The Montreal Supermotocross is crazy. It’s a full-blooded Supercross just like the ones in the U.S except for one thing. It has quads. The ATVs run on essentially the same course as the motorcycles and the crowd loves it. Last year, John Natalie won the ATV class with lap times that would have placed him fourth among the motorcycles. This year, the ATV course was slightly different from the motorcycle track because of one section of whoops. But the biggest jumps were all in place, and they were intimidating for both motorcycles and ATVs.
In fact, when they lined up for the first qualifier, Josh Creamer still hadn’t attempted the biggest jump. Yet he pulled the holeshot and found himself in the lead. Behind him, Canadian Champion Richard Pelchat and U.S. Champion John Natalie made it a Can-Am parade to the delight of the French Canadian crowd. Creamer fully expected one of them to fly past when they came to the big jump. But it didn’t happen. Natalie pulled alongside Pelchat in the air, and they collided immediately after landing. That allowed Creamer to get away. With a small cushion, he decided not to attempt the jump for the rest of the race. Natalie, on the other hand, did, and he caught up quickly. They two of the finished neck and neck, while Pelchat came from the rear to fifth. “I got away without trying the big triple,“ said Creamer after the race. “But that’s not going to happen in the main. I’ll have to do it on the first lap.“ He had actually ridden the qualifier in what had to be considerable pain. He had bitten halfway though his tongue on one hard landing. ATV riders are tough.
The second qualifier was a duel between Cody Miller and Josh Upperman, setting the stage for the main. The four top qualifiers were all Americans. Natalie had said that he could have been much more aggressive with his teammate Creamer in the qualifier, and that the main would be a different matter. It was expected to be a Creamer versus Natalie show with Miller and Pelchat as a spoilers. But that wasn’t how it worked out. The first turn saw a massive bottleneck, and the only one of the favorites to escape was Pelchat. By the time the other riders broke free, Pelchat had a massive lead. The main event would be a runaway for the Canadian, and the crowd loved it. In the meantime, the Americans scrambled amongst themselves as they came though the pack. Creamer finally cleared the jump and turned the fastest lap times of the night, but he could only catch up to fourth. Natalie and Miller had the real race. They passed each other a number of times, with Millar finally getting second overall.
The side-by-side race was another runaway, this time for American Motoworks driver Mark Holz and his Can-Am Commander. Holtz won by 20 seconds over Canadian favorite Karel Benoit. On the motorcycle front, Matt Goerke scored an easy victory in the MX1 class. The only race of the night that had a nail biter of a finish was the MX2 class, where KTM rider Jeremy Medaglia more or less rammed Kavan Benoit in the last turn. Medaglia stayed upright and won. Good fun for the fans.
For full results of all the events, including the amateurs, go to www.mylaps.com
and search “supermotocross.”