McThoughts – Ulverton National
By Jeff McConkey
Round 9 went off this past weekend in Ulverton, Quebec. The track was rough and had lots of elevation changes. Colton Facciotti has been on a tear lately, and he made the rough Ulverton track look silky smooth. Matt Goerke did what he had to do and still carries a 13-point lead into the 10th and final round at Walton.
In MX2, Kaven Benoit clinched his 2nd consecutive title, but not before having an epic battle with Jeremy Medaglia. Although the title is already clinched, Benoit is still fired up to win out at Walton. Let’s take a look at the results and my thoughts.
1st Jeremy Medaglia (2-1): Jeremy ended the ‘Benoit Streak’ in the 2nd moto with a fantastic ride. There wasn’t anyone that was going to stop the 21 machine. You would have to think that Jeremy should be the clear-cut favourite to win the MX2 title in 2016 with the way he has been riding lately.
2nd Kaven Benoit (1-2): The streak ended, but who cares. Benoit clinched his 2nd straight title on home soil. This guy has been fantastic every weekend. Walton will be his last National ever in Canada in the MX2 class, so watch for Kaven to try and go out by winning both motos.
3rd Dylan Wright (4-3): Dylan bounced back strong, after missing Round 8 due to injury. He looked very strong both motos and it didn’t look like he had missed a beat.
4th Jimmy Decotis (3-4): Jimmy just didn’t have the speed to challenge the top 2. That doesn’t mean he didn’t look good though. It’s been a long time since Jimmy won a moto, so maybe that magic will be back for Walton. It’s definitely not from a lack of effort.
5th Blake Savage (6-5): Blake had some bike issues and wasn’t real happy with his performance. I thought he rode solid, but I bet he’s looking forward to the hard-packed Walton dirt.
6th Cole Martinez (8-6): Cole has looked good since coming back from injury. Let’s hope he gets another shot at this championship, as injuries have hampered him.
7th Brad Nauditt (7-9): Brad has been riding solid lately. I’m still waiting for a holeshot. Maybe Walton will be the place.
8th Morgan Burger (10-8): To me, Burger has looked good lately. If he can get a start, he can run the pace. If he doesn’t get the start, it takes him a bit to get through the pack.
9th Jesse Pettis (9-10): Jess has been riding strong and with confidence here on the East. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him run in the top 3 or 4 position for a while at Walton.
10th Liam O’Farrell (13-7): A top 10 start for this guy would be equivalent to a holeshot. I even offered $100.00 of my own money (my money is safe)! If he can get the start, a top 5 is doable.
Biggest Stud: I’m going with two studs: Benoit and Medaglia. These guys were flying in both motos. Very fun to watch!
Biggest Dud: My dud will be all the fast Intermediate riders that aren’t trying to qualify. Being the top dog at your local club has got to be getting old .
Biggest Surprise: Why aren’t intermediates trying to qualify and gain valuable experience? I just don’t get it.
1st Colton Facciotti (1-1): After a very dominant performance. Jocelyn Facciotti told me that my wrong predictions motivated Colton. Well, I must have really gotten to him because he looked great everywhere. He made a very rough Ulverton track look very smooth. Colt has cut Goerke’s point lead down to 13 points with 2 motos remaining, he just may win this thing yet?
2nd Brett Metcalfe (2-2): Brett rode 2 very good motos on Sunday. It’s a shame he had a few mechanicals earlier on this season. I really hope we can see these top 3 battle it out again next year and maybe a few more after that. He is a world class guy and our series needs him.
3rd Matt Goerke (3-3): Goerke rode well, and in my eyes played it safe. He doesn’t need to win motos for the championship and I wouldn’t blame him for not hanging it out.
4th Cole Thompson (4-4): Cole seemed down on himself after the races, but in all honesty, he’s riding great still. He has never completed a full Pro season like this, so it’s still a little new to him. He just needs to work on his fitness for the last 10 minutes, then he will be battling for wins every time on the track.
5th Tyler Medaglia (6-5): Tyler finished a ways back from the top 4, but he never let up. He’s going to give you everything he’s got, and not many people can say they do that.
6th Bobby Kiniry (5-7): Bobby had a good weekend. Most guys would be at home sitting out the remainder of the season if they had crashed as hard as Bobby in Moncton. Word on the street is that Bobby has 2 broken bones in his foot and that he had dislocated his jaw in one of his River Glade crashes. This guy just keeps hanging it out. That’s bad-ass!
7th Cade Clason (7-6): Cade had an all right day; he’s not really a sand guy. I’m excited t see him in the deep ruts at Walton. I think he will podium in a moto there on the harder packed dirt.
8th John Dowd (8-9): The day before his 50th birthday, and Dowdy goes out and moves forward all moto long. This guy is 50 years old and he’s beating a bunch of guys that don’t work and just ride and “train.” He’s on the road having fun and racing with his son. That has got to make you smile.
9th Kyle Keast (10-8): Keast got so-so starts and moved forward both motos. He seems to pick up a 2nd wind around the 25-minute mark and gains a few spots every moto.
10th Dylan Schmoke (12-13): If only Dylan could get a start. He spends the entire moto passing his way up into the top 10, but by then it is too late. I really think he would get better starts if he started backwards. If he was to ever pull a good start, I think he would open some eyes.
Biggest Stud: John Dowd. The guy is 50 years old and pulling top 10’s!
Biggest Dud: The guys behind John Dowd. The guy is 50 years old and pulling top 10’s!
Biggest Surprise: I’m still surprised at how poor the 450 turnout is.
Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you at Walton!