Hetrick, Rastrelli complete podium in Daytona
The 4th Annual ATV Supercross at Daytona International Speedway took place on March 13, 2018 in Daytona Beach, Florida. One rider hungry to earn the first win of 2018 was, Wienen Motorsports/Yamaha/Maxxis rider Chad Wienen. Wienen had set out to show the skills that he worked on during the off-season. He has prepared himself for the 2018 season, and the battles that ensue with Joel Hetrick. These battles would happen right from the first gate drop of the new season. It did not take long for everyone to see Wienen’s training had paid off as the multi-time champion decimated the technical Daytona track earning him the ATVriders.com Fastest Qualifier award.
For Wienen, he watched Joel Hetrick power his way to the heat one win as he sat on the gate warming up for his own heat race. The gate dropped and like a shot, the he was out front and looking incredibly strong even as pressure from Jeffrey Rastrelli was immense at the beginning of the heat race. When the checkered flag waved, Wienen left no doubt he was ready to take on all challengers.
Rockford Fosgate/Ti-lube/Honda’s Joel Hetrick came blasting off the gate in the main with Wienen in pursuit, as the first turn chaos was just what Wienen needed. The tight turn allowed just enough shuffling for a quick burst of speed that sent him out front to make the racing bar-to-bar. With the series top two contenders now giving the crowd an epic show, it was anyone’s guess how this would unfold with a rough track in front of them. When the riders emerged from a section that allowed a limited view, it was Chad Wienen with the lead and a familiar battle was once again underway.
The two front-runners were pulling away from the rest of the field; Hayden Mickelson and Jeffrey Rastrelli would run side-by-side until an incident would occur leaving Mickelson out of the race. Rastrelli would regroup and push forward to finish in the third place position.
The laps would count down until the checkered flag flew as Chad Wienen cleared the finish line jump confident in his efforts as he took the win over Joel Hetrick and Jeffrey Rastrelli who finished 2nd and 3rd respectively. Wienen’s win was a statement to his competition and his fans that he was still in this championship fight and aims to keep pressure on current champ Joel Hetrick. The defeat may be more of a blow to Hetrick’s fans than to Joel, but the second place finish came all in a days work as there is an entire season that will afford plenty of chances for Hetrick to claim his share of wins and defend his number one plate.
Yamaha’s Thomas Brown had a strong start to the season, and finds himself in a comfortable position after finishing in the fourth place position, while Ford Brothers Racing Honda’s Nick Gennusa rounded out the top five.
The season kick off at such a historic location always brings an added element to the races and with a track that no one gets to ride before race day adds a level of uncertainty every year. Round two will feature another new stop on the series schedule where we should get a chance to really see our stars shine.
The 2018 ATV Motocross National Championship continues March 24 and 25 in Hamer, South Carolina at South of The Border MX.