When the gate dropped for the second 450 heat of the night, it was RJ Hampshire jumping into the lead, followed by his Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing teammate, Christian Craig. RJ held the lead until the finish, trailed by of a trio of championship contenders; with Craig finishing fifth. In the main event, both riders battled in the top ten, with Hampshire ultimately finishing eighth, and Craig tenth.
“Man, it was an awesome day, and an awesome experience,” Hampshire said. “Murph pushed hard for it, believed I could do it, and we got all the other guys on board. I was just happy I was able to prove myself today. We were solid from the beginning of the day, really. My qualifying times were decent, P5. I holeshot the heat, led a few laps, and then reality hit that I might win this thing. I won my first heat, my first time ever trying to do it, and first ever race on a 450, so that was awesome. The main event start was decent and I just kind of rode my own race. I didn’t really race anyone hard and wanted to finish in the top ten of my first main and I did that. I’m just really stoked on our whole day and like I said, for the team giving me a chance to come out here and race tonight.”
250 MXIn the 250 class, Talon Hawkins showed improved qualifying speed aboard his FC250, trimming about ten positions from his average position. He also moved from 18th to 11th in his heat race, and ultimately qualified for the main event via the LCQ. In the main, he ran as high as eighth position before a crash dropped him to 18th in the final result.
“Daytona was pretty good,” said Hawkins. “I got my best qualifying position so far, so that’s definitely something to be happy about. I ended up in the LCQ after the heat race…I just had a little spill, so I have some corrections to make and some stuff to work on. But I was running P8 in the main and had a little mishap and went down. That caused a little bike problem…my fault. I’ve got to stay off the ground and keep on keeping on. I know what to work on, so we’ll get back to Baker’s Factory and make something happen next weekend.”
Next Event (Round 9): March 11, 2023 – Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind.
Round Eight Results: Daytona
250MX East Results
1. Hunter Lawrence (Honda)2. Max Anstie (Honda)3. Haiden Deegan (Yamaha)…13. Hardy Munoz (Husqvarna)18. Talon Hawkins – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
1. Eli Tomac (Yamaha)2. Cooper Webb (KTM)3. Chase Sexton (Honda)…8. RJ Hampshire – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing10. Christian Craig – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
250MX East Rider Point Standings
1. Hunter Lawrence – 99 points2. Max Anstie – 85 points3. Haiden Deegan – 75 points…14. Hardy Munoz – 3131. Talon Hawkins – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 31 points
450MX Rider Point Standings
1. Eli Tomac – 186 points2. Cooper Webb – 181 points3. Chase Sexton – 176 points…8. Christian Craig – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 103 points25. RJ Hampshire – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing –15 points26. Malcolm Stewart – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing –15 points