While the end result may not have been ideal, RCH Suzuki Factory Racing riders Ken Roczen and Jake Weimer turned in gritty performances in Saturday night’s Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross Championship race at Ford Field in Detroit.
RCH Soaring Eagle/ Jimmy John’s/ Suzuki Factory Racing’s Roczen came away from Round 12 with a sixth-place finish and Weimer’s night came to an abrupt conclusion following a lap-four incident during the Main Event with Josh Grant.
Despite the less-than-expected end result, Roczen still maintains his stronghold on second in the points, with a healthy 14-point margin distancing himself from third-place and eventual race winner Jason Anderson.
The 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Champion transferred into the Main Event directly out of his heat race, but a bad start after the gate dropped forced him to play catch-up for much of the night, but the 21-year-old German rider came through the field – in front of the many team sponsors attending the event – in workman-like fashion to notch his 11th straight top-six of the season.
“My night wasn’t very good,” explained Roczen. “It was kind of a long week. We started off Saturday morning pretty good but the track changed as the day went on and got a lot drier. It seems like we struggled in the whoops. We had a pretty decent heat race. Going into the Main, we definitely didn’t have the start we wanted. It just seemed like I got stuck behind (Weston) Peick. Normally the whoops are my strong point and we were definitely struggling in that part of the track. I’m ready to put this one behind me but I hope everyone who came out from Soaring Eagle had a good time. We have an off weekend coming up so I’m glad to be healthy. I’m going to do some moto testing and come back to Santa Clara strong.”
Weimer finished fourth in his semi-final and was looking to back-up last week’s top-10 with another solid finish. Unfortunately, a miscue during the Main Event, ultimately resulting in contact with Grant cost the Rupert, Idaho native his second straight top-10 finish.
“It’s a bummer, for sure,” said Weimer, who slipped from 10th to 11th in points. “In the Main Event, I felt like I was in a pretty good situation to get myself another top-10. It ended up being a little mistake on my part. I came across the track a little bit, got together with Josh Grant and just went down. I hurt my shoulder and that ended my night. We’ll go back home, make sure everything is good and go from there.”
As a former Monster Energy Supercross rider and veteran of practically everything action sports, RCH team co-owner Carey Hart is intimately familiar with the ups and downs that come with the territory.
“Pretty rough, especially after winning in Toronto, to have a night like that,” commented Hart following the race. “Things just weren’t clicking in the Main Event. Ken had a bad start and I think after that, he just had a hard time getting in his groove. Jake had a tough night so we’re all hoping for the best with his shoulder. You have to take the good with the bad. We’ll take this weekend off, take a deep breath and regroup so we can come out swinging in Santa Clara.”
Monster Energy AMA Supercross takes a break this weekend affording the teams and riders a welcome respite after starting the season with 11 races in a row. Round 12 of the 2016 Supercross Championship takes place at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California on April 2nd.
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