The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship reached its halfway point with round six taking place this past Saturday at the 35th annual Moto-X 338 National in Southwick, MA. It was a massive crowd of fans who watched the Honda Red Riders take on the demanding conditions of the Southwick national one final time as the facility ends its run as an AMA National Championship venue. Team Honda Muscle Milk's Justin Barcia nailed down his third podium appearance of the season with a third-overall finish. WMX rider Sayaka Kaneshiro finished fourth overall in the final round of the Triple Crown series, giving her second overall in the final Championship standings. Muscle Milk-sponsored GEICO Honda's Eli Tomac logged 1-2 finishes, leading him to his second overall win of the season. Teammate Zach Osborne posted two solid results to round out the 250 podium in third.

450 Race
After two grueling 30-minute plus two-lap motos, Barcia emerged on the podium with his 3-3 scores. In the first moto, he got tangled with another rider in the first turn, which left him in 15th at the close of the opening lap. Barcia put together a remarkable come-from-behind performance, swiftly working his way through the competition to finish third. In the second moto, he sprang off the line to a third-place start and quickly latched onto the leaders while pulling away from the rest of the field. He rode hard to again finish in third.

"Practice was really good and I felt good," Barcia said. "In the first moto I got caught up in the first turn and had to come back from pretty far back to third. This track is so challenging and fast it is hard to charge back up to the front but I was able to do so and finish third. Second moto I got a better start and got in behind both Ryans and hung in as long as I could but ended up third. I am happy with another podium but am really looking for that first win. I am bummed that this is the last time we are here. It's sad to see the track go because I rode here a little as an amateur and it's nice to have a sand track that is so different from everything else we ride."

Team Honda Muscle Milk's Trey Canard sustained a hard crash in moto one that sidelined him for the remainder of the race. Luckily, he was able to return to action in the second moto. Despite having a bad gate pick and starting from the far outside he was still able to grab a mid-pack start. He worked his way up to fifth, which is where he finished.

"I was pretty pumped with the way I was riding in the first moto," explained Canard. "It was a kind of a bright moment for me when Dungey passed me and I was able to pass him back. But, right after that I made a slight mistake and it got ugly quick. I got cross-rutted and ejected from the bike and the bike was too bent up to finish. In the second moto, I had 30th gate pick and got a mid-pack start and just tried to move forward. I got up to fifth and just hit a bit of a wall. I am bummed this is our last time racing at Southwick. I wish I could have ridden here more because it's such a challenge but hopefully in the future we can come back.

WMX Race
Southwick also played host to the third and final round of the Women's Motocross Triple Crown series and Team Honda Muscle Milk's Sayaka Kaneshiro led the points entering this final round. While running second in the first moto, however, she went down and lost multiple positions, but was able to recover a few spots and finish in seventh. During the second race, she put together a solid performance, finishing third. Her fourth overall wasn't enough to wrap up the title, but she was able to secure second place in the championship.

250 Race
Muscle Milk-backed GEICO Honda's Eli Tomac had an impressive showing in the Southwick sand, grabbing 1-2 scores for the day. Tomac made quick work of a top-five start in the first moto and moved into the lead by the completion of the first lap. From there he never looked back, gapping the rest of the field by a considerable margin to take the win unchallenged. A less-than-desirable start left him outside the top 10 on the first lap of the second moto. However, throughout the 30-minute plus two-lap race he moved towards the front with an impressive charge, advancing from 11th to second. Tomac now sits second in the championship standings with a mere seven points separating him from the leader.

"It's cool to get a win in Southwick because it's probably going to be the last time we ever race here," said Tomac. "It is a classic track and has been here for over 30 years. I really love the sand and I really wanted to get a win here before it was all said and done, and we did that. I got a good start in the first moto and was able to get the lead early. I made a few mistakes later in the race but I had some time so I just got up and kept going. I knew I had to get second in the second moto because Roczen was in the lead. I just put my head down and did what I had to do."

