News 17 Jul 2017

Husqvarna’s Roberts takes MXD lead into finale

HQVA press release:

Husqvarna racer Jy Roberts will take the championship lead into this year’s MXD final at Port Macquarie in a fortnight’s time, thanks to another podium performance, at the series’ penultimate round, at Shepparton yesterday.

The Robertson’s Motorcycles rider qualified second-fastest and finished 3-3 for the day, while top honours went to Callum Norton, ahead of Cody Dyce.

Roberts took his Husqvarna FC 250 to the fastest lap in the second moto, and remains confident that if he can find that same speed on July 30, he’ll put the championship safely to bed.

The MXD series does not extend to the final two stops on the regular MX Nationals calendar, and Roberts will switch to an early preparation for the upcoming supercross season after the MXD series is decided, while some U19 riders opt to finish the season in the MX2 class.

Among the latter group is SD3 Husqvarna’s Kaleb Barham, who could only salvage ninth from the day at Shepparton after a heavy crash left him 14th in the opening moto, before climbing to fifth in the second race, on the back of a lacklustre start.

Another first-moto faller was Riley Dukes, who came together with a rider while running as high as third place, resulting in a substantial soil sample, and he could only limp around the last three laps to 13th.

He redeemed himself in the second moto though, taking the R&D Husqvarna FC 250 to fourth place.

Former MX Pro turned movie stuntman Cody Mackie kept on his winning ways in the 125cc Gold Cup championship, topping the podium ahead of Kerrod Morrissey and Cameron Taylor.

Using his Moto Developments Husqvarna TC125, Mackie qualified fastest, came from behind to win the opener, and then lead from start to finish in the second race to maintain his unbeaten run in the championship, which also concludes next time out at Port Macquarie.

Jy Roberts (Husqvarna FC 250): “Third overall today and leaving with the red plate is an alright result – I got some really good starts and put some decent laps down and came away with 3-3. The last one was a bit of a bummer; I got a 15-second penalty because we used a wire brush on the tyre to get the hot beads off from spinning it on the concrete. I had to put my head down then and I really put some good laps in, and I ended up coming away with third, so I was happy with that. The track was gnarly here, it got rough with deep ruts and I got arm pump in both motos, but my bike always goes good and she was on fire here. I’ve got a five-point lead coming into the final round, and if I ride like I did in that last one, I’m sure that I can get the championship. But if it doesn’t happen, I’ll just move on.”

Kaleb Barham (Husqvarna FC 250): “I had two crashes in moto one, and a reasonable second one. Concrete starts don’t help me at all, by the time I got around the first corner I was around tenth. I made my way up to third and I was feeling comfortable and solid on the bike, but was unfortunate enough to have a front-end tuck, and ended up going down pretty hard, bending the bars and breaking my peak and everything. I tried to come back through and actually caught back onto the tail of 7th, 8th and 9th. But the attempted pass didn’t pay off, and I fell and dropped to 14th. In the second one I got another shocking start and made my way through, but by the time I got past a couple the fast guys had gone and I got fifth. Still, it was a whole lot better than the previous round, so we’ll just keep on building. There’s one more round left in U19s, and then we’ll step up to MX2 for Toowoomba and Coolum.”

Riley Dukes (Husqvarna FC 250): “I had good speed all day. I got a decent start in the first moto and worked my way up to third, then I came together with another rider and that put me down. It took me a little bit to get going again, and by then I was about 14th and could only improve to 13th, which bummed out our moto result.

My speed was good though, and in the second one I got another decent start and just worked my way up to third. I ran there for a bit of the moto, then I just got passed for fourth at the finish. It was pretty bumpy there and there were some big deep ruts, but my bike handled great all day. Now I’m hoping for a solid podium to finish off the championship at the next round.”

Cody Mackie (Husqvarna TC 125): “It was a tricky track that could have brought you unstuck at any time, but I was glad I didn’t make any major mistakes, and I was able to stay on and get the wins. I managed to get P1 in qualifying and then win both races. The first one was a little bit trickier for me since I got a bad start, but the second one was better – I got the holeshot and led from start to finish. There was a good battle just a couple of seconds behind me though, so that kept me on my toes. I’m pleased there were a few more riders in the class this time around. I really want to try and help grow the class, I think it’s got potential.”

For more information on Husqvarna motorcycles visit www.husqvarna-motorcycles.com.

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