Wednesday, Dec 08
Adam Sinclair

Adam Sinclair

Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway more than 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.  

Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.

Be sure to tune in for his sports talk program, Thursday Night Thunder, where he discusses the latest in motorsports news with drivers, crew members, and fans. The show takes place (almost) every Thursday at 8:00 pm EST on the Speedway Digest Radio Network. 

Contact Adam: Email  

  

 

As teams, drivers, media and fans are all ready to tackle the third round of the 2014 European Le Mans Series this weekend at the Red Bull Ring circuit in Austria, it's a good opportunity to look at the championship standings in each category at the mid-season point.

In LMP2, the top class of the series, the battle is on between Thiriet by TDS Racing, which currently leads, ahead of JOTA Sport and Signatech Alpine, the three LMP2 podium finishers at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Twelve points separate the Montpellier-based team and its drivers Ludovic Badey, Pierre Thiriet and Tristan Gommendy (35pts) from the Britons from Kent, JOTA Sport (Simon Dolan, Harry Tincknell and Filipe Albuquerque - 27 pts), while Paul-Loup Chatin, Oliver Webb and Nelson Panciatici's 25 points place the Signatech Alpine drivers and their car in third place overall. All tied on 24 points behind the top three are the Swiss team, Race Performance, and its drivers Franck Mailleux and Michel Frey, together with Sébastien Loeb Racing (Jan Charouz/Vincent Capillaire) and Greaves Motorsport (Matt McMurry/Tom Kimber-Smith).

The No.43 Morgan Judd of Swiss team NewBlood by Morand Racing is in 7th place with 15 points for the car and its drivers Gary Hirsch (CH), Romain Brandela (FR) and Christian Klien (AUT), but with a home race ahead for the Austrian, the team is hoping to move up the order.

The second Greaves Motorsport entry, the No.28 Zytek Z11SN, and Pegasus Racing's Morgan Nissan have eight points each (8th and 9th), and are ahead of the Murphy Prototypes ORECA 03 Nissan (10th) and the No.50 Larbre Compétition Morgan Judd (11th).

In LMGTE, the Russian SMP Racing team has the lead thanks to second place at Silverstone and victory in Italy. Together with its drivers Andrea Bertolini, Sergey Zlobin and Viktor Shaitar, it has 44 points on the board, 13 more than the No.55 AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia of Duncan Cameron and Matt Griffin (31 pts each) and Michele Rugolo (25 pts). Third in LMGTE is JMW Motorsport and drivers Daniel Zampieri, George Richardson and Daniel McKenzie who all have 25 points. Austrian entry AT Racing (No.56 F458 Italia - 4th) will be racing in front of a home crowd at the end of this week, and Alexander Talkanitsa Sr and Jr and Pierre Kaffer are currently 5th in the driver standings with 24 points.

At IMSA Performance Matmut, its two Porsche 911 GT3 RSRs (Nos.76 and 67) are respectively placed 5th and 13th in the standings, while Frenchmen Raymond Narac, Nicolas Armindo and David Hallyday have amassed 23 points (6th).  Erik Maris, Jean-Marc Merlin and Eric Hélary are in 15th place in the LMGTE drivers table with one point each.  The No.81 Ferrari 458 of Kessel Racing is 6th with 19.5 points - as are its drivers Matteo Cressoni and Thomas Kemenater (7th) - while the No.80 sister car is 12th.  

Team Sofrev ASP holds 7th in the tables (Fabien Barthez/Anthony Pons/Soheil Ayari - 8th in the driver standings) with 16 points and the two AF Corse Ferraris, Nos.54 and 65 are 8th and 14th, while the No.86 Porsche of Gulf Racing UK is holding 9th place with six points. The British team's Aston Martin Vantage is 11th with 2.5 points, and the No.82 Porsche of Crubilé Sport is 10th.

Of the 16 cars entered in the GTC class of the 2014 ELMS, it is the No.60 Formula Racing Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 and its drivers Johnny Laursen and Mikkel Mac which lead the class with 41 points. Jan Magnussen, the third Dane in the line-up, didn't take part in the Italian round and therefore is in 7th place with 15 points but he will be back in Austria.  Anton Ladygin, Olivier Beretta and David Markozov have 36 points after two appearances with the No.73 SMP Racing F458 GT3. The other two SMP Ferrari Racing entries, Nos.71 and 57 are 5th and 14th. Team Ukraine (Alessandro Pier Guidi/Andriy Kruglyk/Sergii Chukanov) is 3rd in the class with 25 points.  

The two McLaren MP4 12C GT3s (Nos.99 and 98) of the French ART Grand Prix team are respectively 4th and 8th , with their drivers 5th on 22 points (Alex Brundle/ Karim Ajlani/Ricardo Gonzalez) and 10th  with 10 points (Grégoire Demoustier/Kevin Korjus/ Yann Goudy).  The 14 points on the board of the sole BMW Z4 on the grid puts the No.78 in 6th place in the GTC Teams' standings, ahead of the No.59 F458 GT3 of French team Sofrev-ASP (10.5 pts). AF Corse has three entries from the Prancing Horse marque, and they are 9th (No.63), 15th (No.62) and 16th (No.95). The Audi R8 LMS Ultra of Sébastien Loeb Racing didn't run at Silverstone so they are on just 8 points (10th), while the No.93 Porsche of Pro GT by Almeras and the No.75 of ProSpeed Competition are 12th and 13th .

