450 Words: Ken Roczen

It wouldn’t seem possible that a rider would be looking for a new bike with a different feeling on the heels of winning the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship 450 title, but Ken Roczen has apparently been looking to try something different for awhile. Roczen—who was raised racing Suzukis—is indeed leaving his old employer, Red Bull KTM, to ride for Soaring Eagle Casino/Jimmy John’s RCH Suzuki for 2015-2016. Roczen explained all in a press conference at Red Bull Straight Rhythm.

Racer X: How much can you say about the beginnings of this? When was the first time you started thinking about riding Suzukis?
Ken Roczen: I was thinking about it for a very long time just because I was at a point where I struggled a bit with the bike in 2013 and before. I’ve done my duty together with KTM. I love them, love the team, and everything, but KTM has their very own characteristic, the bike. At one point I was just like, you know what? I don’t believe in my bike anymore as much and I just felt like it was time for a change. We’ve been together for like four years or something. Luckily we have done a fantastic job this year and got the outdoor title. It was good to finish it off like that, but for me it was just time in my head for a change. I chose Suzuki because I like the RCH image, and I think together me and RCH we can do something big. I have 100 percent faith in the bike because you take them out of the box already and they’re just so good. I have a lot of good memories on Suzuki. My decision when I went with RCH, people were like, “It’s not factory.” Yes, we are factory. It doesn’t even matter; I have so much faith in the bike I’m like whatever. Just give me the bike and I’ll make it work.

Isn’t it about finding a bike and settings that work for you specifically, not necessarily about having factory parts or whatever? You can make it worth it if you’re comfortable on it?
For sure. It’s important. We have done some amazing changes to the engine and stuff. We got that way, way better, which helps out a lot. But I think in my eyes you can buy a Suzuki, I don’t even know if you need engine work really…more is not always good. It’s about putting it on the ground. I think if you have the right suspension guy, the guy you can trust, and I even have one in Germany. A guy that I’ve been with him since I was little, and he’s absolutely amazing. If I would have to I would buy a bike, get my suspension done with him, and I will be good to race.

Is that who we saw at Salt Lake a year ago? I think there was a guy that came out, no team uniform…
Possible. I think he was at a few races.

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I knew you when you were on Suzuki before and it was 250, smaller bike. How much of a change is it to jump to the 450?
It is. Obviously it’s been a very long time since I’ve ridden a 250 Suzuki, but that bike was trick. We had so many cool parts. KTM was always the fastest engine over there, but I had such a good chassis and such a good suspension, I didn’t need that engine. It would have been better if you would have more, but I just made it work. I’ve always loved my bike.

How much of a difference is it on this one now? I know nobody’s going to sign up for a new team and say, “Man, this is terrible,” but how do you like the bike, and how are you settling in on it?
It’s amazing, the characteristics that are different. It’s crazy how much you notice it and we have only had a few days of testing and we already have the bike where I’m like just leave it like this right now and I’ll ride it and ride it and ride it and get confident on it. I think we just have to do some little changes, meaning once I’m good and confident. I’ve been taking five-six weeks off completely. I just want to get my fitness back. I think at one point when I start riding the bike a little harder I think I can go a bit stiffer on the suspension, but for right now I’m already really comfortable.

Where are they going mount the electric start for you?
We’ll see by A1 what happens.

How long does it take you to get that feeling back and get comfortable and settled in on it?
It depends. If you’re riding an outdoor track not long, it’ll take a day or two. But for supercross you have to be so precise. In general if you come back from an outdoor season and do supercross everything kind of feels weird, it feels super stiff. It’s just so much different. Right now, especially we started testing really early, so now with the bike I have I really just have to put in time. Like I said, in supercross it’s a little bit more difficult. You have gnarly tracks plus a totally different bike, so it’s difficult. But it’ll just take a little bit of time. I’m not even worried because I have three months right now and you don’t need three months to get ready. I think we’re on a good schedule.

