Fueled by a donut, Ken Roczen continued to deliver mastery over the rest of the field sweeping Round 3 at Thunder Valley of the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship series on Saturday in Colorado.
Roczen looked untouchable, again, after grabbing the holeshot and checking out in Moto 1. Ryan Dungey kept pace but ultimately didn't have enough in the tank and crossed in second just more than six seconds behind. Trey Canard followed in third - 41 seconds behind Roczen.
Moto 2 turned into a different story as Canard, looking for his first podium of the year, grabbed the holeshot and the early lead as Roczen got stuck in the middle and Dungey, upfront and looking to capitalize, fell on the first lap dropping back near 20th place. Thus, Canard and teammate Cole Seely tried turning it into their show as the two squared off competing a few times for the lead - which simply allowed Roczen to catch up.
And that he did.
Canard almost went off the track pushing it on a jump which helped put Seely into position to grab the lead. Shortly after, Roczen got past Canard for second and then easily took the lead from Seely eight minutes in and left everyone in his roost thereafter. His riding so fluid and the pace so dominate, Roczen looked at times like he was putting in some practice laps.
Ken Roczen celebrates his sweep at Thunder Valley with a nac-nac
"The track got really hard out here, it's rutty and bumpy," he said after jokingly mentioning he ate a donut the night before. "I didn't grab that good a start so I ate a lot of roost but we came away with a 1-1 win and I'm stoked."
Dungey, the defending Champion, methodically worked his way back to fourth-place giving him second overall but he fell 10 points further back from Roczen in the Championship standings, who now leads by 12. If not for last week's mechanical failure on Roczen's bike that dropped him from a for-sure win to fourth-place in Moto 1, Dungey would have three-straight second-place finishes to start the season. But he seemed unconcerned and is looking forward to the series heading East.
Ryan Dungey managed a second-place overall despite a crash in Moto 2
"I got my front-end over the rut and my rear was still in it and I went to scrub that little hip jump and it pitched my bike forward. The front just tucked and over I went," he said of the crash. "Nineteenth to fourth, we did the best we could. We didn't want to leave nothing out there."
Eli Tomac facing the track that ended his promising season last year took third-place for third straight round with a fifth in Moto 1 and a well-executed ride in Moto 2. Tomac got hampered by bad starts in both Motos but managed to work his way into the Top 5 twice and put down the fastest lap time in Moto 2 but just couldn't catch the fleeing Roczen. Tomac finished 10 seconds back on Roczen in Moto 2 but 25 seconds in front of third-place Seely.
"That was a fun Moto other than starting mid-pack. I was able to throw down the laps and lines I wanted to most of the time," he said. "I just gotta be there at the start. Those guys are getting ahead of me way too quick and I need to be that guy."
Seely finished fourth overall, his best finish of the season and despite dropping to sixth after his blistering start, Canard took home fifth-overall for the third straight week but he managed to gain a spot in the standings and is now in fourth-place. Jason Anderson pulled off in Moto 1 and did not start in Moto 2 after suffering from altitude sickness. He dropped from fourth-place to seventh in the standings.
A crash in Moto 1 kept Joey Savatgy from sweeping but he got the Moto 2 win despite a hard-charging Alex Martin
In the 250 class, Joey Savatgy bounced back from a subpar performance at Glen Helen, nearly taking the sweep, but crashed in Moto 1 while leading and settled for second. He took the overall and the points lead. He lost the red plate after last week's seventh overall but looked impressive in Round 3 grabbing the lead from Adam Cianciarulo on the first lap and checked out.
"It's good, almost a picture perfect weekend," Savatgy said. "Led that first Moto for a long time and made just a bad mistake. It's good to get the red plate back, that's awesome. Overall, I'm just pumped."
Defending Champion Jeremy Martin got his second Moto win of the year but took third in Moto 2 to finish second overall for the second straight week. He moved from fourth-place in the standings to second, just three back from Savatgy as he tries for a third-straight 250 Championship.
Jeremy Martin got another Moto win but settled on second overall
"It was a good day today, these guys were on it," he said of Savatgy and his brother Alex who took second in Moto 2. "It's making for a good series. I love a challenge and I can't wait for High Point."
Alex Martin, who grabbed his first career overall last week and rode the red plate this week, crashed in Moto 1, running in fourth-place, after Aaron Plessinger went down, but salvaged eighth after regrouping in 25th. He looked pin the entire second Moto desperately trying to catch Savatgy, close at one point, finally bobbling on the final lap and holding on for second and taking third overall.
"It was an up and down day for sure. I just tried to do damage control (in Moto 1) and somehow I was able to get back to eighth," he said. "It wasn't the best start in that second Moto but I was able to pick off a couple of guys and we got going and it was just Joey and I and that was a heck of a battle. It was fun. Overall, 8-2, it's not terrible, we're for sure still in the points."
Alex Martin drops to third, six points back from his brother and four points ahead of Cooper Webb who took third in Moto 1 but eighth in Moto 2 for fifth overall. Zach Osborne went 4-6 for fourth overall.
Riders get a weekend off before the series returns with Round 4 on June 18 at High Point in Mt. Morris, PA.
2016 Thunder Valley Motocross Results
Thunder Valley 450 Class Results
- Ken Roczen (1-1)
- Ryan Dungey (2-4)
- Eli Tomac (5-2)
- Cole Seely (6-3)
- Trey Canard (3-6)
- Josh Grant (4-7)
- Justin Barcia (11-8)
- Matt Bisceglia (10-10)
- Christophe Pourcel (8-12)
- Justin Bogle (7-13)
Thunder Valley 250 Class Results
- Joey Savatgy (2-1)
- Jeremy Martin (1-3)
- Alex Martin (8-2)
- Zach Osborne (4-6)
- Cooper Webb (3-8)
- Martin Davalos (7-5)
- Jordon Smith (5-12)
- Shane McElrath (12-7)
- Austin Forkner (17-4)
- Mitchell Harrison (11-11)
2016 Motocross Season Standings
450 Class Standings
- Ken Roczen (143)
- Ryan Dungey (131)
- Eli Tomac (114)
- Trey Canard (97)
- Cole Seely (89)
- Josh Grant (88)
- Jason Anderson (73)
- Marvin Musquin (64)
- Justin Barcia (62)
- Broc Tickle (50)
250 Class Standings
- Joey Savatgy (123)
- Jeremy Martin (120)
- Alex Martin (114)
- Cooper Webb (110)
- Aaron Plessinger (81)
- Austin Forkner (80)
- Zach Osborne (78)
- Jessy Nelson (65)
- RJ Hampshire (59)
- Jordon Smith (52)