The full classifications for Teams and Drivers following the second round in Imola can be found HERE.

The 4 Hours of Red Bull Ring is this weekend on the Austrian circuit in the Styrian mountains.  The first ELMS free practice session will take place at 10h30 on Saturday, 19th July followed by qualifying for the Auto GP Championship. The second free practice session will begin at 15h00 while, on Sunday, ELMS competitors will be qualifying at 9h30 (LMGTE and GTC) and 10h00 for LMP2. The start of the 4 Hours of Red Bull Ring will be given at 14h00.

(ELMS PR)

Three-time AMA Pro SuperBike champion Josh Hayes took another major step toward updating that descriptor to 'four-time' on Sunday afternoon at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca as he closed out the GEICO Motorcycle U.S. Round with a convincing victory, his fourth in a row.

 

The Monster Energy Graves Yamaha ace, racing on the No. 4 Yamaha R1, moved past the holeshooting Martin Cardenas on the 23-lap race's opening circulation. The contest was pretty much decided at that point, save for 18 more precision laps executed at breakaway speed. The race was red flagged and called official with 19 laps complete due to a crash by rider Marcel Irnie.

 

Hayes' biggest challenge figured to come from rookie teammate Cameron Beaubier, who opened the race from the front of the grid after claiming his second pole position of the 2014 season on Saturday. However, the 21-year-old failed to capitalize on his prime starting position at launch and was shuffled back to fourth, corralled behind Cardenas and his Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing teammate, Roger Hayden, while Hayes eked out a gap in front.

 

Beaubier found his way into third on lap 4 and then moved into second on the following circuit, but by then he already trailed Hayes by more than two seconds.

 

Beaubier demonstrated similar pace at that point but was unable to make significant progress whittling away at the gap, and the consistent 39-year-old eventually wore him down.

 

Hayes boasted a commanding multi-second advantage with just three laps remaining when the race was red flagged and ultimately called complete. The win is the 46th of Hayes' remarkable career and his fourth in succession, both on the season and at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

 

As a result, Hayes now leads the title chase with more than a full race's points allotment in hand and only four contests left in play. Two of those races will take place next weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course and it's not inconceivable that he could lock up the crown as early as Sunday.

 

"What a beautiful day," said Hayes after claiming his fifth win of the season. "I can promise you it's never as easy as it looks. The last few laps I was actually having a pretty hard time. I was just trying to stay focused which can be pretty hard to do when you're riding by yourself. Cameron had a little carrot out there in front of him. I didn't have much to look at. I was more running like a scared rabbit, looking at the pit board. It's a little bit of a different game."

 

Beaubier was credited with second while Hayden, who passed Cardenas while working lap 7, came in third. With his runner-up result, Beaubier now moves into second in the points as well, 40 back of Hayes (175-135), and one up on Hayden in third.

 

"I think I rode OK," said Beaubier. "I got a pretty rough start and was behind Rog and Martin and was able to pass them. But by that time Josh already had a second or two. I put my head down and started clicking off the laps. Overall, I'm pretty happy to get out of here with second place, especially after the weekend I had at Barber, throwing a couple bikes down the road. It's good to get some confidence back heading to Mid-Ohio."

 

Hayden was hoping for a little more than third, but was happy with his day overall.

 

"I got a decent start but the first couple of laps I was having trouble getting by Martin," said Hayden. "Then Cam got by me and he got Martin. Finally, I got by Martin and I was trying to catch Cam in the middle of the race. I was starting to make inroads but the last couple of laps I was starting to make a couple mistakes because I was pushing pretty hard. That was pretty much it. It was a pretty good ride for me - Barber didn't go very good so I feel like this was a bit of a rebound."

 

Once it settled in, the race took on a processional shape with more than a second's worth of padding separating every rider in the top ten - most of those gaps near the ten-second range.

 

KTM/HMC Racing's Chris Fillmore finished in fifth behind Cardenas, while ADR Motorsports/Sic/Motul Fly Racing's David Anthony suffered his first finish outside the top five all season long in sixth.

 

Team AMSOIL Hero EBR's Cory West and Proto-Tech Spain Yamaha's Bernat Martinez took seventh and eighth, respectively, while third Yoshimura pilot Chris Clark and Porter Racing Kawasaki's Sebastiao Ferreira completed the top ten.

 

Hayes will now take his mammoth championship lead and all the momentum across the country into the Buckeye SuperBike Weekend in just a few days' time.

 

AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike

 

Jake Lewis won his first AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on Sunday. The 18 year-old started strong and won a difficult but decisive victory on his Motosport.com/Meen Yamaha entry in the 20-lap final.

 

"It's just a huge weight off my shoulders," said Lewis. "It's been an up-and-down year. Last year, I was close to winning and this year I've been close to winning, so it's just a huge weight off my shoulders to get the first win. Qualifying fifth - I was a little bit disappointed with that, but I knew it was going to be a heck of a race. I was sitting on the grid thinking, 'I'm going to win this race,' because last year I was so close to winning. I got off to a good start, went into the lead in Turn 2 and never looked back. That's been my weakness throughout my career - looking back - so I just put my head down and stayed focused and clicked off lap after lap and got into a good rhythm and brought home the win.