Teammate Zach Osborne joined Tomac on the podium with a third-place overall finish. He posted a solid fifth place in the first race, and jumped off the line to a good start in the second moto. He quickly moved into third and stayed consistent all the way to the checkered flag. "I feel like I should have been on the podium in the first moto too but it was definitely better than how my first motos have gone," explained Osborne. "To come away with an overall podium finish is awesome and I am so happy. In the second moto I tried to execute every lap the same. The track changes so much but if you ride the same lines and the same jumps you kind of know what to expect every lap. It worked out for me."

Muscle Milk-supported GEICO Honda's Justin Bogle and Wil Hahn had a difficult day due to mechanical issues. Bogle had a successful first moto, posting his best result of the season with a third place. Unfortunately, after a slow start in the second moto he was unable to finish the race due to bike troubles. Despite securing his third holeshot award in the first moto, Hahn endured similar challenges as mechanical issues sidelined him in both races.

The Focus: Preparing for the Sand
Southwick is the one and only sand track in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross series, and presents a challenge for both rider and mechanic. Before Barcia or Canard hit the track aboard their CRF450R's, a few changes are made to ensure the machines are ready for the conditions.

"We made a few changes on the bikes in order to adapt to the conditions of Southwick," explained Team Manager Dan Betley. "For the suspension we stiffened up the front a bit and softened the rear to help in the sandy conditions. Tire selection is quite a bit different then what we normally run. On the rear we ran the Geomax MX11, which is designed specifically for sand/mud conditions. The tire has a crescent-shaped-curve tread, which helps optimize traction. We also take extra precautions to deflect sand from getting in the motorcycle by using a nylon cover over the filter and a twin air screen over the radiators."

450 Class Overall Results
1. Ryan Dungey 1-2
2. Ryan Villopoto 4-1
3. Justin Barcia (Honda) 3-3
4. Brett Metcalf 5-6
5. Andrew Short 2-16
6. Tyla Rattray 10-8
7. Phil Nicoletti 6-13
8. Mike Alessi 8-12
9. Broc Tickle 11-10
10. Josh Grant 13-11

450 Class Championship Points (after 6 of 12 rounds)
1. Ryan Villopoto 283
2. Ryan Dungey 271
3. Justin Barcia 219
4. Trey Canard 169
5. Mike Alessi 158
6. James Stewart 140
7. Tyla Rattray 119
8. Broc Tickle 115
9. Andrew Short 110
10. Jake Weimer 109

250 Class Overall Results
1. Eli Tomac (Honda) 1-2
2. Ken Roczen 3-1
3. Zach Osborne (Honda) 5-3
4. Blake Baggett 2-8
5. Jason Anderson 6-4
6. Cole Seely (Honda) 8-7
7. Kyle Cunningham 13-5
8. Marvin Musquin  10-9
9. Adam Cianciarulo 9-12
10. Alex Martin 12-11

250 Class Championship Points (after 6 of 12 rounds)
1. Ken Roczen 265
2. Eli Tomac 258
3. Blake Baggett 223
4. Marvin Musquin 222
5. Zach Osborne 185
6. Jason Anderson 161
7. Kyle Cunningham 131
8. Jeremy Martin 124
9. Justin Bogle 122
10. Cooper Webb 113

WMX Overall Results
1. Jessica Patterson 1-1
2. Mackenzie Tricker 2-2
3. Sara Pettersson 4-4
4. Sayaka Kaneshiro (Honda) 7-3
5. Lindsey Palmer 8-5
6. Taylor Higgins 6-8
7. Marissa Markelon 4-12
8. Sade Allender 12-7
9. Brianna DeGray 10-9
10. Amanda Brown 14-6

WMX Final Championship Points (after round 3 of 3)
1. Jessica Patterson 122
2. Sayaka Kaneshiro 120
3. Taylor Higgins 100
4. Machenzie Tricker 99
5. Sara Petterson 94
6. Jacqueline Strong 81
7. Lindsey Palmer 71
8. Amanda Brown 66
9. Sade Allender 64
10. Marissa Markelon 55

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