Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah
image The 2nd annual Zions Bank Utah National, Round 12 and the season finale for the 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, will take place at Miller Motorsports Park on Saturday.

August 19, 2014
MMP redesigns track for pro motocross races

A pair of teammates will battle it out Saturday at Miller Motorsports Park for  the Lucas Oil Motocross Championship in the 450 cc class.

Twenty points separate Ken Roczen (Germany) and Ryan Dungey (Minnesota) who both ride for Red Bull KTM. Roczen heads into the final round of the motocross championship with 474 points, while Dungey has tallied 454.

Jeremy Martin (Minnesota) has sewn up the 250 class championship with 450 points.

These top racers will compete on a revamped motocross track at MMP.

Based on feedback from the riders, the 1.2-mile track has been revised to make the south end of the circuit more of a loop, which will offer better race flow, more passing opportunities and shorter lap times, according to a press release from MMP.

The track will also no longer cross the asphalt road-racing track, the start/finish line has been moved to the straight-away section on the north side of the course and a number of the jump landings have been modified to improve the track flow at the riders’ request.

South Jordan racer Laden Powell, who was sponsored by MMP for the first three rounds of the motocross championship in California, will be back for the final round in his home state. He recently rode a practice round on the improved track.

“They brought in a lot of sand, and transitions on the jumps are smoother,” Powell said in a promotional video which shows him racing on the revamped track. “Instead of harsh landing, the landings are more on the down-slope than flat. There also is a 100-foot gap on the start straight-away. That’s my favorite part of the new track. It will be amazing to see the whole pack flying over that 100-foot gap.”

Off-road racing and motocross have been great additions to event at MMP,  according to John Larson, general manager of Miller Performance.

“We have been looking forward to this year’s Zions Bank Utah National since the teams packed up to leave after last year’s event,” Larson said. “We received a lot of good feedback from the riders and our guests, and we have incorporated many of their suggestions to improve the experience for both.”

Spectators will have better trackside access and viewing opportunities  as a result of the work done to the south end of the circuit and the relocation of the start/finish line, according to MMP.

A practice race is set for 11:30 a.m. on Saturday with the first moto at 3 p.m., and the second moto at 5 p.m. All the action is televised live on NBCSN will rebroadcast the races at 4:30 p.m. Saturday.

The inaugural Rockwell Watches Amateur Motocross Showdown is scheduled for Friday, Aug.  22, and the track’s annual visit from the Ultra4 American Rock Sports Challenge off-road racing series will also take place on Saturday.

General Admission tickets for the Zions Bank Utah National are priced at $40 for adults and $20 for kids aged 6-11. Kids aged 5 and under will be admitted free of charge. Pit passes, which provide access to the teams’ pit areas between 9 a.m. and noon, are priced at $20. 

Mark Watson

Sports Editor at Tooele Transcript Bulletin
Mark directs all editorial coverage of sports in addition to reporting on a wide range of events from high school football to international racing. He has a wealth of journalism experience, having worked for four other newspapers in the state. Mark grew up in Tooele County and graduated from Grantsville High School and Brigham Young University.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>