McThoughts | Monster Energy Supercross | Tampa | 450 Class
By Jeff McConkey
Photos by Billy Rainford
How about the 450 class?! Even though we have lost more top guys to injury, the racing is still really good. This week’s main event was pretty exciting and you, honestly, couldn’t tell who was going to win. Eli Tomac was good, Marvin Musquin looked good, Jason Anderson looked solid, and Justin Hill looked awesome. It’s so nice to have a class that can produce so many different podium contenders on any given night.
The racing hasn’t been boring, and you really don’t know what is going to happen. The track was good, and it had a gnarly sand section that was fun to watch every lap. A few of the big boys were busting out a quad which was nice to see, but it did bite a few guys.
Cole Seely went down hard and will be out for quite a bit. I expect Christian Craig to get the call up to the big leagues as, well, let’s be honest… his 250 SX season has been poor, and nobody expects him to win outdoors.
Anyway, here are the results and my thoughts.
1st Eli Tomac: Checkers or wreckers. Eli rode great, and it seems like when he gets a really good start, he usually wins, unless he crashes himself out. I don’t think he can win the championship, but he sure could win a bunch more main events. Eli is now 7th in points with 116. He trails the leader Anderson by 65 points.
2nd Marvin Musquin: Marvin looked the best he has since he returned from injury. He got a good start, led almost half of the laps and finished a solid 2nd. Even better for Marvin, he just moved himself into 2nd in points, but a distant 39 out of first.
3rd Jason Anderson: Jason needs to improve his starts just a little bit more, if he wants a chance to battle for the win. They aren’t terrible, but he’s been spotting Eli and others too much of a lead. He is still riding very well, and he holds onto his points leader red plate for yet another week.
4th Cooper Webb: This is not the same Cooper we saw for the west coast races earlier on. His starts are better, he’s battling with guys and being rewarded with solid finishes.
5th Broc Tickle: Another great ride for Tickle. He started inside the top 10 and moved forward a little. Rides like the last few weeks are why he got that Red Bull KTM ride. Broc has moved himself up to 8th in points.
6th Justin Hill: Wow…. Hill has always said that he rides the 450 better. He rides the bike “the way it should be ridden.” Well, he wasn’t joking. He looked great on his way to the heat race win, and I honestly thought he had the win until he went down. He looked so effortless everywhere. He will be a player next year in SX.
7th Dean Wilson: Deano gets healthy enough to ride through the week, and his results show. He’s still not 100%, but he’s working hard and it’s showing. Good job, Dean.
8th Malcolm Stewart: Great finish for Mookie. He started 8th and was able to maintain it. I just wish he would attempt to ride outdoors. If you’re going to be SX only, you better be top 5 or better. Let’s hope Mookie sticks around with the JGR squad.
9th Blake Baggett: Not a great night for Blake. After his very impressive Spiderman impersonation, I think he was a little rattled. I’m just happy that the safety nets saved him from what could have been nasty. Blake is 3rd in points with 134.
10th Justin Brayton: Justin started 15th and had a good ride to move forward. He needs a good start for the good finish, but he’s one of those guys that won’t give up. Brayton is now 4th in points.
Biggest Stud: Justin Hill is my Stud. He just looked so good. I’m driving the band wagon if anyone wants on?!
Biggest Dud: Injuries once again. Poor Cole Seely went down with a pelvis and tailbone injury. It seems like anyone sitting in 2nd place in points is going down. Let’s hope we don’t lose anyone else.
Biggest Surprise: Justin Hill…I’ve said enough.
MC’s “G’d Up from the Feet Up” Award: Heck, I might as well pump Justin Hill a little more. To be honest, nobody looked great to me, so I’ll let Hill have this one.
Thanks for reading. See you in Hotlanta!