FEBRUARY 2021 NEWS

TABLE OF CONTENTS

SUZUKI PRESS RELEASES

M4 ECSTAR SUZUKI MOTOAMERICA EPISODE 7 VIDEO ONLINE

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 3.

The final episode of the Hammer Down M4 ECSTAR Suzuki video series from the 2020 MotoAmerica AMA Superbike Championship from Laguna Seca is now online at Team Suzuki Racing. The final round of the series saw two race wins for Sean Dylan Kelly aboard his GSX-R600 and victories for Cameron Petersen in the Stock 1000 class aboard his GSX-R1000 and Rocco Landers in the Twins Cup class with his Suzuki SV650.

ALEX RINS JEREZ ONBOARD VIDEO OUT NOW

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 4.

Team Suzuki Ecstar has launched a new onboard video from the Circuito de Jerez Angel Nieto, in Andalucia, Spain on its YouTube channel.

The video features a lap of the MotoGP circuit with commentary and circuit insights and gears chosen on the GSX-RR around it from Team Suzuki Ecstar Test Rider Sylvain Guintoli.

BRNO MotoGP ONBOARD VIDEO ONLINE

To watch the video on Team Suzuki Ecstar YouTube: CLICK HERE

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 6.

Take a trip back to the Autodromo Brno MotoGP™ race in August in the Czech Republic with an exciting onboard lap of the circuit with Alex Rins on his GSX-RR.
Team Suzuki Ecstar Test rider Sylvain Guintoli again adds his extensive knowledge and commentary corner-by-corner on the circuit and also gearing used by Rins.

DAVIDE BRIVIO AND TEAM SUZUKI ECSTAR PART WAYS

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 7.

After eight years at the helm of Team Suzuki Ecstar in the role of Team Manager, Davide Brivio and Suzuki have announced an end to their collaboration.

The Italian has been present in the MotoGP World Championship paddock for more than 20 years and has been involved with Suzuki since 2013. He held the position of Team Manager when Suzuki embarked on their new MotoGP project, and has remained in place throughout their rise to success, which was this year topped-off by the incredible World Championship crown achieved by Joan Mir, and the Teams’ Championship title for Team Suzuki Ecstar.

Davide Brivio:

“A new professional challenge and opportunity suddenly came to me and in the end I decided to take it. It has been a difficult decision. The hardest part will be to leave this fabulous group of people, whom I started this project with when Suzuki rejoined the Championship. And it’s hard to say goodbye also to all the people who have arrived over the years to create this great Team. I feel sad from this point of view, but at the same time I feel a lot of motivation for this new challenge – which was the key when I had to decide between renewing my contract with Suzuki or starting a completely new experience.

“Achieving a MotoGP title is something that will remain in the Suzuki history books and it will always have a special place in my life memories. I would like to deeply thank all the Suzuki management for their trust and confidence in me, which they had since the beginning. I would like to thank every single member of our MotoGP group in Japan and at the track, all the Suzuki network, and of course all the riders who rode for the Team in this period, especially Joan and Alex who did a great 2020 season.

“Joan becoming World Champion was a dream come true for me and for all the people who worked hard and accompanied me on this magnificent journey. I wish the best to Team Suzuki MotoGP, I hope that the results in the future will be better and better and I will always be a Suzuki fan. Thanks very much Suzuki!”

Shinichi Sahara – Team Suzuki Ecstar Project Leader:

“Sincerely, it was shocking news for us about Davide’s departure from Team Suzuki Ecstar. It feels like somebody took a part of me, because I always discussed with him how to develop the team and the bikes, and we’ve worked together for a long time. In 2020 we achieved fantastic results despite the unusual and difficult situation due to Covid-19. And 2021 will be an even more important year for us to keep the momentum. Now we are trying to find the best way to cover for the ‘Davide loss’. Luckily in most cases I have had quite a similar way of thinking to him, therefore it is not so difficult to keep the direction we should go as Team Suzuki Ecstar, I think. We would like to wish him the best of luck for the future.”

GUINTOLI TALKS ONBOARD LAP OF RED BULL RING

Watch it here on the Team Suzuki Ecstar YouTube page: CLICK HERE

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 8.

Team Suzuki Ecstar MotoGP Test Rider Sylvain Guintoli is back to let Suzuki fans know what is like to ride a lap of the Red Bull Ring Circuit in Austria in this new video from the team.
In this latest video clip, Guintoli explains gearing and strategy around the circuit with Alex Rins onboard the Suzuki GSX-RR

SUZUKI ECSTAR MISANO ONBOARD VIDEO

To watch the video on Team Suzuki Ecstar’s YouTube Channel: CLICK HERE

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 11.

Take an onboard lap of the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli with Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Alex Rins aboard his GSX-RR. In the clip, Suzuki MotoGP test rider Sylvain Guintoli commentates again, corner-by-corner, advising on the gears used and speeds reached during the lap.

SUZUKI ECSTAR TECH TALK VIDEO WITH BREMBO

To watch the video on Team Suzuki Ecstar YouTube: CLICK HERE

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 13.

Team Suzuki Ecstar has just released a new video in their ‘Tech Talk’ series, this week talking about Brembo braking systems as used by Joan Mir and Alex Rins. The video, filmed by the team, features Brembo technical expert Andrea explaining the different size discs and weights, along with various callipers chosen for different track conditions and circuits for the MotoGP World Champions to use on their GSX-RR machinery.

SUZUKI WEEKEND ACTION – January 16TH

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 15.

The first major motorcycle race of 2021 kicks off this weekend in America with the opening round of the Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross Championship at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.
And Suzuki Motor of America’s new team, Twisted Tea H.E.P. Motorsports Suzuki, will have three riders on the grid aboard the 2021 RM-Z450 machinery: Max Anstie, Adam Enticknap and Brandon Hartranft.
The 2021 series will take place over 17 rounds, but due to the uncertainty of the ongoing Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, will comprise several weekend and mid-week back-to back races in Houston, Indianapolis, Orlando, Arlington, Atlanta and Salt Lake City, plus a single race at Daytona Beach in Florida.

2021 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Calendar:

Round 1: Houston, Texas (East) NRG Stadium Saturday, January 16
Round 2: Houston, Texas (East) NRG Stadium Tuesday, January 19
Round 3: Houston, Texas (East) NRG Stadium Saturday, January 23
Round 4: Indianapolis, Indiana (East) Lucas Oil Stadium Saturday, January 30
Round 5: Indianapolis, Indiana (East) Lucas Oil Stadium Tuesday, February 2
Round 6: Indianapolis, Indiana (East) Lucas Oil Stadium Saturday, February 6
Round 7: Orlando, Florida (East) Camping World Stadium Saturday, February 13
Round 8: Orlando, Florida (West) Camping World Stadium Saturday, February 20
Round 9: Daytona Beach, Florida (West) Daytona Int. Speedway Saturday, March 6
Round 10: Arlington, Texas (West) AT&T Stadium Saturday, March 13
Round 11: Arlington, Texas (West) AT&T Stadium Tuesday, March 16
Round 12: Arlington, Texas (West) AT&T Stadium Saturday, March 20
Round 13: Atlanta, Georgia (West) Atlanta Motor Speedway Saturday, April 10
Round 14: Atlanta, Georgia (West) Atlanta Motor Speedway Tuesday, April 13
Round 15: Atlanta, Georgia (West) Atlanta Motor Speedway Saturday, April 17
Round 16: Salt Lake City, Utah (East) Rice-Eccles Stadium Saturday, April 24
Round 17: Salt Lake City, Utah (W/E) Rice-Eccles Stadium Saturday, May 1

January 16: Round 1: Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross. NRG Stadium. Houston. Texas. USA. Also includes Round 1 of the East 250 Championship.

SUZUKI ECSTAR WHEEL AND TYRE CHANGE VIDEO

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 18.

