McDonald Jones Stadium turned it on for the FOX Australian Supercross Championship Newcastle Triple Crown at the weekend.
After staging Sir Elton John and Sir Paul McCartney earlier this year, the Hunter venue displayed its hosting capabilities yet again, with more than 15,000 “rev heads” lapping up the extravaganza.
The hard packed track proved slick and slippery thanks to rain leading into the event, with a challenging set of whoops further making conditions extremely technical.
Smart decisions and strong starts were crucial and, ultimately, saw the star riders rise to the top.
With the Triple Crown format in play for SX1 and SX2, it was a make-or-break night on Saturday 11 November for contenders resulting in intense racing and compelling viewing for fans.
In the end, Froth Honda Racing’s Dean Wilson (SX1) and Boost Mobile Honda Racing’s Max Anstie (SX2) secured back-to-back overall victories.
Both secured the maximum 75 points after three wins (1-1-1) in their respective deciders.
Repco M9 Honda’s Parker Ross claimed the SX3 class while Tasmania’s Cooper Ford took the honours on his KTM in the CR22 85cc Cup.
Final #1 saw the star-studded line up burst out of the gates with five-time Australia Champion Justin Brayton snaring an early lead over current series leader Wilson, Empire Kawasaki’s Matt Moss and CDR’s Justin Hill.
Moss was in the mix early along with Wilson, who eventually passed him to go into battle with his Honda teammate.
Unfortunately for Moss, his night ended prematurely after a heavy crash in lap seven, leaving the resilient Australian bitterly disappointed.
Wilson and Brayton went bar-to-bar while navigating traffic with lappers, but it the Scotsman who used it to his advantage, gaining the edge and ultimately taking the first SX1 checkered flag.
CDR’s Luke Clout started strongly in Final #2 but Wilson quickly took the lead with Brayton hot on both their heels.
He looked comfortable, holding the lead from lap one to the finish line to collect his second win of the night, while Clout and Brayton banged bars, with the American pushing hard trying to pass the Australian for several laps.
Brayton’s persistence paid off to narrowly secure second place, with Clout rounding out the top three.
The final race was drama-filled even before the first turn with Brayton and Boost Mobile Honda Racing teammate Kyle Webster crashing together hard and not finishing.
With Brayton out, Wilson, Hill and Boom Racing’s Dylan Wills hit the front, with the in-form Wilson further extending his lead on the pack to easily finish his laps and secure his third straight SX1 win of the night.
Hill and Wills held their own to round out the top three.
Wilson’s successful weekend gives him a commanding lead on the SX1 Australian Supercross Championship title heading into the final round.
CDR’s Hill was second overall, while his teammate Clout took home third place.
Final #1 was full of action with KTM’s Nathan Crawford taking the lead, and favourite and current SX2 series leader Anstie caught deep for several laps before skilfully and patiently fighting his way to the front, his whoop speed and smart passing the difference.
Anstie took the first points over Crawford, with Yamalube Yamaha Racing’s Kaleb Barham collecting third place.
Final #2 saw Anstie go two-from-two claiming a comfortable win over WBR’s Robbie Wagerman and KTM’s Crawford.
Terrafirma Equipment Sales Honda Racing’s Wilson Todd led early in the race but a mishap handed the lead to Anstie, who didn’t look back.
Final #3 unsurprisingly saw championship leader Anstie lead from start to finish, with KTM’s Crawford right behind him.
Serco Yamaha’s Cole Thompson finished third.
Anstie also enjoys a commanding lead in the SX2 Australian Supercross Championship title going into Melbourne.
Crawford finished second overall, with Barham third in his maiden SX2 podium finish.
The SX3 division raced their standalone final with Ross going back-to-back with the top spot on the podium after a victory over Yamaha GYTR’s Kayd Kingsford and R&D Husky’s Jyle Campbell.
After popping his shoulder in the heat and having a slow start, he rode patiently before taking control from Kingsford.
Round one’s second placegetter and heat one winner Kobe Drew was in the mix.
However, a mishap on the final lap ended his winning chances.
85cc – CR22 Cup
In a highly-anticipated night of racing for the 12-to-14-year-olds in the CR22 85cc Cup, Ford secured the honours on his KTM SX 85 over New South Welshman Heath Davey and New Zealand’s Levi Townley on their Yamaha YZ 85s.
For more sports stories:
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- REAL NRL: Hawks building platform for future success
- Hunter football clubs kick financial goals
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