The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, returns Saturday to High Point Raceway in Mt. Morris for the 41st annual High Point Nationals. It is the fourth stop in the 12-race series and the east coast debut of the summer championship.
The weekend of racing starts Thursday and runs through Sunday, and includes a new track design, a full slate of special events, amateur racing and professional competition.
High Point is widely considered to be one of the best spectator tracks in the world. It has remained a staple on the most prestigious off-road motorcycle championship series for four decades.
Since 1972, the most talented riders have put it all on the line for a shot at victory in what is arguably the most grueling and challenging championship in all motorsports. This season’s 45th anniversary of the series will feature a wide-open battle for the coveted title, with no former champions in the field for only the seventh time in history. As a result, the series championship is there for the taking from a long list of highly talented competitors chasing their first major title. This race will include a field from across the U.S., emerging from 11 different states.
With defending series champion Ken Roczen sidelined with an injury, and the recent retirement of three-time champion Ryan Dungey, the spotlight will shine on the likes of rising stars Eli Tomac, Marvin Musquin, Jason Anderson, Blake Baggett and Justin Barcia.
The High Point Raceway track weaves around a deep valley, forming a natural ampitheater with constant elevation change for the riders. From slippery off-camber corners, to high-speed runs to and from the valley floor, no section of this track is completely flat, and that makes for a true challenge. What makes it toughest for the riders also is what makes it great for the spectators because several vantage points atop the valley offer views of 100 percent of the track. High Point’s jumps were put in front of the main spectator areas, letting fans get close while they watch the riders take flight.
Some call watching a race a High Point “moto theater” and it is a show filled with ups and downs, twists and turns.
Amateur race registration runs from 6-8 p.m., Thursday. An AMA membership is required for both days of amateur racing, Friday and Sunday. The amateur races will consist of a two-moto format.
Also, the fastest females in the sport will converge on the track Friday for the penultimate round of the Onsia Sound Art Women’s Motocross Championship, with defending champion Kylie Fasnacht battling neck-and-neck with Eve Brodeur and Shelby Rolen for the title.
The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship headlines the action Saturday. With three different 450 class winners in the first three rounds, the hottest race action of the summer is set to take place on the newly designed track in the 450cc and 250cc class divisions. The Lucas Oil series races begin at 1 p.m.
Ticket prices are $40 for adults and $20 for kids ages 6-11.