In front of a packed crowd for the 4th of July race weekend, Ken Roczen gets his first moto win en route to a 2nd Overall at the Redbud National.
Ken Roczen got a good jump in Moto 1, but a down rider in turn two would briefly hold him up, keeping him just outside the top 10. By the end of lap one, he had worked his way into the top 5 with his eyes set on the leaders. He continued his charge, moving into second behind Eli Tomac. It appeared he would cruise to a 2nd place finish, but with just three laps remaining, his persistence would pay off. A mechanical issue for Tomac would hand the lead over to Ken, and he would capture his first victory since his hand injury in Supercross.
Moto 2 would see Ken get out to a good start; he would end up running at the front of the pack for the entire moto. His pace was the best it has been all year, battling with Marvin Musquin for the lead for most of the moto. Ken would eventually settle into a nice pace, holding 2nd place into the late stages of the moto. On the last lap, he would come under fire from Justin Barcia. Barcia would make a tough pass on Ken with just a few turns to the finish, pushing #94 back to 3rd, and netting him a 2nd overall on the day.
The Monster Kawasaki Pro Circuit team would come into the weekend fielding 3 riders: Austin Forkner, Joey Savatgy, and the returning Garrett Marchbanks - back from a knee injury suffered this year.
Austin Forkner and Joey Savatgy got out to good starts in Moto 1, running in the top 5 early. Austin would quickly push his way to 2nd running just behind Aaron Plessinger, and a battle between the two would ensue. Austin would eventually take the lead, but it would be short-lived. Aaron, looking to take the lead back, took the inside while Austin went to the outside. The two lines would come together, the riders collided, and Austin would go down. He was shaken up and took a while to remount. Plessinger would go on to take the win. Savatgy had a great moto going until a crash pushed him back to a 17th place finish. Marchbanks would put in a consistent ride finishing 6th.
Moto 2 would see Austin and Joey get out to good starts - Austin running in the top 3 for much of the moto. Austin would battle with Alex Martin over 2nd place for a good portion of the race. A good pass would see him take 2nd and hold it to the finish. Joey would put in a good ride finishing 5th in Moto 2. Austin would end the day with a 7th overall, Joey and Garrett would end the day out of the top 10.
Now we take one week off before continuing, July 21st for the Spring Creek National in Millville, MN.
It was an eventful weekend in Vallnord, Andorra to say the least. The relatively short track is the steepest in the series - dropping a stunning 2053ft in just over 1.5 miles. It’s a track that magnifies every mistake, leaving riders with little room to make up time. The challenging course claimed many big names before the finals even started. When the dust settled, Fox Team riders Loris Vergier and Tahnee Seagrave stood on the top steps.
Loris Vergier took first place and claimed his first World Cup Victory. Riding on the edge, but in control, Vergier was lighting up the split times green. It was a nearly flawless ride, and he came in at the finish 4.57 seconds up on the field. 4:04:05 was the time to beat, and it would not be bested this day.
“It's just like all your life you chase something, and then the hard work pays off” – Loris Vergier.
Tahnee Seagrave is on fire. At the start of her run, she knew she had to put it all on the line – with a qualifying time 14 seconds behind the leader. Attacking the mountain with grit and determination, she put down a scorching time of 4:49:84 and took her place on the hot seat. Rachel Atherton would challenge in the final run, but a rut would send her off course, all but securing the win for Seagrave. Now with back-to-back wins, she has closed the gap in the overall standings to just 80 points.
“I've never done well in Andorra… I’m just over the moon.” – Tahnee Seagrave.
The Fox MTB Team had 4 podiums on the day, with Laurie Greenland finishing 4th and Finn Iles taking 5th. Loic Bruni finished 8th, an effort to be proud of, considering he was riding with 16 stitches from a crash in qualifying.
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