Join Team Suzuki Ecstar’s mechanical masters in a wheel and tyre challenge against the clock in this new fun video from the team. Two teams from Joan Mir and Alex Rins’ crews go head-to-head with a front and rear wheel change in a close competition.

And the winner is?

SUZUKI OPENS 2021 SUPERCROSS SEASON IN HOUSTON

sUZUKI rmz 450

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 18.

The Twisted Tea/ H.E.P. Motorsports/ Suzuki and BarX/Chaparral/ ECSTAR Suzuki teams are currently in Houston, Texas for the three-round back-to-back stint that begins the 17-round 2021 Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross season.

Making his 450 class debut on Saturday night in a dramatic way, Brandon Hartranft launched his RM-Z450 ahead of 21 other riders off his first gate drop in the premier class. Hartranft’ s teammate Adam Enticknap posted strong starts and steady laps on his RM-Z450, and Texas native John Short kept his BarX/ Chaparral/ ECSTAR Suzuki RM-Z250 inside the top 10 most of the night and showed the speed to run up front.

Hartranft shot out of the gate in the premier class’s second heat and reached the first turn in the lead. The 22-year old 450 rookie rode steadily from there amid the pack of veteran racers. Hartranft repeated his great start straight charge in the last chance qualifier, where he finished in second place. Unfortunately, Hartranft’ s start successes didn’t carry over into the premier class main event; a mid-pack start had him battling to reach the top 10 before contact with another rider on lap five put the young rider on the ground. With his work cut out for him, he put his head down and gained his first 450 supercross points.

“I’m happy to get my first 450 race out of the way, said Hartranft. “I felt solid all day and felt awesome in the main event but got taken out shortly into it. I never gave up, though, and put in some solid laps. I definitely have a lot more to show so I’m looking forward to Tuesday.”

Enticknap rode a solid and steady 2021 season opener in Houston. He finished right behind teammate Hartranft in the LCQ, then worked through opening-round jitters to put in a commendable main event performance.

“Opening in Houston was definitely a different atmosphere,” Enticknap said. “I felt more calm and less nervous. I’ve had a lot of good memories at NRG Stadium in the past. The day started out okay, not great, but not bad. As practice progressed throughout the day I started to feel the round one nerves! My starts were on point, and we made it happen. I’m excited to see what round two brings.”

Max Anstie, who had a strong 2020 motocross season with the team and was looking forward to a great 2021 Supercross debut, was sidelined just days before the Houston opener. Anstie will sit out the early rounds but expects to turn heads and put his Suzuki up front soon.

Joining the BarX/ Chaparral/ ECSTAR Suzuki team for the new year, Texas-native John Short came up just shy of a top-10 finish in the Eastern Regional 250 class. After a direct transfer to the main from the first heat race of 2021, Short battled impressively through the 20-lap main event.

Said Short: “Last night was a positive experience considering the limited time I’ve had riding the new RM-Z250 and working with the new BarX team. From where I started the day to where I finished was a real confidence booster. Every time I ride the bike I seem to get a little more confident, I think the RM-Z is a great fit for me. Last night was a good result to build off of. You never really know where you are until you go racing. I’m excited to try and continue to improve upon the 11th place finish as the series goes on.”

“Everybody on the team was excited for the first race and everybody was prepared: mechanics, riders, everybody.” Twisted Tea/ H.E.P. Motorsports/ Suzuki Crew Chief Clark Jones said. “The new race protocol in place makes things different, but we were all excited to get to race. The whole day went smoothly for our riders, both in the heats and in the main event. Everyone is looking to improve for the next race on Tuesday and looking forward to the rest of the series.”

Chris Wheeler, Suzuki’s Racing Support Manager, was happy to see both teams get off to a solid start: “Honestly, we were late getting both teams ready for the season so to see everyone get through the first round is a big positive,” commented Wheeler. “Each rider can build off their night and we are looking for everyone to improve.”

The pandemic lockdowns have required several changes to the Supercross race series, including four Tuesday night rounds, and the Twisted Tea/ H.E.P. Motorsports/ Suzuki and BarX/ Chaparral/ ECSTAR racers and crew members are ready to bring home strong finishes throughout the seventeen rounds.

Championship points: CLICK HERE

Full results and 450 and 250 points: CLICK HERE

SUZUKI TEAMS FIGHT HARD AT HOUSTON 2 SUPERCROSS

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 21.

The Twisted Tea/ H.E.P. Motorsports/ Suzuki and BarX/ Chaparral/ ECSTAR Suzuki teams battled hard at the second round of the 2021 Monster Energy AMA/ World Supercross Championship inside NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas last night.

The Tuesday event was a first for the series and the second 450 race for class rookie Brandon Hartranft on his RM-Z450 machine. Teammate Adam Enticknap had great moments on his Suzuki RM-Z450 on the Texas soil, but not the result his speed could have delivered, while 250 class racer John Short and his Suzuki RM-Z250 spent most of the main event embroiled in intense battles that promised more great rides in the season ahead.

SUZUKI WEEKEND ACTION – January 23rd

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 22.

The fourth weekend of January sees Round 3 of the Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross Championship at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. This is the third race in seven days following a mid-week Tuesday race there due to the rescheduled series run under the ongoing Coronavirus COVID-10 pandemic rules.
Suzuki Motor of America’s 2021 team, Twisted Tea H.E.P. Motorsports Suzuki, will have two riders on the 450 grid aboard their 2021 RM-Z450 machinery – Adam Enticknap and Brandon Hartranft – as Max Anstie recovers from a practice crash injury, sustained just before the season opener.

The 2021 series is scheduled to take place over 17 rounds, but due to the global COVID-19 situation, will comprise several weekend and mid-week back-to back races in Houston, Indianapolis, Orlando, Arlington, Atlanta and Salt Lake City.

January 23: Round 3: Monster Energy AMA/ FIM World Supercross Championship. NRG Stadium. Houston. Texas. USA. The event also includes Round 3 of the East 250 Championship.

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 24.

The first race of the 2021 MotoGP™ World Championship is due to begin on March 28th at the Losail International Circuit in Qatar, but initial revisions issued by the FIM, IRTA and Dorna Sports reveal an updated calendar.

An official statement issued by www.motogp.com states: The season opening Grand Prix in Qatar remains confirmed for the 26th to the 28th of March and it will now be followed by a second event, the Grand Prix of Doha, at the same Losail International Circuit the following weekend, from the 2nd to the 4th of April.

The Autodromo Internacional do Algarve in Portugal will then host the third round of the Championship from the 16th to the 18th of April before the paddock heads to the Circuito de Jerez-Angel Nieto as previously planned.

SUZUKI AND SHORT TOP-10 AT HOUSTON 3 SUPERCROSS

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 25.

John Short: Suzuki RM-Z250 – 8th

The Twisted Tea/ H.E.P. Motorsports/ Suzuki and BarX/ Chaparral/ ECSTAR Suzuki teams took on the third round in seven days to kick-off a 2021 Monster Energy AMA/ FIM Supercross Championship schedule filled with multiple double and triple-headers.

In Saturday’s round in Houston, John Short and his Suzuki RM-Z250 had a stellar night with exciting on-track battles that landed him inside the top 10 at the event and into the top 10 in championship points. Suzuki RM-Z450 racers Brandon Hartranft and Adam Enticknap didn’t achieve the results they wanted despite being in the mix battling for top positions.

SUZUKI ECSTAR MOTORLAND ARAGON ONBOARD VIDEO

Team Suzuki Press Office – January 26.

Take a high-speed lap of the Motorland Aragon MotoGP circuit in Spain with Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Alex Rins in this new video from the team.

The video features an informative commentary from Suzuki MotoGP test rider and recently-announced 2021 Yoshimura SERT Motul Suzuki EWC rider Sylvain Guintoli with his insights around the circuit, gearing and speeds reached on the GSX-RR.

