Suzuki Factory Racing teams have stormed into 2015 with a brand-new RM-Z450, new riders; and a hunger for championship victory.
After three rounds of the Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross series, Soaring Eagle/ Jimmy Johns/ Suzuki Factory Racing 450SX riders Ken Roczen and Broc Tickle, along with Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing’s Blake Baggett, continue to push their Suzuki RM-Z450s to the limit – and to the top-step of the podium.
Roczen has been on the podium at every event so far this season with dominating wins in two of the three Main Events run so far. He increased his lead in the 17-round championship with an impressive win Saturday night in Anaheim, where he made quick-work getting his RM-Z450 to the front of the pack and leading all the way to the flag. Thanks to Roczen’s efforts and the performance of the RM-Z450, Suzuki sits at the top of the 2015 Manufacturer Standings with 72 points after three rounds of racing.
Said Roczen: “We had great starts when we needed it. My Suzuki worked great; everybody could see that it does everything I need it to do."
RCH Suzuki Factory Racing team-mate Tickle said: "I'm really happy with the new RM-Z450. I feel very comfortable and the bike makes it easier to go faster."
Tickle found his stride mid-race in the fifth place spot; but not after feeling pressure from Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing’s Blake Baggett. After the half way point of the race, Baggett suffered a minor crash while sitting in sixth, but was able to remount and race to a solid top-10 finish. As a rookie 450SX rider, Baggett had his best race of the season so far at Anaheim and continues to chip-away towards the front with each race.
In addition to the success of Suzuki’s Factory Racing teams, the presence of the RM-Z450 was further carried throughout the 450SX class: Brett Metcalfe, riding for Team Dirt Candy/ Fugoo Racing Suzuki, worked his way to a 12th-place finish in Anaheim. Metcalfe is making his return to Monster Energy Supercross for 2015 and is finding his rhythm and getting better with each race.
With team-mates Ronnie Stewart (#69) and Robert Lind (#869) at hand, the three Suzuki Riders have a great support system in one another for Qualifying, Evening Program, and Main Events and that support system led Metcalfe to the Main Event at Anaheim 2.
A total of 20 Suzuki RM-Zs rolled into Anaheim. Among that group were 450SX riders Nick Schmidt, AJ Catanzaro, Dustin Pipes, Austin Howell, and Tevin Tapia, who each week continue to push and race harder.
As a worldwide leader in racing, Suzuki continues to project a strong presence in the series with the RM-Z450 being the first choice for a long list of riders. Whether it be the Soaring Eagle/ Jimmy Johns/ Suzuki Factory Racing team, the Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing team, the support teams, or the hardworking, up-and-coming privateer riders, their collective passion and dedication to winning continues to energise Suzuki fans worldwide.