Jeremy Martin scores 250 Class Motocross win on home soil of Spring Creek

1 Comment

Not only did Jeremy Martin leave his home track with the overall victory at the Spring Creek National, he also capitalized on mistakes from the other title contenders to significantly extend his points lead.

The most impressive 250 Class rider all year long in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, Martin entered today’s race as the heavy favorite and backed that up with a dominant victory in the first moto of the day. After passing Christophe Pourcel for the lead on Lap 2, Martin was able to comfortably cruise to victory. Cooper Webb – who entered the day third overall in points – was on the move until he ran into the back of Justin Bogle’s bike trying to make a pass and crashed. Webb lost numerous spots and was left salvaging as many points as he could as he worked his way back up through the field for a ninth-place finish.

Webb would come back with a vengeance in the second moto. For a while it looked like Blake Baggett’s race to lose, but he crashed while leading and was shuffled back through the pack, landing outside the top-15. Baggett encountered bike problems later in the race and was unable to finish, leaving him with no points to show for the moto. After Baggett’s crash, Bogle inherited the lead but was soon passed by both Webb and Martin. Webb held Martin off to score the moto victory – his third of the season – but Martin’s 1-2 moto scores were more than enough to give him the overall win.

“I tried to put in a hard charge [in the second moto] for the home crowd to make it exciting but just came up a little short,” Martin said. “Cooper [Webb] rode good.”

Watch the recap of 250 Moto 2 below:

If it seemed like Martin was an expert with the track, it’s because he grew up riding the facility. His parents have owned Spring Creek MX Park since the late 1980s.

Marvin Musquin (2-4) and Webb (9-1) rounded out the overall podium alongside Martin.

Thanks to mistakes from both Webb and Baggett, Martin now has a lot more breathing room in the championship race. Webb managed to pass Baggett for second place in 250MX points, but he now faces a 43-point deficit behind his teammate Martin that will not be easy to overcome in the final four rounds.

Spring Creek 250 Class Overall Results
1. Jeremy Martin (1-2)
2. Marvin Musquin (2-4)
3. Cooper Webb (9-1)
4. Chrisophe Pourcel (3-6)
5. Dean Wilson (5-5)
6. Jason Anderson (11-3)
7. Joey Savatgy (8-9)
8. Alex Martin (12-7)
9. Cole Seely (7-13)
10. Jessy Nelson (14-8)
*Moto 1 and Moto 2 results in parenthesis

Sebastien Ogier in driver’s seat for sixth straight World Rally Championship title

Sebastien Ogier leads the way in the WRC title chase. Photo: Getty Images
Leave a comment

COFFS HARBOUR, Australia (AP) — Thierry Neuville finished the sixth stage of Rally Australia on Friday without a rear left tire, damaging his chances of catching five-time defending champion Sebastien Ogier for the World Rally Championship title.

The Belgian driver entered the rally just three points behind Ogier in the closest title fight in 15 years.

He held the upper hand on his French rival, building a near-10 second gap through the first five stages at Coffs Harbour before hitting a chicane and finishing the stage with only three tires on his Hyundai.

Neuville was fortunate the puncture occurred late enough in the day to finish all six forestry stages and avoid a retirement. But the mistake cost him 40 seconds and gave Ogier, who is 33 seconds ahead of him, a clear run at his sixth straight championship.

In his last start with Ford before a move to Citroen next year, Ogier struggled as the first to drive the dusty, slippery forest routes.

“I pushed like crazy, I was on the limit over the jump and everywhere, I can’t do (any) more,” Ogier said. “I was on the limit.”

With Ogier on sweeping duties the back markers flourished, and Mads Ostberg took the lead in his return to the series.

Ostberg was forced to miss the previous round in Spain to make way for rally winner and nine-time world champion Sebastien Loeb, who was making the last of his three guest appearances for Citroen.

Now back in the seat, Ostberg leads Jari-Matti Latvala by 6.8 seconds in the Australian rally, with sixth-stage winner Craig Breen in third.

Ogier was seventh, 38.2 seconds off the pace, but only needs to finish ahead of Neuville to claim the championship title. Neuville is in 10th place after six stages.

Roles will reverse on Saturday, with Ogier to start further back in the field and do his best on cleaner roads to make up the day-one deficit before Sunday’s final stages.

Andreas Mikkelsen, the 2016 Rally Australia champion, was an early dropout after rolling into a ditch in his Hyundai. Mikkelsen had only just avoided a tractor that had found its way onto the course.

Former winner Molly Taylor and co-driver Malcolm Read were also forced out of their event when their Subaru hit a hay bale at high speed on the morning’s second stage. Both reported soreness but suffered no serious injuries.

The 24-stage rally totals 319 kilometers (197 miles). Ten stages are scheduled Saturday with the final six on Sunday, most of them through forests on the New South Wales state’s north coast about 530 kilometers (325 miles) north of Sydney.