HUSQVARNA MOTORCYCLES

SOLID FINISH FOR ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING ON DAKAR STAGE FIVE

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

PABLO QUINTANILLA AND LUCIANO BENAVIDES SAFELY COMPLETE EXHAUSTING FIFTH DAY AT 2021 EVENT

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 7 2021

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Pablo Quintanilla and Luciano Benavides have successfully reached the finish of stage five of the 2021 Dakar Rally, claiming 10th and 13th place results respectively. On what riders are describing as the toughest day of racing so far this year, the two FR 450 Rally mounted stars made errors early on but were both able to recoup some of their losses by increasing their pace in the latter stages of the 456km special.

Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

With the first section of the timed special, before the checkpoint at kilometre 43, proving to be the most challenging, many competitors fell foul of the tricky-to-navigate terrain. Quintanilla was one of those who found himself going off-track through the area, but using his experience, he was able to get himself back to the official route before pushing onwards. Finding the second half of the stage with its sandy tracks and desert dunes more to his liking, Pablo immediately began catching the stage leaders. Enjoying a mistake-free final 200km the Chilean rider ultimately reached the finish as 10th fastest, to secure 11th in the provisional overall standings.

Following his third-place finish on Wednesday’s stage four, Benavides soon found himself up near the front today, opening the special. Like teammate Quintanilla, Luciano suffered from a couple of mistakes, including a small crash, and was then caught by a number of riders behind. With the group completing the stage together, it was difficult for the young Argentinian to make any of his own progress, and so he settled for a safe finish in 13th.

Luciano Benavides – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

Pablo Quintanilla:“Well, today turned out to be a really tough stage. At the beginning, on a big plateau, I chose to take one piste about 200 metres earlier than I should have. It meant that I travelled about five kilometres in the wrong direction. When I realised, I tried to cut across to get back to where I should be but it was too stony, so I had to travel all the way back again. Obviously, I lost a lot of time there. I knew I had to push a lot from there to the end of the stage and so I really tried my best and managed to make up some time on the guys in front. In the end, it’s not so bad as we know there is still a long way to go. I’m lying just outside the top 10, but only 15 minutes or so behind the leader and that can change in just one stage.”

Luciano Benavides:“We’ve finished day five, which was easily the toughest day we’ve had all week. It wasn’t the best stage for me, I had a crash quite early on, near kilometre 20, and after that there were a couple of us riding together and we got lost a little bit, which cost even more time. From about halfway through the stage the terrain changed a little as we hit the dunes. By then there was a group of us riding together to the finish, so it was difficult to make up time on any of them. It was a long, tiring day, but at the end my result was not so bad.”

On completing stage six of the 2021 Dakar Rally tomorrow, riders will have reached the halfway point of the event. First however, they must face another tough day in the dunes, with the 618km stage including a long 448km timed special.

2021 Dakar Rally – Stage 5 Provisional Classification

1. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 5:09:50
2. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 5:10:50
3. Toby Price (KTM) 5:11:10
4. Lorenzo Santolino (Sherco) 5:12:19
5. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 5:14:07
6. Xavier de Soultrait (Husqvarna) 5:17:45

10. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 5:22:05
13. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 5:24:13

2021 Dakar Rally – Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 5)

1. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 20:15:39
2. Xavier de Soultrait (Husqvarna) 20:18:10
3. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 20:19:21
4. Toby Price (KTM) 20:19:22
5. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 20:21:45
6. Lorenzo Santolino (Sherco) 20:25:10

10. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 20:30:09
11. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 20:32:01

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Husqvarna Motorcycles are widely known and respected in the offroad world for a heritage of competition and numerous motocross and enduro world championships. Originally founded in Sweden in 1903, Husqvarna Motorcycles have been designed and manufactured in Mattighofen, Austria since 2013.

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TOP-10 FINISH FOR PABLO QUINTANILLA ON DAKAR STAGE SIX

Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING STAR COMPLETES TOUGH OPENING WEEK IN 10TH OVERALL

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 8 2021

Pablo Quintanilla has ridden to another strong result at the 2021 Dakar Rally, placing 10th on the event’s high-speed stage six. The Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing rider completed the timed special without incident just six and a half minutes down on the stage winner. Teammate Luciano Benavides also enjoyed a solid day in the desert, finishing three minutes down on Quintanilla in 16th.

Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

With riders making a final push before Saturday’s rest day, the shortened 688km stage six included a fast timed special of 347km, made up almost entirely of sandy tracks and dunes. Aiming to make up time on his rivals with a 10th place start position, Quintanilla planned on pushing hard right from the start of the special to hunt down the riders ahead. Despite not making any mistakes through the course of the stage, the high average speeds of the route, added to the consistency of the top contenders, made it difficult for the FR 450 Rally mounted star to gain any advantage. With the top-17 split by less than 10 minutes, a safe finish without mishap soon became his priority. In finishing 10th, Pablo also moves up to 10th in the provisional standings and will now enjoy a hard-earned rest day before resuming his Dakar campaign on Sunday.

Also delivering a mistake-free performance, Benavides rode much of the stage as part of a group and as such, found it tricky to make any meaningful headway on the other riders. Also settling for a safe finish to his first week of racing at the 2021 event, Luciano was happy with his performance, despite the position not being quite what he had aimed for. Trailing teammate Quintanilla by just under two minutes in the overall standings, the young Argentinian is confident of climbing the leaderboard during the second half of the race.

Luciano Benavides – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

Pablo Quintanilla:“Today was the last day before the rest day. It was quite a tough one, mostly ridden in between the dunes and valleys. As the whole day was really fast it was difficult to make up a lot of time on the leaders. I’m pleased with how I rode and happy that we have the rest day now. The first week has been good, thankfully it has gone without any problems – I feel good and have not had any big crashes. We still have six days to go, so there is a lot of riding left to do.”

Luciano Benavides:“That’s the first week done and another tough day. The whole stage was made up of sand, with some dunes and some broken pistes. I struggled a little bit to find a good rhythm today, but at the end it was not so bad because we’re still in the fight, and not too far behind the top guys. I’ve got a good start position for the marathon stage, so after the rest day I’ll try my best again and hopefully make up a few more positions.”

All competitors will now enjoy a rest day at the Ha’il bivouac before returning to action on stage seven – the 737km first half of the event’s marathon stage.

2021 Dakar Rally – Stage 6 Provisional Classification

1. Joan Barreda (Honda) 3:45:27
2. Ross Branch (Yamaha) 3:45:40 
3. Daniel Sanders (KTM) 3:46:20 
4. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 3:47:51 
5. Matthias Walkner (KTM) 3:48:41 
6. Adrien Van Beveren (Yamaha) 3:49:00 

10. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 3:51:55
16. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 3:54:56

2021 Dakar Rally – Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 6)

1. Toby Price (KTM) 24:08:43
2. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 24:10:59 
3. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 24:11:40 
4. Ross Branch (Yamaha) 24:12:24 
5. Xavier de Soultrait (Husqvarna) 24:12:24 
6. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 24:13:06 

10. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 24:23:56
11. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 24:25:44

Luciano Benavides – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING LOOK AHEAD TO DAKAR WEEK TWO

Husqvarna Dakar Team 2021
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – Dakar Rally 2021

PABLO QUINTANILLA AND LUCIANO BENAVIDES ENJOY REST DAY BEFORE FINAL SIX STAGES OF 2021 EVENT

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 9 2021

Lying 10th and 11th respectively in the overall rally standings and having successfully completed six days of racing at the 2021 Dakar, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Pablo Quintanilla and Luciano Benavides are currently enjoying a well-deserved rest day at the Ha’il bivouac before resuming racing on Sunday’s stage seven.

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing - Dakar Rally 2021
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – Dakar Rally 2021

So far at the event, both FR 450 Rally riders have delivered solid performances and top-three stage results to secure their strong positions in the overall standings, positioned well within sight of the leaders. Due to both the high pace and quality of riding at this year’s race the top 12 riders are separated by a mere 20 minutes.

