RCH Racing Suzuki riders Josh Hill and Broc Tickle both carded top-10 places on their RM-Z450s in Saturday night’s 13th-round AMA/ FIM World Supercross Championship round at Houston in Texas.
Hill, who finished in eight – his best since his last full season in 2010 – said: “It was a great day. I was top 10 in practice and that really got my day started off on a good note. My heat race was really good; I got a fourth-place start, ran second for a while and finished third.”
In the Main Event, Hill leveraged his third-place finish in the Heat and capitalised on a solid gate pick to score his best finish this season. The Oregon native never raced outside of the top-10 the entire 20-lap feature race.
“I got a great start in the Main Event,” said Hill. “I ended up picking off a few guys and rode all the way up to seventh and stayed there pretty much the entire moto but Andrew Short got me on the last lap and we ended up eighth. I felt great all day. I’ve known that I could be a top-10 rider since the very first round. After I got hurt in Anaheim, coming back was tough. After missing so many years of racing, to get hurt in the first race really took the confidence out of me. I had to re-build myself as a racer. It was tough. I’m accustomed to racing for a podium and wins, but when I came back in San Diego that was out of the question.”
Tickle earned his 13th consecutive Main Event of the season after finishing ninth in Heat 2. Tickle was fifth when the heat was red-flagged on the third lap, but couldn’t maintain his early momentum. He lost four positions over the final five circuits.
Tickle overcame an 18th-place starting position for the Main with a solid ride on the No. 20 Dodge/ Sycuan Casino/ RCH Racing/ Bel-Ray/ Suzuki RM-Z450 despite another handlebar exchange with rival Andrew Short.
Said Tickle: “I just felt off all day and I’m not sure why. I don’t know if it was the track or what, I just didn’t feel comfortable. My bike was working well; it just wasn’t clicking for me today. We got away with a 10th and we’ll take it. It’s not the finish that we wanted but we’ll take it. We salvaged points and we’re still top-10 in the rider standings.”