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TPJ RACING at THUNDER VALLEY

At a beautiful track tucked beneath a mountainside, hundreds of racers and thousands of fans convened at Thunder Valley race way for the third round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship.

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The TPJ Fly Racing Suzuki team arrived to the racetrack early, in order to prepare the equipment for the dramatic change in altitude. On Friday, the team was invited to participate in the Team Suzuki autograph signing at RPM Motorsports. TPJ Racing riders, Justin Ashburn, Killian Auberson, Nick Schmidt and Dustin Pipes attended and signed autographs with excited fans.

PictureJustin Ashburn – 455
Justin Ashburn was stuck by bad luck this weekend at Thunder Valley – but this bump has only fueled his fire to evolve and improve. In 450 qualifying, an equipment malfunction forced Ashburn to return to the pit area before qualifying was complete. This required him to race the consolation race as a last chance to get to the main event – but an unfortunate crash on the wicked Thunder Valley track let his ticket to the main slip by. Although he had some bad luck this round, Ashburn has continued his progression in adapting to his new Suzuki ride. With each round we see vast improvements and have faith that Ashburn will continue his growth.
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Killian Auberson – 902
Our 250-division racer, Killian Auberson was excited for another chance to line up with some of the fastest riders in the U.S. In practice, Auberson was looking strong and turning out solid lap times – but an unfortunate incident left him with a hurting shoulder, which affected him the rest of the day. In moto one, Auberson did his best to fight through the pain, but ended up pulling out of the competition to risk further injury. We are thankful that it is not serious, and Auberson intends to line up at Highpoint next weekend for redemption.
PictureDustin Pipes – 95
Dustin Pipes has backed up his earning of the RC Hard Charger award with continued performance on the track. Pipes was able to find smooth lines in qualifying and managed to earn his ticket to the main. Coming into the first moto with momentum, an equipment malfunction that forced Pipes to retire only fueled him to perform in the final moto. In the final moto, Pipes battled the top riders in the country, as well as the track and the altitude. After a long and grueling moto, Pipes finished 31st. After his race this weekend he was able to evaluate areas to improve upon, and has a game plan to make improvements during the off week before Highpoint.
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Nick Schmidt – 79
Nick Schmidt made great time in qualifying, and earned his main event spot by qualifying INSERT. In the first moto, Nick charged through the pack and held strong against some of the fastest riders in the world, finishing 29th overall. In the final moto, Nick was off to a great start, trying to work his way through the pack until a stroke of bad luck forced him to retire early. Despite this, Schmidt showed great speed and skill in navigating one of the series’ toughest tracks. We anticipate strides of improvement from Schmidt as he works to move up in the ranks.Although the team did not achieve the results that they had hoped for this weekend, TPJ Fly Racing Suzuki plans to spend the off week working diligently to prepare for Highpoint, in order to come out swinging.
The TPJ Fly Racing Suzuki team wants to extend a thank you to all of the staff who helped make Thunder Valley a great event. We also want to thank all our sponsors who, have so graciously supported us this season – your help is pivotal in making this happen. We are looking forward to the next race, June 18, at High Point raceway in Mount Morris, PA.

For a complete gallery of images from our weekend at Thunder Valley, check out our Media section of TPJracing.com, or Like us on Facebook.

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