Monster Energy® Kawasaki Rider Eli Tomac Starts Strong at Opening Round of 2020 AMA Pro Motocross Championship2020-08-17 02:07
The opening round of the 2020 AMA Pro Motocross Championship kicked off Saturday at the inaugural Loretta Lynn's National in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee as Monster Energy® Kawasaki rider and three-time defending 450 class champion, Eli Tomac, captured third overall on the day after earning 7-2 moto scores while teammate Adam Cianciarulo earned 12th overall in his premier class debut. In the 250 class, Cameron McAdoo claimed seventh overall (9-6) in his Pro Motocross debut with the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team with his teammates Mitchell Harrison and Darian Sanayei scoring 15th and 18th overall respectively.
Due to the heavy downpour of rain the day before, the Kawasaki riders found themselves struggling with the rest of the field to make their way through the sloppy conditions as Tomac spent a vast majority of the second 450 class qualifying session trying to free his bike from the mud after getting stuck during the opening laps. He eventually managed to qualify seventh, three spots behind his teammate and 450 class rookie Cianciarulo who qualified fourth in his debut 450 class ride.
By the time the gate dropped on Moto 1 in the 450 class, the mud began to dry up, leaving behind some deep ruts presenting additional challenges as Tomac battled to seventh in the first lap with Cianciarulo in 10th. Halfway through the moto, Tomac and Cianciarulo raced their KX™450 motorcycles through similar lines at a good pace as they made their way up to fourth and fifth respectively. The teammates began to struggle with the changing track conditions in the latter portion of the moto, losing a few positions as Cianciarulo finished sixth and Tomac in seventh.
Moto 2 saw the reigning 250 class champion, Cianciarulo seize the lead early as he grabbed the holeshot, while Tomac found himself mid-pack off the gate before swiftly making his way up to eighth in the first lap. Tomac capitalized on the bike adjustments made in between motos as he charged forward to cross the finish line in second place and land on the podium for third overall (7-2) on the day. Just as it looked like smooth sailing for Cianciarulo, he caught a rut on the face of a jump and crashed hard, forcing him to roll off to the mechanic’s area to eventually withdraw from the moto resulting in a 12th place overall finish (6-38).
#3 Eli Tomac
#9 Adam Cianciarulo
“Third overall on the day and the best way to put it is it was hot and cold. I was up front with the leading group in Moto 1, but I just went backward because I was struggling a bit and with the track. I just wasn’t comfortable, so the team and I made some changes to the bike between motos and I was able to improve and push to the front to be in the fight for the win in Moto 2. We’ll take this result on the day, but we’re looking forward to getting better when we get back out here again next weekend.”
- Eli Tomac
“The Loretta’s track was nothing like I remember. I had zero sense of nostalgia out there. The track was ripped way deeper and you need to ride so much harder than I ever did as an amateur here. Obviously I’m tired of crashing, but I felt really good in Moto 2 and even grabbed the holeshot. We’ll keep working hard over the week and suit up for better results for Round 2 at the Ranch.”
- Adam Cianciarulo
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In their Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki Pro Motocross debut rides, McAdoo and new teammates Harrison and Sanayei were greeted with hot and humid weather in typical outdoor national fashion. In addition to the weather challenges, the trio fought through their first-race jitters as Harrison qualified 13th, McAdoo 14th and Sanayei 22nd in the 250 class.
As the gate dropped on Moto 1, the teammates battled the 40-rider field to grab positions near the front as Harrison pushed forward in eighth on the opening lap and continued to gain positions, even breaking into the top-5 at one point before making a critical error towards the end of the moto and dropping back to finish 23rd. Both McAdoo an
Source: Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A.
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