Round nine of the AMA Pro Motocross Championship at Washougal MX Park in Washougal, Washington, saw Team Honda HRC’s Cole Seely put on an impressive performance en route to fourth overall with 3-5 marks, equaling his best overall result in the 450MX class. Teammate Christian Craig struggled to find his groove on the hard-pack track, scoring ninth in both motos for eighth overall.
In moto one, Seely launched off the line to a fourth-place start but swapped positions multiple times on the hectic first lap. On lap four, the Californian made an exciting pass to take over third. He continued to lay down good lap times through the remainder of the race but was unable to close the gap on the leaders, taking the checkered flag in third, which matches his career-best moto result. Meanwhile, Craig started the race in seventh but swiftly worked his way into sixth. He maintained that position until the halfway point, when he began to fall off pace, relinquishing spots to finish ninth. During the second race, Craig started in fourth but quickly dropped to sixth, while Seely was close in tow in seventh. Seely continued his charge forward, making his way around Craig before moving into fifth a few laps later, which is where he finished. Unfortunately, while battling for position, Craig came together with another rider, suffering a fall and losing multiple spots. He remounted and managed to work his way back to ninth by the end of the race.
- During the morning’s qualifying practice, Craig was sixth-quickest with a 2’13.388” time, while Seely was seventh at 2’13.684”. Precision Site Work TiLube Honda’s Fredrik Noren was impressive in practice, posting the fourth-quickest lap at 2’13.322”.
- It was an exciting day for GEICO Honda’s RJ Hampshire as he scored his career-best moto result of second in moto two en route to fifth overall. Teammate Jeremy Martin had a tough outing, finishing seventh overall with 9-6 results, while Chase Sexton was 13th with 13-12 marks.
- With three races remaining, Seely has moved up to fifth overall in the championship standings with 228 points. “I’m pretty happy to be fifth in points considering how this season has gone,” Seely said. “Obviously I wish I was fighting for the championship but at one point I had actually fallen outside the top 10 so to be back in fifth after some solid finishes is awesome. I’m hoping to finish out the season strong and would really like to get a podium.”
- Following their final break of the season, the Red Riders will return to action on August 12 for the Unadilla National in New Berlin, New York.
THE FOCUS: Exclusive Unveiling for the Red Riders
On Sunday following the Washougal National, American Honda Brand Ambassador Andrew Short continued his duties by heading straight to Hurricane Mills, Tennessee, for the unveiling of the 2018 CRF250R during the AMA Amateur National Championship. The all-new motocross model, which features a more powerful DOHC engine with downdraft intake and completely separate exhausts (header to muffler), is based on the meticulously developed chassis that helped make the 2017 CRF450R the best-selling motocross model of the year. The CRF250R was unveiled during a special Red Riders Appreciation Dinner that was held at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch for Honda racers who had qualified for the event, as well as their families.
“The CRF250R will obviously be an important model for our amateur motocross riders, so we figured it made sense to hold the global unveiling here,” said American Honda Motorcycle Sports Assistant Manager Brandon Wilson. “We appreciate all the hard work these riders put into qualifying for Loretta Lynn’s, and it seemed like they enjoyed being the first ones to get to see the bike in person.”
The Honda Red Riders Rewards semi will be at the ranch all week, assisting Honda riders at no cost.
Mandie Fonteyn // Jonnum Media // email@example.com // +1 (951) 537-0454