Red Bull KTM Factory rider Ken Roczen chalked up his second straight podium of the season when he finished second overall in the 250SX class East Coast competition at the second round of the Monster Energy Supercross, an FIM World Championship held at Chase Field.
Roczen was placed in the first heat where he nailed the holeshot and pulled out to an early lead. Out front, he repeatedly knocked off fast laps and had pulled to a 6 second lead by the halfway point. He led every lap to the checkers to take his second heat win of the season so he went into the main event with plenty of confidence
But Roczen missed the start when the gate dropped and found himself in mid-pack around the first corner. He quickly set to work picking up positions but lost valuable time to the front runners as he moved through the pack. The young German rider was in the top five at the halfway point and one lap later he made a pass on both Jessy Nelson and Cole Seely to move into podium position. With four laps to go, he set his sights on the second place ride of Martin Davalos and began to reel him in. Roczen went on the attack in the final lap and went on to take his second podium of the season.
“I am disappointed in my start tonight,” stated Roczen after the race. “I just had a bad start and had to spend too much time coming through the pack. My focus this last week has been my starts and I’ll keep working on them so I can get up from early and battle for the lead in the next rounds.”
Hard fought eighth place for Dungey in 450 class
It was a tough day at the office for Red Bull KTM Factory rider Ryan Dungey made a valiant charge after a poor start in his 450 class main event to fight his way back to eighth place at the final flag. After two rounds, Dungey now sits 5th in the overall point standings.
Dungey got off to a poor start in the first 450SX heat and came around the first corner in eighth. Then just after the first lap another rider crashed and fell into Dungey, pushing him right off the track right at the peak of a triple jump. He shook himself off after what was a hard rash and got back in the race at dead last. Despite some fast laps he failed to move up to qualifying position and went back to the pits to prepare for the LCQ.
Dungey found himself in a mid-pack position off the start of the LCQ but he had moved into third at the end of lap one and was second at the halfway point to go on to take the final transfer spot to the main event. His qualifying position gave him final gate pick for the main event, which put him in the farthest outside gate for the start of the race. Then when the gate dropped, he got pushed outside and was sent off the track. He came around the first lap of the race back at eighteenth place.
By the halfway point, Dungey had moved into eleventh and advanced to top ten two laps later. He spent the remaining laps reeling in Kevin Windham and Andrew Short and eventually crossed the line in eighth at the end of the twenty-lap race. Although disappointed in his night, Dungey is more motivated to return to the third round and put his KTM up front.
Red Bull KTM Factory Team Manager, Roger DeCoster: “Unfortunately, Ryan didn’t have great starts tonight which affected his overall results. He came from the rear of the field to finish a solid eighth place and we are grateful to salvage those points. Overall, the bike was running great tonight and once we perfect the starts we should be in the running for a win.”
Good night for JDR/J-Star/KTM rookie Savatgy
JDR/J-Star/KTM rider Joey Savatgy was the talk of the day at the second round of the Monster Energy Supercross Series held at Chase Field after turning in an impressive heat race and finishing inside the top ten in the 250SX class in only his second professional Supercross race. The rookie Supercross star was joined by both his teammates, Malcolm Stewart and Josh Cachia, in the main event, which allowed the entire team to be well represented for the night show.
Savatgy went on to be the team’s star performer on the night with Australian Chachia eventually finishing in fourteenth and Stewart in eighteenth position.
Next Event: Anaheim II – January 19, 2013
Image courtesy KTM