Texas’ Freestone National Will Challenge Riders’ Endurance
MORGANTOWN, WV – May 22, 2012 – (motor Sports Newswire) – Last Saturday in California, the opening round of the 2012 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, set the tone for what is sure to be a captivating season. This Saturday, May 26, the series moves to Wortham, Texas, for the Miller Electric Freestone National, presented by Yamaha.
Wortham’s Freestone Raceway will host the second round of the championship.
(Courtesy Simon Cudby)
Team Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart made the first big statement of the season in the 450 Class by sweeping the FMF Hangtown Motocross Classic. The 2008 champion made his highly-anticipated return to full-time competition at the Nationals and didn’t disappoint in his debut for the factory Suzuki squad he just joined two weeks ago.
Behind him, Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey also made his Lucas Oil Motocross debut for the Austrian-based brand; like Stewart. He put in strong 3-2 results, finishing second to Stewart on the day. MotoConcepts Suzuki’s Mike Alessi rounded out the podium in third.
All three 450 Class podium finishers are previous winners at Freestone—Stewart in 2008 en route to his perfect season, Dungey in 2010 for his first premier-class victory, and Alessi in 2009 for his second career win.
Last season at Freestone, Dungey missed a second consecutive victory at the track when he ran out of fuel during the closing moments of the race.
It’s been three years, but James Stewart has returned
to the top of the podium at the Nationals.
(Courtesy Simon Cudby)
In the 250 Class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett replicated his winning efforts from Hangtown in 2011 with a pair of strong rides, bringing the fans to their feet in the first moto with a last-lap surge for the win. With his overall victory, Baggett has the momentum coming into Freestone.
GEICO Honda’s Justin Barcia and Red Bull KTM’s Ken Roczen raced Baggett closely throughout the afternoon. Barcia was in contention for the win in both motos but had to settle for a strong runner-up effort. Reigning World Champion Roczen’s Lucas Oil Motocross debut was impressive. Despite being on the receiving end of Baggett’s last-lap pass in the opening moto and suffering an early second-moto fall, he rebounded for third on the day.
While these three riders lead the 250 Class into Freestone, defending series champion Dean Wilson will not be present aboard his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki. Halfway through the opening moto at Hangtown, Wilson pulled off the track and did not return. The current holder of the #1 plate has battled a shoulder injury for several weeks and determined at Hangtown that he would need to address the issue.
“I was working my way through [the field] and my shoulder [popped] out,” said Wilson, who will be sidelined indefinitely. “That was the last straw for me. I’ve got to get it fixed. I don’t want to be battling for eighth place; I want to battle for the win. I knew it was something I had to do, but I didn’t know how long it would last. Clearly it’s something I need to get fixed, so that’s what I’m going to do.”
Last season at Freestone in the 250 Class, Tyla Rattray emerged victorious with 2-1 moto scores. With his move to the 450 Class, the old division will see a first-time event winner on Saturday. Rattray himself will miss this race with an injury of his own.
Blake Baggett will wear the red number plate as the
250 Class points leader at Freestone.
(Courtesy Simon Cudby)
The Women’s Motocross Championship kicked off at Hangtown with a familiar name atop the podium: Rockstar Energy Racing Suzuki’s Jessica Patterson marked her debut ride for the team with a victory as she pursues her seventh WMX Class title. Despite not winning a moto at Hangtown, Patterson finished 2-2 on the afternoon, giving her the overall victory. Perennial front-runners Ashley Fiolek, who rides for Team Honda Muscle Milk, and Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil Honda’s Tarah Gieger, rounded out the podium.
Fiolek, the reigning WMX Champion, took the Freestone win last year, capitalizing on some early misfortune for Patterson. Both riders are former winners in Texas and have put forth some of the most memorable WMX Class battles there in years past.
Jessica Patterson leads the WMX Class into Texas.
(Courtesy Simon Cubdy)
Freestone Raceway is one of the most challenging tracks on the Lucas Oil Motocross schedule. The facility consistently tests every rider’s physical and mental toughness with its mix of speed and technicality. The track’s trademark sand whoops, affectionately known as the 12 Pack, will be a focal point for fans and riders alike, while the sprawling layout will allow for close competition among all competitors.
