News 20 Jul 2021

Roczen recalls heavy Millville opening moto crash

German rider let adrenaline 'do its magic' in second moto win.

Image: Octopi Media.

Team Honda HRC’s Ken Roczen hit the ground hard in dramatic fashion in the opening moto at Spring Creek, crashing in turn one and being run over, later rebounding to win the second moto of the day.

After qualifying fastest on the day at round six of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, things took a quick turn for Roczen as he crashed at the front of the pack in the first turn of the opening moto.

He subsequently got run over by multiple riders, ending his race on the spot, later detailing the incident, saying it was rather unexpected after such a good start out of the gate.

“I got out of the gate really good,” Roczen explained. “Went down the straight away and I wheelied just a little bit, so I hooked my clutch for a split second.

“But in general I know Justin [Barcia] had a really good start, so he came in from the outside and there was a Yamaha on the inside as well, so I kind of got sandwiched a little bit.

“I hit my brakes and I was in a pretty safe spot I thought, but I saw a green fender on the inside and Adam [Cianciarulo] said he kind of got pushed from the inside as well.

“As we were in the turn it was almost – I don’t think we were locking bars – but something made me just almost like a magnet, I was just being pulled straight into the ground.

“As soon as I was on the ground I kind of just closed my eyes and things obviously happened really quick and I felt a really big hit and it was already done.

“It was kind of unexpected because things like that normally happen when you’re mid-pack and you start locking bars and things like that, so it was kind of unexpected. But I don’t really like the start straight and the way we all funnel into that fast right-hander to be honest. But yeah, that was the end of that.”

Escaping major injury, Roczen returned for moto two and dominated the field, leading the race from start to finish. While he wasn’t 100%, he felt good on the parade lap and let adrenaline do its work to get him through the moto.

“I was pretty solid and the adrenaline was flowing, to be honest,” he continued. “I didn’t really think about it that much. During the parade lap, I could definitely just feel the – I don’t want to call it meat – but you know when stuff wiggles around.

“I was actually really surprised in the ribs that there was no sharper pain [when] seat bouncing or stuff like that, so that was actually pretty solid.

“But my triceps in my right arm, my lat and everything that was hit, I could just kind of feel the inflammation wiggle a little bit, but it wasn’t bad enough internally really for it to take my breath away or anything like that.

“So I was actually pretty pumped on that. It was really just charlie horses all around, I got pretty lucky because obviously, the hit was just [heavy] when you go down in front of the pack on the start turn like that and you get hit like that.

“I was a little scared at first, with [potentially] some broken ribs but it definitely the adrenaline does its magic too.”

The second moto win was a much-needed points grab in his hunt for the championship, as points-leader Dylan Ferrandis (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) suffered his worst moto finish of the season in fifth.

Roczen now trails Ferrandis by 32 points as the series sits at halfway heading to Washougal this Saturday for round seven.