Photo Report | Pro Circuit Open at Tampa MX
By Billy Rainford
I made the drive from Palm Coast (30 minutes north of Daytona) to Tampa over on the Gulf side of Florida Thursday afternoon to catch the Pro Circuit Open Presented by Kawasaki at Tampa MX over at East Bay Park.
The drive looked simple enough on Google Maps – go south on I-75 till you see I-4 at Daytona. Go east until you hit 50th Road in Tampa and you’re there. Boom…easy, right?
Well, have you driven through Orlando, lately…or ever?! It’s America’s version of Montreal – It should be really nice when they’re finished!
22 miles of construction as rush hour approached was not ideal, let me just say that. I managed to keep my blood pressure in check, as I’d given myself ample time to get there before 5:00pm practice, but some of these people on the road should really just have stayed at home! What makes some people think it’s just the rest of us that have to wait for the traffic is beyond me.
Anyway, I knew there were several Canadians planning to race the event so the travel was worth the effort. I’d been to this race once before, but thought it was longer ago than just 2 years. I actually thought it was 7 or 8 years ago until they announced this was the 4th annual. Time flies…
Here’s a look at some of the action from a Thursday night in Tampa, Florida. Oh, by the way, I didn’t take any photos at night because I went Facebook live for the Pro Open Main, so these are all in the perfect, late-afternoon sunlight.
I bumped into Mike Saarela who is nursing an upper leg contusion and loving life living in Florida for the winter.
Tanner Ward, Bryan Cormier, and Eve Brodeur were all there and ready to go.
Eve, Bryan, and Tanner checking out some practice.
FXR’s Andy White talking to Sylvain Brodeur.
This photo op was just too good to pass up. Mike agreed.
It felt like 2010 watching Cole bike over and check out the results board.
Everyone hates it when I lurk around and snap these shots, but they’re the ones that count 10 years from now.
I told you it felt like 2010!
Luke Renzland watching his better half, Eden Netelko, out on the track.
Eve and Sylvain getting set for practice.
Sylvain keeps a close watch during start practice.
Some moto dad just hanging out.
The place was packed and ready for the night show and main events.
I call this one, “Marco, backlit.”
A group of fast up-and-comers.
Cole and Chloe. Life in the pits.
Salina Cannella keeping up with the social medias.
They even had a DJ!
I interrupted William Crete’s dinner to do a podcast interview.
Marco Cannella sponging up some knowledge from a guy who’s been there done that – Barry Carsten.
That’s some very solid women’s fire power right there on the line!
11th place Laura Fong-Lee.
7th place #94 Shelby Quast.
#14 Brittani Majcher has raced up in Canada and had a good battle with Eden Netelkos for 5th. Brittani took 6th.
#15 Eden Netelkos has also raced the Canadian series. She raced the entire GNCC series last year. Her corner entry speed is impressive! She took 5th.
Eve Brodeur was very close in speed to the top couple rippers.
Unfortunately, she slid out in the main and lost touch with the lead group.
Eve got up in 6th and managed to make some good passes and cross the line in 4th.
#49 Jamie Astudilio got out front with #30 Jordan Jarvis. She ended up 3rd.
#46 Jazzmyn Canfield was 2nd.
#30 Jordan Jarvis was definitely the one to beat and proved it with the win.
Pro Open Main
#727 Bryan Cormier went out for practice and decided his lack of Supercross experience didn’t add up to a good night and decided to sit this one out.
Tanner Ward had the speed to battle in the main, but just couldn’t catch a break and missed getting in.
William Crete missed making the main event, but looked damn good doing it!
#201 Cedric Soubeyras was one of the fastest riders there. Unfortunately, I heard it was a broken wheel that kept him out of the main.
#31 Cory Carsten is listed as a DNS, but I didn’t see what happened to him.
#50 Austin Winslow was 16th.
#34 Devin Simonson showed really good speed. He was faster than his 14th place shows.
We couldn’t figure out who this #11 was. Turns out it was Franklin Noguera. He was 13th.
#46 Marco Cannella was out on a 450 and looked good. He said he suffered some arm pump and held on for 10th place after showing top 5 speed.
#49 Henry Miller was 8th.
#711 Tristan Lane looked really good early in the main. He was up with the top guys and held on for 7th.
#86 Ryan Breece was 6th.
We got our first look at #94 Luke Renzland who will be racing in Canada in 2019. For not having been on the bike in quite some time, he looked really good, and will just keep getting back up to speed. He was 5th.
#11 Kyle Chisholm got out to a great start with Alessi out front. He ran his SX suspension and said it was definitely a handful. He finished 4th.
#16 Cole Thompson didn’t get the start he needed. He was mid-pack early in the main and had to work his way forward the entire time. He closed right in on 2nd place and almost had it at the line. He was 3rd.
#43 Tyler Bowers won his heat race and got himself into 2nd place early in the main. He held Thompson off and took 2nd place.
#800 Mike Alessi used his start skills to win his heat race and then lead every lap in the main. He managed his lead and took the win and the cash.
Pro Open podium: Mike Alessi, Tyler Bowers, Cole Thompson.
That event was definitely worth the drive. Congratulations on another solid night of racing. See you at the races…