Irvine, Calif. – Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett both earned victories for Team USA in their respective classes during the Saturday qualifying races at the Motocross of Nations (MXON) at Circuit du Puy de Poursay in St. Jean-D’Angely, France. Helping Great Britain qualify seventh for Sunday’s race by earning third in the MX2 class, Dean Wilson came from behind to land on the podium. In his first race aboard the 2012 Kawasaki KX™450F, Tyla Rattray made his move to finish fifth in the MX1 class, helping South Africa qualify sixth.

Big Lead
Getting out to the lead after the first turn, Villopoto turned up his speed to lead by more than 10 seconds at one point in the race. With two motos run before him, Villopoto was faced with a tough track to tackle aboard his championship winning 2012 Kawasaki KX450F.

“I was the last moto and the track had deteriorated pretty bad,” said Villopoto. “I knew with our 1-1 going into the third race we were in and my goal was to get out there and to get some track time.

PALA, Calif. - After a summer full of some of the best competition in series history, the 2011 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship came to a close on Saturday, in the heart of the motocross industry in Southern California. Thousands of fans were on hand to witness the Traxxas Pala National from Pala Raceway, as Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto, of Poulsbo, Wash., secured his first premier 450 Class title. In the 250 Class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Dean Wilson, of Scotland, capped off his championship season by sweeping the day’s motos for his third win of the season.

In the opening moto of the 450 Class, all eyes were on Villopoto and his championship rival, Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey, of Belle Plaine, Minn., who were separated by just 14 points. Out of the gates, the duo positioned themselves within the top 10, and immediately began working on moving forward. Out front, Red Bull KTM’s Mike Alessi, of Victorville, Calif., looked to pull away, with American Honda’s Justin Barcia, of Monroe, N.Y., in pursuit. After just three laps, Barcia took over the top spot, but it was only a matter of time before the series’ perennial front-runners were battling for the lead. Both Villopoto and Dungey followed nose to tail throughout the moto, and on Lap 12, Villopoto slipped past Barcia and never looked back. Dungey followed suit two laps later, finishing second, and also losing an additional three points in the standings.

In Moto 2, the championship leaders found themselves in similar positions off the start, while TwoTwo Motorsports/Bel-Ray Racing’s Chad Reed, of Australia, took over the early lead. While leading, Reed went down, allowing a closely-pursuing Barcia to assume the position. Upon remounting, Reed was forced to deal with a hard-charging Dungey and Villopoto. Dungey worked his way past quickly, and set his sights on Barcia, and the overall win. Villopoto took his time getting around Reed, using his healthy points lead to his advantage, but eventually settled into third, where he would finish the moto. At the front of the field, Barcia and Dungey brought the fans to their feet, battling for the win over the final two laps, with Dungey prevailing to secure his fourth win of the year.

Irvine, Calif. – Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Green™ celebrated its 30th anniversary with the premiere of the short film “Grassroots” at the Oakley Theater in Foothill Ranch, Calif. on September 7, 2011 to a packed audience of Team Green alumni and friends. The celebration kicked off at 6:30 p.m. with guests arriving on the green carpet to enjoy food and drinks prior to the start of the film.  Following the film there was a panel discussion about the dynamic history of Team Green, hosted by RACER X contributor Steve Matthes.

The 22-minute feature celebrates the past, present, and future of Team Green and stars current team members Adam Cianciarulo, Destry Abbott, Darian Sanayei, Justin Soule’, Chad George, and Stilez Robertson. Former and current Team Green managers who helped create and grow the program including Dave Jordan, Bruce Stjernstrom, Ron Heben, and Kawasaki’s present Senior Manager of Racing, Reid Nordin were part of the panel discussion following the screening, which also included Davey Coombs. Many Team Green athletes and alumni from the program’s rich 30-year history were also in attendance.

DELMONT, Pa. – Thousands of fans lined the fences surrounding Delmont’s Steel City Raceway on Saturday, as the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship celebrated Labor Day Weekend with the Steel City Motocross National. The penultimate round of the 12-race season featured stellar battles throughout the day, and following two grueling 250 Class motos, the first champion of the 2011 season was crowned, as Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Dean Wilson, of Scotland, posted a 1-1 moto sweep, to take his second win of the season, and secure his first-career professional title. In the 450 Class, Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto, of Poulsbo, Wash., raced to his third win of the season with a perfect day of his own, extending his lead in the 450 Class standings.