A lot of racers over the years, anybody who’s raced for a period of time and stick with one particular brand for a few years, when they switch things seem just amazingly better a lot of the times just because it’s different. It brings something new. How much of that are you dealing with too? Like, first time you threw your leg over it, it feels different. Maybe it’s wider in a spot or narrower?
That’s the thing, the Suzuki is a really good bike. It’s very narrow. I think I prefer the characteristic of an aluminum frame just because the frame is stiffer. Where the KTM, it’s a wider bike, it has a lot of power, and it just bends weird. It flexes very weird. Plus the suspension, it’s more of a dead feeling. For some supercross tracks it seems good, but if you take a Suzuki off the stand, it’s so free and it’s so plush, and that’s comfort. That’s a pretty big thing that I was looking for because that’s the stuff I’ve been telling KTM the whole time; I need more comfort. So the change is done now and I’m super happy about it. Like you said, it’s a lot mentally so it’ll be just fine. I’m 100 percent sure.

Is it two years?
Yes.

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What was it about RCH versus Yoshimura or some other team? What was it that attracted you here?
I don’t think Yosh was ever an option. One of the biggest things was Red Bull. All the teams they come with options. Obviously if you go to Factory Kawi you have to be Monster; there’s no way around it. I could have had my own gear deal, but here I have my own gear deal, energy drink, plus the image of the team with Carey and Ricky.

Free concert tickets…
Free concert tickets, free singing songs on the phone, I’ll just call in and start singing…plus I know Suzuki, and I think for me that was just the right direction to go and Red Bull was a big, big part of it. The last thing I wanted to do is drop Red Bull. I’ve been with them for so long, and they’re so solid that there was no way for me to leave them out.

You’re a very big guy on social media. How hard was it to stay off there during that time from the end of the season to now?
Super hard. Especially once I started riding. That was the worst part. I’m like, “Man, I want to post something so bad!” The first couple of days I posted so much because I already had pictures and stuff. It was hard. At one point I enjoyed not being on social media too much because it takes up way too much time of my day, but that’s what makes you happy, so you should do it.

THE EVOLUTION OF CAREY HART

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Depending on who you are, the name Carey Hart can mean many different things. Privateer Supercross racer, freestyle innovator, tattoo shop owner, reality TV star, Pink’s husband, race team owner…the list goes on and on. We’ve been friends with Carey since the near beginning, when he was a struggling privateer riding a Kawasaki KX250 and wearing Fleshgear baggies. Seeing him evolve into one of the most important men in the sport has been a pleasure, and we jumped at the chance to catch up with Hart Luck and reminisce at the 2015 Suzuki RM-Z450 intro held earlier in the week. Enjoy!

http://motocross.transworld.net/1000164806/news/evolution-carey-hart/

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Hart may be “retired,” but his name still carries plenty of weight in motocross. As such, he is featured heavily in Fox Racing’s new MX15 media packet.
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RCH Racing takes on Washougal MX

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That’s a wrap Washougal MX! Weston rode a solid 7-6 for 6th overall today. The track was rough and he rode like a beast. Many thanks to our sponsors Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort Suzuki Fox Racing Sycuan Casino Dodge Bel-Ray Company, Inc. for all the support

RCH RACING SOARING EAGLE SIGNS WESTON PEICK

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The RCH Racing Soaring Eagle has signed top privateer Weston Peick to race the Lucas Oil Pro Motorcross Championship for 2014. Peick will continue to contest the remainder of the Feld Motor Sports® 2014 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship series as a privateer, before joining the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle effort.

Answering the question posed in Racer X Magazine and all over the Internet, “Why Not Weston?” RCH team principal Ricky Carmicheal says why not, indeed. “I’m glad to have Weston a part of the team.” Peick earned seven amateur titles without support from factories and raced a privateer since turning pro in 2009… until now. “We are excited to give him the opportunity and look forward to working with him to help him achieve his goals,” claims Carmichael.

