The 2020 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship reached its halfway point with a historic weekend from legendary RedBud MX over Labor Day weekend. The first ever doubleheader in American motocross history headlined the Circle K RedBud I & II Nationals, and the unique dynamics surrounding Rounds 4 & 5 provided another exciting weekend of racing from the world’s best riders. At the conclusion of the action-packed visit to one of the sport’s beloved venues it was Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Zach Osborne and Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Adam Cianciarulo who emerged triumphant in the 450 Class, while GEICO Honda’s Jeremy Martin and Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s RJ Hampshire prevailed in the 250 Class.
In addition to celebrating the winners and podium finishers at each round of the 2020 season, each week the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship also brings attention to other riders who should be recognized for their efforts. Following every round a pair of specialty awards are handed out to riders who dig deep and overcome the odds to achieve success.
The Deltran Battery RC Hard Charger Award recognizes the 450 Class rider that embodies the relentless, never-give-up attitude that personified the career of the G.O.A.T. Ricky Carmichael, the most successful rider in the history of American motocross. The award is given to the rider that passes the most competitors in a single 450 Class moto at every round, earning the most significant improvement from his starting spot to his finishing result. Each recipient of the RC Hard Charger Award is awarded with a custom-designed trophy.
The FMF Privateer Power Award shines the spotlight on the underdog rider that overcomes the odds in pursuit of his racing dream, exceeding expectations by putting forth an incredible performance that often surpasses that of the factory-backed riders that surround him. The ability to do more with less is something that every privateer aspires to achieve, and each week this award applauds a rider who was successful in accomplishing that feat. Each recipient of the Privateer Power Award is awarded with a custom-designed trophy.
Deltran Battery Tender RC Hard Charger Award – RedBud I
Throughout the 2020 season Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing’s Justin Barcia has shown flashes of brilliance, with the trademark speed that has made him one of the sport’s most exciting riders. While Barcia’s confidence is certainly high, some inconsistent starts have arguably been the one thing keeping the Yamaha rider from the top step of the podium, and it showed again at RedBud I. As the 450 Class field approached the first turn to start Moto 1, Barcia unfortunately found himself caught up in another rider’s misfortune. With virtually the entire field ahead Barcia got back on track and went to work, quickly battling his way up to 24th place by the completion of the opening lap. From there he continued his charge up the running order and sustained his determined pace to fight back to just outside the top five in sixth. The improvement of 18 positions in the moto helped Barcia earn his second Deltran Battery Tender RC Hard Charger Award in four races this season, and the effort ultimately put him in a position to capture an overall podium result at the end of the day.
For reigning three-time 450 Class Champion Eli Tomac, the 2020 season hasn’t gotten off to the start virtually anyone expected. The Monster Energy Kawasaki rider has been hit with a myriad of misfortune thus far, where his quest for the four-peat had been anything but smooth. At RedBud II, Tomac was one of several top riders left on the ground after an incident in the second turn to start Moto 2, with the champ getting the worst of it by completing the opening lap in 29th place. Never one to quit, Tomac had no choice but to go to work. Over the course of the 30-minutes-plus-two-laps moto Tomac pushed as hard as possible and was able to make an impressive climb through the field to finish in seventh and salvage what could have easily been a disaster of a moto. By virtue of his improvement of 22 positions in the final moto, Tomac earned the Deltran Battery Tender RC Hard Charger Award for RedBud II.
Minnesota native Henry Miller has been considered one of the most successful and competitive privateer riders for several years. No matter what his circumstance might be, Miller consistently finds a way to punch well above his weight and achieve impressive results, often right in the hunt for a top-10 finish in an incredibly deep 450 Class field. At the Circle K RedBud I National, the first of a historic doubleheader weekend at legendary RedBud MX, Miller put himself in familiar territory, doing battle within the top 15 of the running order. The KTM rider battled alongside several factory-backed and factory-supported riders all afternoon and earned a pair of well-deserved 14th place finishes to ultimately end the day 13th overall. It’s the third consecutive top-15 finish for Miller this season and his consistency ultimately made him an ideal choice for the first of two FMF Privateer Power Awards handed out over the weekend.
In his third season of Lucas Oil Pro Motocross competition, 450 Class rider Jake Masterpool has learned what it takes to compete at the sport’s highest level and continues to impress aboard his Husqvarna, despite not having the depth of resources enjoyed by so many of his counterparts. After a nightmare of an afternoon at RedBud I, Masterpool returned to the track on Labor Day in search of redemption. After a solid pair of motos Jake ended up a season-best 14th overall thanks to consistent 14-15 moto finishes. What made these results even more impressive was the fact that Masterpool battled his way forward from starts outside the top 20, including a stellar 30th to 14th-place ride in Moto 1. By virtue of his ability to dig deep all afternoon and reward himself with the best result of the season, Masterpool is a compelling choice for the FMF Privateer Power Award at RedBud II.