 

Lewis beat second place finisher JD Beach on the Yamaha Extended Service/Monster Energy/Graves Yamaha machine, making it three runner-up finishes this year for Beach.

 

"Jake was riding great and he got his first win," said Beach. "I was really wanting that win, but it was a really good race. Hopefully, next weekend we can put something together. I have one of the best bikes out there so all I need to do is get a little bit better of a start and do fast laps and hopefully we can get the win."

 

The battle for third was a war between Danny Eslick and Jake Gagne, two previous race winners this season. Eslick and Riders Discount Racing Triumph beat Gagne and RoadRace Factory/Red Bull by defending passing attempt after passing attempt over the final three laps.

 

"Being up here on the podium is huge," said Eslick. "Obviously, I had the big win at Daytona and that's been the top of the year for me. But all I could think about were the races I've been losing since Daytona and not being on the podium. Yeah, Daytona was awesome but I want to be up here week-in and week-out with these guys. It's just huge for the Riders Discount team and Attack Performance. ... It's just good to be up here on the podium."

 

Gagne was third before losing ground when the leaders hit traffic. By the time he could regroup, Eslick had made his way past.

 

"We had a great battle but I couldn't make a pass stick," said Gagne.

 

Dane Westby and Yamalube/Westby Racing snatched back fifth from Beach's teammate Garrett Gerloff. Westby regained the spot with two laps left to finish in front of the factory rider.

 

Polesitter Jason DiSalvo tagged onto Westby early, but lost further ground after Gerloff came by. DiSalvo finished the contest a shade over 21 seconds back, but ahead of Blake Young (GN Gonzalez Racing) and Jake Zemke (GEICO Motorcycle Racing). Benny Solis rounded out the top ten.

 

Kaleb De Keyrel was the top AMA Pro SuperSport regular in the race, taking 17th spot on his De Keyrel Racing entry.

 

Next Race

 

AMA Pro Road Racing will be back in action next weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio for the Buckeye SuperBike Weekend on July 19-20.

 

About AMA Pro Road Racing

 

AMA Pro Road Racing is the premier motorcycle road racing series in North America and is universally regarded as one of the most competitive road racing organizations in the world. The series is comprised of four production-based classes: AMA Pro SuperBike, AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike, AMA Pro SuperSport and the AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series. Learn more about AMA Pro Road Racing at www.amaproracing.com/rr/.

AMA Pro Racing is the premier professional motorcycle racing organization in North America, operating a full schedule of events and championships for a variety of motorcycle disciplines.  Learn more about AMA Pro Racing at www.amaproracing.com.  
 
For additional information contact:
AMA Pro Racing Communications, (386) 492-1014, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

(AMA Pro Racing Communications)

Motorcycle and road racing fans soaked in the action under sunny skies at the eni FIM Superbike World Championship, GEICO Motorcycle U.S. Round at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca this weekend. The international racing series’ only U.S. stop attracted 49,408 people, which is 20 percent more than last year’s crowd of 41,175.
 
And what a show the fans saw. Tom Sykes of Kawasaki Racing Team thrilled Saturday crowds by scorching the track and setting a new World Superbike Championship track record of 1’21.811. Sykes’ time was .582 seconds shy of the 1’21.229 track record set in 2012 by MotoGP Repsol Honda Team rider Dani Pedrosa.
 
Two Tissot Superpole battles on Saturday and two races on Sunday provided fans with plenty of World Superbike action. After 25 thrilling laps, Italian Marco Melandri of Aprilia Racing Team won the opening race of the day ahead of Aprilia teammate Sylvain Guintolo of France. Reigning world champion Britain’s Tom Sykes of the Kawasaki Racing Team took the third podium spot.
 
Race two on Sunday featured two restarts, daring passes, several crashes that brought out red flags and a stunning finish that carried Tom Sykes across in first. Second went to Guintolo and third to Britain’s Jonathan Rea of Pata Honda World Superbike.
 
“The World Superbike fan experience is one of the best in motorsports,” said Gill Campbell, CEO/general manager of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. “Riders are accessible and press conferences open to the public, which attracted enormous crowds, and the overall atmosphere is filled with equal parts racing and entertainment.”
 
The AMA Pro Road Racing was compelling over the three days and featured the AMA Pro GoPro Daytona Sportbike, AMA Pro Superbike and the AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series. Each race had numerous lead changes and hard-fought battles for the lead.
 
Adding to the weekend’s appeal was the Marketplace that featured scores of vendors, motorcycle manufacturer displays, autograph sessions and an off-road driving course. Saturday evening was capped off with the Kawasaki Ninja Nights Fan Party.
 
It was a celebratory homecoming for Kawasaki, not only for Sykes’ victory, but for the world debut of the Kawasaki Ninja 30th anniversary edition. Kawasaki first introduced the Ninja at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in 1984 and returned to commemorate the occasion to the delight of Kawasaki owners.
 
“The weekend attracted an international audience to the Monterey Peninsula who filled hotels, restaurants, purchased goods and supplies in our stores, and experienced the true charm of our coastal community,” added Campbell. “Then when you add in millions of television viewers who devoutly tune in for each race, the amount of exposure Monterey received is invaluable.” 
 
The next event at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca is the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, August 14-17. This world-renowned historic car race features 550 authentic and period-correct race cars that span nearly every era of motorsports. 

