Another Red Bull KTM clean sweep, this week in the second visit to Atlanta. On a rutty, quickly eroding track Ryan Dungey won again, to move into a very secure points lead, as his 250 team-mate Marvin Musquin did the same in the East class with a dominant win.
What a difference a win makes eh? Chad Reed was totally on it in the early stages of the Main event in Atlanta after his win last week, railing the Discount Tires Kawasaki inside fellow great starter Weston Peick’s JGR Yamaha. Peick then pulled off a superb whip move to get ahead, looking strong and confident as Reed made a massive mistake, dropping several places as a result after nearly falling off his bike.
This allowed series leader Dungey into second with other round winners Eli Tomac and Trey Canard close behind. RCH Suzuki man Ken Roczen, so strong early in the season was struggling with a sore ankle here and rode for points.
The battle polarized now as Peick, still riding with a leg injury, battled to hold off Dungey, thus allowing Tomac on the Geico Honda into range, with Canard a small distance away in fourth on his HRC Honda.
First exchanges and Dungey got a great line through a 270 degree sand turn, inside Peick, but Peick isn’t in the mood to roll over and retaliates, forcing Dungey to miss his line in the following jump section. Meanwhile Canard took advantage of all this to move into third past his Honda mounted rival Tomac.
An authorative move by Dungey next time round, totally block passing Peick who’s spirited effort was then moved to holding off the two Honda men, something he did for most of a lap as the red pair were either side of him! Spectacular stuff that had the fans out of their seats.
Canard was soon through and chasing after Dungey as Tomac was held up, allowing RCH Suzuki man Broc Tickle into play, Peick really slowing these guys lines down as they battled.
Up front and the Dungey diesel power is away. Consistency, speed, great with the lapped traffic. There seems no stopping the Red Bull KTM right now and his third win looked on the cards.
In the Honda ranks, as usual, Tomac was fighting back and showing good speed, after the initial delay in getting past Peick he got his head down and showed the pace he has all year to close the gap to Canard. He managed it too, a decent result here for Tomac to eliminate the mistakes that have cost him great results recently.
No stopping Dungey though, peerless is the word at the moment. His starts have improved massively as has his ruthlessness in passing people, the two criticisms people used to level at Ryan are answered, and the result is almost starting to be called domination.
He takes a 25 point lead to the next round, outside at the famed Daytona oval race circuit.
There was a definite European feel to the early stages of the 250 East Atlanta race, with series pacesetter Marvin Musquin on the Red Bull KTM leading supercross rookie Arnaud Tonus on the Pro Circuit Kawasaki in the early stages.
Last weeks winner Jeremy Martin on a retro Kenny Roberts style coloured Yamaha started brightly too in fourth as the Euro stars established a lead on red Atlanta dirt, that features a flyover this week. The Star Racing Yamaha man quickly established himself in second and tried to close the gap on Musquin.
Sadly for the fans the race was dead after that. Musquin maintained the gap and Martin was unable to bridge it, meaning Musquin takes a clearer lead in the East championship.