Features 8 Oct 2022

Racefeed: 2022 WSX Rd1 Cardiff

Direct updates from round one of the championship in Wales.

Follow the 2022 World Supercross Championship (WSX) with direct WSX and SX2 updates from one of the season at Principality Stadium through Racefeed.

Image: Supplied.

SX2 qualifying:
When the first SX2 qualifying sessions of the season were complete, its as Jace Owen (ClubMX FXR Yamaha) who sat atop the leaderboard with a 46.584s, ahead of group two leader Max Anstie (Honda Genuine Honda Racing) at 46.733s. Practice pace-setter Cole Seely (MotoConcepts Honda) was third upon return, directly ahead of Chris Blose (Bud Racing Kawasaki) as the final rider within the 46s. Next in line was Mitchell Oldenburg (MotoConcepts Honda), while after going fastest on Friday, Derek Drake (MDK Motorsports KTM) was sixth this afternoon, ahead of teammate Justin Bogle, Shane McElrath (Rick Ware Racing Yamaha), Kyle Chisholm (CDR Yamaha) and Maxime Desprey (GSM Yamaha).

WSX qualifying:
An incredibly tight WSX qualifier saw Honda Genuine Honda Racing team rider Ken Roczen lead the way on combined times, his 45.935s benchmark marginally better than Joey Savatgy’s (Rick Ware Racing Kawasaki) 45.938s. It was wildcard Eli Tomac (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) who led the way across practice, but was third in qualifying at 46.002s, followed by Justin Brayton (MotoConcepts Honda) and Luke Clout (CDR Yamaha). Best of the Europeans was Thomas Ramette (GSM Yamaha) in sixth position, as group two fastest Vince Friese (MotoConcepts Honda) was next in line for P7. The top 10 was completed by Dean Wilson (Honda Genuine Honda Racing), Cedric Soubeyras (Bud Racing Kawasaki) and Josh Hill (CDR Yamaha), with Chad Reed (MDK Motorsports KTM) improving to 11th this afternoon.

SX2 heat one:
The opening five-lap heat of the season saw hometown favourite Anstie make a late move on wildcard Dylan Walsh (Kawasaki) to pick up the first win of the evening by two seconds. Behind him it was Walsh, McElrath, Blose and Carson Brown (GSM Yamaha). Positions six through 10 featured Lorenzo Camporese (Honda Nils), Wilson Todd (Honda Genuine Honda Racing), Desprey, Henry Miller (Rick Ware Racing Yamaha) and wildcard Dylan Woodcock (Suzuki).

SX2 heat two:
Heat two was won by high-profile American Bogle ahead of Oldenburg and Seely, who made an inspiring return to competition to open his campaign. Top-qualifier Owen claimed fourth from Matt Moss (Bud Racing Kawasaki), who has switched to his back-up bike for the night program after enduring electronic issues earlier. Sixth to 10th was Chisholm, Phil Nicoletti (ClubMX FXR Yamaha), Derek Kelley (PMG Suzuki), Thomas Do (Honda Nils) and Tanti after he went down during the race.

WSX heat one:
It was none other than Brayton who won the first WSX heat race in this new era of the world championship, holding Savatgy at bay and with Ramette in third. Fourth was a solid start for Hill, as was P5 for Angelo Pellegrini (Honda Nils), followed by Wilson, Freddie Noren (PMG Suzuki), wildcard Jack Brunell (GasGas), Jordi Tixier (Honda Nils) and Cade Clason (ClubMX FXR Yamaha). In another return to racing, Josh Grant (MDK Motorsports Honda) went out in the early laps.

WSX heat two:
The second heat saw faster qualifier Roczen jump out front from the outset and that’s where he would remain, while an error from Tomac allowed Friese to sneak through into second position. Fourth came Adrien Escoffier (Bud Racing Kawasaki), with Soubeyras filling the top five. P6 was the best showing yet from Grant Harlan (ClubMX FXR Yamaha), from Ryan Breece (Rick Ware Racing Yamaha), Clout and Anthony Bourdon (GSM Yamaha). Unfortunately for Australian icon Reed, he exited the race in its latter stages after falling heavily in the on-off section. PMG Suzuki’s Justin Starling was another non-finisher.

WSX super pole:
An entertaining super pole belonged to Roczen in a continuation of his form, using a quad in the last rhythm section to record a 45.874s – the fastest lap of the GP all weekend so far. That placed Roczen 0.065s ahead of Tomac, who dipped into the 45s for the first time, with Savatgy third. Next in line was Brayton, Friese and Ramette, all within a second of the quick time. Hill, who was the first to do the quad, stopped the clocks in P7, from Soubeyras, Escoffier and Pellegrini.

SX2 final one:
Winning the first SX2 final of the season was Oldenburg in a solid performance ahead of Bud Racing duo Blose and Moss. McElrath charged through the pack to P4, followed by Walsh, Brown, Tanti, Camporese, Kelley and Nicoletti. It was a tough one for the heat winners, Anstie finishing 11th and Bogle going out early with what appeared to be a mechanical issue, but he will be back for the second outing.

SX2 final two:
Following a five-minute break, the gates dropped on final two and this time it was Anstie who holeshot and went on to win, but importantly, first heat winner Oldenburg could only finish in P19 after going down early. Claiming second was Desprey ahead of McElrath and Blose, while a better start from Todd enabled him to hold onto fifth. Sixth through 10th included Kelley, Brown, Bogle, Tanti and Walsh.

SX2 super final:
The SX2 super final gave Oldenburg the chance to rebound and that’s exactly what he did, winning by 2.594s at the conclusion of this extended 10-lap affair. He led Seely and Tanti in a real mixture of results, while Brown was fourth and McElrath fifth. Next in line was Bogle, ahead of Kelley, Blose, Owen and Anstie. The overall belonged to a consistent McElrath, joined on the podium by Blose and Oldenburg to open the season.

WSX final one:
Final one of the WSX category ended up being a commanding result from Tomac in winning by 4.435s, but only after initial leader Roczen went down in the mid-stages. While Tomac was in control out front, Friese held on for second ahead of a charging Roczen, who continued to execute the quad he first did in super pole. Brayton was comfortably fourth, in front of Hill, who in turn led Angelo Pellegrini (Honda Nils), Ramette, Wilson, Brunell and Breece. Two more top-level riders went out in this one, first Clout in a crunching incident and then, soon afterwards, Savatgy crashed out of podium contention.

WSX final two:
Tomac was again flawless in the second of the eight-lap finals, this time crossing the finish 2.246s clear of Roczen, who again had the speed, but not track position on this occasion. Third was the end result for early leader Friese, followed by an impressive Soubeyras and Savatgy, who was able to get back on track after exiting the first race. Brayton, Hill, Escoffier, Noren and Ramette were the top 10. A late crash saw yet another big name go out, this time Wilson falling on the final lap while running well down the order.

WSX super final:
The WSX super final at 12 laps in duration capped off the night and, while the race distance was extended, the result was unchanged as Tomac delivered to claim all three race wins and the grand prix overall. This time out saw Tomac cruise to a 1.747s victory ahead of Savatgy, who had made a late move for position on Brayton – leader of the opening laps – and that’s how they finished. Fourth was Roczen after ending lap one in P8, with Friese once again up-front in fifth. Positions six to 10 included Soubeyras, Hill, Pellegrini, Tixier and Bourdon, while overall it was wildcard entry Tomac who topped the podium over Roczen and Friese.