 Extreme Speed Motorsports was confident heading into Sunday’s Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP). Following second- and fourth-place qualifying efforts on a track that showed some favoritism to the Tequila Patrón prototype machines, ESM’s day came to an abrupt end following electrical and exhaust system issues in the two-hour, 45-minute race.
 
Both the No. 1 and No. 2 Tequila Patrón Honda Performance Development ARX-03b (HPD) racing machines were unable to finish the race but ranked seventh and eighth on the unofficial scoring sheets in the sixth round of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.
 
Scott Sharp started from the outside pole in the No. 1 machine. He shuffled back to fifth in the opening laps but found a steady pace in the third position. Sharp advanced to second place before the scheduled pit stop and driver change to Ryan Dalziel on Lap 38.
 
In standard Dalziel-style, he set a pace and began catching and passing the competition. Dalziel reached third position and pitted once as scheduled. On Lap 85, as he was coming out of Turn 5b, he felt a drop in power. Dalziel pitted and the team removed the engine cover and determined the car needed to be taken to the paddock. Upon further inspection, there was an issue with the exhaust system and the No. 1 team was forced to retire from the race.
 
Ed Brown started strong in the race for the No. 2 Tequila Patrón HPD. From the fourth spot on the grid, Brown fought to maintain his position. On Lap 7, Brown overdrove in Turn 5b and spun. He was able to regain his composure and the car, and return to the race in ninth position.
 
Near the end of his stint, Brown was behind position-battling GT competitor cars that tangled in Turn 3. With nowhere to go, Brown made contact with one of the race cars and caused some minor damage to the left front. He was able to complete his stint and pit on Lap 41 for the scheduled driver change.
 
Johannes van Overbeek started his stint from the eighth position. He was running seventh and radioed the crew about having an electrical issue. By the time he pitted, smoke filled the cockpit and the team began full inspection on the race car. There was a small electrical fire which caused damage to the battery. The team repaired the damage and sent van Overbeek back on track.
 
Only able to complete a few more laps, van Overbeek pitted again and the team re-evaluated the race car. With less than 30 minutes in the race, the No. 2 Tequila Patrón HPD retired from the race.

“We’ll take what we learned here to Indy and hope our luck swings the opposite way there," stated Ed Brown.
 
Next up for Extreme Speed Motorsports is the Brickyard Grand Prix at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 24-25.

 It was a rough day in the rain for Performance Tech Motorsports at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park for Round 8 of Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda. Early morning storms Sunday, July 13, mixed with intermittent rain showers during the race, soaked the 10-turn, 2.459-mile circuit at CTMP. 

Robert Alon and Joel Janco fought through the rain to ninth- and 12th-place finishes, respectively. A spin in Turn 2 pushed Janco back in the field.  A mechanical problem ended Craig Duerson's race early, an all-too-familiar problem for the team. Hayden Duerson was unable to continue after his car was damaged in an off-course excursion.

 Team Principal Brent O'Neill acknowledged the challenges the rain presented but felt his team still made progress.

 "The rain is a bigger challenge here because of how fast the cars are on this track," O'Neill said. "We had a motor problem with Craig, and it started going south, so we decided to park it before it blew. Hayden was in a different car after his accident yesterday and just made a small mistake, and there you go. Robert Alon had an impressive race again. P9 first time racing in the rain. First season racing a car ever. It's his fourth weekend ever in a race car."

 Performance Tech started all four drivers in Round 8 after a hectic Round 7 left Alon as the soul survivor of the four. The team worked until 2 a.m. (ET) to have a car ready for each driver. With a 9:50 a.m. start time, the team was back in action by 6 a.m. to prepare for the race. 

Performance Tech Motorsports' next Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda race weekend will be Aug. 9-10 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. This weekend will include the No. 38 Dash Neighborhoods/Phillips 66 Prototype Challenge car in the TUDOR United SportsCar Challenge series. For event details, check imsa.com/series/prototype-lites/schedule

 

 Victor Gonzalez earned his first victory of the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo North America season, winning Round 8 in rainy conditions Sunday, July 13 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. He earned the top honor in his No. 99 Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo representing Lamborghini Carolinas and fielded by Change Racing with a victory of 7.536 seconds over first-time series co-drivers Aaron Povoledo and Corey Lewis in the No. 76 Musante Motorsport entry representing Lamborghini Boston.

 Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Europe driver Thomas Pichler rounded out the top three finishers in the Lamborghini Dallas entry fielded by Jota Corse. 

 "I love Canada," Gonzalez said. "That's the only thing I can say while I'm here. I had a great moment and great result, and the hard work from everyone on the team really paid off. This is only my second time in the series, and the car worked perfect.

 Championship leader Kevin Conway finished fourth in the No. 29 Change Racing entry representing Lamborghini Carolinas. He leads John Farano, 88-58, with four rounds remaining.

 Round 7 winner Dillon Machavern finished first in the Amateur class in the No. 07 Lamborghini fielded by Mitchum Motorsports. Machavern started on the pole but was pushed out in Turn 8 early on the first lap. Gonzalez, who started second, then led the rest of the way except for the mandatory pit stop cycle.  Gonzalez led by 29 seconds with 20 minutes remaining in the 50-minute race and managed his lead carefully over the closing laps.

 The No. 88 Lamborghini Vancouver entry driven by David Welch and fielded by GMG Racing finished second in the Amateur class, followed by Lee Carpentier in the No. 80 Lamborghini Palm Beach fielded by Mitchum Motorsports. 

