MORGANTOWN, W. Va. – Through two rounds and four motos of the 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, two teams have emerged as dominant forces atop the 450 and 250 classes.
The Red Bull KTM duo of two-time champion Ryan Dungey and premier class rookie Ken Roczen have traded overall wins in the 450 Class to start the season, while Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha has posted back-to-back 1-2 sweeps in the 250 Class with an undefeated Jeremy Martin and fellow second-year rider Cooper Webb.
This weekend these riders and their competitors will face one of the most unique challenges of the season with the annual visit to Colorado and the mile-high altitude of Thunder Valley MX Park in Lakewood for the third round of the championship.
The Toyota Thunder Valley National will mark the 10th year the facility has hosted a round of Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship competition, which will commence on Saturday.
Last weekend at the Hangtown Motocross Classic, Roczen broke through for his first career win in the 450 Class with a dominant 1-1 performance the proved he’s ready to go head-to-head with his teammate for the most prestigious title in the sport.
One week after the German rookie let the win slip away to Dungey on the final lap at Glen Helen, he responded with a confident performance in which he was undoubtedly the rider to beat throughout the afternoon.
While Dungey minimized the damage by securing runner-up finishes in each moto, giving Red Bull KTM its second straight 1-2 sweep as well, Roczen was able to assume control of the points lead and will wear the red number plate for the first time in his 450 Class career on Saturday at Thunder Valley.
The only rider in the 450 Class to consistently challenge the KTM dominance thus far is Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Trey Canard. Despite missing virtually the entire first half of the 2014 racing season due to injury, Canard has been on point to start the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship and has quietly posted back-to-back third place efforts in the first two rounds.
Hangtown also saw the emergence of Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Brett Metcalfe, who led a significant portion of the final moto and has been a consistent presence in the battle for the top five.
,Thus far Metcalfe’s fill-in duty for injured defending champion Ryan Villopoto has gotten off to a solid start, and he is sure to only get better as he acclimates to the bike. At Thunder Valley, these two riders in addition to Team Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart and Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Justin Barcia will do all they can to bring KTM’s supremacy to a halt.