“He has a great work ethic that will mesh well with our team personnel to get the best result possible,” adds Carmichael. “It should be a lot of fun!”

Despite being a self-professed “goon” at Supercross early in his career, the former high school football player has shown marked improvement in the stadiums this season, including Top 5 at Anaheim 3 and the San Diego rounds. However he is really looking forward to returning to the outdoor nationals. “This is a great opportunity to be surrounded by one of the best riders of all time and one of the best factory teams to help me get to the next level,” said an elated Peick.

Loyalty is important to Peick and his father, and they requested to finish the Supercross season as a privateer in order to honor their sponsor commitments. This is a request that RCH Racing Soaring Eagle certainly respects and is one of the reasons why Peick was offered the opportunity. “I want to Thank all my current sponsors for their outstanding support for the Supercross series… without them, this opportunity wouldn’t be possible,” says Weston.

“We are so happy to have the opportunity for Weston to work with RCH Racing,” says his father Louie who has been working on Weston’s bikes throughout his career. “Thanks to all our sponsors that helped us get to this level.”

Look for Weston Peick to make his debut on the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Suzuki RM-Z450 at Glen Helen on May 24th when the 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship kicks off.

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About RCH Racing Soaring Eagle:

RCH Racing is in its second season of the partnership between Ricky Carmichael and Carey Hart to campaign the Feld Motor Sports® 2014 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship series as well as the 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motorcross Championship. Ricky Carmichael merged his Suzuki relationship and technical development with the established five year marketing giant of Hart & Huntington Racing in 2013. The RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team continues its partnerships with Suzuki, Fox, Dodge, Sycuan Casino, Yoshimura and Bel-Ray. Stay up to date on all RCH Racing Soaring Eagle news, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @RCHRacing and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hartandhuntington.

For additional information contact Justyn Amstutz at Justyn@NFC-Mgmt.com

RCH RACING SOARING EAGLE HITS HOUSTON SUPERCROSS

A season best 7th at St. Louis for Josh Hill and the great news that Broc Tickle was out of the hospital and on the mend at home had the entire RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team flying high and ready to hit Houston for round 14 of the Monster Energy Supercross series. Hill was on fire all day, setting a blistering top five qualifying time and then winning his Heat race to transfer straight to the Main… and that was just the beginning!
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Photo Credit:RCH Team

As they say, everything is bigger in Texas, especially the whoop sections. “I wish I was racing tonight,” said team principal Ricky Carmichael. “Those are my style of whoops. Remember 2002 Houston? Like riding on tough blocks!” Because the whoops were so challenging, riders had to find another way to win. The secret to success on the tough Texas track was going big… literally! Hitting the big quad jump going into the final turn was Josh Hill’s secret line (only he and the days fastest qualifier Ryan Villopoto jumped that quad). The quad not only helped Hill qualify less than fraction of a second behind defending champ Villopoto, but also worked in his Heat race.

Starts have been an Achilles’ heel for Hill this season — he has the speed to race with the best, but has found himself having to fight his way through the entire pack more often than not. However a phenomenal top 5 qualifying time that was just .016 of a second off Villopoto’s top time, gave Josh a great gate pick in Heat race #2. He lined up next defending champ RV and red hot rookie Ken Roczen. Andrew Short took the surprise holeshot, but Hill was right behind him third off the start. By the end of the first lap, Josh got by Short, even without being able to use his hot line through the quad.
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

Meanwhile Villopoto used the hot line to catch up to Hill and managed to get by, briefly. An uncharacteristic mistake by the current points leader had RV crashing out and Hill taking a commanding Heat race win and a transfer spot straight to the Main event. Along the way, he captured plenty of TV time for the RCH Soaring Eagle team this week. Josh was the focal point for leading the race and then the podium interview for winning… his first Heat race win since the Indianapolis SX back in 2013. Fox Sport trackside reporter Jenny Taft also interviewed Josh Hill right after Heat Race #1 where he fessed up that the quad jump was the key. “I could hit that all night!” he told Taft on national TV. “I waited until the end of qualifying to do it.”
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

It isn’t just a secret line that has Hill doing well, though.

