Chad Wienen Wins in Texas, Goes Back-to-Back to Start 2015 Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship

Chad Wienen Wins in Texas, Goes Back-to-Back to Start 2015 Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship

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vendor.2015.atv-motorcross.racer_.chad-wienen.racing.yamaha-yfz.at-mtn-dew-atv-motorcross-national-championship.jpgReigning three-time AMA Pro ATV Champion, and current points leader, Chad Wienen picked up where he left off a month ago at the first round of 2015, claiming his second-straight overall victory on Saturday at the Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing (ATVMX), debut from Underground MX Park in Texas. Wienen faced stiff competition aboard his Wienen Motorsports/Maxxis/SSi Decals/Walsh Race Craft Yamaha at the inaugural Texas ATV National, but ultimately emerged victorious following consistent 3-1 moto finishes.

After rain hit the region on Friday night it looked as though the riders would be faced with an added challenge on Saturday, but the wet weather had little to no impact on the conditions when the riders hit the track in the morning for qualifying. Hetrick Racing/Corrosion Specialties/Brownell Inc. Honda’s Joel Hetrick was on the gas early and made the first statement of the day by taking his second ATVRiders.com Top Qualifier Award of the season.

When the gate dropped on Moto 1, to no ones surprise it was Motosport.com/Maxxis/FLY Racing Honda’s John Natalie, one of the best starters in ATVMX history, who led the riders into the first turn, collecting SSi Decals Holeshot Award. The veteran opened the race looking strong through the opening laps, but Hetrick soon started to apply pressure. Hetrick was relentless in his pursuit of the lead and made an aggressive pass on Natalie stick. Hetrick went on to lead the remaining laps to take his second moto win of the season, but Natalie kept him honest all the way through to the finish.  Wienen wasn’t far behind in third, but also wasn’t a major factor in the battle for the win after having to fight his way through the field. Texas native and Maxxis Yamaha, powered by Moto-Xperts, rider Thomas Brown finished fourth, with JB Racing Can-Am’s Jeffrey Rastrelli rounding out the top five. After the moto concluded, Hetrick discovered he had run his engine to its limit en route to the win and made a complete engine change in his search of the overall win in the final moto.

Underground MX Park provided a challenging track for the riders.Photo: Ken Hill

Underground MX Park provided a challenging track for the riders.
Photo: Ken Hill

As the riders stormed out of the gate in Moto 2, Natalie grabbed his second SSi Decals Holeshot Award of the day for the sweep, with Hetrick second and Wienen third. The battle up front was just as intense as the opening moto amongst the same trio of riders.. Hetrick once again looked to put the pressure on Natalie for the lead, but this time a much better start by Wienen allowed him to make the move on Hetrick for second on Lap 1. Once in the runner-up spot, Wienen was focused on taking control of the moto away from Natalie. The two did battle for the top spot before a couple laps before Wienen eventually made a pass stick on Lap 4, bringing Hetrick along with him. Once out front Wienen pulled away while Hetrick was forced to battle through an apparent bike issue. Hetrick’s misfortune allowed Brown, who had passed Natalie for third, to eventually take over second with two laps to go. Hetrick continued to lose spots as the race came to an end. Wienen took a comfortable win ahead of Brown, with Natalie fighting to another podium result in third. Rastrelli finished fourth while Hetrick soldiered home to fifth.

Natalie (front) and Hetrick (back) joined Wienen on the podium and challenged up front all afternoon.Photo: Ken Hill

Natalie (front) and Hetrick (back) joined Wienen on the podium and challenged up front all afternoon.
Photo: Ken Hill

Wienen’s second moto win of the season proved to be the deciding factor in the overall classification, leading him to back-to-back overall wins to start his title defense. Natalie’s strong starts and consistent efforts landed him second overall (2-3) and while Hetrick was able to secure a spot on the box in third (1-5) despite his late troubles. Brown secured fourth overall (4-2) with Rastrelli completing the top five (5-4).

Wienen extended his AMA Pro ATV championship lead to 10 points ahead of Hetrick. Natalie remains close in third, just 13 points back.

The competition was close all afternoon.Photo: Ken Hill

The competition was close all afternoon.
Photo: Ken Hill

Chad Wienen, Galena, Ill., Yamaha (3-1)AMA Pro ATV Overall Results (Moto Results)

  1. John Natalie, Houtzdale, Pa., Honda (2-3)
  2. Joel Hetrick, Seneca, Pa., Honda (1-5)
  3. Thomas Brown, Sanger, Texas, Yamaha (4-2)
  4. Jeffrey Rastrelli, Palm City, Fla., Can-Am (5-4)
  5. Ronnie Higgerson, Cutler, Ill., Honda (7-6)
  6. Josh Upperman, Louisville, Ohio, Honda (6-7)
  7. Joe Byrd, Union City, Tenn., Honda (9-9)
  8. Nicholas Gennusa, Wall Township, N.J., Yamaha (8-10)
  9. Brett Musick, Verdunville, W.Va., Yamaha (12-11) 

AMA Pro ATV Championship Standings

  1. Chad Wienen, Galena, Ill., Yamaha – 112
  2. Joel Hetrick, Seneca, Pa., Honda – 102
  3. John Natalie, Houtzdale, Pa., Honda – 99
  4. Thomas Brown, Sanger, Texas, Yamaha – 95
  5. Jeffrey Rastrelli, Palm City, Fla., Can-Am – 79
  6. Nick Gennusa, Wall, N.J., Yamaha – 69
  7. Josh Upperman, Louisville, Ohio, Honda – 66
  8. Ronnie Higgerson, Cutler, Ill., Honda – 66
  9. Vital Cazenave, Union City, Tenn., Honda – 53
  10. Joe Byrd, Union City, Tenn., Honda – 50

Specialty Awards 

ATVRiders.com Top Qualifier Award

  1. Joel Hetrick – 2 points
  2. John Natalie – 1 point

SSi Decals Holeshot Championship

  1. John Natalie – 4 points
  2. Joel Hetrick – 3 points

The 2015 Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship continues with its third round of the season from Muddy Creek Raceway in Blountville, Tennessee, in just two weeks on Saturday, May 2.

For more information on the 2015 Mtn. Dew ATV Motocross National Championship, visit www.atvmotocross.com. Join the conversation on the seriesFacebook page, follow on Twitter @ATVMXdotcom and Instagram @ATVMotocross, and be sure to always hashtag #ATVMX.

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