Rockstar Energy Suzuki’s Clement Desalle and Red Bull Teka KTM’s Ken Roczen took the overall victories today at the United States Grand Prix, back at Glen Helen race way for the second consecutive year since re-establishing the international race last year. The morning was cold with a steady light rain, but the sun came out to watch the racing. The First MX2 moto was raced on a slippery, muddy track, but by the time the 250F racers were done the track conditions look perfect.The turnout of spectators was modest but moreso American AMA-contesting racers didn’t show. Even with a $100,000 bonus to any American who could win both motos of the MX1 class (put up by South Coast Casino), the only major US-based team to show was the Lucas Oil/Troy Lee Designs Honda team.
Moto one of the MX2 class had Ken Roczen getting into the lead early and riding a comfortable race on his KTM. American Zach Osborne, who contests the whole World series, got off to a bad start with a crash in the second turn, but managed to pass his way up to ninth before the checkered fell. One position behind him was American Travis Baker in tenth. The moto podium went Roczen (KTM), Jeffrey Herlings (KTM), and Max Antsie (Kawasaki).
The MX1 class attacked a track that looked perfect without too much mud, but deep ruts cut from the MX2 race. Clement Desalle looked to have an easy race until late in the race Antonio Cairoli closed in. As the last lap board went out (FIM uses a board not a white flag) Cairoli seemed to close in the three second gap quickly. A bobble near the end of the lap allowed to Desalle to come in without pressure. The top American in the moto was Christian Craig who crossed the line in eighth. The final moto podium had Desalle (Suzuki), Cairoli (KTM) and Max Nagl (KTM) atop it.
Moto two of the MX2 class started very similarly to the first with Rozcen right into the lead and Osborne back in around tenth. At the mid point Roczen still had his lead, but this time Orborne had already made his way up to fifth. Travis Baker was off the bike and standing beside his mechanic who was mounting a new rear wheel after a problem (likely a flat) forced Baker into pit row. With two laps to go Orborne lept past Antsie in one of the rollers sections to grab fourth place and hold it to the end. The moto podium went Roczen (KTM), Herlings (KTM), and Searle (Kawasaki). The overall podium in MX2 was Roczen, Herlings and Searle. Orborne, the top American, finished fifth overall.
The final moto of the day, MX2 moto 2 saw Clement Desalle again get into the lead early and again get chased by a KTM, this time Max Nagl. Nagl kept Desalle honest but was never close enough to mount an attack on first place. Cairoli rounded the first turn way in the back of the pack, and charged hard all moto to get all the way up to eleventh at the finish. The moto podium went to Desalle (Suz), Nagl (KTM) and Honda rider Evgeny Bobryshev. Overall on the day was Clement Desalle on his Rockstar Energy Suzuki, followed by Max Nagl, and Evgeny Bobryshev.