"Awesome job by Mitchum Motorsports, West Palm Beach Lamborghini," added Carpentier. "Really good job. Again, really tight racing. We had really heaving rain that tapered off at the end. We were leading the race in the Amateur class for about 90 percent of the race until we got taken out in the last corner and ended up being P3 in class.  It's hard to swallow but still a good result for the team. Overall weekend, two podiums - can't be mad about that." 

 While it was Gonzalez's first win of the season in only his second weekend with the series, he is no stranger to the podium. He finished second in Round 7 yesterday at CTMP and second in Round 6 in late June at Watkins Glen. The win today propelled him to third in the points standings with 45 points,

 Rounds 9 and 10 of the series are scheduled for Aug. 22-24 at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Virginia.

 The two rounds at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park continued a busy stretch of action worldwide for the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo championship, which continues to reach new levels of success at every round in Europe, North America and Asia. The Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo North America and Europe competed during the final weekend of June at Watkins Glen International and Circuit Paul Ricard, respectively.

 The next round of the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Europe is July 25-26 at Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium. The Asian Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo championship resumes Aug. 30-31 at Fuji Speedway in Oyama, Japan.

Ruscitti, from Burnaby, British Columbia, completed his two-day reign over the IMSA Development Series by winning Round 8 of the season Sunday, July 13 in wet conditions in the No. 4 8Star Motorsports entry. He beat series leader Mikhail Goikhberg to the checkered flag by 16.749 seconds. Young star Ruscitti, 20, also drove to victory in Round 7 of the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda and in the ST class in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge under sunny skies Saturday at CTMP. These were his first two starts in Prototype Lites. 

"It's unbelievable to get two wins in my first weekend in the Lites car," Ruscitti said. "It's an awesome feeling. During the middle of the race, it actually started to dry, and then it started to get really wet. It was just car control. Keeping the car on the track is probably what won it at the end of the day. 

"Definitely a perfect weekend. I wouldn't have thought it coming into the weekend. I think like they said yesterday, I should go buy a lottery ticket."

Goikhberg, from North Vancouver, British Columbia, returned to the podium after a first-lap crash eliminated his No. 10 JDC Motorsports entry from Round 7 Saturday. He leads the championship, 136-83, over Robert Alon with six rounds remaining.

"I want to thank the crew that stayed up all night fixing the car from yesterday," added Goikhberg. "We were lucky we were able to even start the race. Given the big blow to our championship points yesterday, the only thing on my mind was to finish and collect points. I want to congratulate Remo (Ruscitti) on his win. He did a great job coming into the series and winning both races under different conditions. I'm happy with the end results and how we're leaving Mosport." 

Series rookie John Falb, from Las Vegas, placed third after starting 13th to earn his first career podium finish. He also was the leading Masters (age 40 and older) finisher in the No. 77 ONE Motorsports Élan DP02 chassis.
 
"We had a very wet race, and we seemed to set up the car very well," a damp Falb stated. "This was my first weekend at this track. It's an intense track, so to be able to come away with two podiums, I'm very happy with that." 

Madison Snow, from Lehi, Utah, finished a career-best fourth in the No. 29 Extreme Speed Motorsports entry, while Ruscitti's teammate Christian Potolicchio rounded out the top five in the No. 2 8Star Motorsports entry.

 

Ruscitti started sixth but wasted little time powering to the front in steady rain and a stiff wind in the open-cockpit cars. He pulled up beside pole sitter Goikhberg in Turn 10 entering the front straightaway near the end of the second lap, completing the decisive pass just before the start-finish line. Ruscitti never trailed thereafter.

The field bunched during a full-course caution with about 29 minutes remaining in the 45-minute race due to the stopped Lites 2 car of Jerome Mee, and Ruscitti lost his 9.788-second lead. But Ruscitti never was threatened on the restart, building a 4.728-second lead five minutes after the field returned to racing.

 

While Ruscitti pulled away, Falb's charge through the field created drama in the closing laps.

 

Falb passed Potolicchio for third with five minutes remaining. Falb pulled to within six-tenths of Goikhberg at the white flag while Goikhberg was trying to clear the lapped car of Lites 2 leader Brian Alder

 

Goikhberg and Falb both passed Alder, and Goikhberg held his line and his cool over the final two turns to beat Falb to the finish by .367 of a second. Still, Falb took the lead in the Masters Championship, 114-106 over Craig Duerson, with his victory in the class in the race.

Michal Chlumecky, from nearby Windsor, Ontario, was the second-finishing Masters driver in the No. 31 Eurosport Racing entry for the second time this weekend. Falb's teammate Lee Alexander finished third in Masters in the No. 48 ONE Motorsports car in just his second career start in the series.

"Wow, it was an interesting start, and I obviously spent some time getting acclimated to the track and trying to find some dry areas where I could find some grip," a happy Chlumecky added. "Through (Turn) 5B, I got overzealous on the gas and got it around. That cost me about a lap or so, but I was able to get the car back on the track and compete. Unfortunately, I think we had an electrical issue, and we were running three cylinders from that point on. But all in all, it was a great race. It was fun, but it was challenging finding good speed. But definitely exciting for me." 

