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Images from the Round 4 of the 2021 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship in Mount Morris, Pennsylvania
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Monster Results at High Point Pro Motocross

Jun 202022

One of the original tracks in the storied 50-year history of Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship, presented by Monster Energy, High Point Raceway in Mt. Morris, Pa., played host to yet another thrilling day of American pro motocross racing as Monster Energy-backed racers Eli Tomac (Star Racing/Yamaha), Chase Sexton (Honda), and Jason Anderson (Kawasaki) swept the overall podium in the premier 450cc class on Saturday, going 1st, 2nd and 3rd, respectively.

Tomac’s race to 1st place was highlighted by a second moto run that saw him set up and pass no less than five of the world’s top professional motocross racers. The decisive Moto 2 win for Tomac would be the fourth second moto win of his career at High Point, giving him his first overall victory of the 2022 MX Nationals season and first win at High Point aboard the Yamaha YZ450F.

“It seems like I have to figure out the lines in the first moto,” said Tomac about his comeback victory at High Point. “We made a small adjustment between motos, my body was clear and I was just able to put the power down the whole time. That was a lot of fun and I had to pass a lot of guys.”

Tomac’s combined 2-1 two-moto finish would best Sexton’s 1-2 finish based on the second moto weighing heavier in the scoring.

Sexton, who flat out dominated the opening 450 class moto, briefly held the lead midway (Lap 7) through the second moto, but was hampered by a couple minor - yet costly - mistakes that cost him the victory.

With the effort Sexton retained the overall 450 class championship point lead, 14 points out front of Tomac (181-167). In the support 250cc class Monster Energy was led by Jo Shimoda (Pro Circuit/Kawasaki) who made the podium with a 3rd place overall finish (3-5).

Here’s a look at what went down at High Point Raceway:

450 MOTO 1

Anderson would be the top qualifier, besting 2nd place Tomac by more than a second.

 

Sexton would pull the holeshot in the opening 450 moto, leading Monster Energy/Kawasaki’s Joey Savatgy (3rd), Anderson (4th), Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha’s Christian Craig in 5th and Tomac in 6th. Anderson, who’d dropped back to 6th, quickly made up ground and passed Craig for 4th, with Tomac getting by his teammate Craig soon after. Anderson would then get by Justin Barcia (Gas Gas) for 3rd, giving Monster Energy the top four spots early in the race (Sexton 1st, Savatgy 2nd, Anderson 3rd and Tomac 4th). At the 20:18 mark Anderson would get past his Monster Energy/Kawasaki teammate, Savatgy, for 2nd place. After ten minutes of racing Sexton had already checked out, putting 9.5 seconds between himself and 2nd place. And this lead would continue to grow. Nearing the moto’s halfway point Tomac caught up to Savatgy and passed the fast Floridian at High Point’s historic wooded wall turn. As time clicked off the opening 30 minute plus two lap opening moto, Sexton’s time over 2nd place Anderson increased to 16, 17 then nearly 20 seconds. “This is something to be bragging about if you’re Chase Sexton,” commented race announcer Broc Glover. With Sexton gone, Anderson, who had made a mistake midway through the race and dropped back a number of spots, caught and passed Savatgy for 3rd. Sexton, who’d run a race-best 2:03 lap early, backed ‘er down a bit (2:08 laps) to conserve energy for the second moto. With two laps remaining and Sexton, Tomac and Anderson comfortably up front in the first three spots, Savatgy rode an epic final several minutes to hold off furious charges from Roczen (Honda) and three-time champion Ryan Dungey (KTM) to take 5th.

 

Sexton: “I just wanted to get out front. With all these ruts you really want to have a clear track and be able to focus on what you want to do. For me it was a perfect race. Hit my marks and didn’t make too many mistakes.”

 

Tomac: “I was doing what I could do there. Jason (Anderson) made a mistake and that got me into 2nd. I found a couple lines really late in the moto that I think would have helped me in the first half. So I’ve gotta be smarter with my lines next time.”

450 MOTO 2 

Sexton pulled another good start, and was running in 2nd place following with first turn, with Craig in 4th and Anderson in 5th. Roczen would get past Anderson for 2nd at the 28:55 mark, followed by an impressive move by Tomac – getting by Dungey then Anderson to move into 3rd place. As Tomac began to pressure Sexton for 2nd at the 21:47 mark, Sexton worked to get away and, in the process, snatched the lead – momentarily – from Roczen. A couple mistakes by Sexton near the moto’s midway point would relegate him back to 3rd place, with Tomac now making a bit for the lead. Tomac would soon blow past Roczen for the lead, going from 3rd to 1st in the same lap that Sexton went from 1st to 3rd. With three laps remaining Anderson, who’d fallen back as far as 6th place, was able to get past Aaron Plessinger (KTM) for 5th – which put him in a position to secure enough points to score the third and final podium spot. Tomac would win Moto 2 in dominant fashion, taking the overall with a 2-1 effort at High Point. And Sexton would race to a 2nd place finish, for 2nd overall with his opening moto win.

 

Anderson: “That second moto was a struggle for me. I was trying to keep up front with those guys, but I couldn’t find the flow that they had. So to find speed I was kind of forcing it. I’ll take the positive and be back and I want to win some more.”

250 Moto 1 

Seth Hammaker (Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki) had the starts on lockdown at High Point, railing his KX250F out to the lead spot, with teammate Shimoda in 2nd place. The Pennsylvania native Hammaker, racing his first pro MX National at High Point (and only his second time at the track all together), led the first five laps. Nate Thrasher (Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha) would move up onto Shimoda early on in the contest, but Shimoda would hang tough, not allowing the pass. Lakewood (Colo.) moto winner Levi Kitchen (Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha), who was running in 6th place, would go down on an uphill corner – and looked to be limping a bit when he got his YZ250F back up and going again. With Hammaker eventually giving up the lead to defending 250 class champion Jett Lawrence (Honda), the race’s midway point would feature four Monster Energy-backed racers in the top seven (Hammaker 2nd, Shimoda 5th, Thrasher 6th and Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha’s Justin Cooper in 7th). Shimoda would buckle down and catch Michael Mosiman (Gas Gas) for 4th, setting his site on Hammaker for 3rd place as the white flag few signifying one lap remaining. Shimoda would catch and pass Hammaker, off the wooden corner barrier, for the third and final podium spot in the opening 250 moto at High Point. Hammaker would hold on for a well-deserved 4th.

 

Shimoda: “2nd place off the start was like a holeshot for me. I have been struggling on the starts. It took me a while to get going, just because the track is really rutted.”

250 MOTO 2 

Hammaker again pulled the holeshot, his second of the day, and rockets out to the early lead. Kitchen, who started in 5th, ran into some difficulty and dropped out of the top ten. At the end of the opening lap Nick Romano (Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha) moved up to 5th, with teammate Cooper close behind in 6th. Hammaker would go down, tucking the front end in a shadowy wooded section of the track, and losing the lead. Several racers took advantage of the situation, including Cooper, who quickly moved into 3rd place, with Shimoda moving in to 5th. Cooper would then engage Jett Lawrence, and took 2nd place from the Honda racer for a time. Lawrence would then get 2nd back from Cooper at the 20:32 mark. Cooper would ride solid to place 3rd in the second moto, with Shimoda placing 5th – to secure 3rd overall – and Hammaker placing a respectable 6th.

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