For the fourth time in the four AMA Pro Motocross races held thus far this season, Team Honda HRC’s Jett Lawrence posted a podium overall finish in the 250MX class, this time during Saturday’s round at the iconic RedBud National in Buchanan, Michigan.
The popular young Australian rode his CRF250R to the victory in moto 1 and overcame moto 2 crashes to tally third overall on the day, retaining the red plate that signifies leadership in the title chase. Brother and teammate Hunter Lawrence was fourth overall in the same class, while 450MX teammates Ken Roczen and Chase Sexton were fourth and sixth overall, respectively.
In the 250MX class, the first moto at the Michigan venue saw both Jett and Hunter start well and finish strong, in first and third, respectively. In moto 2, the brothers both suffered poor starts and completed lap 1 outside of the top 10. Jett made a mistake and crashed on the second lap, placing him outside of the top 30, but both he and Hunter made their way through the pack to finish fourth and sixth, respectively, earning Jett third overall and Hunter fourth.
In 450MX racing, Roczen enjoyed a decent start in the first moto and led nine of the 16 laps, eventually securing a strong second place, less than three seconds behind Dylan Ferrandis. Unfortunately, the German was penalized two points for mistakenly jumping on a red-cross flag. Moto 2 saw Roczen suffer a hard crash on lap 7 while running third, but he quickly remounted and finished in sixth place, for fourth overall. Sexton suffered a first-turn moto 1 crash, forcing the Illinois native to charge through the pack for an eighth-place moto result. In the day’s final race, Sexton completed lap 1 in sixth and eventually finished fourth to earn sixth overall.
・This weekend marked the return of the annual RedBud National to its traditional Independence Day Weekend date, after it was pushed back last year due to COVID-19. The event enjoyed perfect weather and a large crowd, as it also returned to full spectator capacity. This season has also seen the return of podium celebrations.
・Although pit access has remained closed to most of the public, the ongoing process of removing fan restrictions reached its newest phase at RedBud, where VIP ticket holders had exclusive access to the paddock from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.. Access to the riders and their respective team pit areas was not permitted. Rider autograph sessions remain suspended, but access to rider posters was offered, at the sole discretion of each team.
・Team Honda HRC sponsor Throttle Jockey–located nearby in Kokomo, Indiana– designed custom Fourth of July graphics with American flags for all four CRF race machines. This weekend also marked 20 years since the team started using their Woody Woodpecker graphics and sponsorship with Universal Studios. Renthal also designed a custom American flag bar pad for Ken Roczen’s CRF450R.
・On race day, Team Honda HRC’s Chase Sexton participated in interviews and video footage for an upcoming Monster Energy project, highlighting his life at home and at the races. His mechanic, Jade Dungey, was also interviewed, and his race-day activities tuning Sexton’s CRF450R were recorded.
・Jett Lawrence posted another competition alert via social media, promising to sign his moto-two jersey and personally hand it to the fan who displayed the best poster at the race, which he did at the podium after his celebration. Before his first moto, the young Australian also had a large crowd attend a brief autograph signing at his donut display in the Red Bull tent.
・For the second time this season, Jett, Hunter and Sexton all wore matching Alpinestars gear, this time featuring red, white and blue colors in commemoration of Independence Day. Ken Roczen also wore special retro red, white and blue Fox gear that was a replica of gear Honda great Rick Johnson wore in 1986.
・Jett Lawrence posted the third-fastest time in 250MX qualifying, with a 2’06.601” in the final session, three ahead of Hunter Lawrence’s 2’07.903”. FXR/Chaparral Honda rider Carson Mumford posted the 20th-best time, and TiLube Honda’s Grant Harlan was 31st.
・Sexton was third-fastest in qualifying for the 450MX class, posting a 2’05.062” in the second session, while Roczen had the fifth-best lap time at 2’05.580”. FXR/Chaparral Honda’s Coty Schock was 14th-best, and privateer Jeremy Hand was 19th-best.
・In the 450MX title chase, Roczen remains second–14 points behind Dylan Ferrandis–while Sexton sits fourth. Roczen was docked two crucial points in the final moto for accidentally jumping during a red-cross flag. Jett Lawrence has an eight-point lead over Justin Cooper in the 250MX class, and he retains the red plate, while Hunter Lawrence remains third.
・Series promoter MX Sports introduced a “media corral,” providing a 15-minute window for media to conduct interviews with the top 10 finishers from each class in a single, convenient location following the race. This did not replace the standard post-race Zoom press conference with the top three overall finishers in each class. All four Team Honda HRC riders were present for the media-corral interviews, and the press conference included podium-finisher Jett Lawrence (with a brief cameo by brother Hunter).
・Team Honda HRC will now make their way to beautiful Southwick, in Southwest Massachusetts, where the fifth AMA Pro Motocross round will take place this weekend.