The current week in dirt bikes, presented by Thor MX Australia.
Words: Alex Gobert/Jeremy Hammer
The Pirelli MX Nationals heads into its final stages and it’s only becoming increasingly unpredictable. Welcome to Motoview presented by Thor MX Australia on MotoOnline.com.au.
Maitland on the weekend was definitely one of the more interesting rounds of the season so far. Coming in, the expectations weren’t overly high, but it’s safe to say the weekend delivered. On track, the action was spectacular and in addition, it’s always good to see when Yamaha turns out in force with the YZ65 Cup.
We only have two rounds left of the nationals from this point and the championships are most certainly tightening up. In the MX1 class, Luke Clout is back on top of the standings, although it could be anyone’s – Hayden Mellross and Todd Waters each within 12 points of the lead. Add in riders like Kirk Gibbs and Brett Metcalfe, what you have there is a very, very intriguing end to this season.
The MX2 class is just as interesting because Wilson Todd, the defending champion, had an off day at Maitland last weekend in P5 overall. Of course, he remains atop the point-standings with the red plate, but behind him, it appears that Maitland winner Kyle Webster is the form rider – only 10 points behind now.
Don’t forget, with two back-to-back rounds to finish off the season at Coolum, Webster – a notable sand rider – may just be in the perfect position to capitalise. And then there is Jay Wilson on the Yamalube Yamaha Racing YZ250F and, considering his performance last year at Coolum, he’ll be right there in the fight to challenge for another championship.
Cast your mind back to last August, it was Webster and Wilson who split the moto wins on the Sunshine Coast, but the overall went to the Western Australian on countback. Neither were in championship contention, as Todd did what he had to for the title.
And before I hand this over, I just wanted to point out what an epic job a bunch of teams did for retro round over the weekend! Most get amongst it while other teams maintain their usual livery, so it’s neat to see what teams do what. Here’s Jeremy with more…
Maitland’s seventh round of the 2019 Pirelli MX Nationals was very much what this season has been all about – an unpredictable weekend of racing that offered more questions than answers.
I’m not complaining one bit, though. Without a doubt, this has been one of the most interesting championship chases – across both categories – that I can remember in recent years. Each and every round is delivering something different, twisting the ongoing narrative of how the championships are played out.
The MX1 is fiercely competitive at the moment, and that’s about to get a whole lot more interesting when three-time defending championship Dean Ferris joins the fun at Moree and Coolum, the New South Welshman confirming this week he’ll pilot a Recover8 and Raceline-supported KTM 450 SX-F.
While Ferris isn’t a factor in the in the championship, he’s no doubt going to be stealing race wins and podiums that otherwise could’ve gone to the trio currently in the mix – Luke Clout (CDR Yamaha Monster Energy), Hayden Mellross (Raceline KTM Thor) and Todd Waters (DPH Motorsport Husqvarna).
With the points situation so close – just 12 points from first to third – all three riders have no choice but to take it to Ferris should the opportunity arise, because those points are extremely valuable at this stage of the title chase.
To say I’m excited for the next two stops (three rounds) is an understatement, and I believe Ferris’ influence on the series in the pointy end is just going to shake things up once again.
And what about the MX2 category? Well, that’s just as exciting with a three-man race between Wilson Todd (DPH Motorsport Husqvarna), Kyle Webster (Penrite Pirelli CRF Honda Racing) and Jay Wilson (Yamalube Yamaha Racing). But, that’s a conversation for next week’s edition of Motoview.
That’s it for this week, we’ll catch you next Wednesday with another Motoview presented by Thor MX Australia feature! In the meantime stay tuned to MotoOnline.com.au for the latest daily content and be sure to follow us on social media via @motoonline on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.