AMA MOTOCROSS

ANSTIE STRONG AT PALA MX AFTER COVID ALL CLEAR


Team Suzuki Press Office – September 8.

Max Anstie: RM-Z450 – 6-5
Brandon Hartranft: RM-Z450 – 10-8
Dilan Schwartz: RM-Z250 – 10-8
Preston Kilroy: RM-Z250 – 16-11



Suzuki raced to strong results at round 11 of the 2021 AMA Pro Motocross Series at Fox Raceway in Pala, California where Max Anstie and his Twisted Tea/ H.E.P. Motorsports/ Suzuki RM-Z450 brought home a top-five moto finish after being given the all-clear from Coronavirus.

Anstie’s sixth and fifth positions gave him sixth overall as teammate Brandon Hartranft had a career-best 450 race with 10th and eighth for an eighth-place overall result.

In the 250 class Dilan Schwartz was again inside the top 10, having his career-best finish on his BarX/ Chaparral/ ECSTAR Suzuki RM-Z250 while teammate Preston Kilroy continued to impress in only his fourth pro event this season aboard his Suzuki RM-Z250.

Anstie hit his stride mid-season and stepped up to another level on the high-speed California track. He put his Suzuki RM-Z450 inside the top 10 at the holeshot line in both motos.

Said Anstie: "Pala 2 was good. I ended up missing the last race because I got COVID; I managed to beat that faster than I expected, came here today and wasn't really sure what to expect; I didn't know how my breathing and everything was going to be but I felt good. It was warm, the team did a great job with the bike, and we got two solid races, going 6-5 for sixth overall. It was definitely a strong comeback and I’m happy with the performance. I'm going to go into the last race at Hangtown firing on all cylinders."

450-class rookie Hartranft put his Suzuki RM-Z450 power into the ground off the gate for two top-10 starts. From there he attacked the jumps and finessed the deep ruts and used a career-best 450 moto finish to post his career-best 450 overall finish. The effort jumped Hartranft up a full three positions in the championship point standings.

"I ended up eighth overall. It was a really good day and my best finish of the year," said Hartranft. "The track was almost like a supercross/ outdoor track, and we were definitely tested with the heat today. The weather was brutal. I qualified ninth, and in the first moto I got 10th, which was a good ride. In the second moto I rode much better and ended up eighth, so I'm very pumped at how I'm doing."

"Max rode great and battled towards the front all day," reported Dustin Pipes, Team Manager for the Twisted Tea/ H.E.P. Motorsports/ Suzuki team. "Brandon took another step in the right direction with his eighth-place finish. His suspension set-up didn’t translate to this track, so he did well to adapt and put his best foot forward. We’ll come up with a new setting for the final round and come out swinging."

Rookie Dilan Schwartz continued his streak of top-10 overall finishes. On what is essentially his hometown track, the young racer nabbed a seventh overall spot after passing his way toward this front in both motos.

"Today was a tough, but good day," said Schwartz. "10-8 moto scores for seventh overall – I'm happy with the two finishes inside the top 10 and my best overall finish. I'm excited to be going into the last round healthy and I'll do my best to put in another strong finish to wrap up the season!"

At only his fourth pro race of 2021, Kilroy recovered from a second-turn pile-up in Moto 1 to salvage another impressive rookie finish. ECSTAR oil products kept his Suzuki RM-Z250 cool and putting out maximum power on the 100+ degree day. The strong ride moved the young racer up one spot in the championship points.

"In the first moto I was caught in a first turn pile-up and my bike got wedged with another bike," Kilroy said. "I did what I could and pushed from pretty much last to 16th. In Moto 2 I got a decent start and was able to log some good laps. Then I made a slight mistake in a corner; I saved it, but lost a bunch of time, so I had to make some passes towards the end, and I wound up 11th. Overall, I’m excited with how my riding has been and I’m excited to see how I can do at the last round!"

Derek Drake was back on the track after being forced to step away from racing earlier this season before round four due to a heart condition. Drake put his BarX/ Chaparral/ ECSTAR Suzuki RM-Z250 up front in Moto 1, running just outside of the top ten for much of the race. After nearly 30 minutes of racing, he was feeling the effects of the extreme heat and wisely chose to return to the pits.

Said Drake: "It was great to be back! I felt good all day, but I just overheated in the first moto, it's as simple as that. I’m looking forward to racing the next round at Hangtown!"

The 2021 Outdoor Motocross concludes this upcoming weekend at the season finale at the Hangtown Motocross Classic in Rancho Cordova, California.

Pala Image Gallery (BrownDogWilson): CLICK HERE FOR PHOTOS

Championship points (round by round): CLICK HERE





For more stories about Max Anstie, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

For more stories about Brandon Hartranft, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

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