News 18 Oct 2023

Fulltime ProMX 450 transition for Todd now official

Signed alongside returning Webster at Honda Racing for 2024.

Image: Foremost Media.

Four-time national MX2 champion Wilson Todd will officially step up to the 450 class of Penrite ProMX from 2024, joining the returning Kyle Webster at Honda Racing in a multi-year contract and signalling the departure of Jed Beaton following a single year in red.

Todd, 25, will face the task of taking on defending premier class champion Dean Ferris – himself a former Honda team rider on multiple occasions – if he’s to deliver Yarrive Konsky’s factory Honda organisation its first-ever MX1 crown next season.

It’s a fascinating step for the North Queenslander that has finally been put into place, returning home in 2022 with Honda Racing following a brief grand prix career and going on to capture back-to-back 250 crowns outdoors. A two-race cameo last year saw him win Coolum’s final round on a CRF450R, however, he remained in the lower tier for one more season.

“I know that I can win with this bike and team, I will just need to work differently to be better prepared,” Todd said. “I am happy to be with Honda for the next two years. We have not decided which class I will race in supercross next year, but I will be ready for the 450 motocross series come March.”

Western Australian talent Webster will once again form part of Honda Racing, marking his third term in MX1 after winning a single 250 class title in 2021. The 27-year-old has proven to be among the quickest of all in-class, going 1-1 at Coolum in August on his way to fifth in the final championship standings. He also won Gillman earlier in the season.

“We had some things out of our control happen this year in motocross and some things happened that were in our control,” commented Webster. “Each contributed to our disappointing overall. There were also many positives – we won two rounds out of seven and nearly won a third.

“We know we can win. The team and I have plans to be better prepared going into next year and I know that we will not leave any stones unturned. Honda is home for me and we will come out stronger next year from the lessons that we have learnt from this season’s championship.”

It’s unclear if Todd will remain on the 450 for the Australian Supercross Championship later in the year, with only ProMX outlined by Honda at this point. Webster is already in the SX1 ranks alongside imports, five-time series champion Justin Brayton and new red plate-holder Dean Wilson.

“Kyle and Wilson have won 450 Australian Motocross Championship rounds and both of them have won 250 titles,” explained Konsky. “They know how to win and we believe that they are capable of contending for a 450 crown. We want to thank Jed Beaton for his hard work and dedication this season – he gave Honda race wins and second overall in the championship.

“It was time for Wilson to step up and race the 450 outdoors, he has dominated on the CRF250R, and we feel that he will be a serious threat for the 450 title in his rookie season, especially as he has already proven he can win on the bigger capacity motorcycle. With regards to Kyle, he is more than capable of winning and has proved it time and time again. We will work together on consistency and a greater frequency of racing throughout next year, so that we are better prepared going into each round.”

Beaton, meanwhile, has been connected to a high-profile switch to CDR Yamaha Monster Energy in recent weeks, which would make for an all-new roster with both Aaron Tanti and Luke Clout moving on. Tanti is expected to be heading to the US in Monster Energy AMA Supercross, while Clout has constantly been linked to Empire Kawasaki during the latter stages of the current silly season.

Honda Racing is yet to outline its 250 program for 2024, but has been heavily linked to fielding a super-team that could include Noah Ferguson, Alex Larwood and Kiwi Brodie Connolly – despite initially planning to head to the US – in MX2, alongside Jake Cannon (MX3) and multiple Australian MXW champion Charli Cannon, in what would be a significant transfer of power in the class after dominating with Yamalube Yamaha Racing since her debut last season.