WATCH LIVE: Unadilla National; Can Ryan Dungey make it two wins in a row?

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The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship hits its final three-week stretch today at the Red Bull Unadilla National, and all four motos will be streaming live on NBC Sports Live Extra starting at 1:00 PM E.T. First motos in both classes will kick things off, followed by second motos at 3:00 PM E.T.

Second motos in both classes can also be viewed live on television through NBC and NBCSN. NBC will air the second 450 Class moto live at 3:00 PM E.T., with coverage shifting over to NBCSN at 4:00 PM E.T. for the second 250 Class moto.

The biggest story entering today’s race is the resumption of the 450 Class championship battle between Ken Roczen and Ryan Dungey. Dungey has trimmed Roczen’s lead down to 14 points and has the momentum right now in the series. It will be quite a battle between the two Red Bull KTM teammates over the final three rounds.

When it comes to winning races though, the 450 Class isn’t a two-horse race by any means. Eli Tomac has been strong ever since returning from a broken collarbone midway through the season and has looked like an even better rider than points leader Roczen in recent weeks. Trey Canard, who set the fastest lap in practice this morning, is also in search of his first moto win of the season.

In the 250 Class, Jeremy Martin holds a comfortable 43-point lead in the championship race, and while he would surely love to return to the top of the podium today, he’s in a position where he can afford to play it safe.

Barring a huge mistake, Martin has built up a deficit that will be challenging for fellow title contenders Cooper Webb and Blake Baggett to overcome. Anything’s possible though – a mechanical problem with the bike or a hard crash in one of the motos could result in a DNF for Martin, which would quickly let his challengers back into the hunt.

Provisional Indy Lights champion Oliver Askew ready for IndyCar ride

Road to Indy
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Provisional Indy Lights champion Oliver Askew has done nothing but dominate the 2019 season, winning seven of the 16 races run so far and finishing on the podium in all but two of those events.

Now all the 22-year-old Floridian needs to do to formally clinch the 2019 title is simply start the final two races of the season, both of which will be held this weekend at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.

For Askew, his maiden Indy Lights season will likely be one he’ll never forget. 

“It’s been a dream come true,” Askew told NBC Sports. “Being with the championship-winning team from last year, we had a really good shot at winning it again for Andretti Autosport. It’s very rare that we show up to a track and struggle to find speed. 

“That’s a fantastic feeling, especially as a driver. That gave me a lot of confidence and hopes of holding the million dollar check at the end of the year. That was the goal going into it.”

This weekend, Askew will accomplish said goal. The championship will not only bring him a sense of pride, but also the opportunity of a lifetime. 

As an award for being crowned the Indy Lights champion, Askew will be awarded a scholarship that guarantees him entry into a minimum of three NTT IndyCar Series events next year – including the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500. 

Time will only tell which team Askew will race for in IndyCar next season, and whether or not Askew’s rookie campaign will be a full-time or part-time affair, but Askew’s performance during the last few seasons in the Road to Indy system has certainly drawn attention of IndyCar’s top team owners.

In August, Askew had the chance to drive an Indy car for the first time in his career during a test session at Portland International Raceway, driving the No. 9 PNC Bank Honda usually piloted by Scott Dixon.

“It was an opportunity with Chip Ganassi Racing that I was very fortunate to have,” Askew said. “I think with my experience in the past couple of years with Cape Motorsports and this year with Andretti Autosport, going into that test was very helpful.

“Going into the test, it was more of trying to treat it as just another day at the racetrack, when it really wasn’t. It was a fantastic opportunity for me – a great experience – and I hope I can take that into my rookie season next year in IndyCar.” 

The final two races of the 2019 Indy Lights season will take place this weekend on Saturday, September 21 at 6 p.m. ET and Sunday, September 22 at 12:05 p.m. ET. Both races will air live on NBC Sports Gold.

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