In the opening 250 Class moto, Wilson assumed the top spot out of the gates, and never looked back. A slight challenge from GEICO Honda’s Justin Bogle, of Cushing, Okla., kept Wilson honest early, but he eventually pulled away from the field to win by nearly 10 seconds.

In Moto 2, Wilson once again found himself at the front of the field early. However, GEICO Honda’s Eli Tomac was eager to claim his first win of the 2011 season, and slipped by shortly thereafter. Tomac opened up a comfortable advantage over Wilson, but it wouldn’t last long. On Lap 6, Wilson erased the deficit, re-passed Tomac, and effectively ran away from the competition, savoring the closing laps to become the 24th different 250 Class champion in AMA history, and just the third internationally-born rider.

“This is the greatest day to me,” said Wilson, who statistically has been the best rider in the entire series this summer. “I went to sleep when I was young dreaming about winning an outdoor championship. Now, it’s a dream come true. I was feeling really good today. In the first moto, I got the holeshot, and in the second moto, I didn’t get a good start, but I got lucky and found a hole that helped me pass a lot of people. It’s just the greatest feeling. I went by the pits and saw on my pit board that I was the 2011 MX Champion, and it gave me goose bumps. I just went out there and rode the way I know how to. I actually didn’t want to win it this weekend, because my parents aren’t here to share it with me.”

Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Tyla Rattray grabbed the 250 class overall win for the second-straight year at MX 338 in Southwick, Mass with an impressive 2-1 moto finish during Round 10 of the AMA Motocross Championship series. Finishing just behind him in second was teammate Dean Wilson with a 3-2 moto result, which extended his points lead in the class championship to 38 points. Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto also extended his lead in the 450 class championship to eight points after he finished second overall with a 2-4. Jake Weimer remained consistent as he finished sixth overall for the second-straight race aboard the 2012 Kawasaki KX™450F. Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett came from behind to finish fifth overall with a 9-6, while Broc Tickle showed speed finishing seventh overall with a 5-12.

Back Into Second
After a tough round at Unadilla, Rattray was able to bounce back in a big way as he grabbed his fourth overall victory of the season. In the first moto, Rattray made his move to the front and was able to finish out the 30 minutes plus two laps in second. After a few set-up changes, Rattray came out ready to lock up the overall and after passing for the lead on the third lap, he captured his fourth moto win of the season.

“The track was a lot rougher than we were thinking it would be in the first moto so we made some changes and the bike was perfect in the second moto,” said Rattray. “I’ve ridden on tracks like this all my life and I think it helps a lot when we come to a track like Southwick. It’s obviously different than anything we see all year and I’m always happy to come here.”

More Points For Wilson
Following his win last week at Unadilla, Wilson entered the race in Southwick with a 25-point gap in the standings. With his smart riding in the deep sand of Southwick, Wilson was able extend that lead to 38 points over second with another podium finish with a 3-2 moto score.

“I didn’t do the greatest here last year so I wanted to come in and put together two good motos and see what happened,” said Wilson. “It was nice to be up on the podium again and add more points to my lead. I would really like to win again this season. We’ll see what happens at Steel City.”

Race By Race
Villopoto started the day with the top qualifying time, but track conditions continued to change as rain started to fall. In the first moto, Villopoto got a good start, but was pushed back to fifth after the second turn. He moved his Kawasaki KX™450F into second and made a push in the final laps, but couldn’t make a pass in time. In the second moto, conditions were even worse and Villopoto did what he needed to keep his bike on two wheels to finish fourth.

“It was pretty gnarly out there during the second moto,” said Villopoto. “Even with the sand, the track was slick and it was hard to get into a groove. I knew I wanted to make sure I didn’t go down because it is really hard to get going again with your hands covered in mud and sand. I would have liked to have left with more than a one-point gain in the championship, but we did get another point ahead of second.”

Another Great Finish
In his rookie motocross season in the 450 class, Weimer continued to get good starts and maintain his position near the front. The starts were important at Southwick, and Weimer was able to put his 2012 Kawasaki KX450F just outside the top-five for the second-straight week.

