Round eight of the AMA Pro Motocross series at Millville, Minnesota’s Spring Creek MX Park was marked by ups and downs for Team Honda HRC. Fredrik Noren put in another impressive performance aboard his factory CRF450R, scoring a career-best moto finish of fifth en route to a solid seventh on the day. This matches the Swede’s career-best overall finish, the previous result having been logged during the most recent round, at the Red Bud National. After missing the past two races due to injury, Cole Seely was slated to make his return, but a crash during the second practice session left the 450 class rookie sidelined once again.

 

NOTES

  • Muddy conditions in the first session of timed qualifying practice played in favor of Fredrik Noren, who came away with the second-fastest lap time. As the track dried out during the second session, speeds picked up considerably, and Noren’s 2:30.2 landed him 13th. Cole Seely was 10th overall with a 2:28.4 time that was logged prior to his crash.
  • During the day’s final race, Noren laid down the fifth-fastest lap time with a 2:16.6, which was over a second faster than his quickest time in moto one. “Freddie has the skills and potential to continue to improve,” said Team HRC manager Dan Betley. “He’s like a sponge right now and just needs to know what to do and how to do it, so we’re trying to help him with that. I feel like with some off-season time to hone his Supercross skills, he could continue to just get better and better.”
  • Spring Creek MX Park offers a wider variety of terrain than any other track in the series, but it’s best known for the infamous sand whoops that line the back two sweeping straightaways, and which require a bit of finesse to negotiate. “The sand whoops are a challenge,” Noren said. “The first set is way more difficult than the second because the curve is bigger, so you have to get your rhythm right to flow through them. If you don’t, you’re basically jumping into each one. In the second set you have a lot more momentum coming out of the turn so you can attack them harder.”
  • As is the case with most tracks on the circuit, American Honda has enjoyed ample success at the Spring Creek National, dating back to 1983. Red Riders have scored seven wins in the premier class, eight in the 250/125 division and 10 in the now-defunct 500cc class.
  • Among the successful Honda riders at the Minnesota track is GEICO Honda’s Eli Tomac, who is still out with injury. The Coloradoan scored his career-first motocross 450 victory last year in dominant 1-1 fashion, providing a foreshadowing of the start to his 2015 outdoor season. Tomac also dominated the 250 class at Spring Creek the previous two years, topping the podium in 2012 and ’13.
  • Team Honda HRC has a short week before heading to Washougal MX Park in Southern Washington State, where the Red Riders will return to action for round nine on Saturday, July 25. Prior to that, the team will participate in Thursday’s press day, during which they’ll participate in pre-race interviews with the local media.

 

THE FOCUS: Honda’s New 2016 CRF450R

While some justifiably envy factory racers for the special equipment to which they have access, this is one of those rare times of the year when the public is able to ride new models before the official team riders. Honda’s 2016 CRF450R is beginning to arrive at dealerships, and the motorcycle media has recently been sampling the new machine during press launches in Southern California. The bike has received several updates aimed at improving handling, including a longer fork, a new rear-suspension link and revised damper settings. As usual, however, Team Honda HRC will be finishing out the season with what it knows—the 2015 model.

“We’ll transition to the 2016 CRF450R immediately after the 2015 motocross season concludes in Indiana,” explained team manager Dan Betley. “The bikes have a lot of similarities, so there aren’t any drastic changes that need to be made, but we’ll continue to improve our settings.”

Despite the fact that the 2015 CRF450R finished on the podium at every AMA Supercross round, Betley feels that there are still areas where the bike’s indoor setting can be improved. “We’ll begin focusing on that for the Monster Energy Cup and the 2016 Supercross season,” he said. “I think our motocross setting is coming along and we’re in an okay spot, but we’ll know more when Trey [Canard] is back and can give additional feedback. Testing never stops, no matter what bike you’re riding. We always want to continue to improve and evolve.”

Fredrik Noren 40

“It was a good day. I came out strong in the first practice and set the second-fastest lap; it was pretty muddy, which are the conditions I like. In the second practice I struggled and got 13th, but still got a decent gate spot in the first moto. I’ve been working a lot on my starts this week and that helped for sure because I got two good starts, putting myself in a good position in each race. We made some minor adjustments to the bike between motos that made me even more comfortable, and I think it showed in my riding. I’m happy and can’t wait to do better at Washougal.”

