Shepparton’s seventh round of the Motul MX Nationals served as another positive outing for the MEGA Fuels Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team, with Brett Metcalfe soaring to his second-consecutive podium with the outfit, as class rookie Nathan Crawford lodged a consistent sixth-place overall finish.
Youthful talent Crawford qualified for Super Pole, setting the fourth fastest time with a lap of 1m33.966s, while Metcalfe fell short of the session to qualify eighth.
In the opening moto Metcalfe blitzed to a thrilling start within the top five, battling from start to finish completing the 30-minute plus one lap race just tenths behind second place, crediting the South Australian third.
The second MX1 outing saw the experienced contender navigate the difficult conditions with class, piloting his KX450F to fourth, awarding him the final spot on the podium in the day’s overall results.
“Whenever you come into a race you always want to be on the podium - on that side of things, it was a successful day,” Metcalfe commented. “Coming into today after Nowra, I was expecting another good day of results.
“We started off with a bit of a struggle in practice - it’s my first time here at Shepparton - so I was learning the track and couldn’t get a good feel out there. I gained a lot of trust and respect for the MEGA Fuels Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team, they made the KX450F from practice to racing much better - they really helped me to get on the podium today.
“Again, I had two great starts that put me up there in both motos, and then battled from start to finish really. I was lurking around the front, but I couldn’t really do more than what I was doing to get up and get the win, or push for the win. My score was 3-4 for third overall and I’m pretty happy with that.”
As for Crawford, it was another solid performance as he continues to learn the ins and outs of the premier division. The Queenslander shot off to a great start in race one, negotiating his way around the Victorian circuit to close out the moto in sixth.
The number 199 went onto better his results in race two, building off a pleasing start to finish fifth, lodging a fast lap in the process that was right in the mix of the leaders’ pace. Crawford’s 6-5 scorecard resulted in him closing out the day in sixth, just three points short of the top five.
“Today wasn’t too bad,” Crawford explained. “We can take a lot of positives from today, my starts were really good and my speed was really good in the second moto too.
“My wrist is definitely getting better and we’re always knocking on the door of top fives, so hopefully we can push for that podium in the next three rounds and achieve our goals.”
Metcalfe and Crawford sit eighth and ninth respectively in the championship standings as the Motul MX Nationals heads to Port Macquarie in New South Wales for the eighth stop of the series, scheduled for Sunday, 30 July.
Further information on the 10-round series can be found on the official website at www.mxnationals.com.au.
To stay up-to-date with the MEGA Fuels Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team, ‘Like’ MEGA Fuels Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team on Facebook or ‘Follow’ @mega_monsterenergy_kawasaki on Instagram. Visit www.kawasaki.com.au for further information on Kawasaki Motors Australia.
Image credit: Marc Jones/MXN.
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