Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki Rider Joey Savatgy Handles the Competition at Hangtown

May 21, 2016 | Hangtown Motocross Classic | Sacramento, Calif

- Joey Savatgy leaves Hangtown with a 15 point gap on second place

- Eli Tomac sets fastest time in qualifying

- Rookie Austin Forkner finishes eighth overall in pro debut

Irvine, CA (May 22, 2016) – Monster Energy® Kawasaki rider Eli Tomac picked up right where he left off last season, setting the fastest time in qualifying for Round 1 of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross series at the Hangtown MX Classic. At the start of Moto 1, it was teammate Josh Grant with the jump on his Kawasaki KX™450F coming around Turn 1 in eighth place while Tomac came around in 12th. After 10 short minutes, Tomac had passed his way into seventh place and began putting pressure on the top-five. Five minutes later, when the halfway flag started waving, Tomac had positioned himself inside the top-five, where he would battle for a podium spot. Towards the end of the race Tomac had raced his way into third and was battling to keep the positon. At the checkered flag Tomac took fourth, while Grant rode to a solid eight place.

Grant earned another great top-five start in Moto 2 with Tomac rounding Turn 1 in eighth. Tomac again would waste no time moving forward and within a few laps the No. 3 Kawasaki rider had made his way into fourth where he would stay for the remainder of the race. Tomac raced his way to an impressive third overall (4-4) with teammate Grant finishing eighth overall (8-8).

“Overall, today went well,” said Tomac. “I was feeling really good after timed practice and heading into Moto 1 with first gate pick. My starts weren’t on point today as I started both motos mid-pack and had to work my way up through the field, but we learned a lot today and fourth place is a start that I can work with.”

“Today was good,” said Grant. “Felt good to get out here and ride two strong and consistent races. I feel like I’ve got more to offer but for it being the first round, I’m okay with leaving here in eighth. Looking forward to Glen Helen next weekend.”

Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rolled into Round 1 of the 2016 Pro Motocross season with the full roster of Joey Savatgy, Adam Cianciarulo, Arnaud Tonus and rookie Austin Forkner ready to compete for the top step of the podium. The team wasted no time jumping out front in timed practice as Savatgy, Cianciarulo and Forkner qualified first, second and fourth respectively. When the gate dropped for Moto 1, Savatgy on his Kawasaki KX™250F grabbing the holeshot, while the rookie Forkner sat eighth, Tonus was in 15th while Cianciarulo, who had an incident on Lap 1, crossed the line in 21st. At the 15-minute mark of Moto 1, Cianciarulo had made his way up into 12th place passing a total of nine riders by halfway, as the skies opened and the rain began pouring down. There was no stopping Savatgy as he rode flawlessly to his first moto victory with teammates Cianciarulo and Forkner finishing just outside of the top-10 in 12th and 13th while Tonus settled for 22nd.

Moto 2 would see two different starts as a red flag caused a 10-minute delay and a complete restart. The restart would turn out to be beneficial for Savatgy and Forkner as they came around Turn 1 in second and third respectively. Forkner would battle inside the top-three for 20 minutes until a collision with another rider resulted in him going off track and falling back to seventh. Savatgy would wait until the five-minute mark to make his move for the lead, going 1-1 for first overall, with Forkner taking home an eighth overall (13-7) in his pro debut. Teammates Cianciarulo and Tonus finished a strong 13th (12-11) and 18th overall (22-15).

“I couldn’t have asked for a better day,” said Savatgy. “Qualified fastest and went 1-1 for first overall. In Moto 1, I made things easy on myself by pulling a holeshot and leading every lap. Got another good start in the second moto and waited until the 25-minute mark to make my move for the lead and took it home to the checkered flag.”

“In the first moto I crashed on the opening lap which set me back,” said Cianciarulo. “From there it was all about salvaging a decent position. The second moto was better and I felt I rode well. Overall, I’m happy to have gotten through Round 1 safely and I’m looking forward to improve throughout the year. This is just a starting point.”

“Coming into Hangtown, I hadn’t been able to ride or train as much as I’ve wanted to due to my shoulder I injured in supercross,” said Tonus. “It’s getting stronger every time I ride and our goal was to leave Hangtown with solid finishes and I believe that’s what we did, so I’m happy with how today went.

“First moto I rode really tight in the first half of the race but near the end was able to calm my nerves and make a few passes to finish 13th, said Forkner. “On the restart of Moto 2, my Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki launched me out of the gate and I came around turn one inside the top-five. I rode really strong for the first 20-25 minutes by pacing the leaders. After deciding to back it down, I crashed and ended the moto in eighth, but that’s definitely something I can build on. We learned a lot today and I had a blast.”

Product Categories
Follow Us