Cole Seely 14

“I’m so frustrated that I wasn’t able to race again today. It’s disappointing not only for myself, but for the entire Honda team that puts so much work into what they do. I had to check up before the catapult triple, which didn’t give me enough speed to get over it, so I cased it hard and went down. I hurt my shoulder so I’m going to get it checked out at home; hopefully nothing’s torn. I’d been feeling good all week and was excited to get back out there and ride. This has been a tough season.”

Rich Simmons

Mechanic (Christian Craig)

“We came into today ready to race, but unfortunately that isn’t how things played out. I’m more bummed for Cole than anything; it’s been a tough season for him. Hopefully when he goes to the doctor, his shoulder isn’t too bad so he can get back out there next weekend.”

AMA Pro Motocross 2015
Race Round 8   Millville

450 Moto 1 Results

Pos. Rider Num Nation Points Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Dungey Ryan 5 USA 25 Red Bull KTM KTM
2 Barcia Justin 51 USA 22 Monster Energy/ Knick/ Factory Yamaha Team Yamaha
3 Roczen Ken 94 GER 20 Team Honda HRC Honda
4 Baggett Blake 4 USA 18 Rocky Mountain ATV/MC KTM WPS KTM
5 Tickle Broc 20 USA 16 Red Bull KTM KTM
6 Anderson Jason 21 USA 15 Rockstar Husqvarna Husqvarna
7 Nicoletti Phillip 46 USA 14 Autotrader/ JGR/ Yoshimura/ Suzuki Factory Racing Yamaha
8 Noren Fredrik 40 SWE 13 TiLUBE Storm Lake Honda Honda
9 Pourcel Christophe 377 FRA 12 Rockstar Husqvarna Husqvarna
10 Grant Joshua 33 USA 11 Monster Energy Kawasaki Kawasaki
11 Chisholm Kyle 11 USA 10 Chisholm Racing Kawasaki
12 Wentland Jesse USA 9 RSR/Star Cycle Honda Honda
13 Cunningham Kyle 39 USA 8 H.E.P Motorsports Suzuki
14 Brooks  Jason USA 7 3D Racing/ Factory Connection/ Motorsports Nation Yamaha
15 Lamay Ben 907 USA 6 TPJ.com/Fly Racing Honda
16 Short Andrew 29 USA 5 Rocky Mountain ATV/MC KTM WPS KTM
17 Harrison Heath USA 4 Got Gear Motorsports Kawasaki
18 Sewell Travis 230 USA 3 Championship Powersports KTM
19 Mcconahy Noah 131 USA 2 Merge Racing Honda
20 Audette  Gannon 73 USA 1 Legends & Heros/ Kissimmee Motorsports Kawasaki
AMA Pro Motocross 2015
Race Round 8   Millville

450 Moto 2 Results

Pos. Rider Num Nation Points Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Dungey Ryan 5 USA 25 Red Bull KTM KTM
2 Barcia Justin 51 USA 22 Monster Energy/ Knick/ Factory Yamaha Team Yamaha
3 Baggett Blake 4 USA 20 Rocky Mountain ATV/MC KTM WPS KTM
4 Roczen Ken 94 GER 18 Team Honda HRC Honda
5 Noren Fredrik 40 SWE 16 TiLUBE Storm Lake Honda Honda
6 Anderson Jason 21 USA 15 Rockstar Husqvarna Husqvarna
7 Tickle Broc 20 USA 14 Red Bull KTM KTM
8 Pourcel Christophe 377 FRA 13 Rockstar Husqvarna Husqvarna
9 Grant Joshua 33 USA 12 Monster Energy Kawasaki Kawasaki
10 Nicoletti Phillip 46 USA 11 Autotrader/ JGR/ Yoshimura/ Suzuki Factory Racing Yamaha
11 Chisholm Kyle 11 USA 10 Chisholm Racing Kawasaki
12 Wentland Jesse USA 9 RSR/Star Cycle Honda Honda
13 Audette  Gannon 73 USA 8 Legends & Heros/ Kissimmee Motorsports Kawasaki
14 Brooks  Jason USA 7 3D Racing/ Factory Connection/ Motorsports Nation Yamaha
15 Short Andrew 29 USA 6 Rocky Mountain ATV/MC KTM WPS KTM
16 Short John 253 USA 5 ACM Services/ Short racing Yamaha
17 Mcconahy Noah 131 USA 4 Merge Racing Honda
18 Cunningham Kyle 39 USA 3 H.E.P Motorsports Suzuki
19 Stewart Ronnie 606 USA 2 DirtCandy Graphics Suzuki
20 Harrison Heath USA 1 Got Gear Motorsports Kawasaki
Location Information

Millville, MN, United States - View in Google Maps