Words by Jackie Riess
Photos by James Lissimore
Round 4 of 5 of the Thor WMX Series took to Motocross Deschambault in Deschambault, QC on Sunday. Now past the halfway point of the series, the top three in points have solidified, but that shouldn’t overshadow the progress Sarah-Kim Villeneuve has made in hunting down Eve Brodeur. With another all KTM/Quebec podium of Brodeur, Villeneuve, and Garant, the native fans were in full support of the WMX racing at Deschambault.
Brodeur grabbed the holeshot in moto one, with Oriana Fraser in second, and Villeneuve in third. Brodeur, Villeneuve, and Garant quickly moved into the top three positions and took advantage of the smooth, early morning lines. Villeneuve was executing her corners well and seem to find some outside lines that were smoother than some of Brodeur’s insides. She was keeping Brodeur honest, but a mistake in the S turns before the finish knocked her out of her groove. Eve began to switch up her lines and pulled away a bit, but Villeneuve wasn’t about to let that happen. As the two worked their way into lapped traffic, Villeneuve began to close back in on Brodeur as she set the fastest lap of the race on lap 6 of 7. Garant rounded out the moto one podium, with Amelie Croteau and Ani Ferguson rounding out the top five.
Eve admits that Sarah-Kim makes her a bit stressed on the track, but she does all in her power to stay calm and focus forward. What translates into stress for Brodeur, translates into radiant confidence for Villeneuve. Admittedly pleased with her race, Villeneuve knows she’s so close to clinching the top step of the podium. Fending off a shoulder injury, Villeneuve knows a start is what could be a game-changer for her results. So that’s exactly what she did in moto two.
A mistake from Brodeur down the start stretch allowed Villeneuve to capitalize on the start in moto two. With Brodeur and Garant in tow early, Villeneuve was able to lead the pack for the first lap. Brodeur made the pass for the lead early, but Villeneuve was able to hang on to her pace and challenge for the lead. A mistake by Villeneuve in the corner by the start straight would allow Brodeur to open up a 3.5 second gap, where she would stay for the remainder of the race. Garant held onto third for the entire moto, as the pack behind her battled for position.
Ferguson was able to charge through the top ten to 4th, as Fraser held onto 5th until a last lap pass by Croteau pushed her back into 6th. The moto long battle for 6th (which ended up being a battle for 7th) was contested by four racers: Page, Orbanski, Greenlaw, and Legare. Page led the group for a lap, but Orbanski was able to make the pass into 6th and hold onto the position for the middle of the moto. A mistake by Orbanski left her to finish 10th, as Page held on steadily for 7th in the moto and 7th overall on the day. Farther back in the pack, Lindsey Bradley fought to hold off three others in the battle for 12th. Vanessa Stinson was able to make the pass on her, but Bradley didn’t go down without a fight as she searched for lines to make a pass back on Stinson. Though her charges were ultimately unsuccessful, they finished in 12th and 13th respectively, with Camryn Horbaty and Megan Hamm not far behind.
Brodeur, Villeneuve, and Garant landed on the overall podium again at round 4. Ferguson (4), Croteau (5), Fraser (6), Page (7), Legare (8), Orbanski (9), and Greenlaw (10) round out the top 10 overall at Deschambault. The final round of the Thor WMX Series is set for August 15th at Walton Raceway after a week of amateur racing at the Walton TransCan Grand National Championship. Can Villeneuve challenge Brodeur for the win? Join the ladies live or catch the action online at www.floracing.com.