Throughout the 2019 season it’s been a battle amongst Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Adam Cianciarulo and the Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha duo of Ferrandis and Justin Cooper. While Cianciarulo has been the most consistent and the most successful rider this season, Ferrandis has done all he can to keep the Kawasaki rider honest in terms of the championship.
Fresh off his series-leading sixth win entering Washougal, things appeared even more bleak for the rest of the field when Cianciarulo topped the time sheets in qualifying. Ferrandis and Cooper were right on his heels to round out the top three, while the rest of the Star riders, Colt Nichols, Ty Masterpool and Mitchell Oldenburg, along with second Pro Circuit rider Garrett Marchbanks, each posted a time inside the top 10.
As he’s done many times this season, Cooper led the way to start the opening moto with the holeshot. Nearly every other member of the Star squad flanked him as the field exited the first turn, while Cianciarulo threw himself into the thick of it as well. Cooper took control of the lead early one, while Ferrandis and Cianciarulo battled their way into a 1-2-3 freight train of the class’ top three riders.
Soon enough these three riders were essentially running by themselves. A slight miscue by Cooper opened the door for Ferrandis and he didn’t waste any time in taking full advantage of it. The Frenchman took over the lead a little more than 10 minutes into the moto and looked to pull away. Cianciarulo was within striking distance of moving into second, but a bobble put him on the ground briefly and cost him valuable time to his rivals.
Ferrandis had the moto well in hand, and was able to respond to some late pressure applied by both Cooper and Cianciarulo. He captured his fifth moto win, with Cooper second and Cianciarulo third. Nichols was fifth, with Masterpool 12th. Both Oldenburg and Marchbanks were forced to retire from the moto.
When the final moto got underway, it was once again an army of Star Yamahas leading the field into the first turn. This time around it was Nichols who grabbed the lead, but Ferrandis, who nailed each of his starts, quickly overtook him. Sensing he needed to act quickly, Cianciarulo forced his way up to second and immediately ignited what would become a moto-long battle for the win. Cooper had his work cut out for him just outside the top five.
While no actual pass attempt ever took place, watching Ferrandis and Cianciarulo trade fast laps and momentum shifts was something to behold. Both riders were riding their absolute best the entire moto, and it was the most definitive evidence we’ve seen yet that indicates the title fight is going to come down to these budding rivals.
While Cianciarulo certainly didn’t make it easy on him, Ferrandis held off the pressure to lead every lap and race to his sixth win in the last 10 motos. Cianciarulo was second, while Cooper just missed the podium in fourth. Nichols followed in ninth, while Oldenburg was 11th. Masterpool finished 15th, with Marchbanks earning points in 19th.
Ferrandis led the way for yet another 1-2-3 sweep of the overall podium for Monster Energy. The Frenchman, Cianciarulo, and Cooper have been the class of the division virtually every weekend.
“The track is always slippery at Washougal, but today it was a bit worst due to the bit of rain we got all morning. I still had a lot of fun riding today. I got two very good starts and was really happy with myself. I had good battle with AC [Adam Cianciarulo] in the second moto. We made a good show for the fans, I hope they liked it, and I look forward to watching it later myself. I’m pretty pumped about winning both motos today.”
As it pertains to the championship, this trio appears to be a virtual lock to secure the top three spots in the standings as well. Currently, Cianciarulo holds a 28-point edge on Ferrandis.
“Although we fell short of our weekly goal, which is to win, there are still positives to take away from the weekend with our second-place finish today. I was doing everything I could in that second moto to get into first, but we just couldn’t find the right place to make a pass stick. It was rad to battle like that though. We are leaving here healthy and still with the points lead, so we will make some improvements over the break and be ready to go in two weeks.”
250 Class Results
1. Dylan Ferrandis, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing (1-1)
2. Adam Cianciarulo, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki (3-2)
3. Justin Cooper, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing (2-4)
4. Michael Mosiman, Husqvarna (7-3)
5. Chase Sexton, Honda (4-6)
8. Colt Nichols, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing (5-9)
13. Ty Masterpool, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing (12-15)
16. Mitchell Oldenburg, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing (37-11)
22. Garrett Marchbanks, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki (40-19)
250 Class Standings
1. Adam Cianciarulo, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki – 394
2. Dylan Ferrandis, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing – 366
3. Justin Cooper, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing – 346
4. Colt Nichols, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing – 261
5. RJ Hampshire, Honda – 200
11. Ty Masterpool, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing – 144
14. Garrett Marchbanks, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki – 88
20. Mitchell Oldenburg, Monster Energy/Star/Yamaha Racing – 62
22. Martin Davalos, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki – 54