Third overall for Matt Goerke as eastern leg  MX Tour kicks off at Sand Del Lee
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Third overall for Matt Goerke as eastern leg MX Tour kicks off at Sand Del Lee

Rockstar Energy OTSFF Yamaha’s Matt Goerke and the rest of the top-five
450 Pro Championship contenders raised the competition bar a notch or two at
the opening round of the eastern leg of the Triple Crown Series MX Tour on
Saturday, July 7th. Goerke and the other usual suspects took no
prisoners as they battled for position and precious championship points on the
rough and tough Sand Del Lee Motocross Park track near Ottawa. When all was
said and done, Goerke, who qualified second, hammered down 3-3 motos to garner third
overall on the day. His teammate Dylan Epstein, who qualified third, finished a
noteworthy sixth on the strength of 6-5 motos.

 

Fortunately, the inhuman heatwave that had been parked over
south/eastern Ontario for the past week, driving temperatures up to 34°C –
feeling more like 44°C thanks to the humidity – had dissipated. Still, the
thermometer reached a high of 30°C, the hottest weather yet to greet the MX
Tour, which is now just past its midway point. A steady 25 km/h wind provided
some relief from the scorching sun. 

 

In the first moto, Goerke nailed
a top five start while Epstein squeezed in just inside the top 10. With the
likes of Kaven Benoit, who pegged the holeshot, Tyler Medaglia, Colton
Facciotti and Cole Thompson just ahead of fifth place running Goerke, the
racing was intense.

The frontrunners quickly put some
serious real estate between themselves and the rest of the field as they
hounded each other, looking to make passes and challenge Benoit for the lead.
The Quebecer, however, would prevail in that position until the checkered flag.
At the halfway mark a heated battle, which would continue until the chequered
flag, saw YZ450F mounted Goerke flash by Thompson. Goerke next set his sights
on Facciotti, who displaced Medaglia for second place, with some five laps remaining.
Despite giving it all he had, Medaglia would succumb to Goerke’s relentless
attacking and lose postion in the closing laps of the moto.

 

The second moto start again had
Goerke slicing into turn one in fifth place, which he quickly converted into third.
Ahead of him was holeshooter Tyler Medaglia and second place running Facciotti.
It was a battle of the champions, with Facciotti taking over first place from
Medaglia around the halfway point. Although he had Goerke all over his rear
wheel, Medaglia, racing his home track, managed to hang on to second as they
drag raced across the finish line.

 

For his part, Epstein stayed the
course to turn a ninth place first moto start into a sixth place finish.
Although he was third off the start in moto two, he stalled his bike a few
corners later.  By the time Epstein was
back in action, he was around 20th place. From there he methodically
powered his YZ450F into fifth place by the halfway point and finished in that
position

 

“Sand
Del Lee was a successful weekend for us. Matt stayed steady and consistent, keeping
himself in the points chase. Dillan had his best weekend to date. So overall,
we are moving in the right direction and are looking forward to Gopher Dunes,
where Matt has placed first a few times in the past,” said team manager Steve
Simms.

 

The Rockstar Energy Triple Crown Series continues this weekend on Saturday, July 14th, with Round 6 of the MX Tour at Gopher
Dunes in Courtland, ON.

 

Round 5 Results 450 Pro

1. Colton Facciotti (Hon)         2-1  

2. Tyler Medaglia
(Kaw)          4-2

3. Matt Goerke (Yam)            3-3

4. Kaven
Benoit (KTM)           1-8

5. Cole Thompson
(KTM)      
5-4

6. Dillan Epstein
(Yam)         6-5