Yoshimura Suzuki's Brett Metcalfe raced his RM-Z450 to sixth place at the AMA Pro Motocross High Point National fourth round in Mt. Morris on Saturday as team mate James Stewart struggled with a wrist injury that occurred at the previous weekend's race, forcing him to pull-out of race two.
Although Metcalfe himself struggled in Qualifying, he bounced back at race time to put in two impressive motos. In the first, Metcalfe got a great start and finished seventh. After making small changes to the bike between motos, he returned to get another excellent launch in the second race and held onto fourth for almost the entire moto before a small mistake saw him slip into fifth.
Said Metcalfe: "I got great starts in both motos. The Yoshimura Suzuki RM-Z450 was awesome off the gate and that helped me get up there with the front-runners. In the first moto, I ended up seventh but I learned what I could do on the track and how I needed to change the set-up for moto two. In the second moto, I should've had fourth, but on the last lap I spun out and lost a spot. But we made big improvements throughout the day and I'm looking forward to carrying that momentum to Budds Creek."
Although Stewart was hampered by his injured wrist, he planned to race High Point nonetheless. But in the first moto, it was apparent that he wasn't 100 per cent fit. The Championship-winning rider got a poor start and fought to hang on to his bike throughout the moto. Despite all this, Stewart still managed to finish fifth, but afterwards he and the Yoshimura Suzuki team decided the wisest move would be to sit out the second moto.
"The weekend started off a little slow in the first practice," said Stewart. "But then I ended up quickest overall in Qualifying. My Yoshimura Suzuki RM-Z450 was working great and I was trying to do my best, but in the first moto I got a horrible start - outside the top 20. I was able to work my way up to fifth, which was pretty good, but about halfway through the race I was barely able to hang on. It just didn't make sense to race the second moto. It was a tough decision to make between the races - especially because everybody worked so hard. We'll go back and re-evaluate the situation. I'll probably just wait until the end of the week and see where we're at and go from there."
Team Yoshimura Suzuki Racing's next event is the fifth round of the 2012 AMA Pro Motocross Championship on Saturday, June 16th, at the Budds Creek National in Mechanicsville.
2012 High Point MX 450 Results:
1. Ryan Dungey 2. Mike Alessi 3. Jake Weimer 4. Andrew Short 5. Davi Millsaps 6. Brett Metcalfe (Yoshimura Suzuki RM-Z450) 7. Broc Tickle 8. Ryan Sipes 9. Nico Izzi 10. Michael Byrne
2012 AMA Pro Motocross 450 Standings:
1. Ryan Dungey - 186 2. Mike Alessi - 144 3. Jake Weimer - 141 4. Andrew Short - 128 5. James Stewart (Yoshimura Suzuki RM-Z450) - 116 6. Brett Metcalfe (Yoshimura Suzuki RM-Z450) - 114 7. Nico Izzi - 95 8. Broc Tickle - 90 9. Josh Grant - 84 10. Kyle Chisholm - 66