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Anderson wins first AMA National at Southwick

Anderson wins first AMA National at Southwick

Anderson wins first AMA Motocross National

2003 YOT Craig Anderson leads Michael Byrne at Southwick
2003 YOT Craig Anderson at Southwick on winner's podium

Photos [Left to right]:  Australian Craig Anderson  (Yamaha) leads fellow Aussie Michael Byrne (Honda) at Southwick in the 2003 AMA 125cc Series; and Ando celebrates his first National AMA win .

Aussies Anderson and Byrne finish 1-2 at Southwick AMA Pro 125 Motocross Round

On 8 June 2003, Australian Craig Anderson won his first National motocross round at Southwick in the United States.

Yamaha of Troy’s Anderson, from New South Wales, turned a pair of holeshots into 1-2 finishes and an overall win in the AMA Pro 125cc Motocross round at Southwick in New England, Massachusetts.

It was a great day for the Aussies with Queenslander Michael Byrne winning Moto 1 and finishing fourth in moto 2, to take second overall for the Amsoil/Chaparral/Honda Team ahead of US Yamaha rider Brock Sellards.

In Moto 1, Byrne muscled past Anderson early on in the 30-minute plus two-lap race to beat Anderson to the chequered flag, ahead of Honda rider Ryan Mills.

In Moto 2, there was a great three-way fight for the lead between Anderson, Byrne and Sellards. But Byrne crashed late in the race while trying to pass Anderson on the outside of a corner, losing several spots. He recovered, however, to finish fourth in the race and hold off Sellards for second overall.

In his first full season in the US, Ando finished seventh overall, with Byrne finishing one place higher in sixth. South African rider Grant Langston won the AMA Pro 125cc Motocross Championship that year.

The year before, both Anderson and Byrne (along with Chad Reed) were victors for Australia in the 2002 World Championship of Motocross in the United States. This win opened up doors for both riders in America. Ando secured a contract with the Yamaha of Troy Team to compete in the 2003 AMA Pro 125cc Motocross Championship, with Byrne riding for the Amsoil/Chaparral/Honda Team.

Byrne scored his first AMA podium finish when he finished third at the Minneapolis round Earlier on 22 February 2003. He went onto become a very consistent top factory rider, finishing five times in the Top 10 in both the MX and SX series and achieving more than ten podium finishes, although he never broke through for a maiden overall victory.

In 2004, Ando moved up into the AMA Pro 250 Championship, where he finished 17th, also winning a round of the US AMA Pro 4-Stroke Championship. He decided to return to Australia for the 2005 season, securing a factory ride with Team Honda.

Round 4 - AMA Motocross 125cc Results

Southwick, Massachussets

8 June 2003

Round 4 of 11, Southwick (Overall Round)

1. Craig Anderson, AU 2-1, Yamaha
2. Michael Byrne, AU 1-4, Honda
3. Brock Sellards, US 9-2, Yamaha
4. Andrew Short, US 7-5, Suzuki
5. Ryan Mills, US 3-12, Honda

End of year championship

1. Grant Langston, Durban, South Africa (380 points)
2. Ryan Hughes, Escondido, US (373)
3. James Stewart, Haines City, US (350)
4. Mike Brown Gray, US (271)
5 . Brock Sellards, New Philadelphia, US (269)
6. Michael Byrne, Queensland, Australia (269)
7. Craig Anderson, New South Wales, Australia (222)

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