Tooele, Utah (August 23, 2014) – Trey Canard went 1-1 to claim his first outdoor title in the 450 class at the final round of the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship at Miller Motorsport Park in Tooele, Utah. However, it was Ken Roczen who came away with the 2014 championship title after posting a 3-4 moto tally for fourth overall on the day.
Heading into the Utah race, all eyes were focused on Roczen and his Red Bull KTM teammate, Ryan Dungey, who have battled all year for the 450-class title. And even though Roczen held a 20-point advantage over Dungey heading into the Utah finale, thanks to an impressive win in the mud last week in Indiana there was still a mathematical chance for Dungey to take the title.
However, when the action got underway in Utah, it was Canard out front in both motos. At the end of the day, the Team Muscle Milk Honda rider capture both holeshots and ultimately led every lap of both motos, easily outdistancing Dungey in each race.
"I've gotten more comfortable [the last few weeks]. It's no secret we made bike changes and it was instant for me in gaining more confidence," explained Canard. "I really have to attribute that to the team and I've had a lot of fun. I've been through such a roller coaster career I thought that if I didn't win today then it would be hard to win [ever]. I just wanted to put two motos together to give us [momentum] going into next year."
Behind Canard, Roczen, Dungey and GEICO Honda’s Eli Tomac battled for the final podium positions.
In moto one, Dungey and Roczen traded the runner-up spot a couple of times before Dungey finally took command of the position. In the meantime, Tomac kept the two KTM riders in sight until lap 14 when a bobbled dropped the Colorado rider off the pace.
At the end of the moto, Canard took the win with Dungey second, Roczen third and Tomac taking fourth ahead of Toyota/Yamaha/N-FAB/JGRMX's Josh Grant.
In moto two, Roczen jumped quickly into second, while Dungey finished the opening lap in third, after starting the race just outside the top five.
Dungey soon began to put pressure on his teammate for second and after applying pressure for a few laps, was able to make the move on Lap 5. Dungey closed in to within a couple seconds of Canard, but could never mount a serious challenge.
Tomac finished the moto in third, with Roczen in fourth, giving Tomac third overall for the day and Roczen fourth, which was plenty enough to clinch the title.
Roczen is the first German native to win a Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship title and is the 23rd different 450 Class champion in the series' 43-year history. Additionally, he joins an elite group of riders who hold the distinction of winning the title in their rookie season, including Dungey, Ricky Carmichael and Jean-Michel Bayle.
"I've been trying to play it cool all weekend but I'm not going to lie, I've been really nervous about today," said Roczen. "I just didn't want to talk about it and [wanted to] go out there and ride. I just pumped myself up for the motos and went, but it was honestly hard to put it out of my mind. I just went out there and did what I needed to do and made it happen, which is a huge accomplishment."
Roczen's title triumph was the second ever for KTM in the 450 Class and was the brand's second premier division crown in three years. It's also the first 1-2 championship sweep for the team.
1. Trey Canard (Hon) 1-1
2. Ryan Dungey (KTM) 2-2
3. Eli Tomac (Hon) 4-3
4. Ken Roczen (KTM) 3-4
5. Brett Metcalfe (Kaw) 7-5
6. Ryan Sipes (KTM) 9-6
7. Andrew Short (KTM) 6-12
8. Fredrik Noren (Hon)10-9
9. Weston Peick (Suz) 13-7
10. Justin Brayton (Yam)12-8