Photo Report | Sand Del Lee II Round 5 | Yamaha Motor Canada
Photos and captions by Billy Rainford
It was the final round of the 2020
Rockstar Energy Triple Crown Tour Canadian MX Nationals at Sand Del Lee this past weekend. One moto was run on Saturday and then two on Sunday to complete the shortened outdoor season.
There were clear favourites in both classes as
Jess Pettis had a big lead in the 250 class and Dylan Wright would have to hit some bad turbulence to lose the 450 class title.
Finally, the weather cooperated and we were treated to two days of perfect racing weather. It even rained Saturday night to prep the track nicely for the final day.
Here’s a closer look at some of what happened near Ottawa, Ontario.
#119 Jared Petruska gave it the old college try. He’s been battling an injured thumb and it caused him to crash early in the day and he decided to finally get a cast put on the thing and call it a summer. He’ll likely have a cool scar on his thumb like me when this is all said and done.
Tallon Unger suffered a mechanical with his race bike and was forced to ride a stock Yamaha at the final round. He was way down on power and ended up 23-33-32 for 33rd overall. He was down a lap early and tried to run the pace of the leaders when they went by. I liked his attitude but the officials didn’t appreciate it.
#141 Eve Brodeur raced the WMX and 250 Pro class again at the final round. Of course, she won the WMX and then placed 34-30-28 for 30th in the 250 class.
Intermediate racer #494 Thomas Rendall now has his feet wet racing with the big boys. 27-24-23 put the local rider 25th. Thank your mom for the homemade muffins, Thomas!
Intermediate rider #777 Tyler Shewchyk was ringing out his 2-stroke and had a really solid final moto, placing 21st. His 26-25-21 put him 23rd.
Tough round for young #942 Preston Masciangelo. He had to battle from the back of the pack in one moto and then had a mechanical in the final one of the season. He’s still young and will just keep getting better. 20-17-DNF for the Brantford racer.
#377 Daniel Elmore is a rider we’ll be talking about more in the future if he keeps improving like he did this past season. He’s very close to a breakout ride and finished 16-20-15 putting him 18th.
#41 Jeremy McKie didn’t have the final round he would have liked. He couldn’t get out to a good start and had a crash in the Hell’s Kitchen section in the final moto. He was in some nice battles though!
#25 Tyler Gibbs didn’t end on a high note either. He finished 11-13 and then suffered a mechanical DNF in the final race. They likely aren’t staying around for the Supercross portion of the series which is too bad because he’s got indoor skills.
#55 Guillaume St Cyr finished 15-15-11 for 14th and is looking forward to Supercross where he should be a top 10 threat.
#77 Casey Keast had his share of troubles. He was up in 3rd place in moto 1 but went down pretty hard with #21 Quinn Amyotte. Then he got stuck in the gate in moto 2 and had to come from dead last. He had a nice little battle with #170 Julien Benek in the final moto. 13-18-10 put the BC rider 13th.
Just when you think #11 Davey Fraser is just happy to be there, he busts out a great start and rips a stellar moto! He put himself in good positions and cracked the top 10 in moto 3. 18-14-9 put the Nova Scotian 12th.
#66 Jamie Powell has as many laps at this track as anyone. He knew when he was down in turn 2 in the final moto that he had the speed to carve through the field and made it up to 14th. 12-11-14 put him 11th.
Top 10 in the first two motos was a really good result for local Intermediate rider #223 Austin Jones. He was mixing it up with some seasoned Pros. 10-10-16 put him 10th.
9-9-12 for 9th for #32 William Crete. I was impressed with his progress this season.
#21 Quinn Amyotte would have liked to battle closer to the front longer at Sand Del Lee. It was really too bad he got together with Keast because that moto was his chance to shine. 7-8-8 for 8th isn’t bad, but he’s capable of higher.
#164 Ryder McNabb is the real deal and it sounds like some teams are trying to get him to jump ship for the future. 5-7-7 put the young Manitoba rider 7th.
In the past it was crashes that hurt #381 Jacob Piccolo, but this week it was arm pump. He grabbed 2 holeshots but faded back as he tried to hold onto the handlebars. If you’ve ever had it, you know it’s a real struggle. It sounds like he’s looking to change colours for the future. Look out for this guy when everything clicks! 8-5-6 put the BC rider 6th.
#123 Ryan Surratt was a nice addition to the series this year. I don’t think he got what he wanted done, but he had some good speed. He’ll now head home to get set to race some off-road. 6-3-5 for 5th was a pretty good way to go out.
#18 Tanner Ward wasn’t feeling it on Saturday but came back strong on Sunday. He had a great battle with Cannella and then went by for 2nd as Marco crashed in the final corner on the last lap of moto 3. 4-6-2 put the Woodstock, ON rider 4th.
3-4-4 for #19 Marshal Weltin was enough to take 3rd on the day and 2nd in the championship. He would have liked to bang bars with Jess at the front more often, but that will have to wait.
That weird crash in the final turn was a blemish on the weekend, but it wouldn’t have made a difference in the points. KT joked that they still have to use that rear fender in Supercross. 2-2-3 put Marco 2nd at the final round and 3rd in the series, just 3 points ahead of Tanner.
