BUCHANAN, Mich. (July 4) – GEICO/AMSOIL/Honda rider Christian Craig celebrated the Fourth of July holiday with his first career podium finish at the Red Bull RedBud National AMA Pro Motocross race on Saturday at RedBud MX.
Craig was third in the second moto Saturday and ended up with a fourth-place overall.
“That’s my first ever podium and that’s what I’ve been working for,” Craig said. “I believe I can be up there. That is my goal, to be on the podium. I’m looking for an overall podium at the next race. I missed it by one spot here, but I’m still happy about my podium in the second moto. My bike was awesome today.”
Craig didn’t make the best start in the first moto, but moved his way into the top five and was running fifth until he was passed on the final lap.
“Sixth place – not bummed about it, but not too happy,” Craig said. “I wanted to be a little more up front.”
That’s where he was in the second moto.
“I focused on my start and ended up pulling the holeshot and running up front for 15 minutes,” Craig said. “The guys caught me, Cooper Webb and Jeremy Martin. Cooper got me at about 18 minutes, and I tried to stay with him and he ended up going down. Jeremy got me, and then with two laps to go Zach Osborne got me.”
Joining Craig in the top 10 was rookie R.J. Hampshire, who broke out of a mini slump with a 10th-place overall finish, going 14-8 in the motos.
“It was a new track for me, so I was feeling it out a little bit in practice,” Hampshire said. “I was in the top 10, went down, and was pretty far back, but I made my way back to 14th. Not too bad, but I definitely wanted more.
“Second moto, I didn’t get such a good start, but I felt good, probably the best I felt all season. I worked my way up to eighth and felt like I had a good pace. It was a decent day and broke my streak of non-top-10s, so it’s good to get back in it, but I want more.”
So does Matt Bisceglia, who finished 11th overall, rebounding with a seventh in the second moto after a 17th in the first.
“I was in third on the first lap, but slid out,” Bisceglia said. “I tried to pick my bike up, but got hit from behind by a couple riders and ended up dropping my bike and going down again. It was a sketchy situation, but I came from dead last back to 17th. I wasn’t too pumped about the finish, but I rode well.”
He rode well in the second moto, too, running with the top riders the entire moto.
“I was way up in the top five for the first 10 or 15 minutes, but got passed by a couple riders,” Bisceglia said. “I pulled up on (Marvin) Musquin with about three laps to go and was almost able to get around him. I ended up seventh.”
Rookie Jordon Smith posted his best first-moto finish in four races, resulting in a 13th-place overall finish.
“The day was pretty good,” Smith said. “I had my best first moto since Colorado, so that was good. Second moto, I got a better start but ended up falling on the first lap. I think I was 35th on the first lap but came back to 14th, so I salvaged some points there.
“Overall I’m feeling better on the bike every weekend and am feeling pretty good.”
The AMA Pro Motocross season takes next weekend off before resuming July 18 for the Spring Creek National in Millville, Minn. Catch the second motos on NBCSN beginning at 11:00 p.m. ET.