Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Shimoda Earns Back-to-Back Podium Finishes at Millville

Spring Creek MX Highlights:

  • Shimoda finished with his second straight podium with third overall (2-3)
  • Forkner made his return to racing to finish ninth overall (11-9)
  • DiFrancesco finished 14th overall (12-15)
  • Hammaker started the day 3rd in qualifying but issues on the start kept him to 16th overall (19-11)

 

MILLVILLE, Minnesota (July 16, 2023) – Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Jo Shimoda continued his podium streak at Spring Creek Motocross Park with an impressive ride going 2-3 for third overall at Round 7 of the Pro Motocross Championship. The finish brought him into a tie for third in the championship standings. Austin Forkner enjoyed a solid first race back as he joined Shimoda in the top-10 for ninth overall (11-9). Ryder DiFrancesco finished 14th overall (12-15), while Seth Hammaker started the day with the third fastest lap time but a string of bad luck on the starts pushed him to end the day 16th overall (19-11).


Shimoda’s momentum from his first podium last weekend continued in Minnesota and he started off on the right foot by claiming the Moto 1 holeshot. He quickly pulled away from the field and maintained a fast pace at the front. With just two laps to go, Shimoda fell back to second where he would hold on to until the checkered flag. He was in good position on the start of Moto 2 in fifth and worked his way forward to claim third, just .4 seconds behind the runner up.

“It felt great to be at the front racing with those guys,” said Shimoda. “I think we’ve found what we needed and getting a good start definitely helps me challenge for the win. I’m excited to keep things going next week in Washougal.”


Forkner had been sitting on the sidelines for over six months after injuring his knee at the opening round of Monster Energy Supercross and he came out swinging in his first race back. He started the day 12th overall in qualifying and when his first gate drop came in Moto 1, he came around in 14th. Forkner kept the pace high and nearly got into the top-10 with an 11th place finish. Moto 2 was even better for the veteran rider who had some battles around 10th place and managed to break through for ninth, which awarded him ninth overall.

“I’ll take a top-10 in my first race back,” said Forkner. “I wasn’t sure what to expect after watching these guys for so long on the sidelines. The pace is definitely high and I’ll have an even better goal for Washougal next weekend. I have always liked going there and it presents its own challenges with the shadows and the high speed. It should be good.”


DiFrancesco continued to execute great starts at Spring Creek and was thankful for the fact that he’s raced at the circuit last year. In the opening moto, DiFrancesco started in the top-10 and was holding his ground in eighth for much of the moto before falling back to 12th at the end. In the second moto, he got an even better start in fourth and did his best to hold off threats from veteran racers, ultimately crossing the finish line in 15th.

 

“I was looking forward to coming back to Millville, but wasn’t able to find the same groove I had last year,” said DiFrancesco. “My starts have been dialed so there are a few more things I need to work on to break back into the top-10. I’ve ridden Washougal before and really looking forward to going back there next weekend.”


Hammaker displayed his speed right away in the morning qualifying sessions, clocking the third fastest lap time. He had a good gate pick for Moto 1, but got caught up in a first turn crash that brought him into the mechanics area right away. He was almost a lap down and in last, but got going and started to pick off riders, eventually making it into a points paying position in 19th where he finished. The second moto once again saw Hammaker with an opening lap mishap that pushed him down to 29th, but thankfully he was able to quickly get going and raced all the way back up to 11th for 16th overall.

“I am bummed about the result after starting the day off on such a good note,” said Hammaker. “The good thing is that the speed is there and now I need to get the start so I can run up there with those guys. We’ve got another one next week and I’m really pushing to get inside the top five.


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250MX Class Overall Results – Millville

  1. Hunter Lawrence (Honda), 1-2
  2. Justin Cooper (Yamaha), 4-1
  3. Jo Shimoda (Kawasaki), 2-3
  4. RJ Hampshire (Husqvarna), 3-6
  5. Levi Kitchen (Yamaha), 7-2
  6. Tom Vialle (KTM), 6-5
  7. Haiden Deegan (Yamaha), 5-8
  8. Max Vohland (KTM), 10-7
  9. Austin Forkner (Kawasaki), 11-9
  10. Jalek Swoll (Husqvarna), 8-14

     14. Ryder DiFrancesco (Kawasaki), 12-15
     16. Seth Hammaker (Kawasaki), 19-11

250MX Class Points Standings

  1. Hunter Lawrence (Honda), 260
  2. Haiden Deegan (Yamaha), 247
  3. RJ Hampshire (Husqvarna), 240
  4. Jo Shimoda (Kawasaki), 240
  5. Justin Cooper (Yamaha), 239
  6. Levi Kitchen (Yamaha), 214
  7. Tom Vialle (KTM), 210
  8. Max Vohland (KTM), 190
  9. Ryder DiFrancesco (Kawasaki), 137
  10. Jalek Swoll (Husqvarna), 130

     16. Seth Hammaker (Kawasaki), 69
     22. Jett Reynolds (Kawasaki), 29
     24. Austin Forkner (Kawasaki), 22


Team Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki uses WRP titanium fasteners