“It’s nice to finally feel like I’m getting into a groove with my riding,” said Weimer. “I am definitely feeling more comfortable now. I was so close to a top-five this week and I know that I’m riding more consistent. Hopefully I’ll be able to put us into the top-five, not just outside of it.”

Managing the Roost
With the mixture of rain and sand at the MX 338 track, Baggett had to tackle conditions he isn’t normally used to. In both motos he had to make charges to the front from mid-pack and in both motos made it inside the top-10. Showing off his never-give-up attitude, he finished the day with a 9-6 moto score that was good enough for fifth overall.

“In the first moto I was making good progress, but had to pull off my goggles with just a few laps to go,” said Baggett. “With those conditions, I had to come in so I lost a few positions there. My second moto wasn’t much better. I am just glad to get out of here healthy and I’m definitely looking forward to next week at Steel City.”

Showing What He’s Got
After a year of battling bad luck, Tickle was finally able to put his speed up front as he finished fifth in the first moto at Southwick. Unfortunately the bad luck would follow him to the second moto where an early moto crash pushed him back to 26th on the first lap. Showing his determination once again, Tickle made it all the way up to 12th to finish seventh overall.

“I am happy to finally be able to show my speed in one moto, but then I have a bad second moto and can’t put together what I think could have been a podium finish,” said Tickle. “I felt really good coming into the weekend. Despite all the bad luck, I can at least say that I haven’t given up during any moto when I have been able to come through the pack. I just hope everyone can see that.”

Top-10 for Junk Yard Dog
While he’s already attended two rounds this season, 46-year-old Kawasaki rider John Dowd was happy to have the AMA Motocross Championship back in his home state of Massachusetts. Since 1987, Dowd has been racing at his hometown track and despite being the most senior racer on the track, he scored an impressive 9-8 moto finish to end the day eighth overall.

Hurricane Warning
While Massachusetts declared a state of emergency in preparation for Hurricane Irene, the racers took to the track in wet conditions. The fans weren’t afraid to come out and see their favorite racers as attendance was better than expected despite surrounding conditions.

“It was great to see all the fans come out considering the weather and hurricane warnings,” said Weimer. “I was thinking the hurricane would have scared everyone away, but it seemed to be a really good turnout.”

Final Stretch
The series hits the final stretch with only two races to go as the series heads to Steel City Raceway in Delmont, Pa. over Labor Day weekend. Wilson holds on to a 38-point lead over his teammate Rattray with only 100 points available over the next two rounds, while Villopoto will try to extend his eight-point lead in the 450 class.

Irvine, Calif. – Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto extended his points lead with a dominant overall victory on his 23rd birthday at Unadilla Sports Valley Center in New Berlin, N.Y. during the ninth round of the AMA Motocross Championship series. The win was his second of the season, but the first aboard the 2012 Kawasaki KX™450F. Teammate Jake Weimer also debuted the new bike and tied his best finish of the season in sixth overall with a 5-6 result. In the 250 class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Dean Wilson made no mistake that his moto score would add up to his first overall victory as he dominated the day with a 1-1 result. Teammate Blake Baggett finished in the runner-up spot with a come-from-behind 2-3 moto score, while Tyla Rattray and Broc Tickle overcame tough moto scores to finish 11th and 18th, respectively.

Great Birthday
Villopoto started his birthday scoring the fastest qualifying time and those fast times carried over into the two grueling motos. Although the weather was beautiful, the track was tough, but Villopoto quickly made his way to the front to lead both motos before the halfway mark.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Following a break in action this past weekend, the 2011 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship will kick off the second half of the season this Saturday, July 16, with the Spring Creek Motocross National in Millville, Minn. Coming off his fourth win of the year at the previous stop in RedBud, TwoTwo Motorsports/Bel-Ray Racing’s Chad Reed occupies the top spot in the premier 450 Class standings. In the 250 Class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Dean Wilson, has moved into the championship lead for the second time this summer, while American Honda’s Ashley Fiolek, fresh off her second win of the season at RedBud, maintains her position atop the WMX Class.