The Miller Electric Freestone National, presented by Yamaha, will commence on Saturday, May 26, from Wortham, beginning at 2 p.m. Eastern. Live coverage of the opening motos on FUEL TV and AlliSports.com will begin at 2 p.m. Eastern; same-day final-moto coverage of the 450 and 250 Classes will air on NBC Sports Network at 11 p.m. Eastern time.
Tickets for all 12 rounds of the 2012 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship can be found at www.allisports.com.
For additional information please visit AlliSports.com/motocross also, “like” the American Motocross Facebook page, “follow” @AmericanMX on Twitter and Instagram for exclusive content and information on the latest Lucas Oil Motocross news and developments.
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MX Sports Pro Racing
MX Sports Pro Racing manages and produces the world’s most prestigious motocross series – the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing. The industry leader in off road powersport event production and management, its mission is to showcase the sport of professional motocross competition at events throughout the United States. Through its various racing properties, partnerships and affiliates, MX Sports Pro Racing organizes events for thousands of action sports athletes each year and attracts millions of motorsports spectators. Visit www.mxsportsproracing.com.
Alli Sports, is an action sports lifestyle brand whose mission is to connect fans with athletes and brands through best in class events, media, and authentic branded products. Alli Sports includes: the Dew Tour, Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship and the Red Bull Signature Series; Alli Media, which creates, produces, and distributes original content; Alli RideShop, an online retailer carrying top skate and BMX consumer products; and Alli MotoShop an online retailer carrying top moto consumer products. Alli Sports is owned by NBC Sports. More information can be found at www.allisports.com.
AMA Pro Racing
AMA Pro Racing is the premier professional motorcycle racing sanctioning body in the United States, operating a full schedule of events and championships for a variety of motorcycle disciplines. From its Daytona Beach headquarters, the organization sanctions professional motorcycle racing competition, which includes, AMA Pro Motocross, AMA Pro Road Racing, and AMA Pro Flat Track. Visit www.amaproracing.com.
NBC Sports Group
When the Comcast-NBCUniversal transaction was completed in January of 2011, the broad reach and storied history of NBC Sports united with Comcast’s 24/7 ability to super-serve fans to create the NBC Sports Group. The new sports media company consists of an array of broadcast television, cable television and digital sports assets, including NBC Sports & Olympics, Golf Channel, Versus, 11 SportNets (regional sports networks) and their respective websites. Together, the new combined assets of the NBC Sports Group possess an unparalleled collection of television rights agreements, partnering with some of the most prestigious sports properties in the world: the Olympics, NFL, NHL, PGA TOUR, PGA of America, USGA, IndyCar, Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, Wimbledon, French Open, Tour de France and Kentucky Derby.
FUEL TV is the only cable and satellite television network that features the exciting world of adrenaline and thrill-seeking sports including UFC, surfing, motocross, snowboarding and more. This new generation of sports provides a rich landscape of some of the most vibrant and action-packed television entertainment in the world. With more hours of UFC coverage than any other network, FUEL TV is the place to be for live fights, weigh-ins, prelims, pre- and post-fight coverage, specials and events you won’t see anywhere else. See why adrenaline sports fans call FUEL TV the channel they never turn off. FUEL TV, part of FOX Sports Media Group, was launched July 1, 2003 and is seen in more than 36 million U.S. homes and can be accessed by broadband, mobile devices and other digital platforms such as iTunes®. FUEL TV programming is available in more than 50 countries around the world with 24/7 channels operating in Australia and Europe. To subscribe to FUEL TV, call 877-4 FUEL-TV. For program times and other information, visit www.fuel.tv.
Lucas Oil Products
Lucas Oil is a worldwide leader in the production of oils, lubricants and additives. Based in Corona, Calif., Lucas Oil Products is one of the fastest-growing additive lines in the consumer automotive industry, featuring a premium line of oils, lubricants and problem-solving performance additives. Through innovative product research and development, along with aggressive marketing programs, Lucas Oil Products has established itself as the top-selling additive line in the American truck-stop industry. Lucas Oil is involved in an array of motorsports sponsorships, including the “Official Motor Oil of the Pro Motocross Championship.” Visit www.LucasOil.com.