Irvine, Calif. – Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett scored his second win of the season at Round 5 of the 2012 AMA Pro Motocross Championship at Budds Creek MX Park in Mechanicsville, Md., with a 2-1 moto result. Baggett will continue carrying the coveted red plate on his Kawasaki KX™250F for a fifth-consecutive week after extending his points lead to 13. His teammate Broc Tickle captured the first outdoor overall podium of his career aboard his KX™450F, landing in second place with a 2-2 moto score. Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Jake Weimer started off strong in the first 450 moto scoring third, but a fourth-place finish in Moto 2 left him just off the podium with fourth overall. Ivan Tedesco got good starts in both 250 motos, but not long after grabbing the holeshot in Moto 2 he crashed and had to pull off the track.
Getting it Done
After finishing off the podium in fourth last weekend, Baggett was determined to do whatever it took to keep the red pates on his KX250F. In the first moto, Baggett got a good start inside the top-five and began pushing toward the front. By the second lap he moved into third and began pacing the leaders on the tight track. With five minutes plus two laps left in the race, Baggett made a pass for second place stick and finished in the runner-up spot. In Moto 2, Baggett got a great jump off the line and came around the first lap in third. He moved into second by lap eight and began pacing the leader. When the leader made a mistake on lap 13, Baggett took over the lead and never looked back. The victory marked his second win of the season and extended his points lead to 13.
“My main goal is to keep holding onto that red plate,” said Baggett. “I don’t think I’m hungrier than I was last year, I think I’m just smarter. Last year I got a lot of wins, but just kept making mistakes that cost me. So this year I’ve learned from my mistakes and know what I need to do to achieve my goals. The track at Budds Creek was really one-lined. Once you committed to a line it was almost impossible to change lines to make a pass, especially with all the lappers. It is so important to get good starts on a track like that and I was able to do that in both motos. The key to winning was keeping it on two wheels both motos; you just can’t afford to go down on a track like this. Overall, I was really pumped on how I rode and the result so I will try to carry that momentum into the rest of the series.”
Hard Work Pays
Tickle was looking forward to the series heading toward his hometown on the East coast. With his family and friends in attendance at Budds Creek, Tickle rode to the best finish of his career aboard his KX450F. In the first moto he got a good start and came around the first lap in fourth position. He quickly began moving toward the front and within the first ten minutes of the race he claimed the number two spot, where he would eventually finish the race. In Moto 2, Tickle got another great start and quickly pulled into third behind the leaders. He kept a tight pace on the leaders for the first five laps before making the pass for second. Despite encountering more than ten lappers before the end of the race, Tickle was able to navigate the congested track to finish second and earn the runner-up spot on the podium. The second-place finish advanced Tickle from eighth to sixth in the championship points standings.
“This weekend went great,” said Tickle. “It was awesome to get my first outdoor podium with my parents in the stands. They live out here on the East coast so this is a hometown race for me. We have a two week break coming up so I am going to use that opportunity to train even harder. The first week I will hit it pretty hard with cardio and try to get my endurance up. The second week I’ll taper down a little, take a day off and maybe head to the beach. I just want to keep having fun and getting on the podium. Whenever I struggled in the past I always just kept my head down and kept working hard. When you have a day like this it really makes you feel good because you know your hard work is paying off.”
Toughing it Out
Weimer came to Budds Creek looking to get back on the box for a third week in a row, but finished just outside his goal in fourth place. In Moto 1, he got a good start and came around the first lap in fifth position. He pushed his way through the field of lappers to earn third behind fellow Kawasaki rider Tickle. In the second moto, Weimer didn’t get the start he needed and ended up mid-pack. While caught in traffic on the first lap he took a rock to the chest, which almost took him out of the race, but he decided to keep pushing forward. Weimer was able to work his way up to fifth and with an amazing last-second pass across the finish line, Weimer stole fourth by a thousandth of a second. He currently sits third in the championship points, only three points behind second.
“The first moto went good and I was able to get on the podium,” said Weimer. “The second moto ended up being pretty tough. I didn’t get the best start and got caught in the middle of the pack. While I was trying to work through the pack on the first lap I got drilled in the chest with a rock. It really knocked the wind out of me and I almost pulled off the track, but I decided to keep racing. It wasn’t the best day, but ending with fourth overall was alright. I need to keep training harder to find more speed. I’m looking forward to Red Bud in a couple weeks; it’s my favorite track on the series. It has a lot of really big and fun jumps so it should be a good time.”
Coming Out Swinging
In Moto 1 of the 250 Class, Tedesco got off to a decent start inside the top-ten. He moved into seventh before the end of the first lap and started clicking off laps. Although he went down briefly on the fourth lap, he was able to recover only losing one position and finished the moto in eighth place. In the second moto, Tedesco came out swinging and ripped the holeshot aboard his KX250F. However, before the end of the first lap he went down hard and was forced to pull off the track. Tedesco earned 14th overall with an 8-36 moto result and currently sits ninth in the points standings.
“I got good starts all day,” said Tedesco. “I pulled the holeshot in the second moto and was stoked on that. Before we even finished the first lap I went down pretty hard going into a corner. My front tire slipped into some ruts and I knifed my front end. I slammed my head and kind of tweaked my knee a little so I decided to pull off the track. I am really looking forward to the upcoming break.”
Ready for Action
At the first round of the season at Hangtown MX, and his premier race aboard the Monster Energy Kawasaki team representing the 450 Class, Tyla Rattray sustained a broken hand after a rock was flung from a competitor’s tire. The injury forced Rattray off the track and out of the series for the next four rounds until his doctor cleared him to ride again. Now with the doctors approval, Rattray is ready to ride and looking forward to his return to the series at Red Bud MX.
In what has become the 250cc class, Kawasaki has won 11 of the last 12 races at Budds Creek MX Park. The Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team has been responsible for cultivating wins at the last seven-consecutive events at Budds Creek MX Park with the help of Ryan Villopoto from ’06-‘08, Weimer in ‘09, Dean Wilson in ‘10, Rattray in ‘11 and Baggett in ‘12.
Next weekend, the 2012 AMA Pro Motocross Championship series will take a much needed break, allowing both racers and teams two weekends off to rest and recoup. The series will reconvene in three weeks on July 7, 2012, at Round 6 of the series at Red Bud MX Park in Buchanan, Mich.