In the headlining 450 Pro class, a third and fourth in Barrie were enough for defending national champion Matt Goerke to secure third in points on his Rockstar Energy/OTSFF Yamaha YZ450F. Goerke was more than pleased with the overall result considering he had been riding with a broken arm suffered in a training accident in February, just before the start of the AX season.
Goerke’s new teammate Dillan Epstein spent the AX tour getting comfortable on his new YZ450F, though consistent appearances allowed the Californian to leave the first portion of the Triple Crown in fifth place going into the MX season.
In 250 Pro, Pettis made his 2018 AX debut a big one after a preseason injury kept him out of the first four contests. Proving he was back in top form in Barrie, Pettis stood on the top box of the podium two nights in a row, setting him up for a strong start to the outdoor rounds in late May.
One of the big surprises of the 2018 Canadian AX series was the performance of Pettis’ teammate, Marco Cannella. A rookie Pro, Cannella was called up to replace an injured Pettis, and showed more confidence and race craft as the season progressed. In Barrie, Cannella finished second on Friday—giving the bLU cRU a 1-2 finish—and third on Saturday. When the dust settled on the season, young Marco had locked down second place in the AX series, making the rest of the field take serious note.
2017 bLU cRU Factory Ride Award winner Jake Tricco served notice in Barrie as a future threat by winning the Intermediate Open and 250 Intermediate classes both nights on his YZ250F. Yamaha off-road racer Zachary Lewis finished second to Tricco on Friday in a rare moto appearance.
The Rockstar Triple Crown Tour moves outdoors as the MX portion of the series gets underway May 26 at Calgary’s Wildrose MX Park.