NEW BERLIN – This weekend, the Pro Motocross National Championship is coming to Unadilla Motocross.
The iconic Unadilla MX, arguably the championship’s most storied venue, will kick off a three-week run to end the season, hosting the 32nd running of the Unadilla National for the 10th stop of the 12-round championship on Saturday, August 12, from New Berlin.
“It (Unadilla) is unique with it being a more natural terrain track, it is a European-styled track, so I think this suites Marvin Musquin, and since he is from France and started racing in the world championships over there, it might suite him, if anyone,” said Casey Huntley, Public Relations Manager at Next Level Sports.
“Unadilla made its debut in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross during the inaugural season of the world’s most prestigious off-road motorcycle racing series in 1972, and is one of just two tracks in the championship that has existed since its inception. Despite that legendary distinction, the history of the facility even predates the national championship by four years, hosting its first ever event in 1969, a mere three years after the sport established itself as a professional competition in the United States,” According to a press release from Next Level Sports. “European riders dominated that era and the unique undulating layout in New Berlin catered to their skillset. Since then, Unadilla has carried the distinction of being the most European-styled track in the country, a major complement to the true roots of the sport. As a result, Unadilla’s carries an unmatched global legacy in the states that now spans 47 years.”
With defending series champion Ken Roczen sidelined with a major career threatening injury, it has been stated that a new champion – no matter who wins – will emerge in the 2017, 450 class at Unadilla. An exciting moment for all, as someone’s career may take a leap into stardom with the field wide open.
“No matter who wins the 450 class, there is going to be a new champion crowned. With Ryan Dungey announcing his retirement after he won the Supercross championship. Ken Roczen had a pretty devastating injury that took place at the beginning of the Supercross championship. Hopefully he is able to make it back, ever. It is definitely career threatening, he suffered some pretty severe damage to his arm. He (Roczen) can ride, it is just a matter of competing at that level. Will someone like Ken Roczen be satisfied going out and finishing 10th? He (Roczen) is a very determined individual, so if anyone can make it back it would be him,” said Huntley of the recent changes involving the sports top riders. “So with those two guys out, everyone was like ‘alright, Eli Tomac is the guy’ and just assumed. And not to say Eli has or hasn’t been that guy, but there has been times where he has fumbled, maybe a bike issue or something. That is where Blake Baggett, and Marvin Musquin, who are second and third in points, have definitely stepped up. They have done a real good job of challenging Eli, Marvin has stolen three overall wins and Baggett has taken two. A new champion no matter what. We have had so many different guys step up this year.”