Australia’s Chad Reeded capped off a successful year of outdoor motocross results with an impressive ride to second place in Moto 1 at the 2009 Motocross of Nations in Brescia, Italy.
The recently-crowned AMA Motocross champion was on the pace early as riders mixed it up in a hotly-contested qualifying race.
Mounted aboard the Suzuki RMZ-450, Reed lined up against a talented field in the MX1 class including the likes of hometown favourite Antonio Cairoli in addition to Clement Desalle and Josh Coppins.
He cruised to a comfortable third place, conserving energy ahead of the following day’s opening moto.
As the gates dropped on the battle between MX1 and MX2 class competitors, the race for holeshot would illustrate a tense two-way fight for honours between Reed and Cairoli.
The Italian took and maintained the advantage but was unable to shake the persistent Australian rider, who shadowed him to the line for a commendable second place.
Reed’s Australian MXoN teammate Brett Metcalfe was swamped early and could only manage 17th in moto 1.
Metcalfe finished 9th in the MX2/MX3 Moto 2 clash but Michael Byrne’s DNF, the result of a frightening mid-air crash, would halt the green and gold effort.
The deciding moto looked once more to be a battle between Reed and Cairoli before both went down in a spectacular first-corner pileup.
Reed fought back to finish ninth, with the trio of Aussie riders combining results to finish the 2009 Motocross of Nations in seventh overall.
“It was great to be in Italy and flying the flag for Australia,” said Reed. “We showed a lot of promise early and I felt sure we would be a factor.
“I was happy with my ride in the first moto but knew there was a long way to go.
“Unfortunately there were a few incidents across motos 2 and 3 that ruled us out of contention, it was a very competitive field and there is bound to be trouble when there are so many quality riders vying for the same spot.
“I had a lot of fun but it was not the weekend for us. Australia is and has always been a strong contender at MXoN and I expect the team will put on a good showing again in 2010.”
7th overall, Australia, 73 points.
2 Race 1 16 REED, Chad Suzuki MX1
9 Race 3 16 REED, Chad Suzuki MX1
9 Race 2 17 METCALFE, Brett Honda MX2
17 Race 1 17 METCALFE, Brett Honda MX2
36 Race 3 18 BYRNE, Michael Suzuki Open
38 Race 2 18 BYRNE, Michael Suzuki Open