Heading into RedBud two weeks ago, the battle for the 450 Class title had been marked by a highly-competitive, three-rider battle between Reed, Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto, and Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey. With each rider achieving at least one overall win this season, the opportunity to capture the victory has been wide open from week-to-week, and it continued in Michigan. At RedBud, Reed began the day with an impressive moto win, fending off a hard-charging Dungey. As the duo battled up front, Villopoto was forced to come from the back of the field after an early crash, ultimately fighting his way into ninth. In Moto 2, the trio paced the field, with Villopoto and Dungey leading the way. As the two rivals chased one another throughout the moto, Reed asserted himself in third and let things play out. As Villopoto rebounded to take the moto win, Reed’s 1-3 moto scores surpassed Dungey’s 2-2 effort, helping him to extend his points lead. Now, Reed carries a 16-point advantage over Villopoto, while Dungey sits an additional six points back.

This weekend’s race from Spring Creek MX Park, presents another opportunity for the 450 Class championship to continue to unfold. Reed has never won at the Minnesota facility, but has run well in the past. Villopoto does hold one victory, but it came back in 2007 as a competitor in the 250 Class. Over the past three years, Dungey, a native of the state of Minnesota, has been perfect at what he considers to be his hometown track. With back-to-back victories in the 250 Class from 2008-2009, Dungey made it three-in-a-row last season by taking the win in his 450 Class debut at Millville. Each rider’s past history at the track makes for an intriguing storyline heading into Saturday.

Through six rounds of 250 Class competition, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki has yet to relinquish a moto or overall win to any other team in the division. Wilson, Blake Baggett, and Tyla Rattray have stood atop the podium every time this summer, and as a result, they have set the stage for a three-way battle for the championship.

At RedBud, Baggett dominated en route to his fourth overall win of the season. Despite a couple tough of rounds this summer, Baggett has shown impressive resolve and is proving to be arguably the fastest rider in the class. His RedBud outing vaulted him into second in the championship, where he sits 14 points behind his teammate coming into Spring Creek. While Wilson is surely happy to be back in possession of the red number plate this weekend, he would likely, much rather have an overall win to his credit. Despite impressive consistency and three moto wins, Wilson has yet to break through and stand atop the overall podium. After a strong effort in his Millville debut last season, he’ll be eager to solidify his position in the standings with a victory.

Spring Creek has been a staple of American Motocross since hosting its first national during the 1983 season. Since then, it has become one of the most popular stops on the schedule thanks to its challenging layout that features a healthy assortment of obstacles, as well as multiple dramatic elevation changes. Millville is home to three of the sport’s most iconic features, including the longest start on the championship schedule, the “Holy Schmit” jump – named for late local legend Donny Schmit, and the infamous sand whoops, that can make or break a rider’s moto.

Last year at Spring Creek, Dungey displayed the familiar dominance that has become associated with his performances at his home track in recent years. A convincing 1-1 effort resulted in his sixth win of the season, and marked his third victory at the track in as many years. In the 250 Class, eventual champion Trey Canard was able to capture his second career win, just one round following his inaugural motocross victory.

The Motorcycle-Superstore.com Women’s Motocross Championship will also begin its second half of the 2011 season on Saturday, hosting its fifth round of the summer with just its second appearance at Spring Creek. After her most impressive outing of the season at RedBud, Fiolek carries momentum, and an eight-point lead in the standings, into Millville over DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha’s Jessica Patterson. Last year in Minnesota, Patterson outran her rival to post her fourth win of the season en route to the WMX Class title, and she’ll be looking to replicate her efforts on Saturday in order to close in on Fiolek in the championship.

The on-track action for the Spring Creek Motocross National begins this Saturday at 9:30 a.m. EST with practice and qualifying. Opening ceremonies begin at 1:30 p.m. EST with motos kicking off at 2 p.m. EST.

In the AMA Pro Motocross series we’ve seen the consistency of TwoTwo Motorsport’s Chad Reed pay off as he leads the points over Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto, who has had the speed to win on any weekend but just hasn’t had the consistency of Reed.  In the Lites class, it’s been all about the dominating performance of the Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki team with their riders handing over the red plate like a hot potato after each round.  Dean Wilson has managed to keep the points lead heading into the off weekend over Blake “El Chupacabra” Baggett who sits 2nd in points and their teammate Tyla Rattray sitting 3rd.  In the WMX series, Ashley Fiolek ripped off two massive holeshots this past weekend at Red Budd to go 1-1 for the overall and extend her points lead over 2nd place.

