Brown, Hetrick fill out podium
After retaking the points lead at the previous round, Chad Wienen cemented his status as the red plate holder on Saturday when the Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, made a stop at Sunset Ridge MX.
Wienen (Wienen Motorsports/Maxxis/SSi Decals/Walsh Race Craft Yamaha) enjoyed a solid afternoon at the front of the field, parlaying 1-2 moto finishes to his third AMA Pro ATV win of the season.
As has been the case for much of the season, Joel Hetrick (Hetrick Racing/Corrosion Specialties Honda) jumped out early to claim the SSi Decals Holeshot Award for the opening AMA Pro ATV moto, with Wienen and Maxxis Yamaha, powered by Moto-Xperts, rider Thomas Brown in tow. Wienen applied the pressure on Hetrick early and was able to make the pass for the lead on the opening lap. The early pass did nothing to deter Hetrick’s confidence as he stuck to Wienen’s rear fender for the entire moto.
Hetrick never sat more than a second and a half behind and even posted the fastest lap of the moto in pursuit of his rival. On Lap 9 Hetrick closed down the deficit to mere bike lengths and made a run for the win in the late stages of the moto. However, he high-sided while attempting to make the pass and lost valuable ground. Hetrick kept the bike going but Wienen went on to lead all 11 laps of the moto and put himself in the drivers’ seat for the overall win. Hetrick was second in a moto that saw the lead duo check out on the field, sitting nearly 30 seconds ahead of Brown, who fnished third. Root River Racing’s Josh Upperman was fourth, with Maxxis/H&M Motorsports Honda’s David Haagsma Jr. in fifth.
Brown got the upper hand in Moto 2, leading the AMA Pro ATV field to the line to claim the SSi Decals Holeshot Award in front of Wienen. With a clear track ahead of him, Brown was able to establish a torrid pace out front and sprinted out to a multiple-second lead on the opening lap. That lead grew consistently for over half of the moto, reaching double digits. With Brown pulling away, Wienen settled into second, knowing the overall would be his with a runner-up finish. That put the pressure on Hetrick, who had to fight his way forward from a fifth-place start. Hetrick and JB Racing/Can-Am/Liquid Wrench’s Jeffrey Rastrelli battled for third during the first half of the moto before Hetrick got the upperhand. Once in third, Hetrick couldn’t catch the leaders while Rastrelli fell into the clutches of a hard charging Haagsma Jr.
While the gap over the field dropped to just a couple seconds in the end, Brown was able to claim a comfortable moto win with Wienen second and Hetrick third. Haagsma Jr. was fourth with Rastrelli following in fifth.
Wienen’s 1-2 scores gave him the edge over Brown’s 3-1 effort to secure his third overall win of the season. Hetrick rounded out the overall podium in third (2-3), followed by Haagsma Jr. in fourth (5-4) and Rastrelli fifth (7-5).
Wienen’s win moved him out to a 15-point lead over Hetrick in the AMA Pro ATV championship standings with four rounds remaining on the schedule. Brown sits 26 points out of the lead in third, with Upperman fourth (-99) and Nick Gennusa fifth (-110).
AMA Pro ATV Overall Results (Moto Results)
Chad Wienen, Galena, Ill., Yamaha (1-2) Thomas Brown, Sanger, Texas, Yamaha (3-1) Joel Hetrick, Seneca, Pa., Honda (2-3) David Haagsma Jr., Bakersfield, Calif., Honda (5-4) Jeffrey Rastrelli, Palm City, Fla., Can-Am (7-5) Brett Musick, Verdunville, W.Va., Yamaha (9-6) Nicholas Gennusa, Wall Township, N.J., Yamaha (10-7) Josh Upperman, Louisville, Ohio, Honda, (4-15) Adam Clark, New London, Ohio, Yamaha (11-11) Casey Martin, Frenchburg, Ky., Honda (15-8)
AMA Pro ATV Championship Standings
Chad Wienen, Galena, Ill., Yamaha – 291 Joel Hetrick, Seneca, Pa., Honda – 276 Thomas Brown, Sanger, Texas, Yamaha – 265 Josh Upperman, Louisville, Ohio, Honda – 192 Nick Gennusa, Wall, N.J., Yamaha – 181 Jeffrey Rastrelli, Palm City, Fla., Can-Am – 168 Ronnie Higgerson, Cutler, Ill., Can-Am – 168 Vital Cazenave, Union City, Tenn., Honda – 132 Brett Musick, Verdunville, W.Va., Yamaha – 125 Joe Byrd, Union City, Tenn., Honda – 124