McThoughts: Women’s East Nationals Round 1
By Jeff McConkey
Coming into Round 1 of the Women’s East National series, Defending champ, Eve Brodeur, was the clear favourite from day 1. The young French Canadian put in the work during the off season and left Gopher Dunes with 2 holeshots and 2 moto wins. She isn’t cocky or flashy, she’s just really, really, really good. She was never challenged and made the track look easy. #6 Kim Normandin looks to be the 2nd best girl, but is still a ways off of the champ’s pace.
For Gopher Dunes being known as one of the roughest tracks in the world, I was pleased to see 32 women sign up for the first round. Congrats to all the ladies who had the courage to show up and race. You are the people who are going to keep this series going. Let’s see the top 10 and my thoughts.
Ladies East Round 1
1st #1 Eve Brodeur (1-1) Is it too early to call Eve the Kaven Benoit of the women’s class? She is quiet, but very fast and has great fitness. Like Benoit, Brodeur rides the 250 2-stroke flawlessly. I really don’t see a weakness in her game, and she will be damn near impossible to beat.
2nd #6 Kim Normandin (2-2) Kim had 2 really good motos. I think after Brodeur, Kim is the girl to beat. She looks pretty strong everywhere and will be on the podium a lot.
3rd #79 Kassie Boone (4-4) Boone has probably the best style in the class. She looked great early in both motos. With more fitness, she could maybe even show Brodeur a wheel. Let’s hope she makes the remaining rounds.
4th #8 Allie Argue (7-3) Allie has the speed to be a constant podium girl, she just needs to eliminate the little mistakes. Watch for her to really hang it out at SDL and try and get a moto win.
5th #3 Abbrielle Tardelli (3-8) Tardelli loves her 2-stroke and it shows. I think with decent starts we shouldn’t see her outside of the top 10.
6th #887 Madison Seguin (6-5) Seguin battled hard all day. Her speed at Gopher was a tad off the pace of the top group, but she should be around the 3-6 spot every week.
7th #4 Cassandra Belanger (5-6) Cassandra had a rough day and was lucky to leave the Dunes with a 7th (mechanical issues). She has great fitness and will be fighting for podiums for the rest of the series. She knows SDL well and will be near the front where she belongs.
8th #927 Robin Hutchinson (10-7) I’m not going to lie, I was a little surprised to see Robin in the top 5 late in moto 2. It looks like she put in the work to prepare and seems ready to battle for top 5’s. I think she has improved a lot…and did you know her and her boyfriend wear the same size gear? He can even fit in her boots. Sorry, Nathan.
9th #31 Heather Bennett (8-9) Heather looked good out there and battled hard all day long. With a good start I think she could improve a few positions.
10th #5 Alexandra Raymond (9-10) I thought Raymond would be around the top 5, I’m not sure what happened? But I did notice how good her KTM and gear looked.
Biggest Stud: Eve Bodeur is my stud. She was in control all day long and is only going to get better. It’s scary to think how good she is going to be. She’s only 15.
Biggest Dud: I don’t have a dud this week. I feel like all of the girls did great.
Biggest Surprise: Kim Normandin is my surprise. I knew she was going good, but she caught my eye in first practice. She will be the girl to beat after Eve.
Thanks for reading and I’ll see you at SDL.