Racer comments from the eighth round of the MX Nationals.
A selection of riders detail the round eight of the 2019 Pirelli MX Nationals at Moree in New South Wales. Team and privateer competitors can submit comments to [email protected] by Monday afternoon after events for inclusion in the post-event Quotebook feature.
Kirk Gibbs (CDR Yamaha Monster Energy) – Second overall:
I’m a little disappointed not to get the race win as you never want to lead for that long and not actually get the W. By the mid-way point I could feel my arms getting tight and I tried to stay as loose and relaxed as possible but when the final last few laps came up and the sprint speed was back on, I just couldn’t be at my best. But on the podium is good and I feel like I’m riding well, so there are a lot of positives to take from the weekend. The bike and team did a great job and we are now focused on a huge weekend at Coolum this weekend where we have the double-header final round that will be tough on everyone.
Luke Clout (CDR Yamaha Monster Energy) – Ninth overall:
The weekend didn’t go the way I wanted it to, and I was just too impatient on the opening lap. I had a reasonable start and tried to get to the front in the first couple of turns but I ended up locking bars with other riders and going down. I was a silly thing to do and the team had spoken to me over the last few rounds about minimising the mistakes and keeping myself in contention in every race. I felt I let them down a little on the weekend. My motivation is high, and I am determined to make up for it at Coolum. I have won championships there in the past, the bike and team are awesome, and I am fitter than I have ever been. Its not over and I plan on coming out swinging from lap one and won’t stop until it’s over.
Jesse Dobson (Husqvarna) – Ninth overall:
The results don’t really reflect how I felt on the bike, or how I rode today. I had good speed in qualifying, only just missing Superpole and taking the sixth gate pick, but I didn’t get the start I needed, giving me some work to do to move forward. On the second lap I made a mistake with my line selection, went down that hard that I wasn’t sure I’d be able to continue, but after stopping in the mechanics area to get some help from Aiden, I was able to regroup, straighten out the FC 450 and fight back to 12th place from dead last. It’s disappointing to not have a second race, but rider safety has to be the number one priority. With the final rounds in Coolum just one week away, I’m more focused than ever to finish the season on a high.
Richie Evans (Yamalube Yamaha Racing) – Fifth overall:
Fifth is a good result and one that I am happy with. I was able to get a good start and run with the lead group and found that they weren’t really getting away. I tried to stay calm and keep pace with Brett Metcalfe who was a couple of seconds ahead of me. Dylan Long closed in and past me just past half way and I made a mistake which cost me a few seconds, but I was able to keep my composure and finish fifth.
Brett Metcalfe (Penrite Honda Racing) – Third overall:
The track was extremely challenging, it was shiny and dry in some sections and wet and tacky in others. I got a great jump off the line and was in fourth for the early part of the race. I took too long to find a rhythm. In the middle of the moto I started matching the leaders pace but it was a case of too little too late for me and I had to settle for third.
Lawson Bopping (Empire Kawasaki) – 10th overall:
I was happy to get through the moto today and 10th-place is alright. It was sort of the same as Maitland where I struggled with my health and faded for sure, but I kept it on two wheels and got a reasonable result – it was a pretty uneventful race for me.
Dylan Long (Empire Kawasaki) – Fourth overall:
“I definitely started to feel better today and it was disappointing that we didn’t get to do that second moto because I felt like I had a podium in me. I’ve been coming on strong later in the season, but it is what it is. The KX450 was awesome and Empire Kawasaki has been so good – I’m just stoked to be getting better at every round.
Todd Waters (DPH Motorsport Husqvarna) – First overall:
I’ve got a two-point lead in the MX1 championship, with two rounds to go. It’s great to have it, but two points isn’t enough to start celebrating. I was really comfortable today with good speed in qualifying and in the race, I was able to ride the FC 450 into the lead with three laps to go and crossed the line with a small lead. I wish we could’ve raced the second moto, as I know I would’ve only gotten stronger, but sometimes these things happen when you race.
Jay Wilson (Yamalube Yamaha Racing) – Fifth overall:
The day didn’t go as I would have liked and that crash in the opening race was a result of me just wanting to get to the front as fast as I could. Looking back, I probably could have been a little more patient but I felt I had opportunity to make it happen, I just didn’t execute it as well as I should have. Race two was better and I was applying plenty of pressure to Wilson Todd but couldn’t find a way past. The championship is still tight and with five riders still a mathematical change of winning it, no one can take it easy. It’s an exciting end to the championship and I can’t wait to hook in at Coolum and give it my best.
Kyle Webster (Penrite Pirelli CRF Honda Racing) – Ninth overall:
Someone crashed in front of me and I went down in the melee, which put me all the way back to dead-last. All I could do was pick myself up and try to work my way through the pack: but I could only make it to 13th place at the end of the seven laps. The second race was tough as well, as I just didn’t have a flow and pretty much struggled.
Nathan Crawford (Serco Yamaha) – First overall:
Since the half way break, things have been going really well and my riding has progressed back to where I believe it should be. I have been on or around the podium since then and been in contention for every moto and that’s what it takes to race for championships at a professional level. Today I had to work for it as there were bikes going everywhere at the start of moto one, then in moto two, all the top riders were inside the top five and I was able to get through for the win. The championship is still a long shot with two rounds to go but I will keep charging to the very end and try and win every race I go in and see where it puts me.
Aaron Tanti (Serco Yamaha) – Fourth overall:
I am sick of fourth place and not getting on the podium. The last three rounds I have been in fourth and missed out on the podium which also means I’m missing out on money. I feel like I have been riding well and been really consistent the while championship, but I just haven’t been able to break through and get a race win which really kicks in the big points. We have two rounds remaining and that’s two opportunities to get on the podium. The championship is out of reach for me so there’s nothing to lose and I’m all in for Coolum.
Wilson Todd (DPH Motorsport Husqvarna) – Third overall:
I think I was lucky today. I’ve extended my lead in the championship after coming down in the first of the back-to-back moto’s! I set the fastest lap in race two on my way to finishing second, and I made a lot of passes in the first race to finish seventh. There’s positives to come out of the day, but now I’m focused on the back-to-back rounds in Coolum next week to finish the season.
Bailey Malkiewicz (DPH Motorsport Husqvarna) – 11th overall:
I qualified fifth but went down on the first lap and had to work hard to make up some ground. With only seven laps left, I managed seven passes, leaving me in seventeenth when I crossed the line. Moto two was a lot better, racing for seventh in the back-to-back format. I’m definitely disappointed that my results weren’t stronger this weekend. I’ve been working hard to eliminate mistakes, and improve myself, and I really didn’t get a chance to show it.