Unadilla National 2018
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

The tenth round of the 2018 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship took place in rainy New York State over the weekend, offering up a very muddy track for riders to battle on. Standing water, slick conditions, and deep, sticky mud were the biggest contenders on the track at Unadilla, claiming many casualties in their wake. However, the racing heated up as the championship series wound down to the final two rounds of the season.

450MX Report

450MX Moto 1 Holeshot
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Plenty of rain and mud greeted the riders of the 450MX class when the gate dropped for moto 1. The muddy roost was a factor right from the start and caused the group to be much more staggered than normal coming off of the line. Rocky Mountain ATV/MC-KTM-WPS rider Blake Baggett seemed to be in line to grab the holeshot, but Dylan Merriam edged him out to take the holeshot and the early lead. Marvin Musquin was in the mix as well when the race got underway, battling with Baggett and working to take the lead away from Merriam. Musquin claimed the lead by the end of the first lap, and Baggett followed behind in second. Merriam began to fall back through the ranks.

Marvin Musquin at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Musquin continued to lead the race for the next several laps, with Phil Nicoletti riding behind him in 2nd place and Baggett in 3rd. Eli Tomac began the race in 8th place after the first lap but slowly began working his way through the ranks. However, an issue with the roll-off system in his goggles led to a quick pit stop to grab a new pair from his team. As soon as he was back on the track, Tomac focused, once again, on picking his way through the pack. It wasn’t long until he had Musquin in his sights.

Eli Tomac at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Tomac wasn’t the only rider experiencing vision problems. Musquin had the same issue Tomac experienced with his roll-off system, and he also had to pull off for a fresh pair of goggles. Tomac moved into the lead and stayed there for the remainder of the race. Although Musquin’s stop was brief, Tomac gained about 10 seconds on Musquin before the latter was able to get back on the track. By the end of the race, Tomac had 25 seconds on Musquin and more than a full minute over third place rider, Phil Nicoletti. Several riders went down during the muddy conditions of moto 1, including Justin Barcia, Cooper Webb, Ken Roczen, and Kyle Cunningham. Rocky Mountain ATV/MC-KTM-WPS riders Benny Bloss and Baggett finished in 4th and 5th place, respectively.

Phillip Nicoletti at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

The rain had subsided by the time moto 2 rolled around, but the track was still a muddy mess for the riders to contend with. Musquin shot out off of the gate drop and got the holeshot, but Nicoletti got around Musquin to lead the pack. A mistake by Barcia at the bottom of a hill caused a big pile up that included Kailub Russell and several other riders in the 450MX class, which mixed up the order of things early on in the race. Nicoletti led the first couple of laps before both Musquin and Tomac got around him. He ran in 3rd for several more laps before being caught by Webb and Barcia, falling back to 5th place.

GNCC Racer Kailub Russell at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

While Musquin and Tomac battled out front for the lead, Barcia and Webb were in a battle of their own for 3rd place. No love was lost on the track between the Yamaha teammates as, first, Webb made an aggressive, wide turn in an attempt to edge Barcia out. Barcia, after visibly expressing his frustration with Webb, reciprocated a couple of turns later with his own aggressive move on Webb.

Justin Barcia at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Musquin held off Tomac and took the win for moto 2, with Tomac close behind in 2nd and Barcia winning the battle with Webb to take 3rd. Musquin and Tomac tied with 2-1 and 1-2 finishes, but Musquin was awarded the overall win as a result of taking 1st in the second moto. Tomac came in 2nd overall, and Nicoletti (3-5) earned his first overall-podium finish in his home state with 3rd place.

450MX Podium at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

450MX Results

125Marvin Musquin^2147433
21Eli Tomac1247448
354Phillip Nicoletti3536253
451Justin Barcia8333363
54Blake Baggett5631332
660Benny Bloss41029253
794Ken Roczen7728358
834Weston Peick9825272
92Cooper Webb16423129
10718Toshiki Tomita1092382
11332Jeremy Hand11131820
12121Cody Cooper121416137
13557Kailub Russell6301515
1439Kyle Cunningham281110140
15907Ben Lamay20121075
16376Chris Canning1815925
1748Henry Miller1324883
1849Nick Gaines1436734
1986Dylan Merriam*1534675
20726Gared Steinke331655
21270Jacob Runkles371744
22314Tyler Stepek173144
2377Ryan Surratt1838
2496Zack Williams1922
25265Nick Fratz-Orr193322
26241Tj Albright273200
27207Dare DeMartile2128025
2873Brandon Scharer3220176
29319Coty Schock222900
30449Dakota Kessler292300
31139Nathen LaPorte233200
32897Matthew Babbitt352200
33723Tyler Enticknap312600
34421Jesse Kirchmeyer263500
35596Carson Tickle243900
36412Jared Lesher343700
37727Bradley Esper363800
3857John Short4040013
39444Brock Papi2501
40227Cory Gilliam2500

