Irvine, Calif. (July 14, 2014) – The Northeast summer heat and humidity pushed temperatures above 90-degrees on Saturday as the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship made their annual stop to Budds Creek in Mechanicsville, Maryland. Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki Blake Baggett beat the heat and put the hurt on the competition in the second moto to take the win by more than 14 seconds securing his third overall win of the season. Justin Hill and Dean Wilson both had one top-10 moto on their way to seventh and 12th, respectively. In the 450 class, Brett Metcalfe battled within the top-10 all day and finished eighth overall.
For the third-consecutive year, Baggett thrilled the crowd at Budds Creek. In the first moto, he was able to fight his way up from a top-10 start on his KX™250F. In the closing laps he dropped his lap times and the top three battled wheel to wheel, crossing the finish line only a second apart. Unhappy with third place, Baggett set out determined and did not let a less than ideal start get in his way. Going two seconds a lap faster than the leader, he was able to reel him in, make a quick pass and leave him behind. His 3-1 score gave him his third overall of the season and moved him into second place in the points standings.
“Today was what I needed,” said Baggett. “We came close the past two weeks and this is what I came here to do. The track was rough, the weather was hot, and we were ready for a fight. I ran out of time in the first moto, so I needed to make a statement in the second moto. We’re 27 points down but with four rounds to go, anything is possible. We’re staying confident.”
Ups and Downs
In the first 250 class moto, it was Wilson who got off to a great start within the top five. He battled up front while his teammate Hill was outside the top 15 and trying to push forward. Wilson finished seventh and Hill finished 13th, which left them both wanting more. Wilson once again got a great start but was tangled up in a first turn pile-up which locked on his starting device. He was forced to come into the pit to free it up and had to work his way up from last position. Roles were reversed as Hill was near the front and rebounded to finish sixth while Wilson passed more than half the field to finish in 16th.
Metcalfe started the day by posting the seventh fastest qualifying lap on his KX™450F. He lined up for the first moto, confident and ready to battle the rough track and humidity. With a top-10 start, Metty fought throughout the 30-minute plus two moto to finish seventh. In the second moto, Metcalfe was ready to better his first moto and rounded the first turn with another great start, but coming down the first hill he realized something was wrong. His rear brakes had malfunctioned and he was left to race the majority of the moto without them. After the moto it was discovered that a rock had wedged itself between the brake line and swingarm. Despite the issue, Metcalfe rode hard to salvage 11th place.
“It’s just one of those things,” said Metcalfe. “A rock cut my rear brake line within the first couple of laps and there was nothing I could do, but ride it out. We still scored some decent points and will continue to dig for more at Millville.”
Back in the Saddle
Next week the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship heads to Millville, Minnesota for Round 8. Jake Weimer will make his return to racing after a High Point crash. With Weimer back under the Monster Energy Kawasaki tent, you can expect he and Metcalfe to push each other up the standings. Meanwhile, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s injured reserve of Adam Cianciarulo, Darryn Durham, and Martin Davalos have all received positive news. Durham is back on his KX250F and plans to return at Unadilla in a few short weeks, while Cianciarulo was cleared to begin riding on Monday. Davalos has begun walking and cycling following his ankle injury that robbed him of the East Coast 250SX championship and hopes to return to riding in August.