McThoughts: 250 East Round 2 – Daytona
By Jeff McConkey
Photos by Billy Rainford
Daytona went off this past Saturday night. The track wasn’t great and kind of looked like a game of follow the leader, but that didn’t stop the top 4 guys from putting on a great race. I, honestly, don’t think I’ve ever seen the top 4 that close for the entire race, especially at Daytona. 250 Class vet Martin Davalos leaves Florida with the red plate and a slim 2-point lead. We now head back to the more traditional SX tracks, and it’s still anyone’s Championship. Let’s take a look at the results and see my thoughts.
1st Jeremy Martin: Jeremy got a great start and was stalking Malcolm Stewart very patiently. It was a very hard track to pass on and he remained very calm on the way to a nice win. Maybe he’s gotten over his SX brain farts?
2nd Justin Hill: I think Justin may have the most raw speed of the East this season. Now he just needs to get a start. He can’t come from behind and expect to win. He has been lucky, avoiding any carnage with the slower riders, but he needs start with the leaders. He will win Toronto.
3rd Martin Davalos: Martin got a podium gift when Stewart stalled at the end. He didn’t have his normal blazing speed, but that is OK. He needs to be there every week and limit his mistakes. This ‘new Martin’ goes into round 3 with a 2-point lead.
4th Malcolm Stewart: Even though Malcolm led the majority of the race and fell to 4th at the finish, I still think he rode very well. He obviously had his mind on the health of his big brother, James, and that had to be tough. After 2 rounds, Malcolm’s starts have been great and his fitness isn’t going to be an issue. He only trails by 5 points, as we head back to the traditional tracks that he shines on. He will win soon.
5th Aaron Plessinger: Aaron was sick with the flu all week, so this is a good finish. He will have to get better starts and he needs to win very soon if he wants this championship. He will need this to be his bad race and get back on the podium. Going into round 3, he is still my pick for the championship.
6th Arnaud Tonus: Finally a good finish for Arnaud. Being a rider of this quality, and being on Pro Circuit, I feel he should be finishing 7th or better each week. Let’s see if he can keep the ball rolling in Toronto.
7th R.J. Hampshire: Nice heat race for Hampshire. His fitness may not be completely there after a very short time to prepare. He will get better as the season progresses.
8th Jesse Wentland: Great ride for Jesse. He’s a super-nice guy, and it is nice to see him do well. With a better start, I think he could finish anywhere between 8th and possibly 5th.
9th Tyler Bowers: Tyler has some issues to start the season, but he’s a true professional and he will work hard to move up the standings.
10th Shane McElrath: As Shane’s arm heals, his results will show. This guy will be on the podium by the end of the series.
Biggest Stud: Justin Hill is my stud. His speed is very impressive and with a holeshot, I don’t think anyone will touch him.
Biggest Dud: He’s not my dud, but I was sad not to see Malcolm Stewart win after leading so many laps. Not many people could go out there and do what he did with a family member on the way to the hospital.
Biggest Surprise: To see the top 4 go at it like that for almost the entire race was a bit of a surprise. Usually at Daytona, someone just checks out. It was nice to see.
Thanks for reading, see you in the 416.