The highly anticipated Round 6 of the CMRC Series brought his lots of highs and lows for the KTM Thor Racing Team. The first 2017 stop in “La Belle Province” had both Kaven Benoit and Cole Thompson face some different challenges.
MX1 rider Kaven Benoit started his day with a little bit more pressure than usual, racing in his backyard in front of thousands of local fans. It didn’t stop him from showing some great speed through practice and qualifying in the top five. Benoit rode an incredible first moto as he started in second place and stayed there until the checkered flag. His impressive race led him to his first podium of the season, where he was welcome by an ocean of French fans. In the second moto, Benoit grabbed the holeshot and fearlessly led for the first laps. Unfortunately, around mid-moto, Benoit went down and had a hard time breathing. He was immediately transported to the nearest hospital, where they discovered extended injuries sustained during the crash. Due to a punctured liver and other serious injury, Benoit will not return to the CMRC series for 2017. The whole KTM Thor Racing Team wishes him a quick and easy recovery.
“Thank you to everyone who called, texted and messaged me on Sunday to get more news,” said Benoit. “It warms me up to see how many people are behind me. It may be over for 2017 but you can expect a great comeback for 2018. I will keep you all updated as my recovery goes forward. Thanks again and see you at the races!”
MX2 Rider Cole Thompson looked really comfortable on the new Quebec track as he set the fastest time in qualification. Thompson got off the first gate drop in the top three and started applying pressure on the second place right away. On the third lap, Thompson and his rival touched and he was sent to the ground. As he was getting back on his bike, he realized that his right thumb was facing a different direction than supposed to. Thompson tried to ride for a lap but couldn’t bare the pain and had to pull off the track. After having his thumb put back in the joint, Thompson decided to line up for the second moto anyway. On lap two of moto two, Thompson’s thumb dislocated again. He never gave up and kept going until last lap to salvage as many points as possible. His seventh place in the second race gave him a 13 overall in the day. As we move to the Maritimes, Thompson is still holding on to a two-point lead in the highly competitive MX2 championship.
“I am not even sure what really happened but seeing and feeling my thumb pointing in the wrong direction was probably one of the worst feeling of my life,” said Thompson. “I knew I had to go out for second moto but after every lap I had to tell myself ‘Just one more.’ I already bought a brace and did everything to make sure I was going to line up next weekend. I am not ready to quit and I will do all it takes to prove it.”
ProAm Rider Tanner Ward was also forced to faces some challenges over the weekend. While running in seventh in the first MX2 moto, Ward had to pull off the track due to bike issues. The team was able to put Ward back and running during the break and he lined up ready to race for the second moto of the day. Ward didn’t get the start he was hoping for after a crash happened in front of him. He started the race pretty close to dead last and slowly worked his way up to an amazing eigth position.
“I am really thankful to be able to rely on a professional team so early in my career,” said Ward. “It proved to be super valuable this weekend, whether it’s for bike or mental support. We are taking the races one by one, making sure we learn as much as possible to be ready for next year. I’m looking forward to the next rounds and enjoying every second left of my amateur journey.”
- Shawn Maffenbeier 1-2
- Dylan Wright 2-3
- Josh Osby - KTM 6-1
- Ryan Surrat 3-4
- Bobby Piazza 5-6
MX2 Championship Standing
- Cole Thompson – KTM - 298 points
- Shawn Maffenbeier – 296 points
- Josh Osby - KTM - 289 points
- Ryan Surrat – 258 points
- Dylan Wright - 245 points
KTM Canada, Inc. would like to thank Thor & Parts Canada for their support, as well as all our other team sponsors.