NEW BERLIN, N.Y. (WKTV) - Unadilla Raceway, Home of Horsepower, produced a day of tight and exciting racing as it hosted Round 8 of the 2013 Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship Series, sanctioned by AMA. Defending Champion, Chad Wienen secured his sixth consecutive overall win as Josh Creamer and John Natalie returned to the podium in New York.
"I'm so thankful for the season I've been having so far it's been a lot of hard work and dedication. Holding onto the red points lead plate at the end of each race weekend is what keeps me motivated as we wind down on the season," said Wienen.
Corrosion Hetrick Racing's Joel Hetrick led the field as he grabbed the ATVRiders.com Fastest Qualifier Award during morning practices. Practice portrayed what the day of racing would bring, as the six top qualifying racers put in practice times all within a second.
As the gate dropped for moto 1 it was Josh Upperman who came out of the first turn and took the SSi Decals Holeshot award aboard his Baldwin PEP Upperman Racing machine.
"I'm really happy I was able to grab the holeshot in moto 1. Coming into Unadilla you know the start is always really important and really focused on that gate drop," said Upperman.
Current points leader Chad Wienen got off to a great start in moto 1 coming out of the first turn right behind Upperman. Sitting in second,it wasn't long before he put his Wienen Motorsports SSi Walsh Yamaha presented by Maxxis Tires & Team Vollmer machine out front leading the field before the end of the first lap. By the second lap, Wienen put a two second gap between himself and the rest of the field and maintained that distance until he took the first checkers of the day in New York.
"I am really happy on my moto 1 win. Unadilla's a really tough track on the rider and their machine, I knew I had to get out front quickly and ride my own race. We had our bike set up perfectly and was really hooking up well on the fast track," said Wienen.
MotoSport.com Motoworks DWT rider John Natalie came out of the holeshot in the top five and was into the third place position by the end of the first lap. Then setting his sights on the front of the field, Natalie pressured Upperman for the second place position until halfway through the moto. Natalie made several passing attempts but was not able to capitalize until lap seven when he took the inside of a sweeper and was able to make the pass stick. Natalie crossed the checkers in second. Hetrick had a top five start and was able to move in behind Natalie by the end of the second lap. Hetrick focused on setting Natalie up for a pass but was unable to make any advances on the field until he capitalized on Natalie's pass on Upperman and was able to move into third in the same sweeping corner.
"Unadilla Raceway had a really great track out there for us this weekend. I knew I had to ride smart and get set up to make a pass stick. I always like when you can hear the fans from anywhere on the track and Unadilla always draws a big crowd, I'm just happy we could put on a good show for them," said Natalie.
BCS Can-Am rider Josh Creamer and Wienen Motorsports SSi Walsh Yamaha presented by Maxxis Tires & Team Vollmer's Thomas Brown had an on going battle for the entirety of moto 1. Both riders came out of the first turn just inside the top ten and Creamer was into seventh while Brown sat in eighth by the end of the first lap. Brown was able to grab the inside corner after the gravity cavity and make a pass on Creamer on lap two. Brown then progressed through the field and made his way into fifth by halfway with Creamer close behind in sixth. Creamer followed in behind Brown until the last lap when he set Brown up for a pass on the last corner and was able to make it stick. Creamer crossed the finish line in fourth followed by Brown in fifth.
"I really had to work hard to get up towards the front of the field. Creamer and I had an ongoing battle for the whole moto and he really set me up well for the pass on that last lap. I was really hoping to hold onto fourth but am still happy with a top five result and looking for better results as we head into Round 9," said Brown
Rookie Nick Moser came off the gate with his best start in his career so far coming out of the first turn in third. Although Moser finished just outside the top ten, Moser was able to gain some confidence he will be sure to hold for the remainder of his rookie season.
As moto 2 started it was Creamer who came out of the holeshot first and grabbed the SSi Decals Holeshot award. The New England native never looked back and led every lap in moto 2. Creamer secured a second place overall finish and is hungrier than ever heading into Round 9 for his first overall of the 2013 season.
"It feels really good to come out here at Unadilla and perform well in front of a lot of my family and friends from New England. It's our closest race and I'm really happy I was able to grab the holeshot in moto 2 and come out with the win for another podium finish," said Creamer.
Wienen got off to another great start in moto 2. Coming out of the first turn in second, Wienen held the second place position unable to make any advances on the field. Wienen went 1-2 for the day and was able to secure his sixth consecutive overall win of the season. Natalie followed Wienen out of the first turn in third and despite trying to make a pass early on, Natalie settled into the third place position and even with pressure from behind was able to maintain third and grab third place overall for the weekend.
Brown had a much better start in moto 2 and came out of the first turn in fourth. Brown, like the rest of the field, was unable to make any advances throughout the moto. Brown finished off of the podium for the second time this season but was able to secure fourth overall and maintain second place overall in the championship points chase. Upperman was the only rider who finished within the top five who was able to make any passes on the field. Upperman had a bad jump off the gate and came out on the field just inside the top ten. Upperman's endurance kept strong until the end of the moto as he tried to make a pass into fourth but ran out of time. Upperman took fifth overall in New York and moved into fifth overall in the championship points chase.
"I had a lot of pressure behind me in moto 1 and it really wore on me, but I came back out for moto 2 ready to go. I got off to a bad start and really had to work hard to make my way up towards the front of the field. I'm happy with a top five overall but am really going to be looking to find the podium again at the next round," said Upperman.
Hetrick was sitting inside the top five when he had a mechanical issue and had to pull into the mechanic's area. Hetrick was able to salvage valuable championship points by finishing fourteenth but fell back into sixth in the championship points trailing Upperman by one point. Walsh Race Craft rider, Nick DeNoble got off to a great start in moto 2, coming out of the first turn in sixth. DeNoble was able to maintain sixth until the checkers flew and secured sixth overall for the weekend.
"I've always really enjoyed this track and knew coming in I had to just focus on my starts, stay positive, and ride my own race. I'm really happy about my sixth overall finish and looking forward to heading back home to the Midwest for Round 9," said DeNoble.
The series will continue Round 9 of the 2013 Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross, sanctioned by AMA, National Championship at Red Bud MX in Buchannan, MI. on July 27. For more information, please visit www.atvmotocross.com.
AMA Pro ATV Results
Chad Wienen (YAM)
Josh Creamer (CAN)
John Natalie (HON)
Thomas Brown (YAM)
Josh Upperman (HON)
Nick Denoble (SUZ)
Jeffrey Rastrelli (CAN)
Joel Hetrick (HON)
Casey Martin (HON)
Tyler Hamrick (HON)
AMA ATV Motocross Championship Pro Point Standings
1. Chad Wienen (360)
2. Thomas Brown (302)
3. Josh Creamer (292)
4. John Natalie (280)
5. Josh Upperman (258)
6. Joel Hetrick (257)
7. Nick Denoble (201)
8. Jeffrey Rastrelli (196)
9. Joe Byrd (167)
10. Casey Martin (158)