If the first race of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship was any indication, this is going to be one exciting summer.
The series kicked off at Glen Helen Raceway on Saturday, and the overall win in the 450 Class came down to a battle between two Red Bull KTM teammates – two-time 450MX champion Ryan Dungey and 450MX rookie Ken Roczen.
In the second moto of the day, Dungey spent most of the race chasing down Roczen. Finally within striking distance on the last lap, Dungey charged hard and made his move with just a few turns left in the race, overtaking Roczen and just narrowly beating him to the checkered flag.
By virtue of a third-place finish in Moto 1 and a win in Moto 2, Dungey also took home the overall victory. Roczen emerged as the runner-up with 2-2 finishes but is just one point behind Dungey in the standings entering the next race.
Click here to watch the final lap of the battle between Dungey and Roczen.
The 250 Class was considerably less competitive. Jeremy Martin, who was flying a bit under the radar as a championship threat this year, dominated the competition – winning both of the 250MX motos by a wide margin. Racing just his second full season as a pro, the kid from Minnesota has grabbed himself the early points lead.
Visit ProMotocross.com for more video highlights and recaps from each of today’s motos.
The series stays in California next weekend when Hangtown hosts the second round.
Daniel Ricciardo believes Red Bull stands a “decent chance” of signing off from the 2017 Formula 1 season with a victory in next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
After a slow start to the year, Red Bull made massive gains across the course of the season by developing its RB13 to end the season as front-runners, rivaling Mercedes and Ferrari for pace.
The Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi has a number of slow-speed sections that should suit the RB13 car, with Ricciardo optimistic about his chances of not only ending his podium drought at the track, but even winning the race.
“Yas Marina has actually been one of my favorite tracks over the years,” Ricciardo said in Red Bull’s pre-race preview.
“It’s been a bit like Suzuka for me though, a track that I’ve always enjoyed and gone well on but not quite reached the podium at. I broke that trend in Suzuka this year so hopefully I can do the same in Abu Dhabi.
“When you have so much time away from the car in the off season it helps to sign off with a strong result as it makes you feel like you really deserve a break.
“I think we should have a strong car in Abu Dhabi. I said I want another win before the season is out and I think we have a decent chance of achieving that.”
Red Bull has claimed three race wins through 2017, with Ricciardo’s victory in Azerbaijan being followed up by successes for teammate Max Verstappen in Malaysia and Mexico.