Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Race Report - Washougal MX

For the eighth time in nine rounds of the 2015 Pro Motocross Series, there has been some sort of precipitation. Redbud being the only stop that didn't have any threat of being a mudder. Washougal MX was the third round in four races to have extremely muddy conditions to deal with. In practice and the first motos, it was a common sight to see half the field running out of tear-offs and tossing their goggles in an attempt to be able to see at least a little bit. The track came around a lot for the second outings however with lap times being reduced drastically. Christophe Pourcel was the top finisher on the team, with his 2nd podium since joining the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Squad.

Pourcel seemed to start rolling half way through the season, but then had a couple off weekends get mixed in. The problem in those races was that after getting less than stellar starts, he fell into the pace of those around him, taking too much time to move forward. Knowing that to be a problem, he went to work and focused on that facet of the race. In the first outing, he got a good start and rode to a podium position. In the second moto however; he started outside of the top ten. Putting his new focal point into fruition, he wasted no time and moved forward. From the direction of his mechanic and pit board, he motored past the rider he needed to overtake by race's end for an overall podium finish.

Christophe Pourcel: "Practice went ok. Top 5 is always the goal to get a good gate. In the first moto I was 3rd and I kind of just ran my own race. I didn't have the speed of the leader so that is where I ended up. It was an ok ride but nothing crazy, no mistakes and a good start and it was good to be on the box for the first moto. That gives me a good chance for an overall podium. The second moto I got a bad start and was around 11th. It was good to finally make some passes and move up to 5th for 3rd overall."

The potential for Jason Anderson's day in Washington was very high. If not for a couple mishaps that were out of his hands, he could have had at very least his first premiere class moto win, if not the overall. In the opening go-around, Jason got mud behind the roll-offs on his goggles, rendering them useless. He wisely came into the mechanic's area for a replacement, which the team always has at the ready. This put Anderson outside the top 30 with a lot of work to do. He began moving forward at an incredible rate. Passing sometimes 5 guys in a lap. Then he posted the fastest lap time. At this point he was 12 seconds behind the next competitor on the lead lap and it looked like 7th would be all he could muster. Then suddenly he was making the pass for 6th. Then it was the same scenario, a large gap that El Hombre suddenly closed. If not for a minor mistake in a corner, he may have got into the top 5. He actually ran his fastest lap in the final circulation. An astonishing 3 seconds quicker than any other rider.

In moto 2 Jason ran into more problems. After getting into 3rd and falling, he got back up and rapidly moved back into 4th. As he was cutting the gap in between himself and the 3rd place rider, he visibly began to slow down. Rolling jumps and just putting around, back to the mechanic's area. Unfortunately Anderson had to retire due to a bike issue. He has so much positivity to take from last weekend however and so does the team.

Jason Anderson: "My weekend was decent. My first moto I had to pull in for goggles on the first lap and I ended up coming back to 6th which was pretty cool. In the second moto I got a good start and then fell. I got back up to 4th and I was catching Kenny [Roczen] until I had some bike troubles. All in all I had a pretty good day. I feel like I've always been pretty fast, I just need to put the pieces of the puzzle together. I feel pretty strong and ready to go.  I feel like I've been getting good starts outdoors and been up front a lot, but to be honest, I just want to learn from the leaders and look at the big picture. I feel like I have the speed to win but I am focusing on building myself to be a championship threat."

Zach Osborne didn't have a great day either. He rode good but made some mistakes that hampered his end result. Like many in moto 1, he had to toss his goggles early but somehow, after a bad start, he managed to move through the pack and nearly into 4th before falling after the white flag came out. The second moto his start was even worse, but not due to technique. He just plain got stuck in the gate. That inevitably put him pretty much last. In a valiant effort, he came all the back to nearly get into the top ten.

Zach Osborne: "Today was a struggle. First moto I got off to like a mid back start and came through to 5th. On the last lap I was trying to pass for 4th and went down, ending up 7th. The second moto I pulled a D rider move and got stuck in the gate. It flinched and four of us started to go and I just didn't pull back far enough and it fell on my front tire. I ended up coming back to 11th. Overall I guess I gained some points in the championship over the next rival but it just wasn't a good day. Going into the last three races I like all the tracks and I think it's going to be a good end to the season."

It has been a long time since Martin Davalos has been on the line, and even longer since he has seen the gate drop on an outdoor track. Definitely feeling the nerves to get the first one out of the way, then the rains came. Perhaps that takes some of the pressure off as Martin had to focus simply on the task at hand of overcoming the terrain. Although, being out of practice in a racing environment is made that much more difficult physically with extreme conditions. Davalos got through the day healthy and that is achievement number one. Now he has two weeks to be better prepared for round 10.

Martin Davalos: "Today was decent for me considering I haven't raced an outdoor race in over a year and a half after my injury and recovery from epstein barr. I was looking forward to it but it's tough coming back to such a muddy race. Washougal is one of my favorite tracks but it was tough and really slick. Crashing didn't help but I'm glad I got the first one out of the way. It's rough jumping back in with guys who have been racing all summer. I'm looking forward to the weekend off cause I know what I need to work on going into Unadilla. Hoping to turn things around and get better and better."

The team gets another weekend off while the series takes a break for the Loretta Lynn's Amateur Nationals. Pourcel, Anderson and Osborne will continue with their programs as they are all on the right page. Davalos will look forward to a much better result at Unadilla after getting his return race in the books.

Tags: rockstar energy husqvarna factory racing, christophe pourcel, jason anderson, zach osborne, martin davalos, mx, motocross, washougal motocross national

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