Honda : Canard Captures Second Overall At Spring Creek National

Honda : Canard Captures Second Overall at Spring Creek NationalThe excitement continued this past Saturday at Spring Creek Motocross Park in Millville, MN, for round nine of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship series, and the Honda Red Riders put together stellar performances all day. Team Honda Muscle Milk's Trey Canard logged his best finish of the season for second overall with 2-2 scores. Muscle Milk-supported GEICO Honda rider Eli Tomac swept the 250 class for a second consecutive week with two impressive come-from-behind performances. With three rounds remaining, Tomac holds a 27-point championship lead over second place.

450 Race
When the gate dropped for moto one of the 450 class, it was Team Honda Muscle Milk's Justin Barcia who grabbed the holeshot and took over the early lead. Closely in tow was teammate Trey Canard, who also nailed down an exceptionally great start aboard his CRF450R. By the halfway mark the Honda duo had fallen into second and third and were in a heated battle for second, but Canard ultimately made the pass on his teammate and continued to work his way towards the leader. By the final lap he had closed the gap to within one second of the leader; unfortunately he didn't have enough time to make the pass and ultimately settled for second. Barcia maintained his position and took the checkered in third.

Canard and Barcia launched off the line in the second moto and quickly made their way into third and fourth by the end of the opening lap. Barcia moved past his teammate on the second lap and maintained his third-place position throughout the majority of the moto. With five laps remaining Barcia made a mistake in the sand whoops, allowing Canard and another rider past. He was able to recover and still finish a solid fifth place in the race. Canard set his sights on the rider in front of him, and once within striking distance was able to make a pass stick and take over second with only three laps remaining. Canard's 2-2 finishes left him second overall for the day, his best finish of the motocross season. Barcia finished just shy of the podium in fourth overall with his 3-5 scores.

"It was a really great day all around," explained Canard. "The whole day was very needed and I really enjoyed it all. Timed qualifying practice was the best it's been all year for me with two thirds. I got good starts both motos, which has also been a struggle all year, and then two good motos. I was really excited to be in the front battling with the top guys. Both Ryans (Dungey and Villopoto) and James (Stewart) have been a large step ahead all year and they may be still, but it was nice to be up there racing with them. We made some changes to the bike, which I think really helped today so I am excited to see how the rest of the season goes."

"First moto was good. I got the holeshot so that really helped," stated Barcia. "I was battling most of the race with Trey and then towards the end made a little mistake and got cross-rutted on the face of a jump and I ended up just cruising in for third, which was good after the bad weekends I have had recently. The second moto started out good too; I was up front battling but made a mistake and ended up going down, which cost me a few positions and I ended up fifth. It wasn't awesome but we definitely made a lot of progress with me and the bike so we are ready to get back out there and race Unadilla."

250 Race
Muscle Milk-backed GEICO Honda's Eli Tomac continued his winning ways on Saturday with two moto victories, allowing him to take over the 250 class championship points lead. In moto one, Tomac sat in 14th after the first lap but began methodically moving his way past the rest of the riders. By the halfway mark Tomac had taken over the lead, and carried it all the way to the finish. With his title rival unable to collect any points after a DNF, Tomac took over the points lead with ease. In the second moto, he got another less-than-desirable start but by lap five had made an incredible charge up to third. He went to work on the front-runners and despite their efforts they were not able to hold off the fierce Tomac. He took over the lead a few laps later and rode unchallenged all the way to the checkers to capture his fourth overall win of the season.

"It was an all-around awesome day," Tomac said. "The starts weren't there, but the rest of if was on point. My track at home is very similar to this one and I think that was a big help today. I tried to make my passes earlier and get them over with. I've been on the podium every race this season and I really wanted to stay up there. We're leaving here with the red plate and that is awesome."