“I’m finally feeling good, I came into the season with a back problem and then broke my collarbone at the Oakland Supercross,” said Josh from the podium after leading a Suzuki sweep of the Heat races (an ailing James Stewart held it together to win the first Heat). With only a week off after getting the collarbone plated, Hill had been fighting through the pain all season long. However a Heat race win and three consecutive Top 10 Main event finishes in a row, had Josh feeling no pain at Reliant Stadium in Houston… at least until the first turn of the Main event.
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

Josh lined up next to Ryan Dungey for the start of the 450 Main putting the KTM rider in a Suzuki sandwich with James Stewart. Unfortunately in the drag race to the first turn Stewart’s Suzuki clipped Josh, grounding the Soaring Eagle rider instantly! Although there was some additional carnage in the second turn, Hill was dead last. By lap 10 of the 20 lap Main, Hill had battled his way up to 15th. Despite being a lap down from leader Villopoto, Josh continued to charge, up to 13th with 8 laps to go, and then into 12th with two laps to go, where he eventually finished.

“The heat race went well,” said a disappointed Hill. “I felt really confident in practice… I was jumping some section that not many people were doing and just felt great. It is unfortunate to have a fall in the first turn! I really wanted to get the holeshot, but ended up running out of real estate — me and James kind of bumped and I hit the deck.”

Unfortunately Heat race wins don’t count in the points standings, but his gritty 12th place finish in Houston has Hill up into 10th overall in the points standings with three races left. While he is healing up and unable to race, Broc Tickle still holds onto 8th place in the standings. This is a true testament to the talent of the RCH Soaring Eagle teammates since they are both in the top ten in points despite missing several races (5 total for Tickle and 3 for Hill).

As always, the team sponsors were at the epicenter of the action in the pits as the Suzuki Holeshot experience proves to be popular with the fans. Also attracting a crowd is the sign up for a chance to win an all-expenses-paid four-day/three-night get away to Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort. A new addition to the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle vibe is the new RCH Racing Fanwear collection from team riding gear sponsor Fox Racing. Show your support for both Broc Tickle and Josh Hill by flying the Soaring Eagle colors: http://bit.ly/RCHxFox

So how does a Soaring Eagle fare in Seahawk territory? Yoncalla, Oregon, native Josh Hill is looking forward to a homecoming as the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle team flies to Seattle for the April 12th race at CenturyLink Field. “It’s on to next weekend… again,” he says. “I really think I can get up on the podium, so that’s what I’m going to keep working toward.”
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Photo Credit: RCH Team

About RCH Racing Soaring Eagle:
RCH Racing is in its second season of the partnership between Ricky Carmichael and Carey Hart to campaign the Feld Motor Sports® 2014 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship season. Ricky Carmichael merged his Suzuki relationship and technical development with the established five year marketing giant of Hart & Huntington Racing in 2013. The RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team continues its partnerships with Suzuki, Fox, Dodge, Sycuan Casino, Yoshimura and Bel-Ray. Stay up to date on all RCH Racing Soaring Eagle news, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @RCHRacing and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hartandhuntington.

For additional information contact Justyn Amstutz at Justyn@NFC-Mgmt.com

Making A Statement At The St. Louis Supercross.

After a tough weekend in Toronto that saw team leader Broc Tickle suffer a season-ending injury, the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle team headed to the “Show Me” state of Missouri determined to show the world what they are made of. Lone eagle Josh Hill was ready to fly the team colors in St. Louis at round 13 of the Monster Energy Supercross series. Mission accomplished as Hill had his best finish of the SX season!

