MOTOCROSS: AUS: Round five summary

Hurley the destroyer Daryl Hurley's searing form in the 2005 Maxxis Australian Motocross Championship, presented by Yamaha, reached new heights at Barleigh Ranch (NSW) on May 22 as he motored to his first double win of the year. The New...

Hurley the destroyer

Daryl Hurley's searing form in the 2005 Maxxis Australian Motocross Championship, presented by Yamaha, reached new heights at Barleigh Ranch (NSW) on May 22 as he motored to his first double win of the year.

The New Zealander, aboard the Shift Motul Suzuki RM-Z450, was relentless, taking maximum advantage of pole position to win the two 30-minute (plus a lap) Pro Open (250cc 2T versus 450cc 4T) races by 18 and 31 seconds respectively over defending champion Darryll King (CDR Nokia Yamaha YZ450F). Shayne King (TeamMoto Honda CRF450R) and Lee Ellis (Motorex KTM 450SXF) shared the round five third places.

With the blitzkrieg, Hurley extended his championship lead over Darryll King to 13pts (233 to 220), with a maximum of 150pts still up for grabs in the final three rounds. In turn, Darryll King is 29pts in front of sibling his sibling Shayne (191), with Danny Ham (Shift Motul Suzuki RM-Z450, 133) safely in fourth.

"Today was pretty straightforward for me -- I got to the front and stayed there for both races," said Hurley. "After winning races in the last couple of events but not actually taking round honours, it was pretty satisfying to walk around with the overall win today."

Hurley and Darryll King have now finished on the podium in all 10 Pro Open races in 2005, with the former winning five of them, and the latter two. Craig Anderson (No Fear Honda CRF450R), who has missed the last three rounds with a broken foot, won the opening three races.

While Hurley and Darryll King brought up another couple of 'lazy' 1-2 finishes at Barleigh Ranch, 27-year-old Ellis' season of tumult finally began to turn around when he finished third in race two -- only the fifth rider to score a podium position all year.

Ellis, the reigning No. 5, struggled in the opening rounds with poor starts, after which a severe finger injury restricted his movements. But now it appears he's righted the ship, and will be looking to improve markedly on his current ninth place position (89pts) in the remaining three rounds.

To do that, Ellis will have to make some inroads on the likes of Mick Cook (Pro Yamaha YZ450F, 110pts), Thomas Jones (Fly Racing CRF450R, 108) and Nathan Brochtrup (Singleton Motorcycles YZ450F, 104), who hold positions fifth to seventh. Anderson is eighth on 93pts, and is slated to return to action in the next round in Tasmania on June 12.

Cook, with a 28pt haul, finished fifth overall in round five, behind Hurley (50), Darryll King (44), Ham (36) and Shayne King (35).

In Pro Lites (125cc 2T versus 250cc 4T), the season of unpredictability continued, with many of the big guns failing to complete one or either of the two races. In the wash-up, Serco Yamaha's Robbie Marshall (YZ250F) claimed overall honours for the second time this year -- but this time he won a race en route to the accolade.

The 21-year-old, after finishing third in the opener, came from behind to win race two ahead of Danny Anderson (Honda CRF250R) and 16-year-old Matt Moss (Yamaha Australia YZ250F).

Marshall, from Dundas in Queensland, has now jumped back to second in the championship on 159pts, behind teammate Cameron Taylor (YZ250F, 187).

"I am absolutely stoked," said Marshall, who warmed up for the meeting with a double class-winning effort at the previous weekend's Queensland title. "The Newcastle track is very tricky, where one little mistake gets you in trouble.

"Fortunately, it all came together for me today. I never expected to be winning national motocross events ahead of supercross, but the training and extra races has really helped me."

After early leader Daniel McCoy (Motorex KTM 250SXF) crashed, the opening Pro Lites races saw New Zealander Luke Burkhart (Shift Motul Suzuki RM-Z250) score an emphatic 57-second victory over Troy Carroll (CDR Nokia Yamaha YZ250F) -- his second of the year.

However, race two wasn't as profitable for Burkhart, after he was caught up in a turn one melee in race two, which also claimed other leading lights in Daniel Reardon (Whale Kawasaki KX250F), Troy Dorron (No Fear Honda CRF250R), Carroll and Warren Smart (CRF250R).

After remounting, Burkhart saw out race two in 13th position, for third overall on the day behind Marshall (45pts) and Moss (38pts) - the latter finally showing his mettle after switching from a two to four-stroke Yamaha.

Taylor (31pts) struggled to fifth overall at Barleigh Ranch, and acknowledged that a little luck -- the high attrition rate among the ensemble cast - was at play as he extended his championship lead.

Anderson was one of those to feel the DNF wrath, after mechanical meltdown in the opener. Meanwhile, Ryan Marmont (Motorex KTM 250SXF), who had won three of the previous five races, crashed in race one, and suffered a jaw injury. With the aid of pain killers, Marmont refused to yield, and finished ninth in race two.

Despite the nadir, Marmont only lost one championship place at Barleigh Ranch -- to Marshall -- and is now on 152pts, 10 in front of a resurgent Burkhart (142). McCoy (132) and Carroll (130), Smart (130) and Dorron (124) follow, while defending champion Cody Cooper (No Fear Honda CRF250R) languishes in 13th position on 69pts -- his defence only remaining a remote 'mathematical' possibility.

For more information on the 2005 Maxxis Australian Motocross Championship, presented by Yamaha, visit www.ozmotox.com

<pre> ROUND FIVE RESULTS

Pro Lites overall 1 Robbie Marshall Yamaha 45 2 Matt Moss Yamaha 38 3 Luke Burkhart Suzuki 33 4 Troy Dorron Honda 32 5 Cameron Taylor Yamaha 31 6 Danny Anderson Honda 22 7 Cody Mackie Yamaha 22 8 Troy Carroll Yamaha 22 9 Simon Thompson Kawasaki 21 10 Daniel Reardon Kawasaki 20

Current Pro Lites standings (after five of eight rounds) 1 Taylor 187 2 Marshall 159 3 Marmont 152 4 Burkhart 142 5 Daniel McCoy KTM 132 6 Carroll 130 7 Warren Smart Honda 130 8 Troy Dorron Honda 124 9 Reardon 119 10 Anderson 107

Pro Open overall 1 Daryl Hurley Suzuki 50 2 Darryll King Yamaha 44 3 Danny Ham Suzuki 36 4 Shayne King Honda 35 5 Mick Cook Yamaha 28 6 Thomas Jones Honda 25 7 Nathan Brochtrup Yamaha 23 8 Lee Ellis KTM 20 9 Nick Saunders KTM 19 10 Adam Cini Kawasaki 16

Current Pro Open standings (after five of eight rounds) 1 Hurley 232 2 Darryll King 220 3 Shayne King 191 4 Ham 133 5 Cook 110 6 Jones 108 7 Brochtrup 104 8 Craig Anderson Honda 93 9 Ellis 89 10 Saunders 88

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