Bogle's victory in New York puts him in control of championship chase
Only one race left in the 250SX East series
EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey -- Honda rider Justin Bogle scored his second career victory Saturday night in New York and all but officially clinched the 250SX East title in the process. Teammates Eli Tomac (in photo) and Matt Bisceglia also had solid nights, equaling their season-best results in their respective categories.
Bogle's big win moved him into the points lead by 17 markers, and with only one race left and the next three riders in the standings all sidelined with injuries, Bogle seems assured of extending the GEICO Honda team's streak of championships to five straight years.
"It's a great feeling," Bogle said. "I certainly feel a lot better about it now than I did at the beginning of the night. Everyone wanted to talk about the points, but I still had a black number plate on my bike (the points leader is signified by a red number plate). I just tried to tune it all out and do what I've been doing all season. I knew it would all work out if I stayed with the program."
Consistency has been key to Bogle's remarkable season, and his steady riding on a very muddy track in the Meadowlands kept the drama to a minimum. Bogle won his heat race by a large margin and repeated the feat in the main, even though he had to fight through a few riders early in the race.
"It was raining during the main and the track was greasy in a lot of spots," Bogle said. "The one thing I wanted to avoid was going down early, so I was a little careful. Once we got rolling I just fell into a rhythm and kind of checked out. There were a few moments when things got gnarly, but I kept my focus and rode it out.
"I'm so happy to be in this position. We've got one more race next weekend in Vegas and I want to do the same thing I did here. One of my team guys reminded me to enjoy myself today and I really kind of took that attitude."
Racing in his first year on a 450, Tomac scored his second runner-up finish of the season. He shared the podium with Ryan Villopoto, who wrapped up his fourth straight championship with his sixth victory of the year.
"We're getting closer and closer to that No. 1 spot," Tomac said. "My congratulations to Ryan on his championship. He's the best and he's done what I want to do several times. He's where I want to be.
"I'm always satisfied to get on the podium, but of course you want the win. It's my first year in the class and I've learned a lot. Hopefully, we'll finish strong next weekend and then get ready for outdoors."
Bisceglia had a great start in the main and actually led three laps early in the race after getting around holeshot winner Jimmy Decotis. Unfortunately, he stalled his bike on Lap 8 and fell back to fourth. Still, that equaled his best finish of the year.
"I'm really upset with myself," Bisceglia said. "I felt great out there and I was really riding well. My mechanic said the timing sheets showed I was turning the quickest laps of the race. I just got back there in a tricky turn and the bike just stalled. I restarted as quickly as I could, but it was so close up front that a few guys had gotten past me."
Zemke looking for first win of the season in SoCal Nationals
Kyle Wyman gets redemption at Road America