Little known fact, the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis was the site of RCH Racing Soaring Eagle team principal Ricky Carmichael’s last Supercross victory back in 2007. “It is a very technical track and there will be some great racing in St. Louis tonight,” predicted the Greatest Of All Time after qualifying. “First through 10th were separated by just over half a second!” With four wins, Carmichael is also the all-time winner in the Edward Jones Dome, so he knows a thing or two about this event.  He was able to transfer some of his insight to the team’s rider Josh Hill.

A week of practicing starts and yet another solid top 10 qualifying session had Hill positioned where he wanted to be in Heat race #1, lined up next to second fastest qualifier of the afternoon, Ryan Dungey. As expected Dungey took the holeshot and Hill was fifth off the start (top four transfer straight to the Main from the 6-lap Heat races, the rest have to ride the Semis). By the halfway point, Hill had moved up into 4th for a qualifying position when an unfortunate crash caused the race to be red-flagged and re-started. On the restart, and slower riders conspired to have Hill back in 11th. Despite a valiant charge that had Hill all the way up to 7th on the last lap, he was still three positions out of a direct transfer to the Main.

Another tough start for Hill in Semi #2 allowed him to demonstrate just how fast he is. Suzuki-mounted holeshot artist Mike Alessi snagged the lead on the start and never looked back, while Josh made the Main the hard way. In the short 5-lap semi, he charged from 7th up to 2nd . Shades of last week as Alessi and Hill outpaced the field and easily made the Main event. “I have the speed to run with the leaders and proved it again in the Semi, but like we said last week, gotta get a start!”
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

Teammate Tickle Tweeted from home where he is recovering from his crash in Canada: “Good luck today @soaringeagleresort @Rchracing and @joshill75 you got this! Keep that momentum up!”  Broc was referencing the fact that Hill earned back-to-back top-10 finishes for the first time since last year. Proving that he might be down, but definitely not out, Broc was just released from the hospital yesterday. “Everything is getting better day-by-day and I really appreciate all the support and fans that I have behind me.”

Tickle added, “I still have a lot ahead of me to get healed up. I’m blessed and really can’t thank everyone who is behind me enough. I will make a 100% recovery and be back when the time is right. I’m motivated to get through this and get back where I left off. I was building great momentum and getting more confidence each weekend this Supercross season.” First things first, though.”First off I want to thank my wife Jessica for taking care of everything,” says Broc. “I also want to thank my family for the awesome love and support, everyone at RCH Racing and all my sponsors — you guys are awesome and I consider you my family, too.

For the multitude of fan requests, Get Well cards can be sent to Broc Tickle at P.O. Box 100, Holly, MI 48442.
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Photo Credit: Jessica Tickle

The 450 Main saw RCH Soaring Eagle ready to fly… until he had his wings clipped at the start. Josh was back in 14th place and having to fight traffic for the first three laps of the 20-lap main event. Then he began another of his patented charges through the pack. He was up to 11th by lap 5, and into the top 10 by lap 8. Despite a collision with privateer Weston Peick, he continued to charge all the way to the end. Hill was 9th with 6 laps to go and then on the last lap picked up two more positions!

“I’m not that happy with 7th,” said Hill. “Coming from the back of the pack is getting really old. If I get my starts where they need to be, I really feel like I can be a contender.” However the team is happy with the progress Hill has made and three consecutive Top 10 finishes in a row.

“Good ride for Josh tonight,” said team principal Carey Hart who was  on hand with his wife singer Pink to support Hill. “He made big gains throughout the day and rode to a solid  7th place finish.

By virtue of his 7th place finish at the Edward Jones Dome, Josh Hill jumps up into 11th overall in the points standings with four races left in the season.  Injuries suffered earlier in the season have had Hill trying to play catch-up all season long. Despite not being able to race, Broc Tickle still holds onto 8th place in the standings.

