Racer comments from Victoria's third and fourth rounds of the season.
A selection of riders detail rounds three and four of the 2018 Pirelli MX Nationals in Wonthaggi, Victoria. Team and privateer competitors can submit comments to [email protected] by Wednesday afternoon after events for inclusion in the post-event Quotebook feature.
Dean Ferris (CDR Yamaha Monster Energy) – First/First overall:
The weekend was good for me and a couple of things happened to my rivals that really allowed me to extend the points lead. It was nice to get back in the Superpole event on both days after missing out at Appin in round two, then get the race wins on each day. I enjoy riding tracks like this, especially on the Sunday when the overnight rain made it very technical to ride and challenging to get good, consistent laps down. I liked it wasn’t just a pin it and leave your brain in the toolbox style track as it required a lot of concentration to get around as you had to choose lines carefully and think your way through the rolling bumps and hard pack square edges. My bike was again awesome as the conditions were had on bikes as well as the team and my CDR Yamaha Monster Energy team did a great job and worked hard all weekend. It was a credit to the team that we had no troubles with our bikes when others really struggled in the deep, wet conditions. The YZ450F was amazing to ride here.
Dylan Long (CDR Yamaha Monster Energy) – Sixth/fifth overall:
Saturday was awful and I don’t even want to discuss it. It was just one of those days I would rather forget. But I was determined to turn it around on Sunday and while not the kind of conditions I really enjoy, I just had to make it happen and I’m happy with how things went and that I was able to salvage something from the weekend. My speed was much better and I didn’t make too many mistakes. There is still more work to do and I need to bring my A game every weekend at this level of racing and that’s what I’m determined to do.
Kirk Gibbs (KTM Motocross Racing Team) – 11th/fourth overall:
Everything was going not too bad on Saturday. I got Super Pole and then had a frustrating race in the first one, but I was still second, so that’s all good. I got a good start in the second one and I was going all in to the make something happen, but I caught a little edge that flicked me into the rollers and I was obviously unable to save it. The worst thing is I did a lot of damage to the bike, but I still scored some points thanks to the team getting me going again. That wrote the rest of the weekend off for me, because today I struggled and just had little issues after that. I’ll come back swinging at Murray Bridge, I ride there pretty well so am looking forward to the quick turnaround now.
Luke Clout (KTM Motocross Racing Team) – Third/sixth overall:
I started the weekend off pretty good, getting third yesterday, second on count-back, which was really good. I started today off well, getting into Super Pole, but it was just one of those days as I struggled to find my flow and had a few crashes. I was pretty much fatigued and had nothing left in the tank today – I ran out of energy and was just trying to fight through and grab some points. I’m still carrying confidence though, I was riding really well and had some good speed. I’m looking to get back on the podium at Murray Bridge.
Kade Mosig (DPH Motorsport Husqvarna) – Seventh/third overall:
It’s been a huge weekend at Wonthaggi really happy I could finish it off on a good note. With a third and securing a podium at After having a rough day on Saturday I really wanted give it a big effort. So happy with all the hard work we have put in here at DPH Motorsport to get us back up there it’s really rewarding to see progress. We are building every week looking to gain momentum as we hit the half way point of the MX Nationals championship. Big thanks to all of the team and sponsors for the support.
Mitch Evans (Raceline Pirelli KTM) – Second/second overall:
I’m really happy with the weekend. We just wanted to get starts both days and that’s what we did so I can’t complain with the result we got at all. My starts were the one thing I knew I needed to improve on to get the results. Especially when tracks are sort of one-lined, a start and running with guys like Ferris and Gibbsy right from the start is so important. We worked on starts a lot over the last three weeks and it definitely paid off. Coming in to the weekend I knew the double header was crucial and that my result on Saturday would set the tone for the following day, so getting a second on day one put me in a good headspace and even though the track was rough and we had raced the previous day, on Sunday I felt good. We got some solid points, and a good result at the first double header of the season, so I’m happy, feeling positive and looking forward to getting to Murray Bridge.
Brett Metcalfe (Penrite Honda Racing) – Eighth/seventh overall:
I was looking forward to Wonthaggi because I thought it was really good last year and it didn’t disappoint. We were lucky with the weather, the rain held out pretty well, and the track was rough. I was kind of nervous for the double-header, just knowing how much a round beats you up, but we got through well. In the first two rounds I’ve been struggling to get through the moto and find a balance with the bike, so we changed a lot of stuff coming in. Unfortunately in the first moto on Saturday I was charging through, but with a couple of laps to go the bike started to have a malfunction. It was a super-simple issue in the water-pump cover – it popped off and we dumped coolant. With two corners to go it locked up, I ended up pushing the bike and pretty much blew my back and legs out – I’m still recovering from that actually [laughs]. That unfortunately set the tone for us, for the rest of the weekend. Murray Bridge is real important for me. Obviously, being a home town race you want to do well, so that’s definitely going to work in my favour, but we’re still figuring it out. When you’re going up against some of these teams that are established, it’s a tough field right now. I’m new here, learning the bike and the team, so we’re kind of still playing catch-up, but in that last moto even though I had no goggles, I felt like we found a little bit of something and we will carry that into [this] week. The championship isn’t looking good for us, so now the goal is to just get up front with Dean and the front-runners. I know I have the speed, so we just have to get it all together and make it happen. I know we can get up front and race for the win, so that’s my goal.
