Team Honda HRC had an up-and-down performance at RedBud MX, highlighted by second-overall finishes for Chase Sexton in the 450 class and Hunter Lawrence in the 250 division—both with 2-2 moto scores.
Ken Roczen managed a fourth place in 450 moto 1 and led moto 2 before the lingering effects of sickness caused him to slip to seventh place and fifth overall. Jett Lawrence’s first 250 moto ended early with a mechanical issue, but he bounced back to win moto 2 for ninth overall.
Sexton completed lap 1 of the first 450 outing in fifth place, then moved up a spot at about the one-quarter mark. Lap 10 saw him get by his teammate (who had run in third for the first part of the race), and four laps later Sexton was by Joey Savatgy for second. He ended the moto six seconds behind Eli Tomac, with Roczen fourth. The German led the first 10 laps of moto 2 before his sickness caught up with him, and he slowly slipped to seventh. Sexton had started poorly, putting him sixth after lap 1, and he had a tip-over when he hit a fallen Jason Anderson. Nonetheless, he charged through the pack to second place by lap 11, again crossing the line just six seconds back.
Hunter Lawrence enjoyed a strong 250 moto 1 start and led the first five laps before being overtaken by his brother. When Jett experienced his issue, the older Lawrence once again assumed the lead, but Hunter was in conservation mode and was passed by Jo Shimoda with six laps remaining. Moto 2 again saw Hunter running up front early, while this time Jett was recovering from a bad start, completing lap 1 in eighth. By lap 5, the defending champ was up to second, and he displaced his brother at the front just past the halfway point. Jett and Hunter were 1-2 at the finish, but Shimoda’s third place gave him the overall win.
All the Team Honda HRC machines wore special Throttle Jockey graphics at RedBud, celebrating Independence Day weekend with a throwback look from the 1996 Motocross des Nations, when Team USA (including Honda-mounted Steve Lamson and Jeremy McGrath) took the victory in Spain.
RedBud MX is the home race for Throttle Jockey, and Friday night saw them throw a party in the Team Honda HRC pits, celebrating their 30th
Jett’s mechanical issue cost him a probable 250 moto 1 win and ended his overall win streak at four, but his moto 2 performance boosted his career moto-win tally to 14.
The RedBud national featured an amateur Scouting Moto Combine, with Team Honda HRC’s Chance Hymas taking part. Unfortunately, crashes affected the Idaho rider’s performance, and he went 11-4 for eighth overall.
The week before RedBud, Team Honda HRC test rider Trey Canard and Hymas opted to take part in the Mammoth Motocross, a popular event in California’s Sierra Nevada range. Canard earned the overall wins in 450 Pro and Open Pro Sport, as well as second in 250 Pro. Hymas was second overall in Open Pro Sport.
Along with the Ironman National, RedBud is a home race for Chase Sexton, who is originally from La Moille, Illinois (about three hours west). He had a number of guests on hand, including both his immediate family and members of his extended family.
Weather conditions were perfect for RedBud, with sunny skies and temperatures in the 70s.
Fire Power Honda announced the signing of Max Anstie last week on a three-round deal that marks the team’s debut in AMA Pro Motocross (though it regularly competes in AMA Supercross).
Chase Sexton and Ken Roczen were officially fourth and sixth in the combined 450 qualifying times, although Sexton’s second session was ruined by a transponder issue. (The team’s own data showed that Sexton had very fast times.) In 250 qualifying, Hunter and Jett Lawrence were second and third, respectively.
While coming through the pack in the second 450 race, Sexton set the fastest lap of the moto, with Roczen second-fastest. Jett Lawrence had the fastest time in the first 250 moto, and Hunter Lawrence had the fastest moto 2 time.
This week, there were co-winners of Team Honda HRC’s Award of Excellence, with truck drivers Mike Spraker and Scott Heltsley sharing the well-deserved honors.
Jett’s moto 1 issue resulted in him losing the 250 class points lead to Hunter, who now has a seven-point margin and will go to the next round with the red plate on his CRF250R. Sexton still leads the 450 division, now with an edge of seven points, which would be eight were it not for a 1-point penalty at Thunder Valley for jumping under a wheels-on-ground flag.
Next up for Team Honda HRC is this Saturday’s Southwick National in Massachusetts, which will mark the series’ midway point.
|1||Hunter Lawrence||96||Team Honda HRC||Honda||218|
|2||Jett Lawrence||1||Team Honda HRC||Honda||211|
|3||Jo Shimoda||30||Monster energy ProCircuit Kawasaki||Kawasaki||182|
|4||Justin Cooper||32||Star Racing Yamaha||Yamaha||159|
|5||Levi Kitchen||59||Star Racing Yamaha||Yamaha||145|
|6||Michael Mosiman||29||Troy Lee Designs Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing||GasGas||141|
|25||Lance Kobusch||194||STR Honda||Honda||12|