Team Suzuki Press Office – August 20.
Weston Peick #34 – [450 Class] – 14-9 for 10th Place.
Enzo Lopes #816 – [250 Class] – 13-13 for 12th Place.
Jimmy Decotis #47 – [250 Class] – 34-14 for 18th Place.
• Weston Peick tallies another Top-10 on the Suzuki RM-Z450.
• Enzo Lopes earns career-best overall finish on the Suzuki RM-Z250.
The Autotrader/ Yoshimura/ Suzuki Factory Racing Team visited the Budds Creek National in Mechanicsville, Maryland, for the penultimate round of the 2018 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship at the weekend, where high temperatures, muggy conditions, and a rough track made for a challenging day.
But that didn’t prevent Weston Peick from giving it his all. The 27-year-old dug deep to score his 11th consecutive top-10 finish on the Suzuki RM-Z450, while in the 250 class, rookie Enzo Lopes was fast all day: The Brazilian logged a career-best 12th overall despite tweaking his knee in practice and teammate Jimmy Decotis returned to action after battling sickness the past few weeks. The Massachusetts rider charged back from several crashes to put the RM-Z250 inside the top 20.
Peick, the anchor of the Autotrader/ Yoshimura/ Suzuki Factory Racing Team, has proven time and again that willpower and grit can overcome nearly any obstacle. He has been racing all summer with torn tendons in his hand, yet he refused to let that sideline him. The Menifee, California native showed his determination at Budds Creek – a track that was not kind to Peick’s hand. On his #34 RM-Z450, Peick fought hard in both motos to earn 10th overall and remain sixth in the points standings. He will undergo hand surgery on Tuesday and miss the final round of the 2018 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship this weekend at the Ironman Raceway.
Over the past few weeks, Lopes has focused on increasing his sprint lap-speed and intensity while riding during the week at the JGRMX compound; and the hard work is beginning to pay off. The Brazilian twisted his knee in practice at Budds Creek, but he suited-up anyway. The decision proved fruitful. He pushed through the pain to collect 13-13 moto scores for 12th overall–the best result of his rookie campaign. Lopes sits 20th in the points standings.
Decotis was a late scratch for the previous round at Unadilla after dealing with a lingering illness that he couldn’t seem to shake. “The Rippa” returned to action at Budds Creek. Had it not been for a slew of crashes in the first moto, Decotis would have finished near the top-10. He powered his Suzuki RM-Z250 to a great start in the second moto and settled-in for 14th by moto’s end. The 34-14 scores resulted in 18th overall and he is 26th in the standings.
Weston Peick [450 Class, 14-9 for 10th Place]:
“Budds Creek was the last round for me, because of my hand injury. The race didn’t go as well as I wanted it to. I didn’t get the best start in the first moto, but I worked my way up. The track was hard pack and bumpy, which took a toll on my hand. Honestly, it was one of my worst weekends for my hand issue. We made some changes to the bike for moto two, and they also prepped some of the track that was pretty gnarly rough. I got off to a sixth-place start and held there for half the race. I’m obviously not stoked, but given my hand situation, to pull off a top 10 is good in my books. I am getting surgery on Tuesday to get my hand fixed. At this point, I’m not sure how long I’ll be off the bike.”
Enzo Lopes [250 Class, 13-13 for 12th Place]:
“The day started out well. I was 13th fastest in the first practice, and pretty close to the leader’s pace. Midway through the second practice, my foot came off the peg and I hurt my knee. I struggled in the first 15 minutes of the first moto with the pain, but then my knee started to loosen up and get better. For a few laps toward the end of the first moto, I was one of the fastest riders on the track. Then, in the second moto, I was caught up in the carnage of a first turn crash and had to dig deep to get toward the front. I fought hard and finished 13th. I have one more round to go, and I’m blessed to be in this position. I want to end the series with an even better overall result.”
Jimmy Decotis [250 Class, 34-14 for 18th Place]:
“It was good to be back at the races. I was sick the past few weeks. I tried to limit my time on the dirt bike and came in fired up. I felt good in both practices. I had a bad start in the first moto and crashed, then crashed twice more after that. I had a far outside gate pick, but I came around 10th. After hanging in there for 25 minutes, I ran out of steam the last four laps. We made some great changes on the bike, and I’m getting more and more comfortable. The results aren’t the best, but everything is feeling good.”
Jeremy Albrecht [Team Manager]:
“Weston Peick had his toughest race with his hand, but he knocked-it-out with a good second moto for how bad his hand is. It keeps getting worse, so now’s a good time to get it fixed. Enzo Lopes rode awesome. His speed was up there. He ended up crashing off the start in the second moto. He and Jimmy Decotis were battling on the last lap and Enzo got him by a foot. Jimmy had more energy, but a few crashes held him back. I’m excited to have Justin Hill back next weekend. I just wish Weston’s hand was better because he was surviving out there.”
The Autotrader/ Yoshimura/ Suzuki Factory Racing Team will travel to the Ironman National in Crawfordsville, Indiana for the final round of the 2018 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on Saturday, August 25th.
Words and images courtesy Team Suzuki Press Office