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
MRTI: Road America preview
Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
All three series of the Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires were last in action on the same day – May 25 – though at separate venues. The Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires was at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Freedom 100, where Colton Herta emerged victorious.
Meanwhile, the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires and the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda were at Lucas Oil Raceway for the Freedom 90 (Pro Mazda) and Freedom 75 (USF2000) – Parker Thompson and Kyle Kirkwood dominated their respective races and claimed victories to extend their championship leads.
All three series reunite at Road America for double headers this weekend, with a close title fight developing in Indy Lights, while the championship leaders in Pro Mazda and USF2000 (the aforementioned Thompson and Kirkwood) look to build on already strong leads.
Previews of all three series are below.
Colton Herta enters Road America as the hottest driver in the Mazda Road to Indy, having swept the month of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway – he won both races on the IMS Road Course and outdueled Pato O’Ward, Dalton Kellett, and Santi Urrutia to win the Freedom 100. He leads O’Ward by six points, while Urrutia is 21 out of the lead, but don’t think that they’re the only ones who may factor into things.
Victor Franzoni had been getting better with every race, and had two podiums on the season entering the Freedom 100, but multiple problems saw him finish eighth and drop him to 50 points out of the lead. Franzoni appears to have the speed to challenge for wins, and he’ll need a win soon if he is to get into title contention.
Wisconsin native Aaron Telitz looks to rebound at his home track after a down weekend in the Freedom 100, in which he finished sixth. Teltiz had a run of fourth, third, and second in the three races prior, so the speed is most certainly there to steal a race win, and doing so at his home track would be a massive thrill for him.
Given that his Juncos Racing teammates, Rinus VeeKay and Robert Megennis, came into the season as perhaps slightly more heralded, it may surprise some that Cunha is the closest rival to Thompson at this point. Though he doesn’t yet have a win, he has back-to-back second place finishes, and also has a pair of third-place efforts this year as well. The 18-year-old Brazilian has made a big jump from last year, and a win may be beckoning for him this weekend.
Harrison Scott and David Malukas look to rebound after they crashed in the Freedom 90. It leaves them 68 points (Scott) and 78 points (Malukas) out of the lead. It will be tough for them to get back into title contention, but race wins and/or podiums at Road America would certainly be a big help regardless.
The aforementioned VeeKay looks to get back on championship form at Road America, which he swept last year, while teammate Megennis looks for back-to-back podiums after finishing third in the Freedom 90.
Kyle Kirkwood is starting to run away with the USF2000 championship, with a staggering 59-point lead over second place Alex Baron. The 19-year-old from Florida has things far from wrapped up, but he certainly has a stranglehold of the championship at the moment, and if he can keep things clean, it will become harder and harder for drivers to make up ground.
Interestingly, title rival Baron is perhaps the faster driver of the two, but Baron’s season is plagued by a 22nd-place effort in Race 1 on the streets of St. Petersburg, and a 21st at the Freedom 90. He’ll need a string of race wins to get back into contention, and Road America would be a good place to start.
Jose Sierra sits third, only five points behind Baron, and looks to add to his two podiums this year (second in St. Pete Race 1, and third in Race 1 on the IMS Road Course). And, if both Kirkwood and Baron falter, he could be primed to steal a win.
Igor Fraga sits fourth and looks to continue a consistent effort from the opening five races, with fifth place drivers Lucas Kohl and Rasmus Lindh (tied on 74 points apiece) looking to do the same.
Kaylen Frederick got his first podium of the year in the Freedom 75, finishing second to Kirkwood. It is only his second finish inside the Top 10 this year (ninth in St. Pete Race 2 is the other), and he’ll look to build off that effort moving forward.
Pro Mazda has practice and Race 1 qualifying on Thursday, with Race 1 on Friday and Race 2 on Saturday. Indy Lights and USF2000 practice on Friday, with their races on Saturday (Race 1 for both) and Sunday (Race 2 for both). A full weekend schedule can be viewed here.