CHINO, CA (JULY 24, 2012) – Yoshimura-backed teams topped the podium once again at round eight of the 2012 AMA Pro Motocross Championships at the Washougal National in Washougal, WA on Saturday. The Honda Racing, Yoshimura Suzuki and Rockstar Energy Racing Suzuki teams dominated the great northwest in style using their Yoshimura products to their fullest.
In the 250 class at RedBud, Yoshimura-backed Muscle Milk-sponsored GEICO Honda riders Justin Barcia and Eli Tomac went 1-2 on the podium for a third consecutive week. In moto one, Barcia ran in second a majority of the race, followed by Tomac. Both riders eventually made the pass on the leader to finish the race 1-2. In the second moto, Barcia launched to a good start, quickly opening up a gap on the rest of the pack. He led a majority of the race until a slight mistake caused him to surrender the top position. He finished second, followed by Tomac. Yoshimura-backed teammate Justin Bogle placed seventh overall with 9-5 finishes followed by Wil Hahn with 5-10 finishes.
"It feels awesome to be in the top spot and to have closed up the points gap a little," said Barcia. "In moto one I had to ride really hard to get around Marvin but I finally got sick of the roost and made the pass. In the second moto I got the holeshot and rode up front most the time until Blake caught up and passed me. I haven't had the best of luck here the last few years so it's great to come out of here on top."
"Today was overall a good day," stated Tomac. "In the first moto I stayed up front with Justin throughout the race and once we got by Marvin we settled into a nice pace and rode to the finish. In the second moto I didn't get as good of a start and spent way too much time trying to get through to the front but was able to make my way up to third."
In the WMX class, Yoshimura-backed Team Honda Muscle Milk's Ashley Fiolek topped the podium once again with 1-1 finishes. In moto one, Fiolek grabbed the holeshot and rode unchallenged to the checkered flag, then in the second race she once again launched to a great start but was quickly pressured by other riders. After moving into second, Fiolek was able to capitalize on a mistake by the leader, which allowed her to regain the front position. She currently sits third overall in the championship standings, a mere 11 points off the leader.
In the 450 class, Yoshimura-backed Team Honda Muscle Milk's Tommy Hahn rode his way to a sixth-place finish after going 7-7 in both motos. After posting the third-quickest times in practice, Hahn was forced to work his way through the pack in moto one after getting a less-than-desirable start. He put together a hard charge, making his way into seventh. In moto two, Hahn jumped to a good start, eventually surrendering a few positions to finish in seventh.
Yoshimura-backed teammate Justin Brayton put together a noteworthy first moto with a solid ride for the entire 30-minute-plust-two-lap race, finishing in fifth. Unfortunately, after getting off to another good start in moto two Brayton went down hard and was unable to continue the race.
For Yoshimura-backed Rockstar Energy Racing in the 250 class, Blake Wharton continued with his trend of racking up respectable results. Wharton overcame poor starts in both 250 motos to finish seventh and sixth respectively, for a final result of sixth overall for the day. "I had a pretty good run," said Wharton. "I had some good battles and I felt like my endurance was good. Overall, it was a good day, the team worked well together and everything just fell into place. We're going to Southwick in a few weeks and I hope I can continue this upward spiral. I finished the last four races strong, but there's still a lot of racing left and some good points to be made up."
Yoshimura-backed Rockstar Energy Racing teammate Jason Anderson also finished in the top 10 in the 250 class. Although Anderson suffered a few minor get-offs, his overall performance was strong. Anderson ended the day 10th overall, thanks to 10th- and ninth-place moto finishes. "The day was a little bit of a struggle," admitted Anderson. "But I felt like I rode well and I ended up 10th overall, so it was a good day. I crashed twice in the second moto, but I kept pushing and pushing, and ended up ninth in that race. Now I'm looking forward to taking a few weeks off and then coming back strong for Southwick."
Yoshimura-backed Rockstar Energy Racing's Martin Davalos returned to the 250 class after missing the last five rounds from injury. In the first moto, Davalos got tangled up with some other riders and had to start from dead last. But he rallied and came back to finish 18th. In the second moto, Davalos was still getting back into his racing groove and finished 12th. Overall, Davalos concluded the day in 17th. "I didn't have any expectations for this race," said Davalos. "In the first moto, I got taken out and it took me a little while to get going again, but I came back to 18th from last. In the second moto, I felt really good. I got a decent start and I was running good. I'm happy with my first race back, but I can work on some things during the next few weeks and come back better for Southwick."
Yoshimura-backed Rockstar Energy Racing's Hunter Hewitt was unable to race this weekend due to illness. Hewitt hopes to be ready to race again by the next round, at the Southwick National.
In the WMX class, Yoshimura-backed Rockstar Energy Racing's Jessica Patterson bounced back from a broken hand and recent surgery to put in two impressive rides. Patterson finished second in the first moto, and led the second moto before finishing eighth. Overall, Patterson wound up fourth for the day. "The first moto went really well," said Patterson. "I surprised myself. I was in second and I pretty much stayed there. I got a little tired toward the end but I held on. In the second moto, I passed for the lead and I was doing good. But then, (the injury) just caught up with me. I was exhausted and I could barely pull the clutch in. Now, I'm looking forward to Southwick. That's one of my favorite tracks and I have two weeks to heal up, so I'll be ready for that one."
The next stop for the Yoshimura-backed teams is the ninth round of the 2012 AMA Pro Motocross Championship on Saturday, August 11th, at the Southwick National in Southwick, MA.
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