Eli Tomac of Cortez won the Budds Creek National on Saturday after a strong comeback in the first motocross race and a fast finish in the second.
Entering Mechanicsville, Maryland, with a 15-point lead in the standings, Tomac picked up a five-point advantage over rival Marvin Musquin and will line up next Saturday with a 20-point lead at the series’ final venue.
Tomac, the fastest qualifier, got off to a slow start in the first moto and was seventh after the first lap.
The leader, Ken Roczen, was followed by Musquin, Justin Barcia and supercross champion Jason Anderson, who had missed the previous eight races with a broken foot.
Midway through the race, Tomac got past Anderson for fourth place, then picked off Motocross of Nations teammate Barcia for third in Lap 12, about 19 seconds behind Roczen and Musquin.
He stayed there for the final four laps to finish third. Blake Baggett and Anderson passed Barcia to round out the Top 5.
In the second moto, Tomac again started slow and was in sixth after the first lap, but he moved up one spot in the fourth lap and two spots in the eighth to tuck in behind Roczen and Musquin for third.
In the 10th lap, Tomac got by Musquin quickly on the outside, and about four minutes later passed Roczen for the lead in the 12th lap.
Once he was in front, Tomac ran away, leading by 1.5 seconds in the 12th and winning by 5.460 seconds in the 16th.
Meanwhile, Baggett made a late charge, picking off Musquin and Roczen and preserving the overall victory for Tomac.
Roczen, Musquin and Barcia rounded out the Top 5. Anderson did not race in the second moto.
Although Roczen’s first- and third-place finishes tied Tomac at 47 points, Tomac (3-1) got the overall victory because he placed higher in the second moto. Rounding out the Top 5 overall were Musquin (2-4), Baggett (5-2) and Barcia (6-5).
It was Tomac’s 15th moto win and eighth overall win of the 12-race series.
The Ironman, the final venue in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship series, is next Saturday in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Tomac has a 20-point lead over Musquin and a 90-point lead over Barcia.