Pablo Quintanilla has shown great consistency over the first six stages of the rally. Although suffering from a number of small navigation errors, the Chilean rider is still well within the hunt for podium places. Currently 10th overall, just 15 minutes down on the rally leader, Pablo is looking forward to the second half of the race and improving his position.

Just one minute behind Quintanilla, Luciano Benavides sits 11th in the standings but is confident of improving on his position as riders face the tough second week. The young Argentinian, contesting his fourth Dakar Rally, enjoys a strong start position for Sunday’s 737km day seven – the first half of the event’s marathon stage – and is confident his strength and stamina will prove useful over the all-important final days of the race.

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing - Dakar Rally 2021
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – Dakar Rally 2021

Despite the opening week challenging all competitors with some of the most difficult to navigate stages seen at the Dakar, the second week of racing could arguably be even tougher. Sunday will mark the first half of the event’s marathon stage, where riders will be unable to receive any outside assistance and must maintain their bike themselves. Machine preservation will be imperative so as to not lose any time over the two days. Stage nine’s long, looped stage around the town of Neom is billed as being one of the most demanding of the rally due to the variety of terrain that will be encountered. While on Thursday, riders will then face the longest timed special of the event – a 511km route for the penultimate stage 11.

Pela Renet – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Rally Team Manager:“After one week here at the Dakar things are looking really good for the team. Everything is really close in the overall classification even though we have seen some incredibly tough stages. We’re only halfway through but I am really happy with how the team and riders have performed over these first six days. The results are a lot different to last year – on rest day in 2020, Pablo was second, 20 minutes behind the leader, now the whole of the top 10 are only 15 minutes apart. It’s almost as if we start over for next week as the gaps are so small. We have learned a lot from this first week and hope to use some of that knowledge in the closing days ahead. I think we are in a good position, and both riders have good starts for stage seven and that could well be important as it’s the first half of the marathon stage. So, there’s a long way to go, but the team are all really motivated, and we’ll give it our all for the second week.”

2021 Dakar Rally – Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 6)

1. Toby Price (KTM) 24:08:43
2. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 24:10:59 + 0:02:16
3. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 24:11:40 + 0:02:57
4. Ross Branch (Yamaha) 24:12:24 + 0:03:41
5. Xavier de Soultrait (Husqvarna) 24:12:24 + 0:03:41
6. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 24:13:06 + 0:04:23

10. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 24:23:56
11. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 24:25:44

LUCIANO BENAVIDES EIGHTH FASTEST ON DAKAR STAGE SEVEN

Luciano Benavides - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Luciano Benavides – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING RIDERS SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETE FIRST HALF OF EVENT’S MARATHON STAGE

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 10 2021

Battling his way through a tough stage seven of the 2021 Dakar Rally to finish eighth fastest, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Luciano Benavides now holds 10th in the provisional overall standings. Joining his teammate at this evening’s marathon stage bivouac, Pablo Quintanilla claimed 15th on the stage and lies 12th overall.

Luciano Benavides - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Luciano Benavides – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

Marking the first half of the event’s marathon stage, and including a 453km timed special, day seven at the Dakar proved a tough one for all competitors. While focusing on their navigation, riders also had to preserve their machines as no outside mechanical assistance was allowed at the bivouac overnight.

Setting off as the 14th rider to enter the stage, Luciano Benavides found himself having to pass a number of riders to make up time on his rivals. Putting in a strong ride, the Argentinian increased his position to sixth by kilometre 398. A small error after the final checkpoint resulted in him losing a couple of minutes, but Benavides was able to defend his top-10 position to the line, finally finishing the day in eighth and moving up to 10th in the provisional overall standings.

Highly experienced rally racer Pablo Quintanilla took a steady approach to the day’s special, minimising any possible mistakes and conserving his FR 450 Rally machine. In finishing the stage in 15th, the Chilean rider now sits 12th in the general rankings.

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

Luciano Benavides:“Everything went well today – I feel good, the bike is good – I did get lost a bit at the end but thankfully didn’t lose too much time. I had a much better feeling on the bike, so enjoyed the stage a lot more. I was caught by my brother so was able to ride with him for a little bit, which was nice. Overall, it was a solid day for me, the terrain was mostly sandy and fast but there were some rocks hidden in places. My tyres look good, but tomorrow will be another long day, we’re still in the fight so I will try my best again.”

Pablo Quintanilla:“Today was the first half of the marathon stage and it was quite a tough special. With the early part being wet, sandy tracks it was difficult to keep the bike straight in some places. Because of that it was hard to get into a fast rhythm and so bearing in mind we have no assistance today, I decided to just get to the finish safely and save the bike. I focused on my navigation and in the end, finished without problems.”

Stage eight of the rally – the second half of the marathon stage – will see riders cover a total of 709km, of which, 375km will be timed special, ridden against the clock. The route to Neom will consist of a mixture of sandy tracks and rocky pistes, with tricky navigation testing riders’ road book skills.

2021 Dakar Rally – Stage 7 Provisional Classification

1. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 4:37:44
2. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 4:39:51
3. Skyler Howes (KTM) 4:40:03
4. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 4:40:36
5. Daniel Sanders (KTM) 4:40:58
6. Xavier de Soultrait (Husqvarna) 4:41:41

8. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 4:43:33
15. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 4:47:36

2021 Dakar Rally – Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 7)

1. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 28:51:31
2. Toby Price (KTM) 28:51:32
3. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 28:53:42
4. Xavier de Soultrait (Husqvarna) 28:54:05
5. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 28:59:00
6. Joan Barreda (Honda) 29:01:49

10. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 29:08:38
12. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 29:11:32

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING RIDERS SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETE DAKAR MARATHON STAGE

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

PABLO QUINTANILLA AND LUCIANO BENAVIDES FINISH THE ULTRA-CHALLENGING STAGE EIGHT IN 18TH AND 20TH PLACE

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 11 2021

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Pablo Quintanilla and Luciano Benavides have safely arrived at the bivouac in Neom where they have re-united with their team following the 2021 Dakar Rally marathon stage. With both riders claiming top-20 stage results, despite the challenging journey through the desert, the two FR 450 Rally mounted stars sit 10th and 11th respectively in the provisional overall standings.

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing-1
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

With no outside mechanical assistance allowed overnight at the temporary bivouac, preserving tyres and machine was the priority for both riders. Not feeling as comfortable as he’d like over the harsh terrain on stage eight, Pablo Quintanilla opted to complete the 375km special at a solid but steady pace and ensure a safe finish. Finishing the day as 18th fastest, 18 minutes down on the eventual stage winner, Pablo now provisionally sits 10th overall, just ahead of his teammate.

Stage eight turned out to be one to forget for Luciano Benavides. Struggling to find his rhythm early on, the Argentinian then came across a fallen rider who required medical attention. Staying with him until help arrived, Luciano then carried on to the end of the stage, posting the 20th quickest time. Despite the disappointing result, Benavides lies 11th in the provisional standings, one place behind his teammate, and may see his result improve if he is awarded time back for the period spent helping his fellow competitor.

Luciano Benavides - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Luciano Benavides – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

Pablo Quintanilla:“It’s been a tough marathon stage, both days have been challenging with some very tricky technical sections and for the body it has been very tiring. I didn’t really feel comfortable enough to push today and with four more long days to go, I didn’t want to make any serious mistakes on the rocky tracks. Luckily, we didn’t have any issues during the marathon stage, and I was able to look after the bike really well. I’ll talk to the team now and we’ll come up with a plan for the rest of the race and hopefully we can make up a few more places.”
Luciano Benavides:“That has certainly been the worst day of my rally so far. For me, I didn’t feel so good at the start of the stage, so it was difficult to focus properly through the stage. I struggled a little with my rhythm at first and then after the refuelling I found another rider who had crashed. I stayed with him until the medical helicopter arrived but after that it was hard to get into the right frame of mind again, so I just tried to get myself safely to the finish and not push too hard. The stage was amazing with some really beautiful scenery, it’s just a shame I wasn’t able to enjoy it.”

