Washougal Preview: Dungey goes for 6 straight
Back to the Pacific Time Zone
Dungey Sets Sights on Six Straight as Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship Heads to the Pacific Northwest at Washougal
Points Leader Baggett Looks for Continued Success in Competitive 250 Class
For the first time since the opening round of the season, the 2012 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, will make its return to the Pacific Time Zone on Saturday, July 21, with its annual visit to Washougal, Wash., and the Peterson CAT Washougal National.
Legendary Washougal MX Park hosts the championship’s lone visit to the beautiful Pacific Northwest and has been providing one of the most unique landscapes to challenge the world’s best riders for over three decades. This weekend, the 32nd Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship round from Washougal will feature television coverage across FUEL TV and NBC Sports Network.
Last weekend at Spring Creek MX Park, Minnesota native Ryan Dungey captured his fifth consecutive win of the 2012 season in front of his hometown crowd, once again extending his lead in the championship standings, which now sits at 80 points. Since capturing his first win of the summer at the third round of the championship, the Red Bull KTM rider has been relentless in his pursuit of a second career Lucas Oil Pro Motocross 450 Class title.
In addition to his fifth straight victory, Dungey also enjoys a 10-moto winning streak and by virtue of his 19th-career win in the 450 Class, now sits alone in fourth on the all-time wins list behind Hall of Fame riders Ricky Carmichael (76 wins), Bob Hannah (27 wins), and Ricky Johnson (22 wins). On Saturday, he returns to the site of his first-career Lucas Oil Motocross victory back in 2008, where he has yet to relinquish his position atop the podium since.
The primary challenger to Dungey’s dominance this season has been MotoConcepts Suzuki’s Mike Alessi. The veteran rider continued to impress last weekend, posting a strong runner-up performance for his fifth overall podium effort in seven rounds. Currently occupying second in the 450 Class standings, Alessi heads to Washougal with added motivation to succeed for his Spokane-based MotoConcepts team, which is experiencing a breakthrough season as a privateer effort with Alessi leading the way.
Last season at Washougal, Dungey claimed his second straight 450 Class victory at the facility, relying on a second-moto tiebreaker to edge out eventual champion Ryan Villopoto and keep the Washington native winless at his home track.
The 250 Class continues to produce exceptional competition among its top four riders in the championship standings. Last weekend, GEICO Honda’s Eli Tomac ended a recent string of dominance by points leader, and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider, Blake Baggett to capture his third overall win of the season.
While Baggett was in position to secure his fourth win of the summer at Spring Creek, a crash while leading ultimately allowed Tomac the opportunity to capitalize, while also costing Baggett some points in the championship. While he rebounded to finish third, Baggett will be looking to make up for the ground he lost to his rivals.
Last season at Washougal, Baggett emerged victorious following a highly competitive battle with his teammates Tyla Rattray and eventual series champion Dean Wilson. Baggett hopes his past success will work to his advantage against the field.
The Women’s Motocross Championship returns to action at Washougal for the sixth round of the 2012 season. Currently, Rockstar Energy Racing Suzuki’s Jessica Patterson leads the championship and boasts a division-leading three victories. However, a recent hand injury has hindered her efforts and allowed Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil Honda’s Tarah Gieger to close the deficit to less than 10 points heading into this weekend’s race. The WMX Class has not competed at Washougal since the 2009 season, when Patterson edged out Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Ashley Fiolek for the win.
Washougal MX Park is one of the oldest stops on the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship schedule and is the only round of the season to run in the Pacific Northwest. The first National was held at Washougal in 1980 and with the exception of 1987, the track has been a part of the championship for the last 30 years. Over that span, the facility has been the site of many of the sport’s most memorable moments and has become one of the most challenging circuits on the schedule. Washougal boasts one of the largest climbs on the circuit, with the iconic Horsepower Hill. Its picturesque setting, surrounded by evergreen trees and rolling hills, make it a must see for any motocross enthusiast.
The Peterson CAT Washougal National will feature live broadcast coverage of the first 450 and 250 Class motos on FUEL TV and AlliSports.com, beginning at 4 p.m. Eastern. Same day coverage of the final 450 Class moto can be seen on NBC Sports Network at 11 p.m. Eastern, while the second 250 Class moto will air Sunday on NBC Sports Network at 11 a.m. Eastern.
450 Class Championship Standings
1. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM, 336
Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Suzuki, 256
Jake Weimer, Rupert, Idaho, Kawasaki, 244
Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, Honda, 209
Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Kawasaki, 187
Justin Brayton, Ft. Dodge, Iowa, Honda, 167
James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Suzuki, 151
Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Kawasaki, 150
Brett Metcalfe, Mannum, Australia, Suzuki, 142
Kyle Chisholm, Valrico, Fla., Kawasaki, 113
250 Class Championship Standings
1.Blake Baggett, Grand Terrace, Calif., Kawasaki, 315
Justin Barcia, Monroe, N.Y., Honda, 297
Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Honda, 281
Ken Roczen, Apolda, Germany, KTM, 273
Marvin Musquin, La Reole, France, KTM, 218
Wil Hahn, Decatur, Texas, Honda, 191
Blake Wharton, Pilot Point, Texas, Suzuki, 156
Jason Anderson, Edgewood, N.M, Suzuki, 145
Jessy Nelson, Paso Robles, Calif., Honda, 128
Jake Canada, Sun City, Calif., Honda, 125
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