RCH Suzuki Factory Racings Ken Roczen made it two-in-a-row victories and five for the season after putting together an almost-perfect performance and winning Saturday nights Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross penultimate round at MetLife Stadium in America.
While the rider of the #94 Soaring Eagle/ Jimmy John's Suzuki RM-Z450 was forced to officially concede the 2016 Supercross title to Ryan Dungey with one race left in the season, Roczen won the holeshot, lead every lap; and picked-up his eighth career win. Meanwhile, the win marked the seventh premiere class points-paying victory for the team co-owned by Carey Hart and Ricky Carmichael.
Said Roczen: We grabbed the holeshot and never looked back. I felt great out there. We were as consistent and you could possibly be out there, in my eyes. We didnt make any mistakes and had an awesome night. Its exactly what we were shooting for. Now we have to keep the ball rolling. We got the job done. We got a heat race win and then a Main Event win so I would say thats almost a perfect night. I think thats the first time Ive gone back-to-back so hopefully another one next week and make it three-in-a-row.
Roczens RCH team-mates Jake Weimer and Broc Tickle earned their respective trips to the Main Event via the first and second 450SX semi-finals of the night: Weimer snagged the holeshot and finished second the first semi while Tickle finished fourth in the second.
In just his third race back after an extended break while recovering a wrist injury, Tickle raced with the leaders early and went on to turn-in a hard-fought 13th-place showing.
It was an improvement from last week, said Tickle. I got a better start in the Main than I did the last couple of weekends. I was in the mix there with those guys but if I couldve been just a little better this week, it would have been a really good night. I felt better on the bike and more comfortable riding in the pack. I just need a little more intensity and speed throughout the race and Ill have a good result. I just need to keep building. Im not too pumped about finishing 13th but its a step in the right direction.
Weimers performance in his semi was the highlight of his night, but unfortunately, the solid showing in the semi didnt translate to the Main Event.
The semi was definitely the positive of the night, said Weimer. I got the holeshot and led a few laps so thats always good. Im a little disappointed with the way the night turned out because I felt like the semi was a decent ride and I could build on that but it just didnt work out.
RCH Team Manager Kyle Bentley was pleased with his teams showing in the shadow of New York City and expects to close-out the season strong in this weekends season finale at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas.
Said Bentley: It was a good night with two wins in a row. Thats awesome for the team. Im super-stoked for Ken. It was another dominating night for him. He won by over 19 seconds, so thats pretty impressive. Its a little bittersweet though; we lost the championship but we have momentum. Were looking forward to Vegas, trying the get the final win of the Supercross season and carry that into Outdoors. Well see if we cant come away with the championship out there.
Broc had a great start from the outside so I was really happy with that. He ran-up front a little bit but hes still trying to get back in the swing of things. Were pumped with where hes at, given the injury early in the season. Jake is still a little beat-up from Foxboro but he got the holeshot in his semi and almost won so that was a net positive for him. Everyone is healthy so well go to Vegas this weekend and try to finish out the Supercross season on a high note.
The curtain rings down on the 2016 AMA/ FIM World Supercross season this weekend in Las Vegas where Round 17 of the Monster Energy Supercross-supported series.