Stage nine of the rally forms a loop north of the bivouac at Neom and covers a total of 579km. The timed special at 465km long is the second longest of the race and will require accurate navigation.

2021 Dakar Rally – Stage 8 Provisional Classification

1. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 3:08:40
2. Toby Price (KTM) 3:09:45
3. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 3:11:30
4. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 3:12:26
5. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 3:14:09
6. Joan Barreda (Honda) 3:14:27

18. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 3:27:20
20. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 3:30:28

2021 Dakar Rally – Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 8)

1. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 32:00:11
2. Toby Price (KTM) 32:01:17 + 0:01:06
3. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 32:06:08 + 0:05:57
4. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 32:13:09 + 0:12:58
5. Joan Barreda (Honda) 32:16:16 + 0:16:05
6. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 32:17:53 + 0:17:42

10. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 32:38:52
11. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 32:39:06

PABLO QUINTANILLA SAFELY COMPLETES DAKAR STAGE 10

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING RIDER PROVISIONALLY SITS EIGHTH IN THE OVERALL STANDINGS WITH TWO DAYS LEFT TO RACE

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 13 2021

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Pablo Quintanilla has successfully completed stage 10 of the 2021 Dakar Rally. On another tough day that challenged competitors with some very fast terrain and tricky navigation throughout, Quintanilla brought his FR 450 Rally home in 15th position and now lies eighth in the provisional overall standings.

In what was an uneventful stage for Quintanilla, the Chilean left the bivouac early this morning to head for AlUla. Following just over three and a half hours of racing against the clock, he completed the technically demanding special in 15th.

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

Continuing to place consistently despite the ultra-tough stages, Pablo now sits comfortably inside the top 10 of the provisional standings. With Thursday’s stage 11 combining the longest timed special of the event with some extremely difficult navigation through a huge area of dunes, it looks set to be one of the most challenging of the rally. Quintanilla hopes his knowledge and experience will come to the fore and aid him in securing a top result while closing down the riders ahead of him in the general rankings.

Pablo Quintanilla:“Another stage done and I’m happy to get to the finish. I’m still struggling to find a good rhythm on the different types of terrain, but I’m trying my best and happy with my overall result. We have two days left now and tomorrow looks like it will be a very long, tough stage. I will get some rest tonight and then set off tomorrow and hopefully put in a good ride for a strong result.”

Day 11 of the Dakar Rally, the penultimate of the event, contains the longest timed special of the race. At 511km, the special will challenge all competitors with varied terrain including a 100km section of dunes in the middle of the stage that heads from AlUla to Yanbu.

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing-2
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing-2

2021 Dakar Rally – Stage 10 Provisional Classification

1. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 3:12:33
2. Joan Barreda (Honda) 3:15:48
3. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 3:17:44
4. Skyler Howes (KTM) 3:18:21
5. Matthias Walkner (KTM) 3:18:29
6. Daniel Sanders (KTM) 3:21:40

15. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 3:32:33

2021 Dakar Rally – Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 10)

1. Kevin Benavides (Honda) 40:20:08
2. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 40:20:59
3. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 40:30:44
4. Joan Barreda (Honda) 40:35:48
5. Skyler Howes (KTM) 40:49:46
6. Daniel Sanders (KTM) 40:51:03

8. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 41:24:10

SEVENTH OVERALL FOR PABLO QUINTANILLA AT 2021 DAKAR RALLY

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING RIDER SHOWS GREAT PACE IN FINAL FEW DAYS OF EVENT TO SECURE TOP-10 RESULT

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 15 2021

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Pablo Quintanilla has safely completed the 12th stage of the 2021 Dakar Rally, securing a seventh-place overall event result after almost 49 hours of racing.

In what was an incredibly testing 43rd edition of the Dakar, covering over 7,500km through the varied terrain of the middle eastern desert, Quintanilla stayed strong to put in solid results day after day, which ultimately paid off and enabled him to secure his top-10 finish. Despite struggling to feel comfortable during the early stages of the event, the Chilean worked hard with his team to find a good set-up and was ultimately able to settle into a fast rhythm later in the race, claiming a runner-up result on stage 11.

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

The 12th and final stage of the rally didn’t go Pablo’s way. Setting off second and pushing for another strong result, he lost time after struggling to find one waypoint. Settling for a safe finish to his race, the former FIM Cross-Country Rallies World Champion carried on to the end of the timed special, claiming 21st fastest. Although not securing the result he had hoped for coming into the race, Quintanilla was positive about his performance and the event as a whole.

Luciano Benavides, who sadly crashed out of the race on stage nine had also shown encouraging pace, with the young Argentinian sitting safely inside the top 10 overall at the point of his withdrawal. Benavides will now take some time to rest and heal the shoulder he injured in his crash and hopes to be back onboard his FR 450 Rally as soon as possible.

Pablo Quintanilla - Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing-2
Pablo Quintanilla – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing-2

Pablo Quintanilla:“Finally the race is over and I’m happy to finish another Dakar. For sure, we didn’t receive the result we had hoped for but over the whole race we worked really hard as a team and were able to identify a few things we can improve. I’m happy with my riding, especially on what was such a tough event, and my fitness has been good too. To finish inside the top 10 is always good and seventh is still an extremely good result, I just know I should be fighting for the podium. We’ll go away and work hard now this year and we’ll definitely be back stronger in 2022.”

Pela Renet – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Rally Team Manager:“So, Dakar is over for another year. Pablo finished in seventh position, which is a strong result, but definitely a little disappointing for him and the team. After his second-place finish last year, we know he is capable of fighting for the win, but as it happened, this year it was just not possible. But this is Dakar, and he will come back stronger. For Luciano, it’s a great shame he got injured and had to retire, but his injury is not too bad. He will require some surgery and some time off the bike, but he will be back soon I’m sure. He definitely showed some good speed over the race and was doing a very good job on the day he crashed. Finally, a big thank you to the whole Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing team. They did an incredible job and worked very hard and even when things were not going so well, everyone held their heads up and did their best, so thank you again to all.”

2021 Dakar Finish
2021 Dakar Finish

2021ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING OFF-ROAD TEAM LINEUP

2021 ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING US OFFROAD TEAM
2021 ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING US OFFROAD TEAM

TEAM RIDERS SET TO CONTEST PREMIER OFF-ROAD RACING SERIES ACROSS THE US

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 15 2021

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing has announced its 2021 off-road team lineup, which includes five of the nation’s top riders in their respective disciplines. With seasoned veteran Colton Haaker headlining the team’s Enduro effort for the sixth year, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing also welcomes back Thad DuVall, Trevor Bollinger and Craig DeLong to contest the east coast championships, while Austin Walton is set to represent the west in his second season of premier class racing with the team.

Haaker, one of the most decorated off-road racers in the U.S., will face a hungry field of premier class competition this season as the four-time AMA EnduroCross Champion looks to defend his title once again in 2021 aboard the FX 350. Additionally, as a three-time FIM SuperEnduro World Champion, Haaker will compete in select rounds of the AMA National Extreme Offroad Championship aboard the TE 300i this season.

Thad Duvall -Dec2020-Cudby-407

Thad Duvall heads into the 2021 AMA Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) Series healthy and strong as he returns to the team aboard the FX 350. DuVall missed most of the 2020 championship due to a knee injury but he eased his way back at the end of the season to prepare for an XC1 Open Pro title fight in 2021. DuVall will also compete in the U.S. Sprint Enduro Series this season.