*Moto 1 Holeshot
^Moto 2 Holeshot

250MX Report

250MX Starting Gate
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

The 250MX class didn’t have to contend with the rain, but they raced on a very muddy track at Unadilla just the same. Michael Mosiman earned the moto 1 holeshot and quickly distanced himself by about 10 seconds from the rest of the pack. The track took casualties left and right during the first lap, including Joey Savatgy, Austin Forkner, Luke Renzland, and others. However, Dylan Ferrandis and Mitchell Harrison had their sights set on catching up to Mosiman.

Michael Mosiman at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Mosiman ran up front for several laps before his lead was diminished. A crash off of a jump caused Mosiman to forfeit the lead to Ferrandis. Harrison and Aaron Plessinger were close behind Ferrandis, and they were able to pass Mosiman as well. Plessinger got around Harrison and began working on catching Ferrandis for the remainder of the moto. The two had an intense battle going that was only hindered by Ferrandis’ smoking bike and a jump that went wrong on Plessinger’s part. Plessinger’s mistake allowed Ferrandis to gain some serious ground. Ferrandis had a crash of his own that sent him and his bike into the fence, but his sizable lead kept him from losing any spots. Ferrandis ultimately finished in 1st place. Plessinger came in behind him in 2nd, and Shane McElrath rounded out the podium in 3rd for moto 1.

Dylan Ferrandis at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Moto 2 was definitely an exciting race for the 250MX class. As soon as the gate dropped, several riders went down in the first turn and caused a pile up on the track. Cameron McAdoo was able to escape the carnage to grab the holeshot and take the early lead. Several riders were right on his heels in the beginning lap, including Jordon Smith, Harrison, and Ferrandis. McAdoo led for the first four laps before taking a wide line through a corner that allowed Harrison to get by him for the lead.

Aaron Plessinger at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

McAdoo continued to fall back a few spots, and by the last quarter of the race, Harrison, Ferrandis, and Plessinger were battling hard up front for the lead. The three swapped positions several times, all three of them spending time in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. Ferrandis was finally able to make a pass stick that landed him in 1st place. He rode out the final four laps in the lead and finished the race in 1st place. Harrison went down after getting caught up on a lapped rider, which allowed Joey Savatgy to get in the mix with the race leaders. Plessinger finished out the race in 2nd with Savatgy behind him in 3rd.

250MX Podium at Unadilla
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Ferrandis had a 1-1 sweep at Unadilla that earned him 1st overall for the weekend. Plessinger took 2nd overall with 2-2 finishes, and Harrison claimed 3rd overall after running 4-4 for the day. Plessinger enters the last couple of rounds with a 78-point lead over Alex Martin and with a high likelihood of clinching the championship in the next round.

250MX Results

124Dylan Ferrandis1150254
223Aaron Plessinger2244415
330Mitchell Harrison4436151
417Joseph Savatgy8333247
540Chase Sexton5829251
628Shane McElrath31427278
726Alex Martin10725337
831Colt Nichols71025127
962Justin Cooper12624291
1064Michael Mosiman*61323183
1166Cameron Mcadoo^15522113
1236RJ Hampshire91122252
1345Jordon Smith111219244
1435Austin Forkner23912250
1563Hayden Mellross1618840
16700James Weeks1334817
17816Enzo Lopes1440759
18222Ramyller Alves3615618
1942Dakota Alix1719657
2038Luke Renzland4116519
21133Jordan Bailey20175115
2243Sean Cantrell19203106
23137Martin Castelo1838326
24101Yusuke Watanabe212300
25346Kevin Moranz262403
26509Alexander Nagy272600
27169Challen Tennant2925033
28427Deegan Vonlossberg282800
29947Daniel Netti253100
30188Gage Schehr352201
31367Hunter Sayles243300
3282Cody Williams223500
33214Vann Martin302903
34130Austin Root3921014
35162Maxwell Sanford332700
36919Brian Borghesani313000
37303Michael Hand343200
38561Caleb Hall373700
39296Ryder Floyd403900
40675Kyle Dillin3200

*Moto 1 Holeshot
^Moto 2 Holeshot

Photo Credit for All Gallery Images: Kardy Photo