During the week Dean Ferris announced he was heading abroad to race internationally for 2019, and his parting gift to his CDR Yamaha Monster Energy Team was to stamp his authority at the final round of the 2018 Pirelli MX Nationals at Coolum, on the Sunshine Coast.
Ferris, who wrapped up the championship last weekend, put the field to the sword in both motos, winning both races by more than 30 seconds and completing a perfect clean sweep of round victories this year. He shared the podium with a pair of high-speed North Queenslanders - Raceline Pirelli KTM’s Mitch Evans who wrapped up second in teh championship, and Davey Motorsports Husqvarna’s Caleb Ward, who finished the season strongly with his second top three in as many weeks.
Evans grabbed the holeshot of the opening Thor MX1 moto and led for six laps before a charging Ferris strode past and disappeared into the distance. By the end of the race he’d lapped up to fifth place, with a margin of 37.4s over second-placed Evans. Ward put in a gritty ride to pass eventual non-finisher Brett Metcalfe (Penrite Honda Racing) for third with two laps to go. Rhys Carter (Complete Parts Kawasaki Racing) and Callum Norton (DPH Husqvarna) finished fourth and fifth.
In the final 450cc moto of the season KTM Motocross Racing Team’s Luke Clout snatched a brilliant holeshot, but was overhauled by Evans before the end of the lap. It was shortlived though, as Ferris moved into the lead on the second lap and again put daylight between himself and the pack, finishing with a 34.4s buffer over Evans. A consistent ride from Ward saw him place third, with Metcalfe fourth and Norton fifth.
The top three positions in the Thor MX1 championship went to Ferris from Evans and Clout.
In arguably his most dominant display for the season, Ferris was in a league of his own on a track that sorted the men from the boys. Coolum was at its gnarliest and ugliest, but Ferris' winning margins were huge.
“Last year I won nine of the ten rounds and I made a little deal with myself this year to aim to win every round,” Ferris said. “Today I was able to achieve that and I’m super stoked to be able to do it with this team of people behind me at CDR Yamaha Monster Energy in what could be my final round of motocross in Australia for some time.
“The track today was tough as the sand was deep and the ruts made it a real challenge. Physically, it was as demanding a track we have had in some time so I’m thankful for the work my trainer, Guy Andrews and I have put in.
“Thank you to WEM for another great series as well as the event sponsors. I’m honoured to have won this championship three times now and it was something I dreamed about as a kid when I first started racing on a YZ85.
“Finally, a huge thank you to my family, my girlfriend, my mechanic Aiden - who is prepared to do whatever it takes - and the CDR Yamaha Monster Energy Team who make it feel like a second home at the race track,” he signs off.
“The past three years working with Dean has been great for myself and the team. With Dean, you know you are getting a rider who rolls up his sleeves, is prepared to get dirty and gives his all every time he hits the track. His passion for racing is infectious and we all gel so well that it is sad to see him go, but we 100% understand that he has international goals to attain.
“We still have the Australian Supercross Championship to go and that is another goal Dean has set for himself this year so we expect him to do what he always does and leave it all out on the track."
MX Nationals MX1 category - final points:
1st Dean Ferris – 699
2nd Mitch Evans – 567
3rd Luke Clout – 547
4th Caleb Ward – 506
5th Dylan Long – 502
Final round positions and points:
1st Dean Ferris – 70
2nd Mitch Evans – 64
3rd Caleb Ward – 60
4th Callum Norton – 52
5th Rhys Carter – 51