Trevor Bollinger -Dec2020-Cudby-373

Trevor Bollinger also returns to the team in 2021, racing aboard the FX 450 in the GNCC and AMA National Enduro Championship. Coming off a pair of knee injuries in 2020, Bollinger has been putting in the work to be healthy and ready to go at the start of the season.

Craig Delong -Dec2020-Cudby-105

Craig DeLong, who clinched the GNCC XC2 250 Pro Championship as well as the National Enduro NE Pro2 title in 2020, will be mixing things up this season in terms of competition. Returning to defend his XC2 title aboard the FC 250, DeLong will make the jump into the AMA National Enduro Championship’s NE Pro1 division where he will line up on the FX 350.

Austin Walton -Dec2020-Cudby-329

Following a solid debut with the team in 2020, Austin Walton will return this season racing aboard the FX 450 in the World Off-Road Championship Series (WORCS) and the AMA National Grand Prix Championship. With a WORCS overall victory under his belt last season, Walton looks to take his winning experience into the new year as he contests his first-ever title in the premier class.

Tim Weigand, Team Manager: “I am excited for the 2021 season and how the team is structured. Colton and Craig are eager and ready to defend their 2020 championships. It will be great to have Thad back heathy and consistently running up front. Trevor has had some setbacks but is more determined than ever to come back stronger. Austin has a year under his belt now and understands what it takes to run up front so I have no doubts we will see him on the podium often.”

The Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Team will kick off its 2021 off-road race schedule this weekend in Delano, California for Round 1 of the AMA National Grand Prix Championship. For more information on Husqvarna Motorcycles and its athletes, visit www.husqvarna-motorcycles.com

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING TEAM KICK OFF 2021 SX CHAMPIONSHIP IN TEXAS

RJ HAMPSHIRE SX ROUND 1
RJ HAMPSHIRE SX ROUND 1

STRONG START FOR RJ HAMPSHIRE WITH A TOP-5 FINISH IN 250SX EAST

“We felt good in the beginning and it just got worse as the day went on,” Hampshire said. “In the Main Event, I ripped a start and just did not ride very well at all. I lost my front with a couple laps to go and then jumped off the track on the last lap. I’ll regroup and recover over the next couple of days and be better on Tuesday.”

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 16 2021

The Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Team took on the opening round of the 2021 AMA Supercross World Championship on Saturday, fielding a team of four riders across the 250SX and 450SX classes. It was RJ Hampshire highlighting the team’s effort at Round 1 as he rode his way to a top-five finish in the 250SX Eastern division. Teammate Zach Osborne battled through a challenging weekend in Houston, Texas to claim a top-10 finish in Round 1 of the 17-race championship. In his quest for a career-first 250SX title, Hampshire maintained a top-five running throughout the day, beginning with fifth-place in qualifying. Setting the tone for positive starts, Hampshire shot off the line to capture the holeshot in 250SX Heat 2, intensely battling for the lead before finishing a close second in the heat. In the Main Event, he once again got a great jump off the line to secure the holeshot and the early lead. He settled into second early on and continued to charge in the lead battle, dropping back to third on lap 11. Maintaining a hard-fought third place position, Hampshire lost traction with two-laps to go and tucked the front end, finishing fifth place in the Main Event.

ZACH OSBORNE SX ROUND 1
ZACH OSBORNE SX ROUND 1

“We had an unfortunate incident yesterday and I am really lucky to be riding today, so I was happy to start to feel like myself again in qualifying, get a heat win and have a decent Main Event,” Osborne said. “I would have obviously liked to have been a little better than 10th but to be down in the first turn, come back to 10th and get some valuable points is a positive takeaway for me after yesterday.” 

450SX: Osborne eased into the race day after sustaining a big crash during Friday’s media ride. He powered through the qualifying sessions with an 11th place spot but when the gate dropped for 450SX Heat 2, Osborne was more than ready to pick up where he left off at the end of the 2020 Supercross season. He secured a top-five start and worked his way up to second, eventually challenging for the lead with two laps to go. With a nice pass and a strong finish, Osborne secured the heat race win. In the Main Event, Osborne got caught up in a first-turn crash that left him battling from the back of the pack. Digging deep, the 2020 AMA 450MX Champion fought his way through the stacked field to ultimately finish 10th for the night. 

JASON ANDERSON SX ROUND 1
JASON ANDERSON SX ROUND 1

“My night was not that good but we’re going into the next round and going to stay positive about it,” Anderson said. “I was up to seventh and then I got arm pump and kind of went backwards but all-in-all, we started the season and I’m happy to be back racing so let’s go from there.” 

It was a challenging day for 2018 450SX Champion, Jason Anderson, who finished 15th at the season opener. After qualifying ninth among a deep field of talent in the premier class, Anderson started off outside the top-10 in 450SX Heat 2 but he charged his way through the pack to secure a sixth place transfer position. In the Main Event, Anderson faced some first-round challenges in the form of arm pump as he fought hard in the opening laps to make up a 13th place deficit off the start. He made his way up to eighth early on but he wasn’t able to make it stick, ultimately finishing 15th for the night.


DEAN WILSON SX ROUND 1
DEAN WILSON SX ROUND 1

“My starts in both the heat and Main Event weren’t that great tonight but I feel like if I can get a good start, I can definitely be up there,” Wilson said. “I got a little bit of arm pump and I was maintaining, instead of pushing forward, which was disappointing. We’re healthy and we’ve got another chance to try on Tuesday, so we’re going to keep positive.”

Wilson had a great start to the opening round as he topped the morning’s free practice session, eventually landing 12th in the combined qualifying. In 450SX Heat 1, Wilson grabbed a top-five start and delivered a solid performance to carry a sixth-place transfer into the Main Event. With a 15th place start in the main, Wilson maintained a consistent pace throughout the 28-lap race to come away with 12th at the first round.

Next Event (Round 2): Tuesday, January 19 – NRG Stadium – Houston,

Texas Round 1 Results:
Houston I 450SX Results: 1. Justin Barcia (GAS) 2. Ken Roczen (HON) 3. Marvin Musquin (KTM) …10. Zach Osborne – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing 12. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing 15. Jason Anderson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

250SX East Results: 1.Christian Craig (YAM) 2. Austin Forkner (KAW) 3. Colt Nichols (YAM)…5. RJ Hampshire – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing450SX

Rider Point Standings: 1. Justin Barcia – 26 points 2. Ken Roczen – 23 points 3. Marvin Musquin – 21points…10. Zach Osborne – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 13 points 12. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 11 points 15. Jason Anderson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 8 points

250SX East Rider Point Standings: 1. Christian Craig– 26 points 2. Austin Forkner – 23 points 3. Colt Nichols – 21 points…5. RJ Hampshire – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 18 points

FULLY EQUIPPED FOR ON AND OFFROAD RIDING – 2021 701 ENDURO AND 701 SUPERMOTO AVAILABLE NOW

2021 701 ENDURO AND 701 SUPERMOTO
2021 701 ENDURO AND 701 SUPERMOTO

PERFORMANCE AND AESTHETIC UPGRADES FURTHER ENHANCE THE INCREDIBLE RIDING EXPERIENCES

Husqvarna Motorcycles is pleased to announce the availability of the 2021 701 Enduro and 701 Supermoto. With each model benefitting from shared and specific upgrades that boost overall performance, the two large-displacement machines continue to offer unparalleled riding experiences both on, and offroad.

Enhancing each model is a new LCD dashboard. Neatly positioned behind the redesigned headlight unit that has been developed using extensive motorsport experience, the dashboard features an integrated gear indicator, as well as an RPM display. In addition, the 701 Enduro and 701 Supermoto now feature a EURO 5 compliant exhaust system.

701 Enduro 2021-2
701 Enduro 2021-2

Specific to the 701 Supermoto is the new Brembo Monoblock 4 piston front brake caliper. When used together with the 320 mm brake disc it provides superior stopping power in all conditions. Forming one of the main highlights for 2021, the 701 Enduro comes with the option to fully disengage the ABS system to unlock exceptional offroad performance.

