Eli Tomac Conquers RedBud National

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Eli Tomac earned his third Lucas Oil Pro Motocross victory of the season on Saturday during the RedBud National. (Jeff Kardas Photo)
Eli Tomac earned his third Lucas Oil Pro Motocross victory of the season on Saturday during the RedBud National. (Jeff Kardas Photo)

BUCHANAN, Mich. – Eli Tomac padded his Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship 450 class championship lead with a victory during the Circle K RedBud National on Saturday afternoon.

In the 250 class, Dylan Ferrandis captured his third career win with a dominant performance by sweeping both motos.

As the gate dropped on the opening 450 class moto, Cooper Webb emerged with the holeshot over teammates Justin Bogle and Blake Baggett. Bogle quickly went to work as he found his way around Webb to takeover the race lead before the end of the opening lap. Tomac was just behind the leaders in third.

Bogle used a clear track and impressive riding to lead the first several laps as Webb and Tomac gave chase. On lap three, Tomac carried speed downhill and around the outside of Webb for the second position, followed by a pass on Bogle for the lead in the same section just one lap later. As Webb set his sights on Bogle, he made a costly mistake by stalling the engine of his bike, which let Jason Anderson slip by.

Tomac instantly took full advantage of having the lead and began opening a gap over his competition, while Anderson began to knock on Bogle’s door and made an aggressive move for second. Webb followed shortly after, bumping Bogle outside of the top three.

When the checkered flag waved, it was Tomac who remained unchallenged to win by 6.3 seconds, giving him his sixth moto win of the season. Anderson finished strong in second, followed by Webb in third. Ken Roczen and Marvin Musquin finished sixth and seventh, respectively.

The Rocky Mountain ATV/MC-WPS-KTM teammates once again put themselves towards the front when the gate dropped on 450 class Moto 2 as Baggett was credited with the holeshot, followed by Bogle and Musquin.  As Baggett set the pace out front, Roczen muscled his way into second, just ahead of Musquin in third to complete the opening lap.  Anderson, Webb and Tomac started the moto just outside of the top five.

On lap two, Roczen used his early race speed to charge past Baggett for the race lead, while Musquin followed shortly after, shuffling Baggett back to third. With clear track ahead, Roczen relied on his effortless style to calmly navigate the demanding circuit as Musquin put his head down in an attempt to track down the German. As the race neared the halfway point, Musquin began to slowly close in on the race lead, eventually making the pass stick on lap nine.

Behind the leaders, the battle for third began to heat up between Anderson and the first moto winner Tomac. Every time Tomac searched for a way around, Anderson would wick it up to close the door. On lap 12, Tomac dove to the inside of Anderson and pushed him against the edge of the track to overtake third. The defending champion continued his push forward in the final laps of the race as he chased down and made the move around Roczen with two laps remaining.

Musquin managed the moto with his veteran experience to take his third moto win of the season, 6.2 seconds ahead of Tomac. Roczen soldiered home in third.

Tomac’s 1-2 moto scores carried him to his third overall victory of the season, tying him with James Stewart for fifth on the all-time win list with 20 apiece. Anderson finished the day runner-up (2-4), while Musquin completed the podium in third (7-1).

“Overall, it was a really good day for us,” said Tomac. “I had been feeling good all day. It has been a little bit rough the last couple of weeks, but the first moto was a really good way to start the day and get things turned back around. I think that I had some better lines in the first moto, but I was able to move up and get the job done in the second moto.”

In the 250 class no one had anything for Ferrandis, who controlled both motos en route to a dominant victory. Adam Cianciarulo finishes of fifth and second allowed him to secure second overall, while Justin Cooper’s finishes of third and sixth gave him the final spot on the podium.

“I just felt good today and my bike was really good,” said Ferrandis. “It took some time for me to find a good outdoor feeling, but I think we’ve finally found it. It was just the perfect day and I’m really happy and looking forward to the rest of the championship. It feels good to get the monkey off of my back with a win finally.”