Alder, from Marysville, Ohio, completed a weekend sweep in Lites 2 in the No. 22 BAR1 Motorsports car. Todd Slusher finished third in the No. 62 ONE Motorsports car, followed by Mee in the No. 95 Alta Velocita Racing entry.

Rounds 9 and 10 of the season are scheduled for Aug. 9-10 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. For live updates on all the action, follow @IMSALive on Twitter.

 

Remo Ruscitti completed the most successful day of his young racing career Saturday by winning Round 7 of the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda season at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. The 20 year-old driver from Burnaby, British Columbia, earned the victory in the No. 4 8Star Motorsports entry from the sixth position on the grid in his first career start in the series. The win came just 3 ½ hours after he drove to victory in the ST class with teammate Adam Isman in the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race. 

"I'm a little speechless," Ruscitti said. "We started sixth, and it was my first weekend in the car, so I wasn't expecting to be on the top step of the podium at the end here. We had really good pace toward the middle. A couple of people dropped out, and we were able to take advantage and pull away. 

Robert Alon, from Encino, California, finished second in the No. 9 Performance Tech Motorsports entry, 2.095 seconds behind the winner.
 
"It was a good weekend," added Alon. "We were fast all weekend. Performance Tech just put a great car underneath us. The whole team was fast all weekend. My two teammates ran into some problems on the track. It was definitely an interesting race, but we came out and got a good finish. It was my first time at this track, and it's a really fun track and really fast." 
 
Ruscitti's Prototype Lites teammate, Christian Potolicchio of Hallandale Beach, Florida, finished third in the No. 2 8Star Motorsports Élan DP02 chassis powered by a Mazda engine, rallying from a crash in practice Thursday. 

"It was a really good race," stated Potolicchio. "We made a change to the car for the race, so we weren't sure how it was going to work, but we are happy because it worked really well. I had a podium here last year, as well, so I am really proud of the team and all the work they have put in this weekend after my crash on Thursday."

Andrew Novich, from Novato, California, finished fourth in the No. 61 Comprent Motor Sports entry.

Lamont Harris rounded out a dominant performance by 8Star Motorsports, finishing fifth overall and as the first Masters driver (age 40 and older) in the team's No. 65 car. 

 "So far, it's been an awesome weekend," commented Harris. "This is my third year here, and I am really working on trying to be flat in (Turns) 1 and 2. It's such a great track and a great venue, and it's really fun to come up here to Canada. There were a lot of great battles out there despite the fact that the track was really greasy at the end of the day. My goal is to just get faster tomorrow."

Ruscitti prevailed after a wild 30-minute race on the 10-turn, 2.459-mile circuit. He took first place for the first time - and for good - when leader Craig Duerson spun off course in Turn 8 in his No. 27 Performance Tech Motorsports car with eight minutes remaining.  

Pole sitter Hayden Duerson and series leader Mikhail Goikhberg didn't finish the first lap after a collision between them resulted in hard contact for both in Turn 8, giving Alon the lead. 

Craig Duerson passed Alon for the lead halfway through the race but lost the top spot two laps later to Matt McMurry, 16, with 12 minutes remaining. But Duerson and Ruscitti passed McMurry two minutes later when McMurry slowed quickly due to a mechanical problem that reportedly caused fluids to leak from the rear of the No. 20 JDC Motorsports entry. 

Then Duerson spun two minutes later, handing a lead to Ruscitti he would not surrender.  

Michal Chlumecky, from nearby Windsor, Ontario, was the second-finishing Masters driver in the No. 31 Eurosport Racing entry.
 
"My day was great," stated an exuberant Chlumecky. "What a great start at the beginning. The guys did such a fantastic job prepping the car all weekend. The car was just wonderful all day. Unfortunately a mishap during the practice session cost us some valuable training time, but I really have to thank Eurosport and Cooper Tires. The track was fantastic, it's a great venue, and I love being here. I am just thankful that for my second opportunity to be racing this season I am on the podium. This is a real drivers' track, and you just have to hang on!"
 
John Falb finished third in Masters in the No. 77 ONE Motorsports car. 
 
"It's a great track, and this is the first time I've been here," Falb added. "It's really intense and a lot of fun. We had some very close racing, and I just kept my head down and was able to make it up to the third step of the Masters podium. So I'm very happy about that. Turn 8 should be flat and I've done it a couple of times, but particularly in the race there was some oil down there, and we're going really fast, so I was just lucky to get through there. The tires were great. They lasted the whole time; rock solid."

Brian Alder, from Marysville, Ohio, was the top finisher in Lites 2 in the No. 22 BAR1 Motorsports car after a rugged duel for most of the second half of the race with Jerome Mee in the No. 95 Alta Velocita Racing entry.

"We had great pace through practice and qualifying," Mee said. "Coming into qualifying, 13 minutes in the pits really didn't do us any favors. I never really got a clear lap, so we got bumped on P1. We started the race off clean, and Brian (Alder) and I had a fantastic race. Best race we've had. I finally got him on (Turn) 8, only to realize it was under yellow, so I gave it back to him. Almost got him again in (Turn) 10 on the last lap, and he took the right line and I jumped the curb and spun. But I was on his tail the whole time, and you couldn't ask for a better race than that!" 

Mee ended up second in the class, and Todd Slusher was third in the No. 62 ONE Motorsports car. 