Between having Pink and the Suzuki Holeshot experience going on, the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team pits were rocking. Fans were drinking in the energy of a real rock star in addition to having a chance to win an all-expenses-paid four-day/three-night get away to Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort. The party in the pits at any Monster Energy Supercross makes the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle
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Photo Credit: RCH Social Media

With St. Louis in the rearview mirror, it is time for the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle team to head to Houston. Everything is bigger in Texas, including the expectations for the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team on April 5th at Reliant Stadium.

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About RCH Racing Soaring Eagle:
RCH Racing is in its second season of the partnership between Ricky Carmichael and Carey Hart to campaign the Feld Motor Sports® 2014 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship season. Ricky Carmichael merged his Suzuki relationship and technical development with the established five year marketing giant of Hart & Huntington Racing in 2013. The RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team continues its partnerships with Suzuki, Fox, Dodge, Sycuan Casino, Yoshimura and Bel-Ray. Stay up to date on all RCH Racing Soaring Eagle news, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @RCHRacing and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hartandhuntington.

For additional information contact Justyn Amstutz at Justyn@NFC-Mgmt.com

RCH Soaring Eagle Team Hops The Border 

Like the legendary Jason and his crew of Argonauts from Greek mythology, Team RCH Racing Soaring Eagle set sail for parts unknown… well, at least venturing outside the continental United States as the AMA Supercross went to Toronto, Canada this week. The Rogers Centre, home to the Canadian Football League Argonauts, proved to be quite an adventure for the team. On a night that James Stewart passed RCH team principal Ricky Carmichael for 2nd on the all-time SX win list with 49 victories, the deceptively tough track played havoc with every racer attempting to chart a course for the podium, including a detour for team leader Broc Tickle.

Things quickly went south north of the border for RCH Soaring Eagle Supercross team rider Tickle. A crash in practice had Tickle taking a trip to explore a Canadian hospital instead of attempting to make the podium. Josh Hill was left as the lone rider to fly the colors in Canada. Actually, things were looking good for the RCH Soaring Eagle rider leading up to the race, literally. In a harbinger of things to come for #75 Hill, he was picked as the lead wallpaper image from leading moto lifestyle magazine Racer X as the Simon Cudby photo was e-blasted around the world for free downloads. If you missed it, check out this shot of the Team RCH Soaring Eagle rider at the Detroit SX (coincidentally sponsored by Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort):
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

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http://racerxonline.com/2014/03/18/detroit-sx-wallpapers?utm_medium=Email&utm_source=Newsletter&utm_campaign=Newsletter%2B2014-03-20

Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

“Stop looking like a turkey. Grab a Suzuki and some Shift MX gear and be a #soaringeagle,” the likable kid from Oregon Tweeted before the heat races. However, things got serious for Hill when Tickle went down. Another solid top 10 qualifying session saw Hill positioned where he wanted to be in Heat race #2, however he was squaring off against the fastest qualifiers, headed by fellow Suzuki rider James Stewart (who set a blazingly fast 49 second lap time). A 7th place start had Hill battling with five other riders for the 4th place transfer position (top four transfer straight to the Main, the rest have to ride the Semis). Despite getting past Andrew Short for 6th on the last lap, Hill was sent to the Semi.

Garnering some more media attention, Josh lined up on the inside line for the first Semi race, right in front of the Fox Sports TV camera. A great start had Hill second just behind Suzuki-mounted holeshot artist Mike Alessi. The two quickly outpaced the field and easily made the Main event as 5 riders made the main from the 5-lap Semi. “It’s all about the starts,” said Hill. “I have the speed to run with the leaders and proved it in the Semi.”
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

The 450 Main saw the lone RCH Soaring Eagle Suzuki Team rider ready to fly the team colors in Canada. A tough start left Hill well outside the top 10, but he kept his head in the game. With five laps left of the 20 lap main event, Josh cracked 10th place and then quickly reeled in 9th, however there just wasn’t enough time as James Stewart snagged the Golden Fleece… um, Supercross win in Toronto. “I know what I need to do… I guarantee we will be working on starts all this week headed into St. Louis,” said Hill after the Main.