Equipped for any adventure, the 701 pairing continues to offer the latest cutting-edge electronic rider aids and a torquey 692.7 cc single-cylinder engine while also delivering perfect balance and outstanding handling.

701 Supermoto 2021-3
701 Supermoto 2021-3

Technical highlights:

  • New LCD dashboard with integrated gear indicator and RPM display
  • New design of headlight unit based on extensive motorsport experience
  • New EURO 5 compliant exhaust system
  • New Brembo Monoblock front brake caliper on 701 Supermoto for improved brake performance
  • ABS functionality can be fully disengaged on 701 Enduro for exceptional offroad performance
  • Advanced Ride Mode functionality includes Supermoto/Offroad ABS mode
  • Cornering ABS
  • Lean-angle sensitive traction control
  • Easy Shift
  • Chromium-molybdenum steel trellis frame
  • Aluminium swingarm
  • Polyamide rear subframe with integrated fuel tank
  • 74 hp single cylinder engine
  • Ride-by-wire throttle
  • Power assist slipper clutch
  • State-of-the-art bodywork and striking graphics

Ensuring all 701 Enduro and 701 Supermoto riders are fully prepared for their next adventure, the Functional Offroad Apparel collection offers high-quality items that guarantee protection, all-round functionality and comfort. Husqvarna Motorcycles also offers an extensive line-up of Technical Accessories – high-quality items that add additional protection, durability and style to all 701 Enduro and 701 Supermoto machines.

The MY21 701 Enduro and 701 Supermoto are available now at authorised Husqvarna Motorcycles dealers. Availabilities may differ from country to country. For all details on pricing and availability please refer to your national Husqvarna Motorcycles Subsidiary or Importer.

The complete 701 Enduro and 701 Supermoto Media Kit is available (for registered press) at: press.husqvarna-motorcycles.com

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING ROUND 3 OF AMA SUPERCROSS

DEAN WILSON RD 3

ANDERSON LEADS THE CHARGE IN HOUSTON WITH EIGHTH-PLACE FINISH

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 21 2021

Wrapping up their third race in just seven days, the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Team closed the first chapter of the 2021 AMA Supercross World Championship on Saturday in Houston, Texas as they look ahead to the remaining rounds of the series. Jason Anderson and Zach Osborne claimed top-10 finishes in the 450SX class, while teammate Dean Wilson just missed the top-10 with a hard-fought 11th place.

Anderson continues to make steady improvements in his 2021 performance. Coming out of the gate with a top-10 start, Anderson quickly placed himself into fifth in 450SX Heat 1. He maintained a consistent pace and secured a fifth-place transfer into the main. He pulled out of the gate with a sixth-place start in the Main Event and he fought hard to keep that position early on. The 2018 450SX Champion persisted through the chaos in the Main Event to ultimately finish in eighth.

“My night was pretty good,” Anderson said. “I ended up getting a top-10 and I feel like I’m coming around, just going to try to keep getting better from here.”

Osborne has proven to be a 450SX Championship contender but the cards haven’t quite fallen his way this season. Riding quick and consistent in qualifying to finish fourth, he carried that momentum into a solid top-five start in 450SX Heat 1. He inserted himself into the podium battle early on but he was never able to break into the top-three, securing a solid fourth-place transfer. In the Main Event, Osborne had his work cut out for him with an 11th place start but he kept his calm and edged his way into a top-10 finish.

“My night was rather disappointing honestly,” Osborne said. “I feel like I’m riding the best I’ve ever been riding in my life – and in my 450 career – and to start with two 10th places and a ninth is a little disappointing. I’ll improve this week and be better in Indy.”

Wilson, with a mid-pack start in 450SX Heat 2, made some quick passes to sit just outside the top five early in the race. Nearly missing a pile up on lap two, he maintained his consistent pace to land a safe sixth-place transfer spot. In the Main Event, Wilson began in 17th off the start but he quickly climbed his way through the field to gain five more positions in the first half of the race. Maintaining his mid-pack position for the duration, Wilson finished just shy of the top-10 with 11th for the night.

“My night was okay,” Wilson said. “I didn’t get a great start, I really pushed the first corner trying to be up there but everyone is so good at starts. I was outside top-15 and came back to 11th, which is not really what we want but we’ll keep pushing to be better.”

250SX East

Team rider RJ Hampshire suffered a practice crash during the day’s first untimed session and he missed the evening’s racing due to an injured wrist.

Next Event (Round 4): Saturday, January 30 – Lucas Oil Stadium – Indianapolis, Indiana

Round 3 Results: Houston 3

450SX Results 

1. Cooper Webb (KTM)

2. Ken Roczen (HON)

3. Adam Cianciarulo (KAW)

8. Jason Anderson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

9. Zach Osborne – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

11. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing

250SX East Results

1. Colt Nichols (YAM)

2. Christian Craig (YAM)

3. Jett Lawrence (HON) 

450SX Rider Point Standings

1. Ken Roczen – 60 points

2. Cooper Webb – 59 points

3. Justin Barcia – 59 points 

10. Zach Osborne – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 40 points

12. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 35 points

13. Jason Anderson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 34 points

250SX East Rider Point Standings

1. Colt Nichols – 70 points

2. Christian Craig – 70 points

3. Jett Lawrence – 64 points

11. RJ Hampshire – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 32 points

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING FOURTH AT ROUND 1 OF WORCS

AUSTIN WALTON CLAIMS FOURTH AT ROUND 1 OF WORLD OFF ROAD CCHAMPIONSHIP SERIES

HUSQVARNA-MOTORCYCLES PRIVATEER JUSTIN HOEFT SCORES A PODIUM FINISH IN PRO 450 CLASS

JANUARY 24 2021

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Austin Walton had a solid start to the 2021 World Off-Road Championship Series (WORCS) on Sunday, finishing just off the Pro 450 class podium with a hard-fought fourth-place in Havasu, Arizona.

The season opener proved to be a challenging one with course conditions on the rougher side due to rainfall throughout the weekend but Walton came prepared with an optimum setup aboard his FX 450. Getting off to a top-10 start, Walton charged his way up to a top-five position by lap eight and he set his sights on the fourth-place battle ahead. At the halfway mark, Walton made his move to overtake fourth and from there he maintained a steady pace to finish just off the Pro 450 podium in fourth.

Walton: “It was definitely a challenge today. I had a couple little spills just coming in a little too hot and getting a little too lazy coming into the corners. That track is very demanding but my suspension was awesome. I made a last minute decision before this race today and I was very happy with it. It was a grueling race but I’m happy to be walking away safe and done with the first round.”

Privateer Justin Hoeft put forth an impressive performance in the Pro 450 class to come away with an impressive third-place podium finish at the season opener.

Next Round: Blythe, California – February 19-21, 2021

Pro (MC) Round 1 Results

  1. Dante Oliveira (KTM)
  2. Taylor Robert (KTM)
  3. Justin Hoeft (HQV)
  4. Austin Walton (HQV)

GASGAS MOTORCYCLES

GasGas logo

TROY LEE DESIGNS/RED BULL/GASGAS FACTORY RACING ON THE GAS IN HOUSTON

MICHAEL MOSIMAN RD 2
MICHAEL MOSIMAN RD 2

MICHAEL MOSIMAN CARRIES FIRST-EVER HEAT RACE WIN INTO SOLID FOURTH IN 250SX MAIN EVENT

Fresh off a successful debut into the 2021 AMA Supercross Championship, the Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GASGAS Factory Racing Team was back on the gas for round two in Houston, Texas on Tuesday. Proudly displaying the red numberplate aboard his MC 450F, Justin Barcia notched his second-straight heat race victory, matching teammate Michael Mosiman’s motivating career-first heat race win in the 250SX East division. Barcia concluded the night with an impressive top-10 performance in the Main Event despite racing through a broken shifter and being limited to first-gear only. For Mosiman, a season-best fourth served as a positive stepping stone into the 2021 championship.