"It got off to a slow start with the early caution, but after that, it was Jerome (Mee) and I battling it out for the last 15 minutes of the race," Alder stated. "And he drove a great race; he was all over me. He actually got me once, but unfortunately it was right into the yellow flag, so he had to give the spot back. It was a tough race. I was watching in my mirrors the entire race, so it was good to have a great race out there, bringing the BAR1 Motorsports home on top."

 

Robert Alon salvaged a tough day for Performance Tech Motorsports with a second-place finish in Round 7 of Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda on Saturday at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. Alon took home his second runner-up finish of the season while his three teammates retired early from various causes.
 

 

"It's my first time at this track, so it was a little tricky getting used to it. But we found our pace pretty quickly. The car that Performance Tech put under me had a lot to do with that. The whole team was fast all weekend. It showed on the start; we were all right up there in the front of the field. Luckily I was able to keep the car on track and stay up there. This Prototype Lites field is really competitive, though. That was a tough race." 

Pole sitter Hayden Duerson was sent spinning into the wall when he and points leader Mikhail Goikhberg collided on Lap 1. 
 

 

"I got a great start. It was looking like a good race for the Performance Tech No. 39. Mikhail (Goikhberg) got a good draft on me going into Turn 8. I drove a little bit defensive, and then he got around me on the outside, and we both made contact and backed it into the wall. It was sad that it was on Lap 1 and we were leading, but we will be there tomorrow."

Duerson's father, Craig Duerson, fought from fifth to the lead. But he spun in another competitor's oil in Turn 8 and hit the tire barrier while out front with eight minutes left in the 30-minute session.



 

"The team has been great this weekend. They really put together a good car for me. It was a shame it went to waste. I was out in the lead when I hit oil on the track and spun. I think they needed to throw a flag; I was looking for one. Excited to see Hayden on pole and Robert on podium, though. It's great for the team to see them succeeding."  

Joel Janco also spun with just two minutes left in the race. 



 

"We had a new engine today, and for some reason it just shut off. Then it went back on, and I moving back up on the field. Then I hit some oil as I was passing somebody and that was it. So we're looking forward to tomorrow." 

Team Principal Brent O'Neill made time to celebrate at podium with Alon and Hayden Duerson for their accomplishments. Then he returned to the paddock to assess the work he and his crew need to perform to ensure each of the four Prototype Lites cars are ready for Round 8, a 45-minute race which starts at 9:50 a.m. Sunday. 

"We'll have a little work to do tonight," O'Neill said. "It was a shame to see Hayden out on Lap 1. Mikhail tried to pass Hayden on the outside, and it just didn't end up working out for either of them. That's racing, though. Joel ended up having a little spin in Turn 5 and got center-hung on the curb with a few laps to go. 

"Craig spun and hit the fence. It was a rough race for the guys, but Robert made it to the podium. Robert did an awesome job again. He just kept working toward the front, led the race for a couple laps. We'll look forward to a different outcome tomorrow." 

 

In the shadow of the nation's capitol, the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, celebrated 25 years of competition in Southern Maryland on Saturday with the annual GEICO Motorcycle Budds Creek National from Budds Creek MX Park, the seventh stop of 12 this summer. The budding 450 Class rivalry between the Red Bull KTM duo of Ryan Dungey and Ken Roczen continued with Dungey gaining the advantage for just the second time this season, winning for the third straight year at Budds Creek. In the 250 Class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki's Blake Baggett duplicated the achievement of his premier class counterpart, winning for the third consecutive season at the facility with his third victory of the summer.

 

The battle for victory once again came down to the Red Bull KTM duo of Dungey (5) and Roczen (94).

Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X

 

In his third race back from an injury that kept him out for the early portion of the season, Toyota/Yamaha/JGRMX's Justin Brayton grabbed his first Motosport.com Holeshot Award of the season in the opening 450 Class moto. Brayton was closely followed by a large contingent of competitors, led by Team Honda Muscle Milk's Trey Canard and Dungey. Brayton maintained the lead on the opening lap with a hard-charging Dungey on his rear fender, but while that battle took shape Canard took advantage of an opportunity to slip by Dungey and then set his sights on Brayton.

 

Canard soon made the pass to take over the lead on the opening lap and proceeded to open a small gap over the field. As that happened, Dungey lost another spot on the track while fighting to get around Brayton, this time to his teammate Roczen. With no riders separating himself and the leader, Roczen set his sights on Canard and chipped away at the deficit, eventually taking control of the moto on Lap 4. Dungey, meanwhile, made the pass on Brayton and was able to close the gap on Canard to eventually take control of second.

 

With the KTM duo asserting themselves out front and pulling away, Canard fell into the clutches of GEICO Honda's Eli Tomac with the pair battling throughout the remaining stages of the moto. Out front, Dungey was able to close to within a second of his teammate as they approached lappers near the end, but Roczen held him off for the win. Canard withstood the challenge of Tomac for third, with Team Yoshimura Suzuki's James Stewart coming on strong to finish fifth.

  

Dungey (5), Canard (41) and Roczen (94) all made their presence felt in the opening moto.

Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X

 

After closing in on his teammate at the end of the first moto, Dungey aimed to seize the opportunity in Moto 2 and did just that by racing to the Motosport.com Holeshot Award. The clear track allowed Dungey to set a torrid pace in the early stages and open a comfortable margin over the field. With Dungey pulling away, Roczen needed to work his way into second and after slotting himself in third on the opening lap, he passed Toyota/Yamaha/JGRMX's Josh Grant for second and looked to try and close the gap on his teammate.