Despite his crash and having to sit out the Canadian round, Tickle hangs onto 8th for the rider point standings. By virtue of his 9th place finish at the Rogers Centre, Josh Hill moves up into 12th overall with five races left in the season as he continues to make up for time lost due to injuries earlier in the season.
Of course the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team pits were still the center of attention during the pre-race festivities, even in Canada. “Fans can always check out the RCH Racing pit activation at any race for a chance to win an all-expenses-paid four-day/three-night get away to Soaring Eagle Resort,” stated Raul Venegas, director marketing entertainment for Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort. “Partnering with Monster Energy Supercross gives us an exciting platform for fans to learn more about our luxury resort.”
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

Charting a course out of Canada, the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle team heads south to the “Show Me” State. See the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team flying high at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis for Round 13 on March 29.
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About RCH Racing Soaring Eagle:
RCH Racing is in its second season of the partnership between Ricky Carmichael and Carey Hart to campaign the Feld Motor Sports® 2014 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship season. Ricky Carmichael merged his Suzuki relationship and technical development with the established five year marketing giant of Hart & Huntington Racing in 2013. The RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team continues its partnerships with Suzuki, Fox, Dodge, Sycuan Casino, Yoshimura and Bel-Ray. Stay up to date on all RCH Racing Soaring Eagle news, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @RCHRacing and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hartandhuntington.

For additional information contact Justyn Amstutz at Justyn@NFC-Mgmt.com

RCH Soaring Eagle Team In The Driver’s Seat At Ford Field 

Not only is RCH Soaring Eagle Supercross team rider Broc Tickle from nearby Holly, Michigan, the Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort is located in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan, so the Soaring Eagle folks decided to really make a statement and partnered with Feld Motor Sports® to host Supercross racing’s return to the Motor City. After last week’s round on the Ricky Carmichael-built track in Daytona where Tickle and his teammate Hill felt like they had a home field advantage, they were really in the driver’s seat for the race at Ford Field in downtown Detroit!

The RCH Soaring Eagle team certainly made a statement in the opening ceremonies as Tickle swapped his traditional Fox MX jersey for a #20 Barry Sanders Detroit Lions jersey. Hill made an impression by riding down through the stands on his #75 RCH Suzuki. Not to be outdone, Miss Soaring Eagle Sierra Merchant rode in on a Side-by-Side during opening ceremonies, shooting T-shirts out to the fans.  Presenting sponsor Soaring Eagle also showed up in force with more than 100 Tribal members, family and VIPs to attend the race.
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Photo Credit: RCH Team

Riding as if they owned the place, afternoon qualifying saw Josh Hill just edge hometown boy Broc Tickle by 12/100s of a second as both of the teammates made the evening racing program with lap times well inside the top 10 (only the top 40 fastest qualify for the evening racing program). The evening started off with a little more TV time for Tickle as Fox Sports reporter Jenny Taft interviewed him. With more than 85 friends and family members in the stands, not to mention the event’s title sponsor watching, Tickle wanted to do even better than last week’s career best 4th place finish. Photos_SCudby_03
Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

“I’m really looking forward to tonight,” Tickle told Taft and the TV audience. “All my family is here, and on top of that we have our title sponsor Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort, so I’m looking to keep building that momentum like I have the past couple of weeks and hopefully get some holeshots tonight.”