In Supercross racing, momentum is key and Barcia came into Tuesday’s race prepared to ride the wave as he lined up for round two at NRG Stadium. He clicked off another holeshot in 450SX Heat 2 and it was right away that he established himself as the man to beat on the opening lap. Riding nearly a flawless race, the round-one winner backed up his performance with a second-straight heat race win. In the Main Event, Barcia didn’t get a standout start and he was shuffled into a chaotic group of riders on the first lap. As he was trying to break away, he got crossed up and clipped a tuff block, which caused his shifter to break off and he was stuck in first gear for the rest of the 20-minute plus one-lap Main Event. With obvious modifications required for his riding style, Barcia did what he could to salvage the remainder of the race, ultimately finishing ninth.

JUSTIN BARCIA
JUSTIN BARCIA

Barcia: “I didn’t get a very good jump in the Main Event and we were outside the top-five pushing each other and I just cross-rutted a little bit, clipped a tuff block and ended up breaking a shifter off. With my luck, it got stuck in first gear, so I did a lap and I was pretty nervous – I missed the triple. I tried the jumps in first gear but it was squirrelly when the dirt is sticky like that so I just salvaged what I could. I’m in it for the long-run so I just have to push through things like that when they happen. All-in-all, it’s not that bad of a spot, obviously would have liked to been out front tonight but it wasn’t my night.”

In 250SX Heat 1, Mosiman got off to a second-place start and he pressured the race-leader early on. On lap four, he capitalized on a mistake by the leader and that’s when he made his way to the front. Focused on settling his first-career heat race win, Mosiman also raced his way to history for GASGAS Factory Racing as he claimed their first 250SX heat race win in Houston. In the Main Event, Mosiman grabbed a top-10 start and got to work charging through the pack. He remained within striking distance of the battles ahead and he picked riders off one-by-one until he sat just outside the podium battle heading into the final laps. He wasn’t able to make a dent in the podium battle but he finished strong to take home a fourth-place finish for the night.

MICHAEL MOSIMAN HEAT RACE WIN
MICHAEL MOSIMAN HEAT RACE WIN

Mosiman: “Getting a heat race win and a fourth on the night is a huge step in the right direction. I’m excited it’s my first heat race win! it feels good to come across the line first, so I’m hoping for a lot more of that shortly. When you’re riding good everything else just comes easy and is fun.”

The Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GASGAS Factory Racing Team will enjoy three full days off from racing before getting on the gas this Saturday, January 23, for the final round at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.

Results – 2021 AMA Supercross Championship, Round 2

450SX – Main Event

  1. Eli Tomac (Kawasaki) 29 laps; 2. Dylan Ferrandis (Yamaha) +04.976; 3. Justin Brayton (Honda) +09.002…9. Justin Barcia (GASGAS) +25.708

250SX East – Main Event

  1. Jett Lawrence (Honda) 22 laps; 2. Colt Nichols (Yamaha) +07.855; 3. Christian Craig (Yamaha) +13.303… 4. Michael Mosiman (GASGAS) +18.843

Championship Standings – After Round 2

450SX – currently unavailable

250SX East

  1. Christian Craig (Yamaha) 47pts; 2. Colt Nichols (Yamaha) 44; 3. Jett Lawrence (Honda) 43… 6. Michael Mosiman (GASGAS) 35

TOP-FIVE FINISHES FOR BARCIA AND MOSIMAN AT ROUND 3 OF AMA SUPERCROSS

JUSTIN BARCIA RD 3
JUSTIN BARCIA RD 3

JANUARY 21 2021

Wrapping things up in Houston, Texas on Saturday, the Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GASGAS Factory Racing Team enjoyed a solid run at NRG Stadium with plenty of historical moments in the first three rounds of the 2021 AMA Supercross Championship. Proving himself as a serious title contender, Justin Barcia sits tied for second overall in the early 450SX standings and he’s got plenty more to give after another impressive performance aboard the MC 450F. Teammate Michael Mosiman ran up front all day, coming away with a top-five finish in 250SX East division.
Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GASGAS Factory Racing concludes week-long “residency” in Houston with first-ever 450SX Main Event win, two 450SX heat wins and one 250SX heat win
Justin Barcia wore the red numberplate for the second-straight round in Houston
Michael Mosiman continues to establish himself as a 250SX front-runner
In a strange turn of events, Barcia came into round three sporting the shiny red numberplate backgrounds aboard his MC 450F, which is always an exciting look and feel for the team. He kept it light and fun during the heat, jumping out front with a stellar holeshot. He led the first seven laps but his perfect heat-race record slipped away when he came into contact with a lapped rider and went down. Barcia was able to quickly get going again to maintain second in the heat. As the gate dropped for the Main Event, Barcia found himself just inside the top-10 with his work cut out for him early on. About 10 laps in, Barcia started clicking off consistently fast lap times and it wasn’t long before he was in podium contention. A small mistake cost him some time in the sand section but he reclaimed fourth and kept it on two wheels all the way to the finish.

JUSTIN BARCIA
JUSTIN BARCIA

Barcia: “I felt good going into the Main Event. The track was pretty rough and beat up and I came off the line a little bit late and didn’t get the best of start but I worked my way up to fourth. I was behind third and made a mistake in the sand and went down. All-in-all, I should have been on the podium but we’ll regroup and be ready for Indy. We are in a good spot, the bike feels great, I’m feeling good and the speed is definitely there, I just need to keep it on two wheels, keep nailing the starts and put myself in a good position to be in the fight.”

All smiles heading into the night show, Mosiman kicked off the day with a solid top-four position in qualifying. He wasted no time getting himself up front in the heat race, where he scored a second-place finish. In the Main Event, he jumped right into the mix up front as he pressured the podium battle early on from the fourth spot. Five laps in, Mosiman went for the pass on third and after some back-and-forth combating, he fully assumed the role. Mosiman found himself in another intense battle for third later in the race but this time he was on the unfortunate end of the bar-banging. After coming together with another rider and going down, Mosiman quickly peeled himself off the ground and finished strong with a top-five on the night. After three rounds, Mosiman maintains a top-five running in the overall standings.

MICHAEL MOSIMAN

Mosiman: “I was just a little bit off all day but I brought it together for the night show. In the heat race I was really frustrated; I feel like Jett kind of walked away from me. I made a couple little mistakes but I think I had the speed. In the Main Event, I made some adjustments, got a better start and then there was chaos. I was in third and things were looking good, I got into some lapped traffic and Jett caught up to me and absolutely plowed me. There is blood in the water and it’s going to be an exciting season.”

The Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GASGAS Factory Racing Team will enjoy a full week off from racing before getting back on the gas Saturday, January 30 for the first of three rounds in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Results – 2021 AMA Supercross Championship, Round 3

450SX – Main Event

  1. Cooper Webb (KTM) 26 laps; 2. Ken Roczen (Honda) +00.468; 3. Adam Cianciarulo (Kawasaki) +14.431; 4. Justin Barcia (GASGAS) +20.174

250SX East – Main Event

  1. Colt Nichols (Yamaha) 20 laps; 2. Christian Craig (Yamaha) +03.478; 3. Jett Lawrence (Honda) +16.392… 5. Michael Mosiman (GASGAS) +42.215

Championship Standings – After Round 3

450SX

  1. Ken Roczen (Honda) 60pts; 2. Cooper Webb (KTM) 59; 3. Justin Barcia (GASGAS) 59

250SX East

  1. Colt Nichols (Yamaha) 70pts; 2. Christian Craig (Yamaha) 70; 3. Jett Lawrence (Honda) 64… 5. Michael Mosiman (GASGAS) 53