In the FIM World Motocross series we have seen the Red Bull Teka KTM team consistently up front and new red plate holder Antonio Cairoli working his way back into the top spot of the series standings after an impressive win at the Swedish round.  Rockstar Energy Suzuki’s Clement Desalle sits 2nd in points as the series heads to Germany this weekend.  Speaking of Germany, this weekend’s race will see hometown kid Ken Roczen looking to expand his points lead in the MX2 class over his Red Bull Teka KTM teammate Jeffrey Herlings.

North of the border in the Monster Energy Canadian Motocross nationals, after 4 of 9 rounds have been completed, it has been total domination by the Yamaha Red Bull Blackfoot Fox Racing squad of Colton Facciotti and Dusty Klatt in the MX1 class with both riders sitting 1-2 in the points respectively.  In the MX2 class it’s more of the same with Blackfoot’s Tyler Medaglia holding a healthy points leads over his nearest rival.

Switching to offroad racing, in the Can-am GNCC series it’s been a close battle between FMF Makita Suzuki’s Josh Strang and FMF KTM’s Charlie Mullins after 8 rounds.  The two have battled non-stop thus far and sit atop the Leaderboard heading into this weekend’s round in Ohio.

In the WORCS series, FMF KTM’s Kurt Caselli has been the most consistent up front, and with the most wins (2) leads Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Taylor Robert by comfortable margin in the Pro 1 class.  The WORCS series is currently on “Summer Break” and will resume racing in late August in Washington state.

All of the riders mentioned in this article use Renthal handlebars, sprockets and grips on their quest to earn titles in their respective disciplines.  With 153 World Titles and 132 US titles, Renthal Builds Championships.

Source: www.Renthal.com

Irvine, Calif. – Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Tyla Rattray proved his mettle in Texas overcoming blistering heat to win the 250 class overall with a 2-1 finish at Round 2 of the AMA Motocross Championship at Freestone County Raceway in Wortham, Texas. While the sandy track at Freestone County Raceway would prove challenging in its own right, the biggest obstacle that faced all the racers was the overbearing heat and humidity that not even a steady wind could phase. Dean Wilson came out of the gate swinging, gapping the field to win the first moto, but a third-place finish in the second moto left him in the runner-up position behind teammate Rattray. Blake Baggett got good starts in both motos, but crashes left him with a 7-16 and ninth-place overall.  Broc Tickle overcame a rough first moto, going 39-5 to finish in 12th place.  Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan

Villopoto grabbed a podium finish in the first moto, but the overwhelming heat took its toll during the second moto, leaving him with a 3-5. The finish was good enough for his second-consecutive podium finish. Jake Weimer continued to show steady improvement since his return to the KX™450F to finish 6-7 and take sixth-place overall.

Irvine, Calif. (May 23, 2011) – Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett earned his first-career motocross win with a 2-1 finish at the AMA Motocross Championship season opener at Hangtown MX in Rancho Cordova, Calif. The win comes in only his seventh professional outdoor race after being forced to sit out most of the season in 2010 with injury.

Teammate Dean Wilson finished close behind with a 1-3, putting him in second overall after opening the day with a moto win. Tyla Rattray rounded out the overall podium with a solid second-moto comeback to finish 5-2. Teammate Broc Tickle overcame a crash in the first moto to finish 13-7 and ninth overall. Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto made a trip to the podium after finishing third overall with a 3-3. Teammate Jake Weimer earned the recovery award with a great second-moto ride to earn 12th after a 21-6 ride.

Winner
With three supercross wins already to his name, Baggett earned his first motocross overall victory with two great rides aboard his Kawasaki KX™250F. In the first moto, he was running up front, but had a minor crash that pushed him outside the top-10. He didn’t give up and made his way up to second, posting the fastest lap time of the race on the final lap. In the second moto, he kept pace with his teammate Rattray and made the pass in the final laps to earn his first motocross win.