Photo Report|Rockstar MX Nationals|Regina Round 4
By Billy Rainford
We finished of the western swing of the 2016 Rockstar MX Nationals at Moto Valley MX Park in Regina, Saskatchewan, this past Sunday. The sky in the province is referred to as “living” and you can see why. There were cloud formations threatening to make the event a repeat of a couple years ago when the rains came and shortened the program. It was an ugly scene that nobody want to revisit. Fortunately, the only result of the clouds and cool temperatures was absolutely perfect racing conditions!
#118 KTM Thor Racing Scott rider, Davi Millsaps, is proving himself very difficult to beat as is his MX2 teammate #4 Cole Thompson. What is it going to take to beat either of these riders is the question. Here’s a closer look at some of the racing action from a perfect day in Rough Riders territory.
I got to know #144 Nolan Heppner a little this past winter down in Florida. He’s a solid threat down south in the ultra-competitive B class, so I was excited to see how he’d stack up. He pulled the first moto holeshot but then took a spectacular crash in the rhythm section on just the 2nd lap. He was out for a short period and didn’t line up for the 2nd moto. Hopefully, he recovers well and is fine for Loretta Lynn’s.
#50 Alex Jeffery found himself in some good battles on the track. He’s continuing to improve and finished 23rd (23-19).
#90 Todd Sewell suffered a DNF in moto 1, but came back for a 17th in the second to get 20th overall.
#15 Shawn Maffenbeier lives a couple hours away from the track and was the clear crown favourite. He was all set to battle Thompson on his home turf.
They both had troubles off the start of moto 1. Shawn got through the pack quickly to take the checkered flag first. Unfortunately, he was penalized 10 positions for jumping on the red cross flag for Heppner.
He was all set to redeem himself with a second moto win when his motor started to let go. He tried to nurse it to the end to salvage points but it quit completely with about 2 laps to go. 8-DNF put him back in 15th on the day.
#42 JC Bujold came all the way from Quebec for this round. He actually had 2 flats in qualifying and had to go to the LCQ, which he destroyed. He had last gate pic and took 12th and then had a hard fall in the second but still managed 16th for 14th overall.
#35 Hayden Halstead was one of the riders up near the front of the first MX2 moto who got penalized for the red cross flag. His solid 9th in the 2nd put him in 12th overall (17-9).
I’m sure #67 Kyle Biro had this day circled on his calendar – he’s from down the #1 in Moose Jaw. He was 7th in the first and 14th in the second for 9th. There’s still a chance we’ll see them in the east but it will be a game time decision as they are busy working on a new house.
#70 Brandan Leith was a welcomed part of the MX2 class for the first 4 rounds. He’d love to head east but there doesn’t appear to be fundung to get the 3rd-ranked rider to Ontario. He was docked in the first moto and then raced to 6th in the second for 7th overall.
#69 Ryeley Gallup grabbed the second moto Royal Distributing Holeshot Award (after almost getting the first). He looked comfortable running the pace of the top guns out there and finished 4-7 for 6th. He’d like to head east, too, but we’ll have to wait and see…
If you’re looking for a rider to watch drag his bars in a corner, #17 Dylan Wright is one to keep an eye on (Tyler Medaglia is another).
He was matching the speed of the winner and will likely hit that top spot as we we head east at some point. He was docked in the first and then took a close 2nd in the final for 5th.
Once again, his teammate, #20 Jess Pettis, finished within one spot of him with solid 5-3 motos for 4th.
#101 Mark Worth was down in the first turn in moto 1 and came all the up to 3rd! His 2nd moto start wasn’t the best but he fought hard for a 4th and rounded out the podium in 3rd.
#18 Brad Nauditt took the Royal Distributing cash with a holeshot in the first. When the dust settled, he was given the win, too.
He was easy to spot in his 2017 Shift gear for the 2nd and finished 5th for runner-up spot on the day. The question is, will he head east? We’ll give you a solid maybe on that one.
#4 Cole Thompson did it again, but it wasn’t easy. He was a little under the weather and was even sick at the end of the second moto!
He now has a 50-point lead in the points and is going to be difficult to beat for this title.
I think that was the last we’ll see of #217 Casey Keast at the Nationals for a while. He had one of the best first 4 rounds of any Intermediate we’ve seen! He finished 11th in Regina (15-10) and leaves us in 8th spot in the standings.
Maffenbeier chasing down Nauditt in the first moto.
The Regina MX2 Podium: Cole Thompson, Brad Nauditt, Mark Worth.
The Utah Boys, #873 Dusty Humphries and #26 Riley Brough, keeping it light at the MX1 starting line. The are on their way to race Red Bud on the off weekend. Good luck, guys.
#49 Graham Scott has been working hard but had troubles in the first MX1 moto, taking a DNF. He was 22nd in the final moto for 24th.
#73 Cody Matechuk had a solid western swing going. He only finished 7 laps in the first moto and wasn’t out there for the 2nd.
#571 Danny Mathe showing just how tacky the dirt was Sunday. Danny was a solid 15-14 for 16th even after going down in the first.
#27 Shawn Robinson finished one spot up in 15th (16-13).
#28 Keylan Meston looking for a smooth line. Keylan rode all alone for 10th in the first and then came from last in the second to 17th for 14th overall.
#21 Kyle Swanson finished 11-11 for 12th overall.
Idaho’s #19 Morgan Burger is also on his way to Red Bud this weekend. Morgan rode to 10th with 13-9 motos after falling in the first.
#11 Kaven Benoit chased Davi Millsaps for most of the first moto. Kaven finished way up in 2nd.
He was fighting for another podium in the second when his rear hub let go and the chain came off for a DNF. 2-DNF put him 9th.
Sometimes #6 Cade Clason rides alone out there…
Other times, he’s in a total dog fight like the second moto in Regina. Cade finished 8-8 for 8th and was totally spent at the end of the day.
#5 Tyler Medaglia was fin to watch this past weekend. He battled with Brett Metcalfe, Clason, and Vince Friese late in the first and then had another with #55 in the second. 9-7 put him 7th.
#55 Vince Friese was again fastest in qualifying but then had to work hard from a first moto, first turn fall all the way up to 7th! His second moto 6th gave him 6th.
#2 Colton Facciotti is well aware of how important starts are in this tight field this season. He finished 5-5 for 5th and will look to keep moving forward as we head east.
#3 Brett Metcalfe had to work forward from a bad start in the first moto. He had a great battle with Clason and Medaglia. He is scored with 6-3 motos for 4th.
#1 Matt Goerke was up behind Millsaps early in the first but messed up and lost touch with the lead 2 riders, Millsaps and Benoit. He hung on for 3rd and then took 4th in the second after a great battle with Facciotti for 3rd overall.
This is more like we’re expecting from #800 Mike Alessi who broke his holeshot-less streak n the 2nd moto.
Mike finished 4-2 for 2nd overall. He said he was determined not to go 0-8 on holeshots.
Anyone remember the ‘Sweet River Baines’ Michael Jordan skit from SNL? Well, I’m thinking we start calling Davi ‘Sweet River’ from now on… (Google it, Bowker!)
He did it again with 1-1 motos for the overall. He’s got a 24–point lead over Alessi in 2nd as we go to the break.
The Metty, Medaglia, Clason battle through lappers.
Goerke heading for the step down.
The Regina MX1 Podium: Davi Millsaps, Mike Alessi, Matt Goerke.
See you at Colton Facciotti’s home track July 10th. Who’s your money on for that one?!