TWMX Race Report: World Supercross GP, Vancouver

BC Place Stadium, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada: Round 2, 2005 THQ World Supercross GP

For the second weekend in a row, the THQ World Supercross GP winner was as predictable as the rain forecast in Canada, with Team Suzuki’s newest star Ricky Carmichael running away from the pack at the BC Place Stadium in Vancouver, British Columbia. As foreseeable as it was, the main event wasn’t completely void of surprises thanks to the two privateer riders who joined RC on the podium.

With factory stars Tim Ferry and Mike LaRocco in the mix, most everyone in attendance figured they could guess the remaining podium spots fairly easily, but runner-up Nick Wey and third-place finisher Damon Huffman had other ideas. The pair followed Carmichael to the checkers, marking what could be a great rivalry for the coveted Clear Channel/THQ World SXGP Privateer of the Year Award and the $100,000 bonus money that comes along with it.

“I’m learning tons out here in Canada, and I’m glad to be taking advantage of all of this extra time on the bike, said Ricky Carmichael following his runaway win in Vancouver, BC. “I really feel that competing in these Canadian rounds will give me a big advantage come Anaheim, because every week the bike gets better and better and I feel my confidence building. These World SXGP rounds are really a great warm-up for January 8 th , and it’s something that I should have been doing the last few years. I’ll be here next year, that’s for sure.

As flawless as the race was for RC, he did not lead it wire-to-wire, as Moto XXX’s Kyle Lewis took the holeshot for the second week in a row on his mighty CRF450R. It took Carmichael a couple of laps to get by Lewis, but once he did he was gone—his lead at the checkers was nearly 30 seconds long.

So what happened to Ferry and LaRocco? Tim Ferry was the victim of a first-lap collision with Monster Energy’s Sean Hamblin. Ferry went down fairly hard, going over the bars in a tricky section of jumps. With Red Dog out of the mix, the door was wide open for Wey and Huffman, as LaRocco was relegated to the back of the pack with one of his typical bad starts. Once the Rock got going, though, he was gaining some serious ground, but still didn’t have enough time to sneak his Factory Connection Honda onto the podium; LaRocco had to settle for fourth. As the race drew to a close, it became a fairly tight race between Wey and Huffman, with Nick finishing just two seconds ahead of Huffman’s Team ECC Honda.

“My bike is surprisingly good, said Wey. “Even though it’s a 2004 model, I can’t thank Pro Circuit and MDK enough for providing me with such a great motorcycle. I can’t wait to start getting my 2005 dialed in, but for now I feel I’m at no real disadvantage on this bike. I’m excited for Anaheim, and I want to be right in there with the top four or five guys.

The 125cc class winner was just as predictable as the premier event, with KTM’s Nathan Ramsey taking his second consecutive victory in runaway fashion. The only real competition Ramsey potentially faced was from Arenacross Champ/Canadian hero Darcy Lange, but a crash kept Lange from the front, allowing Ramsey to once again decimate the field aboard his brand new KTM 250 four-stroke. Though Nathan didn’t enjoy quite the same 30-second lead that RC did in the 250cc division, he still trounced the field convincingly with a 17-second win over second-place finisher Jeff Northrop. About five seconds behind Northrop was CRF250R-mounted Brian Hagseth, who rounded out the podium.

After a very convincing ride last weekend, Bobby Kiniry looked fast once again but unfortunately went down at the end of a set of whoops. As he attempted to get up and going after the minor incident, Kiniry couldn’t get his CRF250R to fire up. Several (and we mean several!) kicks later, the CRF finally started, but it was too late for Kiniry to mount a serious charge. Still, Bobby finished in a respectabble 14 th position, which wasn’t that bad considering how long he was out of the race for.

Now that the Canadian rounds are out of the way, the series takes a few weeks off until it resumes in Anaheim on January 8 th , where the best riders in the world will battle one another for the most sought-after win of all—A1.