 

Dungey never looked back and went on to post his most dominant ride of the season with a wire-to-wire victory. The former two-time series champion had led just nine laps coming into Budds Creek, but nearly tripled his season total by leading all 17 laps of Moto 2. Roczen followed in second, but had to fend off a major threat from Tomac in the closing laps.

 

The Red Bull KTM duo posted identical moto scores once again but Dungey's second-moto triumph awarded him the tiebreaker. Roczen's streak of finishing on the podium in every moto this season continued.

 

The second moto holeshot proved to be the key to Dungey's (5) success.

Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X

 

"It was tough after that first moto, but I got back, cooled down and was feeling good," said Dungey, who moved into third on the all-time total career wins list. "I thought this [the second moto] was my moment. I got a good start, which that was way, way key and just allowed me to ride my laps. It's good to get this win; it's been since round one. This is a good step."

 

"We all have our days. I'm just happy to finish second and keep the points lead the same," said Roczen. "That's all I can ask for. I just wasn't feeling it in that second moto and it's time to put that behind me. It's all about preparation during the week, so I'm going to go back and get stronger."

 

Tomac's hard charge to close out the final moto helped him steal third overall (4-3) from Canard, who posted identical 3-4 moto scores. Soaring Eagle/RCH Racing Suzuki's Weston Peick finished fifth (6-5).

 

Roczen's lead over Dungey in the 450 Class standings remains at 26 points. Canard sits third, 63 points behind. With three consecutive overall podiums in his first three career starts in the premier class, Tomac has already moved into 11th.

 

Bogle (32) and Anderson (17) were two new faces at the front of 250 Class field in the opening moto.

Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X

 

New faces emerged in the battle for victory in the opening 250 Class moto with GEICO Honda's Justin Bogle securing the Motosport.com Holeshot Award, edging out Valli Motorsports Yamaha's Christophe Pourcel. As this pair jockeyed up front, Rockstar Energy Racing's Jason Anderson emerged as a player in the fight for the lead, passing Pourcel and setting his sights on Bogle out front. Neither of the lead pair had ever won a moto in their career, setting the stage for a thrilling battle. After going bar-to-bar in the opening laps, Anderson slipped passed Bogle on Lap 2 and began to open a gap over the field.

 

With Anderson out front, the battle for the podium intensified with points leader and Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha rider Jeremy Martin joining Bogle and Pourcel in their fight. Martin made the pass on Pourcel for third on Lap 6 and proceeded to challenge Bogle for three laps before assuming control of the runner-up spot on Lap 9. Throughout this fight, Baggett fought his way forward from a seventh-place start to jump into podium contention. Baggett moved into fourth on Lap 9 and then made the pass on Bogle for third just two laps later.

 

As Baggett pressured Martin for second, the pair started to close in one the eight-second lead that Anderson held out front with all three eventually running mere bike lengths from one another. As the white flag flew to signify the final lap, about one second separated all three riders. Anderson maintained his lines to hold off Martin and capture his first career moto win while Baggett settled for third. Bogle finished fourth with Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha's Cooper Webb coming from an 11th-place start to finish fifth.

 

Anderson's first career moto win put him in control in the pursuit for the overall.

Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X

 

Martin gained the upper hand to start the second moto by securing the Motosport.com Holeshot Award with Pourcel in second and Anderson third. The lead duo were able to pull away from the field but Baggett, who started fourth, began his march to the front, which started with a pass on Anderson for third. As Martin slowly pulled away out front, Pourcel and Baggett engaged in a hotly contested battle for second that lasted six laps before Baggett finally made the pass on Lap 7.

 

Once in second, Baggett faced a deficit of over five seconds to Martin and methodically closed it down to just a matter of bike lengths. With their second and third-place finishes in the opening moto, the overall win would be decided between Martin and Baggett, in which the better finisher would emerge victorious. On Lap 11 Baggett made his move on the points leader and immediately pulled away, taking the moto win to secure the overall in convincing fashion.

 

It was once again Baggett (4) versus Martin (19) in a fight for victory.

Photo: Simon Cudby / Racer X

 

"I definitely hope we can keep chipping away towards this championship," said Baggett, whose third straight win at Budds Creek was also the ninth consecutive for Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki at the track. "All that matters is that I have the points lead at the end of the season, even If we have to wait all the way to the last moto then that's what we're going to do. We're not going to stop fighting until then."

 

Baggett's 3-1 finishes edged out Martin (2-2) by one point when the final totals were tallied. Anderson's first moto win helped him land third (1-7), with Pourcel fourth (6-3) and Webb fifth (5-4).

 

"I got off to a great start [in the second moto] and tried to put on a charge there for a little while and got away a bit," said Martin. "But then we hit some lappers and I could see Baggett was right there closing in on me. He was riding really good and congrats to him today. I'm just having fun and trying to win as many races as I can. I'm getting to do what I've always dreamed of doing."

 

Martin lost just one point to his lead in the 250 Class standings with Baggett moving into second, 27 points out. Webb sits third, 33 points behind.

 

The 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship continues next weekend with the eighth round of the 2014 season with the Spring Creek National. Spring Creek MX Park in Millville, Minnesota, will host the world's best riders on Saturday, July 19. Action begins at 2 p.m. ET.

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