OK, I’ll say it…#15 Jess Pettis belongs on the AMA circuit. Nothing against our series, but his talent puts him at the extra-elite level. He made winning look easy out there. 1-1-1 put the icing on the cake. Now, will they show up for the final 4 SX races is the question.
Round 5 250 podium: Pettis (1-1-1), Cannella (2-2-3), Weltin (3-4-4).
250 seires podium: Pettis (341), Weltin (274), Cannella (266).
Congratulations, team. 450 Class
Well, I’m sure we all saw what happened to #54 Phil Nicoletti at Round 5. Most impressive was that he was back at the track to be with his team and congratulate Dylan Wright on his title. That hand was nasty! Heal up, Phil.
#170 Damon Luksys had a scary moment in the Hell’s Kitchen section as he was battling some bike issues. He decided to call it a day.
#243 Eric Schildt cracked the top 25 in the final moto and is just one of those good guys who loves to ride and race. 32-27-23 put him 28th.
I couldn’t take a bad photo of #281 Simon Lessard all weekend! That’s all I really know about his Round 5. 25-21-22 put the Quebec rider 27th.
#380 Kevin Lepp proving nice guys can actually succeed in the real estate game. He flew out and rode Julien Benek’s 450 and had some fun. It was great to see him again. He was one of our first “Rig Tour” videos a bunch of years ago. 20-18-DNF put the BC rider 23rd.
#317 Cooper Larche kept snagging inside gates when they were open and it paid off in the final moto with a very solid 15th. 30-23-15 put him 22nd.
#4 Jeremy Medaglia was down in turn 1 of the first moto and charged all the way up to 13th by the flag. He wasn’t on the track Sunday so he’s scored with 20th.
Looking ultra-styling couldn’t save #76 Bryan Cormier from a moto 2 DNF as a mechanical took him out while running up in 14th. 19-DNF-12 put him 19th.
#83 Tommy Dallaire ended the series on a high note with a 13th in moto 3. 22-17-13 put him 17th.
#43 Ryan Derry was having one of his best weekends and had 16-13 motos heading int moto 3. He was up in 13th when he tangled with #343 Max Filipek and crashed out. Like Bruce Banner, you won’t like Ryan when he’s angry. Fortunately, he calmed down and nobody got hurt! 16-13-DNF put him 16th.
#383 Cameron Mead put himself up in some good battles all weekend. In the final moto, it was with Filipek and #67 Brock Kelly. 17-14-17 put him 15th.
#33 Yanick Boucher put in two solid motos with 12-11 finishes. Unfortunate, mechanical issues forced him out of the final moto putting him 13th.
#67 Brock Kelly forced his way into the conversation with two really good motos, 14th and 12th. His final moto was an 18th, which is still good, and he was 12th overall for a really solid end to the series.
#50 Bobby Piazza wanted a strong end to the series but a flat tire DNF in the 2nd moto put an end to that. He still had 8-10 first and third motos putting him 11th. It sounds like he’ll now join the AMA circuit.
#208 Logan Leitzel was pretty pumped to crack the top 10 with a 9th in moto 2. His 11-9-11 put him 10th. He wasn’t sure what his next move was but it sounds like we’ll see the Pennsylvania rider racing SX here in a couple weeks.
#36 Parker Eales make great improvements this season and was a consistent top 10 threat. He finished with 10-10-9 motos for 9th but it sounds like he’s heading back to BC to make some money and won’t be here for Supercross.
#64 Liam O’Farrell just kept moving forward every moto. 9-8-8 put him 8th and he turned a few heads this summer.
#28 Sam Gaynor breaking and dislocating a toe and then borrowing a bigger boot so he could still race will be a story we all remember. He managed to pull off 7-6-7 motos (the last two with the broken bone) for 7th. Oh, he broke his frame early on too…
#26 Josh Cartwright finally got the better of his nemesis Meston in the first moto for a very solid 5th place. 5-7-6 put the Florida rider 6th.
#10 Keylan Meston grabbed a couple holeshots and ran up front. He ended up 6-5-5 for 5th and should be pretty proud of his riding this summer.
#3 Shawn Maffenbeier did what he needed to do to claim 3rd overall in the series with 3-4-3 motos for 4th. I’m not sure why I was surprised, but Shawn was a regular podium threat all summer and looks to be still improving.
#5 Tyler Medaglia battled his teammate all summer and took a very nice 2nd in the final moto. 4-3-2 put him 3rd on the day and 4th in the series, just 5 behind Maff.
This was #2 Matt Goerke’s final Pro Motocross race before he heads into retirement after the SX portion. He was consistent with 2-2 motos and then knew what he needed to hold his position in the points with a 4th in the final moto.
Like I said about Jess Pettis, #9 Dylan Wright belongs racing in the AMA series, he was that good in his rookie 450 season. 1-1-1 at the final round was the icing on his championship cake. It was great to see him and Phil congratulate each other at the podium on Sunday.
Round 5 450 podium: Dylan Wright (1-1-1), Matt Goerke (2-2-4), Tyler Medaglia 4-3-2).
450 series podium: Dylan Wright (335), Matt Goerke (269), Shawn Maffenbeier (260).
Thanks for looking. Supercross is next. Ryan Lockhart says, “ Yarrr, I’m the Captain! See you at the races…“