2017 Gopher Dunes MX
As the racing resumed following a one-week break for the 2017 CMRC sanctioned Rockstar Energy Drink Motocross Nationals presented by Motovan, a huge crowd was treated to some spectacular action as they watched their favourite riders in Round 5 at Gopher Dunes Raceway in Courtland, Ontario this past weekend. Under perfect weather conditions, the brutally rough Gopher Dunes race track lived up to its reputation as one of the toughest circuits in North America, as the series reached the halfway point while moving to Eastern Canada.
Monster Energy Alpinestars Kawasaki’s Mike Alessi came into the 2017 series recovering from an injury he had suffered during last winter’s supercross season, which he admitted set him back in both his training and his bike preparation. After being the fastest qualifier in the morning, Alessi got the holeshot in the first moto, posted the fastest lap of the race, and led until Lap 3 when he tucked the front end and went down. He got back up in fourth and charged back to second place before making a small mistake with two laps remaining and finishing the first moto in third. Mike grabbed the lead on the first lap of Moto 2 and led wire to wire, again posting the fastest lap of the race, and extended his lead to as much as 10 seconds during the moto to take the win and the overall victory for the day. The overall was his first since 2014. He broke Matt Goerke’s win streak at Gopher Dunes, and moved himself into fourth place in the series standings. On the podium Mike said, “I am fit, strong, hungry, and focused, and I was not going to be denied in that second moto.”
After qualifying second, and then going down in the first turn of the opening moto, Rockstar Energy OTSFF Yamaha’s Matt Goerke proved why he has been called the fastest rider to ever negotiate this track when he put on a charge that would see him in second place at the end of the moto, only 6 seconds behind the winner. Goerke called his second moto start horrible and was thirteenth after the opening lap. He would finish the moto in third, earning him second overall on the day, which put an end to his win streak at Gopher Dunes. Matt admitted that his first moto charge took a lot out of him and that this year’s track was the roughest he had ever seen, making it hard to find a good setup for the bike. After coming into this weekend sharing the red plate with Christophe Pourcel, Matt will have it all to himself going into Round 6.
Royal Distributing Motovan Piller’s Race Team’s Tyler Medaglia continued to look impressive in Round 5 after qualifying fourth in the morning and then finishing fifth in the first moto. Medaglia said he struggled in that opening moto with his rear shock setup, but after making some adjustments before the start of Moto 2 felt much more comfortable and it showed. Tyler’s second place finish in Moto 2 earned him third overall for the day, and moved him into fifth place in the series standings. On a brutally rough and gnarly track where a rider’s fitness is put to the test, Tyler proved that he is one of the fittest out there, and as the series moves eastward, expect him to climb to the top of the podium. Read more…