Fox Raceway, Pala, CA — May 27, 2023
As the ProMotocross season opens, the 250MX riders will only have one of the Lawrence brothers to contend with. Jett Lawrence moves up to the 450 MX class leaving his brother Hunter to battle with the other contenders for the outdoors title.
250 Class Moto #1
Jalik Swoll(38) grabbed the holeshot, but it was Jo Shimoda(30) who took the early lead, and RJ Hampshire followed him to run one-two on the first lap.
Hunter Lawrence(96) was back in 10th, and Justin Cooper(32) in 11th. Hampshire trailed Shimoda closely, and when the leader made a mistake, RJ passed, moving into the top spot. Max Vholand moved up to the third spot but trailed Shimoda by a full two seconds.
Tom Vialle(128) ran fourth, with Ryder DiFrancesco(75) in fifth. Shimoda got cross-rutted and went down, allowing Vohland, Vialle, and DiFrancesco to slip by. Cooper in sixth place and Lawrence in seventh were hunting Shimoda.
Supercross rookie of the year, Haiden Deegan(238) held down the 10th position at the midway point of the moto.
Shimoda worked his way around Ryder D. while Lawrence worked his way past Cooper and set his sights onDiFranceco. Upfront, Hampshire built a 10-second lead on Vohland in the second position.
Shimoda got back into a podium position, passing Vialle, and Lawrence followed shortly after.
On the final lap, Lawrence caught and shot past Shimoda. He closed on Vohland but could not catch him. Hampshire held on for the win.
250 Class Moto #1 Results
450 Class Moto #1
All eyes are on the youngster, Jett Lawrence(18), waiting to see how he fares against the established stars of the 450MX Class. Will Chase Sexton(23) be able to translate his Supercross success into the outdoor season?
Lawrence nailed the start and established himself out front easily. Dylan Ferrandis(14) and Cooper Webb(2) settled into second and third, three seconds back. Sexton and Aaron Plessinger(7) counted out the top five after lap one.
Sexton moved around Webb and trailed Ferrandis by a half second. While Lawrence built his lead to almost five seconds in the first five minutes of the moto.
Ten minutes in, and Lawrence built his lead to over seven seconds. The only question appears to be if the 19-year-old rookie can hold up to the heat, fatigue, and physical challenges of the 30-minute and two-laps distance of the ProMotocross races.
At the halfway point, Lawrence was up by ten seconds. Surprisingly, the rider struggling seemed to be Sexton. He could not gain on Ferrandis, and Plessinger was putting pressure on him to try and move into a podium position.
Plessinger slipped and fell, dropping to fifth. Sexton managed to get it together and passed Ferrandis. But he still trailed Lawrence by over ten seconds.
With six minutes to go, Plessinger passed his teammate Webb to move up to the fourth spot. The duo set off to try and catch Ferrandis.
Riding for the first time since his injury late in the Supercross season, Webb looked good, and a fifth-place finish is a solid run.
Plessinger’s quest for a podium position went away when he fell after getting tangled with a lapped rider. That mistake allowed Webb to move back to fourth.
Lawrence was never challenged in his runaway victory. Sexton and Ferrandis held second and third, respectively, to finish the first 450MX moto of the outdoor season.
450 Class Moto #1 Results
250 Class Moto #2
This time, Lawrence got the start he was looking for and took the holeshot easily. The winner of the first moto, RJ Hampshire, went down in the second corner and will have to battle himself back from the 39th position.
Vialle and Deegan ran second and third. Jo Shimoda was mired back in 13th place. Lawrence was quickly up three seconds on Vialle and five seconds on Deegan. No one else in the field was even close.
With 20 minutes to go, Hampshire had moved past half of the field. If Lawrence wins, Hampshire would have to finish second to out-point him for the event title.
After his impressive Supercross season, Haiden Deegan is carrying the momentum he earned inside to the outside circuits. He ran down Vialle, which will give him second overall if he can hold on.
Justin Cooper made a late dash to try and pass Vialle. If he could move up that one position, it would give him an overall podium in third.
Hampshire made a late attempt to move into the top ten, but he went down again with two laps to go.
Lawrence and Deegan go one-two in the moto and finish that way overall. Cooper pushed too hard and fell off his bike on the last lap allowing Vialle to coast under the checkered flag for third.
250 Class Moto #2 Results
250 Class Points Standings
450 Class Moto #2
Second moto the same as the first. Jett Lawrence gets the holeshot and starts to pull away. However, there is a change in the running order behind the leader. Sexton holds second, Ferrandis runs third, Webb in fourth, and Plessinger runs in the fifth position.
While the rest of the field falls away from the leaders, Sexton keeps Lawrence in sight.
They both ride almost flawlessly, with the interval only moving half a second back and forth. With ten minutes to go, they hold a 20-second advantage over Ferrandis and Plessinger, who are battling for the final podium spot. The leaders are catching lappers which always carries the potential for creating an incident.
Despite the pressure, Lawrence never faulted riding to the moto win and the overall event victory.
450 Class Moto #2 Results