It was another impressive showing for Muscle Milk-supported GEICO Honda's Justin Bogle, who captured sixth overall with 5-6 finishes. Bogle nailed down a third place start in the first moto and battled with the front-runners for much of the race until getting passed and settling for fifth. In the second race, he put together another strong performance to finish sixth.

"I think I rode well," stated Bogle. "It took me a while to get going today. I didn't have the best practice times but as soon as the gate dropped I started to figure it out. I got started around fifth or sixth and stayed there the whole time. I was battling with riders the whole time, just not moving forward. I felt like I rode really well, so I can't be bummed."

Wil Hahn came out of the gate strong in both motos, nailing down two Holeshot awards and increasing his lead to eight points over second place in the chase for the $15,000 reward. He recorded a pair of eighth-place finishes, giving him eighth overall for the day.

"It seems like the holeshots have been the highlight of my weekend," explained Hahn. "I'm not getting the results I'm looking for after leading as many laps as I have. I am making progress, but I really want to be on the podium. I keep improving, but I definitely still have some things I need to work on."

Zach Osborne finished 10th overall for the day with 11-9 scores aboard his Muscle Milk-supported GEICO Honda CRF250R.

The Focus: Factory Mechanic Mike Tomlin Bio
The relationship between a rider and a mechanic is a special thing. It may take a while for the relationship to form, but after it does, it is a true bond—the mechanic knowing exactly how the rider wants his bike to be set up, and the rider trusting his mechanic to do so. Often times riders become so comfortable with their mechanics that they will do anything they can to keep them, even while transitioning to other teams. Team Honda Muscle Milk's Justin Barcia has seen ample amounts of success with his long-time race mechanic Mike Tomlin, who he brought over from the GEICO Honda squad.

"I have been Justin's race mechanic for five years now. One year of amateurs and then the last four years as a pro," explained Tomlin. "He joined the Factory Connection amateur team, and I started helping him at the amateur races while also working for one of the team's pro riders. When he turned pro, I took over the role as his full-time race mechanic. My favorite memory with Justin is winning our first outdoor race at Southwick in 2009. He won the first moto and in the second moto the gate dropped but bounced back up, he started dead last and still finished third. He was riding unreal that day and it was so cool to watch. Both Supercross championships were also very special to me. We have a really strong relationship, so I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to move with him from GEICO Honda to factory Honda Muscle Milk Team at the end of last year. It has been a great experience and I am looking forward to many more years with Justin."

450 Class Overall Results
1. James Stewart 1-3
2. Trey Canard (Honda) 2-2
3. Ryan Dungey 5-1
4. Justin Barcia (Honda) 3-5
5. Ryan Villopoto 6-4
6. Andrew Short 7-8
7. Mike Alessi 11-6
8. Chad Reed (Honda) 10-7
9. Jake Weimer 9-9
10. Broc Tickle 8-10

450 Class Championship Points (after 9 of 12 rounds)
1. Ryan Villopoto 413
2. Ryan Dungey 379
3. Justin Barcia 307
4. James Stewart 269
5. Trey Canard 263
6. Mike Alessi 195
7. Andrew Short 191
8. Jake Weimer 184
9. Broc Tickle 183
10. Josh Grant 176

250 Class Overall Results
1. Eli Tomac (Honda) 1-1
2. Marvin Musquin 4-4
3. Jason Anderson 3-5
4. Jeremy Martin 2-7
5. Blake Baggett 6-3
6. Justin Bogle (Honda) 5-6
7. Wil Hahn (Honda) 8-8
8. Justin Hill 7-11
9. Ken Roczen 35-2
10. Zach Osborne (Honda) 11-9

250 Class Championship Points (after 9 of 12 rounds)
1. Eli Tomac 405
2. Ken Roczen 378
3. Marvin Musquin 334
4. Blake Baggett 295
5. Zach Osborne 261
6. Jason Anderson 238
7. Justin Bogle 209
8. Jeremy Martin 207
9. Kyle Cunningham 183
10. Cooper Webb 170