Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s RJ Hampshire put all the pieces together to claim second overall at Saturday’s Washougal National, scoring impressive 2-3 finishes at Round 7 of the 2021 AMA Pro Motocross Championship in Washougal, Washington.
Hampshire, who has been a season-long front-runner in the class, came out swinging in Moto 1 as he positioned himself in the podium battle right away on the opening lap. He fought his way into second about four laps in and he challenged the leader all race long to finish in a close second. In Moto 2, he got off to another great start and battled up front early on but he made a small mistake and stalled the bike halfway through the race. Losing a couple positions, Hampshire rallied back to finish third in the moto and second overall for the day.
“I felt good in practice even though I wasn’t that fast, but I knew we’d turn it around for the motos,” Hampshire said. “I felt good, I had two good starts and battled hard all day. In the second moto, I was in contention again, pushing for the win, and it could have been there but I stalled it about halfway into the moto. I got passed a couple times and it took the sails out of me but I can’t complain, I’m stoked on second overall.”
Round 3 winner, Jalek Swoll, experienced a rough go at the start of Moto 1 when he got caught up in a first-turn pileup that ultimately resulted in him getting run over. As a precaution, Swoll remained sidelined for the rest of the day’s racing.
“It honestly felt like today was going to be one of those days where I thought it was going to be a good finish,” Swoll said. “Unfortunately, in the first moto I got in a little first-turn pileup and got ran over. I think I came away with a little ding to the head but it’s all good, we’ll take the break to recover and get back to it at Unadilla.”
Teammate Stilez Robertson did not line up for Saturday’s racing due to feeling under the weather after the morning’s qualifying sessions.
In the 450MX class, Dean Wilson continues to battle through some health challenges this season but he was able to dig deep and put forth a consistent day with 11-11 finishes at Round 7.
“I’m just kind of running on fumes, dealing with what I’m dealing with and I feel like I have nothing left in the tank,” Wilson said. “That was the best I had today but I’m out of here safe and have two weeks off to hopefully recover and try to get some energy back and be ready for Unadilla.”
Next Event (Round 8): August 14 – Unadilla National – New Berlin, New York