Blurred Lines: 2023 NGPC Delano GP Photo Report

Delano NGPC Photo Report

It’s been a long time since JCR Honda has won a NGPC, since March, 2019 to be exact, but they found themselves back in the winners circle in January, 2023.

The opening round of the AMA National Grand Prix Championship started in Delano, CA for the second year in a row. Hosted by SoCal MC, the venue is as picturesque as it gets with a stunning backdrop, a 7 mile grasstrack through the rolling green hills, and a race track like no other. Weather played a huge role as a massive SoCal storm left its mark, but the racing was as good as ever at the front of the race with a first time winner, a lot of drama, and more. Enjoy.

The Delano landscape is a rider’s dream – rolling grass hills, wet tacky dirt, and an endless flow around the natural grass track with a picturesque backdrop.
Very few tracks resemble what the American MX compound facility provides for a race track.
Jon Ortner held it down in the 60+ Expert class.
Rain starting Saturday morning saw what was once a nice track turn into a mud fest in no time.
Less than 60 minutes after the previous photo was taken, you can see how quickly it changed.
Jeff Belknap pilots our RM-Z250 off-road build to a podium during the 30+ Expert race.
Saturday’s AA race was the sloppiest of them all, with very few racers heading out in favor of saving their bikes for Sunday’s main event.
Conditions were DEEP.
Preston Campbell overalled the AA race on a CRF250R, coming from row two to do so.
The 3x and defending champ’s bike looked pretty prior to the start of the race.
Tallon LaFountaine is coming off a hot streak at the end of 2022.
GNCC XC2 champ Lyndon Snoddgrass came to play in the mud on the west coast, racing a Babbitt’s KX450X in the premiere class.
Zach Bell is making his long awaited return to racing after missing nearly two straight years due to injury.
The champ is here.
Dante Oliveira’s younger brother, Mateo, is now his newest teammate at Red Bull KTM and has joined the 450 class full time for 2023 and beyond.
When an 11x Baja champion is holding your bike on the line, you know you’re doing something right.
The Beta boys were the most aggressive on the start line, cleaning the tread from mud prior to the start.
JP Alvarez is the newest recruit to the RPM KTM Team, though his day was flogged in the mud.
Justin Hoeft switched from Husqvarna to a Yamaha and showed more than a flash of brilliance, leading half the race before fading back to 6th on his new YZ450FX.

The former Supercross rider’s style and technique is flawless – one of, if not the best in class.

Beta’s Dare Demartile, another former Supercross racer, ran up front all race long and just missed out on his first NGPC victory.

Dante showed a lot of poise and speed in the last half of the race, coming back from a slight mechanical and a run-in with Hoeft half way through the race to finish 3rd.

The younger Oliveira was in the fight all day long, battling with the best in the class.

LaFountaine was off his usual pace in the mud, but the next few tracks have been quite successful for the former Pro motocrosser.
Cole Martinez was visibily frustrated at the end of his race, citing course cutting amongst some of the leaders, but finished a respectable 4th at the end of the day.
Zach Bell was nowhere near the front in his debut race, but a poor start hindered his early laps. Still, his final laps were on par with the leaders in the final 30 minutes.

Remember when Justin Barcia won Anaheim 1 in his debut Yamaha race a few years back? Surratt winning is very similar. He has the speed, talent, and equipment to be a race winner, but has yet to put it all together until today. However, this surprise first time winner has the potential to this into a championship by the end of the year.

Lyndon Snoddgrass was fun to watch, showcasing some GNCC mud skills in his first race out west.
Austin Walton was another top contender who wasn’t pleased with his result.

Jack Simpson, an experienced Australian who made his US debut with SLR Honda last year, is a new comer to the Purvines Yamaha squad. He made it a winning one taking the Pro 2 class by 5 minutes.

Gus Riordan, another Aussie who is slated to race GNCC again this year, was Jack’s closest competitor. An overheating issue late in the race forced an unexpected pit and a slowed bike, but he soldiered on for 2nd.
Husqvarna tester and racer Kai Aiello scrapped for a podium, always facing pressure and rising up to a podium spot in the final two laps.
Collier Martinez, the younger brother to Cole Martinez, put in an impressive 4th Pro 2 and has the confidence and will to win in the near future.
Cody Simpson was a highlight of the Pro race, running a strong pace on his ’03 YZ250 to finish 5th Pro 2.

Colton Aeck holds perfect form, even in the mud.

 

Like many, DBT tester Tyler Belknap had a rough race in the mud.

Brandy Richards was perhaps the cleanest rider in the race as she went on to dominate the Women’s Pro field once again.
GasGas racer Ava Silvestri has been 2nd best in the Women’s class for the past year, and she held that spot in Delano to start the year.

Mikayla Nielsen is the newest and youngest to the Women’s Pro class. The high schooler battled for a podium position all day to finish 3rd.

RPM KTM’s Kaitlyn Jacobs has struggled with injuries over the past year, but is starting to find her form again as she jsut missed the podium in the mud.

Another new recruit to RPM KTM Team, Tristun Alvarez is ripping a 125 in the A classes this year and having a good time doing it.
Reaching the finish was a feat for a lot of racers.

Do You Like DBT Bringing You Fresh Content? Search and Shop Through the Links Above or Below:






Advertisement
Advertisement