Three’s a charm for Blose at round 2 of AX Tour in Barrie

With a third place in the AX Pro and AX Lites mains, Chris Blose assured Team Rockstar Energy OTSFF Yamaha podium finishes at Round 2 of the Canadian National AX Tour in Barrie, ON, keeping him solidly entrenched in the points chase as the eastern leg of the series wrapped up this past weekend.

In the Clash for Cash feature event—pitting the top six finishers from the AX classes—Blose battled tooth-and-nail to exchange a fifth place starting position for second at the finish line.

Blose kicked off the showdown at Molson Centre with the fastest qualifying time in both classes aboard his potent YZ250F.

“Despite a few setbacks on the track tonight, and still tweaking a few things on the bike for Chris, it was another good night for the team. We’re in the title hunt in both classes and that’s where we want to be. We’re looking forward to the next round out west and we’ll be gunning for a repeat of the Round 1 sweep,” team manager Steve Simms said.

After leading the field in the qualifiers, clocking the fastest time, Blose kept the express train rolling in the heat races. In AX Pro, he parlayed a second place start behind Brock Leitner into first place just a few corners into the race. The Arizona native went on to pull a sizeable gap on Leitner, taking the lead all the way to the finish line.

In his AX Lites heat race, Blose more or less delivered a rerun of the AX Pro heat results. But this time out it was holeshooter Colton Facciotti who found himself the target of a quick pass on lap one. At that point nothing changed up front. Blose crossed the finish line without having to worry about any serious challenges for the lead from Facciotti. 

Moving on to the AX Pro 10-lap main, Blose snared another second place start, following Facciotti into turn one. Blose kept the multi-time motocross champ in his crosshairs for a few laps before attempting a pass. In the process of taking over the lead, however, Blose made contact with Facciotti, sending both riders for a soil sample.

Steve Mages, running in third place, proved to be the beneficiary of Blose and Facciotti’s tangle. The Ohio native handily inherited the lead, which he would keep for the remainder of the race. Meanwhile, Facciotti managed to get back into the fray before Blose and would finish second. Blose, who remounted in fifth place, was able to redeem himself by grabbing third in the remaining laps.

A less auspicious start in the 10-lap Pro Lites main saw Blose get out of the gate in a tepid fifth place. In the heat of battle, he was briefly relegated to sixth when he was edged off of the track just before the whoops section. With just a few laps to go, Blose recovered to make his way into third, again following Mages and Facciotti across the finish line to complete the podium.

In the 20-Lap Clash for Cash, Blose was on top of his game, nailing the holeshot and quickly checking out on the frontrunners. But it was all in vain due to a crash by Facciotti and another rider, which saw the race red-flagged. The restart was less kind to Blose, who found himself in fifth after one lap. He put his head down and soldiered on to systematically slice and dice his way into a respectable second place finish behind Facciotti.

“All in all I’m happy with my results tonight, walking away with podiums and grabbing more points towards the championship in both classes. I did have a few more challenges to deal with compared to last weekend, but once again the crew did an excellent job to keep me competitive and feeling good on the YZ250F,” Blose said.

Rockstar Energy OTSFF MotoPark Yamaha support rider Marco Cannella, who made his Canadian National AX Tour debut in the AX Lites class and Clash for Cash action at Round 1, continued to impress in Barrie, running with the top pros.

Sixteen-year-old Cannella nailed down sixth place in the AX Lites main and, with a well-earned fifth place, sealed the top-five in the Clash for Cash.

The Canadian National AX Tour continues after a two-week break in the schedule at the South Okanagan Events Centre in Penticton, BC on Saturday, October 29th.

Team Rockstar Energy OTSFF Yamaha would like to acknowledge the following individuals for their invaluable contribution to our 2016 Canadian National AX Tour program: Scott Donkersgoed, lead technician for Chris Blose. Kerry King – truck driver/team logistics; Brad Ewen – marketing director; Andre Laurin – team owner.

Results: AX Pro (10 Laps)

1. Steven Mages (Kaw)

2. Colton Facciotti (Hon)

3. Chris Blose (Yam)

4. Westen Wrozyna (Kaw)

5. Karl Normand (KTM)

6. Logan Karnow (Hon)

7. Kyle Keast (Husq)

8. Jake McKinney (Kaw)

9. Kyle Swanson (Kaw)

10. Brock Leitner (Kaw)

Results: AX Lites (10 Laps)

1. Steven Mages (Kaw)

2. Colton Facciotti (Hon)

3. Chris Blose (Yam)

4. Brock Leitner (Kaw)

5. Logan Karnow (Hon)

6. Marco Cannella (Yam)

7. Kyle Swanson (Kaw)

8. Tanner Ward (KTM)

9. Austin Watling (Hon)

10. Seth Green (Yam)

Results: Clash for Cash (20 Laps)

1. Colton Facciotti (Hon)

2. Chris Blose (Yam) 

3. Logan Karnow (Hon)

4. Steven Mages (Kaw)

5. Marco Cannella (Yam)

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