With one wet round of racing under its belt, the 2013 Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship, sanctioned by AMA is set to visit Muddy Creek Raceway in Blountville, Tenn. this weekend for the AMSOIL Spring National.
Defending champion Chad Wienen picked up where he left things off in 2012, as he claimed the overall win at the series opener aboard his Wienen Motorsports SSi Walsh Yamaha presented by Maxxis Tires and Team Vollmer machine. Wienen currently holds the points lead early in the season, but with nine rounds to go, the defending champ has his work cut out for him with a field of rising talent and several veterans of the sport chasing close behind.
The return of 2010 champion, Josh Creamer, proved to be as eventful as expected as he claimed second overall last round. The BCS Can-Am rider will be competing in the ATVMX Pro National Series full-time for the first time in three years and stands tied for second place in series points with Texas native Thomas Brown. Brown made a statement in Moto 1 aboard his new Wienen Motorsports SSi Walsh Yamaha presented by Maxxis Tires and Team Vollmer ride, finishing second in the opening round, ultimately securing third place overall for the weekend.
Although Corrosion Hetrick Racing’s Joel Hetrick currently sits in fifith place overall, it doesn’t reflect the young gun’s impressive race win at the season opener. Hetrick represents an all-new generation of Pro riders who will be gunning for this year’s National Championship.
Baldwin Motorsports PEP’s Josh Upperman upheld his reputation as one of the most consistent riders on the circuit and is looking to find himself on the podium in Blountville. Upperman sits only four points away from Wienen in the championship chase, three points ahead of Hetrick. Walsh Race Craft’s Nick Denoble, who has recovered from a season ending injury in 2012, put in an impressive sixth place finish at Round 1.
Tennessee’s very own Joe Byrd – 2007 Pro Class champion – will attempt to conquer a youthful lineup of ATVMX Pros in front of a hometown crowd. At 40-years-old, Byrd is a veteran of the sport but currently holding seventh place in points proves that Byrd is still on top of his racing game.
And then there’s 2011 ATVMX champ John Natalie, who didn’t have the best of luck at the season opener, finishing ninth overall for the weekend. Natalie is one of the most persistent riders on the circuit, though, so there’s no counting the Motosport.com-backed Natalie in the 2013 championship fight.
The pro riders will run Saturday as part of a full schedule of amateur racing, including classes for Youth, Women and Veteran riders. Amateurs will practice on Friday and race on Saturday and Sunday, while Pros race on Saturday. Tickets on Saturday are $20 for spectators ($10 for ages 6-11), and admission includes full pro-pit access and an autograph session.
Muddy Creek Raceway is located at Exit #63 off of I-81, between Bristol and Kingsport, Tenn. Gates will open on Thursday at 4 p.m. for early entry. Gates will lock at midnight each night.