston (87)
  5. David Vuillemin (86)
  6. Nick Wey (86)
  7. James Stewart (82/1 win)
  8. Kevin Windham (81)
  9. Josh Summey (52)
  10. Josh Demuth (51)

(128)

  • Davi Millsaps (101)
  • Travis Preston (87)
  • David Vuillemin (86)
  • Nick Wey (86)
  • James Stewart (82/1 win)
  • Kevin Windham (81)
  • Josh Summey (52)
  • Josh Demuth (51)