Although Hill did’t have his entire family in the grandstands, he still wanted to do well for the team’s sponsors. Heat #1 had Hill squaring off against fastest qualifier of the day, James Stewart and holeshot artist Mike Alessi, also mounted on Suzukis. Despite getting boxed out at the start, Hill quickly moved into 4th by the end of the first lap. By the second lap, he slashed past Justin Brayton for 3rd spot. The TV cameras then concentrated on Hill’s attempts to chase down Alessi and captured a Suzuki sweep of the top three qualifiers (only the first 4 transfer straight from the heat race, the rest have to race the Semi, or worse, the infamous LCQ “Last Chance Qualifier’).
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

Tickle didn’t quite take the holeshot he wanted in Heat #2, instead he ended up the first lap a distant 7th. Although he did get up into 5th by the last lap, remember that only the top 4 go straight to the Main. That meant a trip to the Semis. Tickle went into Semi #2 lined up on the far inside hoping to sneak through, although he didn’t get the holeshot, his strategy paid off as he gated top five and quickly moved into second. After chasing Andrew Short for much of the race, Tickle set up a dramatic pass attempt in the final turn, but came up just short of Short to finish second and make the Main.

The 450 Main saw both RCH Soaring Eagle Suzuki Team riders finish inside the top 10 of the fiercely competitive field. Hill had a better start than Tickle, finishing the first lap in 7th, dicing with Short, while Tickle was back in 9th after getting squeezed off at the start. However on lap #3, Tickle passed privateer Suzuki rider Weston Peick for 10th position. “I was 9th on the start and rode really cautiously for the first five laps,” explained Tickle. “I finally got into the flow and started picking guys off.”Photos_SCudby_02
Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

By lap #7, both teammates were battling each other for 7th. “I got into into 6th and then was closing the gap on 5th. Then I started losing my flow,” said Tickle. “I tried to run it in on Barcia on the last lap, but couldn’t make it stick. Still, I’m pumped with 6th and how I rode through the pack.”
At the finish, Barcia just beat Tickle to the line. Following Tickle’s career best 4th last week, he backed that up with a hard-fought 6th place in Detroit.

Meanwhile, Josh Hill had a much better Main event than he had in Daytona, finishing a season high 8th. “I rounded the first turn in 6th or 7th,” said Hill. “Then the night just kind of turned into a full on battle! It went back and forth and I made my way up pretty far at one point, but made a couple of mistakes.”
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Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

Tickle moves up to 8th in the rider point standings and Josh Hill now holds 13th overall with six races left in the season to continue to make up for time lost due to injuries earlier in the season.

The RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team pits are always the center of attention at a Supercross race, but they really pulled out all the stops for the Detroit round, including stepping up as the title sponsor for the race. “We’re happy to support RCH Racing and the Monster Energy Supercross community,” said Raul Venegas, director marketing entertainment, Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort. “Fans can check out the RCH Racing pit activation at any race for a chance to win an all-expenses-paid four-day/three-night get away to Soaring Eagle Resort.  Partnering with Monster Energy Supercoss gives us an exciting platform for fans to learn more about our luxury resort.” Photos_SCudby_01
Photo Credit: Simon Cudby

After rolling out of the Motor City, the RCH Racing Soaring Eagle team heads north of the border to the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Canada for Round 12 on March 22. Although the pits are closed in Toronto, come and visit RCH Soaring Eagle’s Activation at the Main Entrance of the Rogers Centre this weekend.

Miss Soaring Eagle at Opening Ceremonies & Soaring Eagle Tribal Members with Carey, Broc, Josh, and Miss Soaring Eagle from Detroit SX
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Photo Credit: RCH Team

About RCH Racing Soaring Eagle:
RCH Racing is in its second season of the partnership between Ricky Carmichael and Carey Hart to campaign the Feld Motor Sports® 2014 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship season. Ricky Carmichael merged his Suzuki relationship and technical development with the established five year marketing giant of Hart & Huntington Racing in 2013. The RCH Racing Soaring Eagle Team continues its partnerships with Suzuki, Fox, Dodge, Sycuan Casino, Yoshimura and Bel-Ray. Stay up to date on all RCH Racing Soaring Eagle news, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @RCHRacing and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hartandhuntington.