The Port Macquarie leg of the 2017 MX Nationals Championship delivered the Raceline Pirelli KTM team with top ten results, with Morgan Fogarty, Jayden Rykers and Jay Wilson each fighting hard across their respective motos.
Fogarty qualified in 10th position yesterday morning, and when bikes took to the line for their second last moto of the season, the 17-year-old was determined to step things up. Unfortunately for Fogarty a crash on the opening lap forced him to re-join the race in dead last, however thanks to the reliability of his KTM machine, he was able to charge back to 14th position at the conclusion of the moto. In race two Fogarty experienced a similar fate. After going down on the opening lap, the Victorian made his way back to an impressive sixth place, and with 14,6 results he was awarded with tenth overall for the round.
Following the Port Macquarie outing, Fogarty finished sixth overall in the Pirelli MXD Championship for 2017, with a total of 372 points to his name.
“The last round wasn’t my best. I felt like I had great speed but I just couldn’t put it together,” Fogarty shared.
“In the first moto I had a perfect start but I had a back marker take me down on the second corner and had to come from last.
“In moto two I didn’t get the best start and I had to make my way through the pack to get back to seventh.
“It’s not how I wanted to wrap up the season, but I got some good results this year and I’m happy with what we achieved.”
For the team’s MX2 rider Rykers, Round 8 delivered consistent results. After qualifying in eighth yesterday morning Rykers raced to sixth in race one, while in race two the KTM 250 SX-F rider showed his speed. Depsite starting outside the top ten, the former Western Australian made his way through the pack of talented riders up to fifth at the conclusion of the moto. With 6,5 race results, Rykers finished the round just shy of the top five in sixth overall.
“Overall the last three rounds have been a step forward from the first half of the season,” Rykers shared.
“In qualifying I got caught off-guard and lost the back end resulting in a bent up bike, but I still managed to record the eighth fastest time.
“The track was difficult to pass on, the starts were so important and we didn’t make the best of the situation with two mid pack starts. Apart from that, a 6-5 finish for the day was solid considering the circumstances.
“Once I sort my starts out everything else is already in place to win races, so it’s just a matter of keeping my focus on what matters and keep working hard.”
Newly drafted MX2 rider Wilson who is just finding his feet at the MX Nationals after time away from the National circuit, faced some challenges at Round 8. Despite beginning his day by qualifying in a comfortable seventh position, crashes hindered the experienced rider’s charge when racing commenced at Port Macquarie. After going down on the opening lap of race one Wilson clawed his way back to tenth, while in race two Wilson was sitting in seventh position when a crash in the roller section of the track saw him drop back to ninth. With 10,9 race results, Wilson finished in ninth overall for the round at Port Macquarie.
“Round 8 was a challenge to say the least. I went down a number of times and made it hard on myself, and unfortunately it was a track that if you didn’t get a good start then it was difficult to do much,” Wilson shared.
“In race one I got a really good jump off the start but unfortunately I got caught up with another rider and went down. I got back up and made my way through the pack to 10th, but it wasn’t the result we were hoping for.
“In the last moto I got sort of a mid-pack start and felt my speed was a lot better. Unfortunately, though I went down again while I was in about sixth, and by the time I got up and going again, I’d lost positions and ended up ninth.
“The changes we made to the bike were much better on the weekend so now it’s just up to me to minimise mistakes and keep pushing towards the front.”
The 2017 MX Nationals will continue at Toowoomba in Queensland for Round 9 of the Championship on Sunday, August 13. Visit the official series website at www.mxnationals.com.au for further information.
To follow Raceline Pirelli KTM’s progress this year, like ‘Raceline’ on Facebook or follow @raceline_motosport on Instagram.