Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Others...Toronto

North of the border we went for round nine of the Monster Energy Supercross Series in Toronto, Canada. Championships would tighten up and we'd find out what champions are made of inside the Rogers Centre.

The Rogers Centre offer a large layout
The biggest issue this week may have been the bitter cold. As temps dipped around -12 Celsius (10 Fahrenheit) teams took to their heated rigs and an already compact pit area became a ghost town. Privateers litter the basement halls and would be joined by the Star Yamaha team and Malcolm Stewart with the opportunity to pit inside the stadium. We spotted tire warmers on the Star Yamaha machines and all measures were being taken to keep warm. The cold also reeked havoc on riders like Bryce Stewart, who'd have a shock malfunction when the seal froze.

As for the track, maybe one of my favorites of the season. Like previous rounds it did break down fast but the layout seemed to offer a little more technicality and passing opportunities than we've seen thus far. As qualifying hit the track it'd be 250 points leader Zach Osborne putting his Husqvarna atop the class with a 56.531. Kawasaki's Eli Tomac would go on to set the fast lap among the 450 field with a 55.729. With low entry numbers in Canada there was buzz around TXS Productions backed Ronnie Ford. Ford has been attempting to make the show on a Husqvarna 250 two stroke. He's been way off pace and Toronto may have been his best shot, but after struggling in the first practice session Ford would pull out of the event.

When the smoke cleared from opening ceremonies and fans took their seats from "Oh Canada" being belted for the only time we hear the Canadian National Anthem during the season, we'd drop the gate on heat races. Some may not have been familiar with the number 108 out in front of 250 Heat One as Dylan Ferrandis took the win. His Star Yamaha teammate, Colt Nichols grabbed his first heat race win in Heat Two. Chad Reed came out looking aggressive and made it three wins in a row for Yamaha with the first 450 heat win. Eli Tomac would break the streak by putting his Kawasaki on top of Heat Two. Semi qualifiers are ran only in the 450 class and JGR Suzuki backed Justin Barcia  along with RCH Suzuki's Broc Tickle took the Semi wins. With just one more shot at the Main Events Kyle Peters, Fredrik Noren, Josh Cartwright and Jesse Wentland would join the 250 field. Mike Alessi, Cody Gilmore, Nick Schmidt and Adam Enticknap took the last spots in the 450 Main. Enticknap had to work hard for his final transfer spot with a wire to wire battle between the BWR/K1 Speed machine of Cade Clason and the 314 FXR/TXS Productions backed Alex Ray. Mistakes by both gave Enticknap the upper hand.

"You pay for the whole seat, but you'll only need the edge." A quote that really takes meaning during the main events. The 250's get 15 minutes plus a lap to prove themselves. It'd be Dylan Ferrandis picking up where he left off and jumping out front early. He looked to struggle with the pace and pressure from Joey Savatgy and Zach Osborne. Ferrandis would go down around the halfway point and Osborne would waste no time getting around Savatgy's Kawasaki for the lead.  As the Husqvarna pulled away, Savatgy would hit the eject button and allow teammate Adam Cianciarulo a second place and first podium of the season. A few more bobbles in the fight for the final podium step would allow Christian Craig to quietly work his way to a third place finish. 450 action brings the sports biggest names and a championship that is heating up. The KTM of Ryan Dungey somehow, someway seems to salvage even his worst nights. The only thing worse for the defending champ than starting nearly dead last is seeing the number 3 Eli Tomac out front. Tomac is on fire and would head to win number four on the season as Dungey just kept coming. By the time the checkers flew, he'd be second and RCH Suzuki backed Broc Tickle got on the podium with a very impressive and career best third place finish.

Cole Thompson normally enjoys the life of a factory rider while in his home country of Canada, as a member of the Thor KTM Team. When racing Monster Energy Supercross he returns to a system that got him to that level. The entire Thompson family is involved in Cole's program. Dad spinning the wrenches, brothers coaching and Mom keeping the team fed and on schedule. The number 72 would qualify 17th, take the last transfer spot out of his heat race and go on to finish 12th in the 250 Main Event.

Cole Thompson taking flight

And now...The Others

5. 170 Zack Willliams
6. 677 Cody Williams
7. 285 Tony Archer
8. 351 Eric Grondahl
9. 740 Lane Stanley
10. 248 Travis Delnicki
11. 309 Jeremy Smith
12. 559 Dylan Merriam
13. 256 James Milson
14. 313 Kyle Swanson
15. 619 Mark Weishaar
16. 675 Kyle Dillon
17. 814 Deven Sorenson
18. 326 Trevor Ezell
19. 795 Aaron Leininger
20. 236 Mike Bottolfson
21. 98 Matt Babbitt
22. 731 Steven Roman

5. 80 Cade Clason
6. 723 Tyler Enticknap
7. 95 AJ Catanzaro
8. 509 Alex Nagy
9. 314 Alex Ray
10. 181 Dustin Pipes
11. 918 Michael Akaydin
12. 282 Bubba Pauli
13. 713 Chad Cook
14. 151 Dakota Tedder
15. 240 Bryce Stewart
16. 606 Ronnie Stewart
17. 291 Kyle White
18. 389 Davey Sterritt
19. 749 Gavin Kadlec
20. 608 David Pulley
21. 178 Ronnie Ford
22. 41 Trey Canard

The series will go back to the USA for round 10 during Bike Week in Daytona, Florida. A mix of motocross thrown in to the series should favor Tomac once again. Is Dungey still in control of the championship?

-Kyle Pesci

This weeks "The Others" is brought to you by Race Tech. Privateer proven and offering the latest in technology for all makes and models. Check out their Air to Coil kits by clicking the banner below.

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