Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing Team’s Dylan Ferrandis put on a masterclass performance to take dominant wins in both motos and notch his first overall win this season in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross 250MX Championship at the RedBud National in Buchanan, Michigan, on July 6. Joining him on the podium was teammate Justin Cooper who scored a 3-6 tally to take third overall. Rookie Ty Masterpool scored his best overall finish in sixth (4-11) followed by Colt Nichols in seventh (11-5). The fifth member of the squad Mitchell Oldenburg took 14th overall with a 15-13 score.
In the first moto, Ferrandis got the start he was looking for. Although not the holeshot, the Frenchman got to the front early and maintained his lead all the way to the checkered flag to score his second moto win this season and secure the victory with an 18.248-second gap over the rest of the field. His teammates Cooper and Nichols also got off to a good start, but unfortunately luck was not on their side.
For Cooper, misfortune struck on the opening lap. The New Yorker nearly went over the bars, and while he saved it, the error cost him valuable time and position. Undaunted, he put his head down and worked his way back from 11th to 5th with around 20 minutes plus two laps remaining in the moto. Meanwhile Nichols was up ahead in fourth with his eyes set on a podium spot. With six minutes remaining, it became a three-way battle with Adam Cianciarulo and RJ Hampshire for the podium. That battle saw Cianciarulo and Nichols going for the same line with the latter being pushed off track. The Oklahoman quickly got back on track and, in his push to rejoin the fray, he lost the front. Nichols was able to rejoin the race and fought his way back through the pack to finish just outside the top 10 in 11th place.
Cooper, who kept making forward progress, was able to inherit fifth and ultimately move into third. Rookie teammate Masterpool finished right behind him in fourth. The 16 year old rode his best race of the season, getting off to a decent start in ninth and running a solid moto to steadily work his way up the ranks, as well. Oldenburg, still working on getting up to speed after being sidelined in the first three rounds while he recovered from his Supercross injury, started 12th and was able to work his way up to ninth. Unfortunately, just before the halfway mark, a crash meant the fifth member of the Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing team had to fight his way back through the pack to finish 15th.
In the second moto, Nichols and Ferrandis once again got off to a good start, but this time around, it took the Frenchman a bit longer to take the lead. Nine minutes into the moto, he overtook Nichols in second and went after the leader. A few minutes later, he was able to take the lead and once again go unchallenged to the finish line to take the overall win and move up into second in the standings, 25 points behind the championship leader with five rounds remaining.
Cooper, on the other hand, had a much more difficult start, finding himself back in 10th. Although it was chaos further back in the pack, the New Yorker kept his cool and was able to make progress forward as the race neared its conclusion. He put his down and made a last-lap push to take sixth and get what he needed to join Ferrandis on the podium with third overall. While Cooper lost his second position in the standings, he’s only a point back from his teammate.
Nichols had a much better second moto with his flying start in second. After his teammate passed him for second, he held on to that last podium spot until the halfway mark. He kept fighting, though, and it was a three-way battle with two laps to go. Ultimately, Nichols had to settle for fifth, leaving him seventh overall on the day.
As for the young Masterpool, he didn’t get the start he was looking for but was able to work his way up to 11th to finish 6th overall on the day. Oldenburg also got off to a difficult start in the second moto, but he was able to fight his way back to an improved 13th-place finish to score 14th overall.
The Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing team gets a weekend off before heading to Millville, Minnesota, for the Spring Creek National on July 20.
Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing Team Manager
“A solid day for us with another double podium for the crew and the first 1-1 of the season! Going 1-3-4 in the first moto was really cool, as well. I’m really proud of the whole team and looking forward to the next one in Millville.”