Rhys Carter (Complete Parts Kawasaki Racing Team) – Fifth/10th overall:
We’ve worked on a couple of things over the last couple of weeks, which has made a massive improvement to my riding and confidence as well. Saturday was a solid day and my speed was good on both days, which was a real positive. My moto was really good in the first one today until a little mishap and in the final race I made it hard for myself with a bad start and a crash. There were more positives to take out of the weekend, so that’s always a good thing. The team was awesome and everything has been working really well.
Kayne Lamont (SB Motorsports) – 20th/DNS overall:
The weekend went okay when things were going good. Qualified ninth, then in race one got a good start and was running in fourth early, but then dropped back to eighth and had a few scary moments but managed to hold the spot. In race two I got another decent start and slipped back to eighth again, and then had a crash and hurt my wrist which saw me DNF the moto, and end my weekend.
Aaron Tanti (Complete Parts Kawasaki Racing Team) – Eighth/fourth overall:
Yesterday at round three I had a tough day – in the first moto I came back from 30th through to 12th, while in the second moto I got stuck behind people after a tough start and I ended up eighth overall. I turned it around today and got second in the first moto, but in race two I was taken out on the first lap, so I had to fight my way back – I ended up getting into fifth, which put me equal third for the day but fourth on count-back. I got some solid points and I’m leaving on a positive.
Egan Mastin (KTM Motocross Racing Team) – Fifth/second overall:
It was a great weekend in the end and I am really happy. The first moto today, I got off to a decent start, but the track was very muddy out there – you had to make sure of what you were doing because it could come up and bite you and you would be on the ground. I got a solid fourth place in the first moto and just moved into the second moto with a half-decent start. I worked my way up to second place and just stayed there – I felt very solid today, the bike felt great and it was the best I’ve felt all year. To get second overall is definitely what I needed after a reasonable round on Saturday, so I’m going to keep the ball rolling onto the next event and can’t wait.
Dylan Wills (DPH Motorsport Husqvarna) – Seventh/sixth overall:
Overall definitely a positive weekend for myself and the team. A little change before the last moto of the weekend had us right where we needed to be off the start which is where I struggled for the majority. Speed and fitness is right where I need to be and mentally I’m very positive that we’re not far away from putting it together. My FC250 is awesome and my support crew with dale, Pynee and Boyd is second to none, even my team-mate Kade has my back 110 percent and the whole crew wants me to succeed. We’re very close to being there it’s just up to me the place these last pieces to the puzzle. Seventh at round three and sixth at round four definitely don’t show the rides I put in. I burned loads of energy today but I gave it my all. Time to recover now and get back to it this week and come out and put it together at Murray Bridge.
Jayden Rykers (Raceline pirelli KTM) – 10th/22nd overall:
Even though the results aren’t quite there yet we still had a really positive weekend. I was able to show I have the speed to run inside that top five consistently, so once I can iron out the other bits and pieces I know I can be there every weekend. The back to back days were a challenge but I actually felt really good on both days. If we can minimise the mistakes from this point forward I know that we can all prove what we can do.
Nathan Crawford (Serco Yamaha) – Second/16th overall:
I’m not really sure what to say. The weekend started well and although I didn’t win on Saturday, my riding was good and I did exactly what I needed to do. I gained a few points in the championship, felt good on the bike and made quick passes when I needed things to happen so I was confident I could do the same on Sunday. But it wasn’t to be. I tweaked my shoulder in race one when I fell but it came good by the end of the moto and I was able to get back to sixth place in a pretty good ride. But it wasn’t strong in race two so I will get it checked out this week and see if there are any issues. But, the boys will get the bike sorted, I will get my body sorted and I plan on getting things back on track at Murray Bridge this weekend.
Wilson Todd (Serco Yamaha) – Third/first overall:
Getting that race win on Saturday was just a relief and a reminder to myself that I can win races and this is where I belong. The last two months I have put in plenty of hard work so I knew that it was coming and I was improving, I just needed to get that first win on the board and really kickstart my season. To come into the weekend so many points down, but to leave with a 16 point lead is hard to believe but that’s how it goes sometimes and I really need keep working hard as there are plenty of riders in the MX2 class capable of winning races and big points swings won’t be uncommon if you are having a bad day or have issues. Thank you to the Serco Yamaha team and all our sponsors for the long hours in the lead up and over the weekend. My YZ250F was sweet and my focus now is to keep the momentum rolling at Murray Bridge next week.
Jay Wilson (Yamalube Yamaha Racing) – Fourth/eighth overall:
When I look back at the weekend, I know there are things I would do differently if I had the chance. I don’t get too worked up about the results, I just focus on the way I ride and the decision I make on the track and I need to learn from them and be better next week. Saturday I had good speed and track position but I didn’t make the most of it, while Sunday I was just over riding the track and trying to force my way around the track rather than ride with instinct and feel. If I can take a few things I didn’t do well at Wonthaggi and put them into practice during the week and on the racetrack this weekend at Murray Bridge, I’m sure I can be a front runner.
Kyle Webster (Penrite CRF Honda Racing) – First/19th overall:
It’s so satisfying to finally win a round of the MX Nationals. I’ve been working so hard towards this result, it’s amazing. I’m so grateful for the huge effort that my team puts in to make this possible and to have had both Honda and Penrite present at the event made it really special.