- AMA 450 rookie leads every lap in both motos
- Chase Sexton a solid third overall in return from injury
- Hunter Lawrence wins first 250 moto before crashing out of moto 2
Jett Lawrence’s incredible AMA Pro Motocross 450 rookie season continued at the Independence Day Weekend RedBud National, where the 19-year-old Australian led every lap of both motos aboard his CRF450RWE, keeping his unblemished record in the class intact. Five rounds in, Lawrence has yet to lose a moto in the big-bike class, and he has earned a maximum-possible 250 points, putting him over a full round in front of second place with more than half of the season still to be run. Returning to action at his home race following a three-round absence, Illinois native Chase Sexton notched a respectable third-overall result via 2-3 moto scores. In the 250 class, Hunter Lawrence enjoyed a commanding first-moto win aboard his CRF250R but—for the first time all season—wasn’t able to take the overall victory, due to a first-turn crash that put him out of moto 2.
The first 450 moto saw Jett snare an impressive holeshot and ride smoothly to an 18-second win. Sexton was fifth in the early going but moved into third on lap 5 of 17. The next lap saw him secure second place, which is where he ultimately finished. Moto 2 was a repeat performance for Jett, although Dylan Ferrandis gave him a challenge, as reflected by the five-second winning margin. Sexton, in turn, pushed Ferrandis hard from third, but a tip-over in a turn slowed his progress. In the end, he passed the checkered flag third, which was also his overall result.
Hunter was untouchable in the opening 250 moto, snaring a commanding holeshot and pulling ahead to win by 13 seconds. Unfortunately, he was caught up in the mayhem of the fast lefthand sweeper after the moto 2 start and was in enough pain to require a ride to the Alpinestars Medical Unit. Fortunately, a checkup didn’t reveal anything serious enough to cause him to miss further action, and Hunter looks forward to trying to get back on top at the next round.
- Team Honda HRC was pleased to welcome back Chase Sexton following his three-round break to recover from a concussion suffered in practice just after the opener. Unfortunately, the squad was missing Chance Hymas, who tore the ACL in his left knee just after round 4. The Idaho native underwent successful reconstruction surgery but is expected to miss the remainder of the 2023 season while he recovers.
- On Friday, Sexton joined teammates Jett and Hunter Lawrence for press day, during which they participated in interviews and turned some laps on the track.
- With the RedBud round hosting a Scouting Moto Combine, SLR Honda was on hand, supporting riders Parker Ross and Noah Viney. Ross posted an eighth-overall result, with Viney taking 16th and fellow Red Rider Nate Freehill finishing 21st.
- RedBud MX is celebrating its 50th anniversary of racing this year, and Team Honda HRC participated with special retro graphics designed by Throttle Jockey. Also as part of the celebration, Team Honda HRC test rider Trey Canard participated with other former racers in a “Legends Lap.”
- Jett and Sexton were the top two riders during morning qualifying for the 450 class, while Hunter was third-best in the 250 division.
- On his way to winning both 450 motos, Jett also posted the fastest lap times, and Hunter did likewise in the first 250 moto.
- With Jett’s victory, Honda moved into a tie with Kawasaki for most RedBud overall wins in the 450 class (formerly 250 two-strokes), at 12 each. Other Red Rider winners at the venue include Marty Tripes, Steve Wise, David Bailey, Jeff Stanton, Jeremy McGrath, Kevin Windham, Sebastien Tortelli, Ricky Carmichael (three times) and Chad Reed. Jett’s win ended a drought for Honda, who had last topped RedBud’s 450 class in 2011.
- RedBud marked the fourth time in five rounds that Jett has led every lap in both 450 motos.
- With a best-possible total of 250 points in the 450-class standings, Jett now has a commanding lead of 57 points. Sexton moves up to 10th despite having missed three of five rounds. Although Hunter was docked seven points at High Point and didn’t finish the second moto at RedBud, he still leads the 250 class by 11 points.
- Jett Lawrence and Chase Sexton were both drug-tested following the second moto, after which they participated in the post-race press conference.
- Next up, Team Honda HRC heads to Massachusetts for the Southwick National on Saturday.
Jett Lawrence 18“That second [moto], it took me a little bit to find my flow—and it was the worst time for that because Dylan [Ferrandis] was right there! I didn’t even know he was there at first; I saw my pit board with the gap and was like, ‘Oh, we’ve got to step it up.’ Once I found my flow, I could go back to just trying to time things, and stuff like that. It’s been an awesome season so far. It’s Chase’s first race back since round 1, so he’s going to get better and better—and the same with Dylan; he’s made progress from the first race to now. We’ll just try to make sure we keep those starts good, because it makes it a lot easier on myself.”
Chase Sexton 23“It’s definitely good to be back. This race is super special for me, just growing up only two hours from this place; the fans were yelling the whole track, no matter what position I was in, so that was awesome. Obviously, it wasn’t the result I wanted. I didn’t get great starts, and I ended up falling over in the second moto, which is on me; I’ve just got to be better than what I was today. I knew coming in that I’ve got to build back to where I was in Supercross; that’s the reason I came back, and hopefully we can get there by the end of the year.”
Hunter Lawrence 96“It was a bit of a hero-to-zero day here at RedBud. We executed perfect for our first-moto holeshot and rode good laps, well within my limits. The second moto was a bit of chaos after the start. I’m not entirely sure where it went wrong—I didn’t holeshot, so I guess that’s where it started. It’s unfortunate, but it is what it is—part of the sport. I’m thankful it’s nothing major; we’ll buff her out, and should be good to go.”
Lars Lindstrom - Team Manager“We had an interesting day full of ups and downs, but all in all, it was a pretty good day. We were super-excited to have Chase Sexton back, and at the same time bummed not to have Chance Hymas—and I want to send a big get-well-soon to him. I was extremely relieved to have Hunter’s injuries not be serious enough to keep him from racing the next races, even though the initial outlook didn’t look good. If Chase had started up with Jett, I think we would’ve had an interesting race, but we have another chance for that next weekend. Lastly, what can you say about Jett? His unbelievable rookie 450 season is turning out to be legendary, and he’s making it look like he’s a seasoned veteran out there. It’s so exciting to watch him, and I’m so proud to see Honda having so much 450 success again.”