Monday, January 16, 2017

The Others...San Diego

With first round jitters out the window, Monster Energy Supercross would take over Petco Park in San Diego, California for round two.

Petco Park | Photo: Eric Phalin
One of my favorite rounds. San Diego has turned to Military Appreciation and always brings out limited graphics and tribute gear. It's nice to see teams take part and even spend their week doing different events with the military. The event is very special to guys like Eli Tomac and Broc Tickle who have family in the service.

Chase Marquier got some camo graphics | Photo: Connor Moore

Fredrik Noren went with a camo jersey | Photo: Connor Moore
Rain stayed in Southern California through the week and the track would sit tarp covered awaiting a battle. The Dirt Wurx track crew once again worked their magic. After pumping access water and uncovering the track, race day looked to provide perfect conditions. Free practice would be cut out of the program to allow final track prep and riders would first take to the track for timed qualifying. Topping the 250 times would be Monster Energy/Pro Circuit's Justin Hill. In the 450 class, RedBull KTM rider Ryan Dungey would click off the fast lap.

When the gates would drop on heat races we were treated to a track that seemed to offer more passing opportunities than last week, which provided some good racing and great block passing. Troy Lee Designs/RedBull KTM rider Shane Mcelrath would run a wheel in on Husqvarna backed Martin Davalos to take the first heat win.  Justin Hill would get the heat two win on his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki. In 450 heat one Kawasaki's Eli Tomac jumped out to the lead but it'd be Jason Anderson who'd slide his Husqvarna under Tomac and take the W. HRC Honda backed Ken Roczen grabbed the start in heat two and never looked back. The 450 semi qualifiers would go to Davi Millsaps and Cole Seely. Transferring to the main through last chance qualifiers in the 250 class was Justin Starling, Zac Commans, Scott Champion and Cole Martinez. In the 450's it'd be Alex Ray, Fredrik Noren, Tommy Hahn and Cade Clason.

On the results sheets, it just looks like another week of same results. Ken Roczen and Shane Mcelrath would win their respected class for the second straight week, but this time neither would come without challenge. Shane put on what I'd consider a championship performance. He started just outside the top 5 and was even bumped off the track. He'd then charge to the front. Grabbing the lead just as the timed main came to an end and leading the final two laps. Just as impressive was Justin Hill and Aaron Plessinger who started 9th and 10th and would finish 2nd and 3rd respectively. The 450 class is about to get interesting. I think many have forgotten how much time Ryan Dungey had off of his KTM due to a back injury last season. As he finds his race pace, things are going to get really good! Dungey grabbed the holeshot with Ken Roczen in tow and the two would go on to battle for nearly 24 laps. Roczen gained the upper hand around lap 8 but Dungey kept him honest until a last lap bobble secured the win for Roczen. They'd finish one and two while Dungey's teammate, Marvin Musquin took the final podium spot.

It may be a little early in the season to use the word disappointed but in a short 250 West Championship, I am going to throw it out there. Tyler Bowers finished outside the top 10 for the second straight week. He was said to finally be healthy and liking his switch to Yamaha. I personally considered him a podium threat coming in to the season. I'm beginning to think we won't see him in the top 5.

The 314 machine of Alex Ray has came in to the season looking fit and has switched from a Honda to a Husqvarna. In true privateer fashion, Alex is racing out of a van with some help from companies like TXS Productions, FXR Racing, Dedicated Ride Co., Spectro Oils, Bills Pipes and more. He looked to have main event speed at round one, but was in the wrong place at the wrong time on a few occasions.  He'd turn things around in San Diego and put on an impressive LCQ performance that'd earn his spot in the 450 main.

Alex Ray on his way to a LCQ win. | Photo: Brandon Schlegel
On a side note, we mentioned Justin Starling in last weeks "The Others" and he didn't let us down. Justin would grab the win in the 250 LCQ and then race to an impressive 14th place main event finish.


And now...The Others.

250
5. 338 Ryan Surratt
6. 59 Noah McConahy
7. 154 Brandon Scharer
8. 805 Carlen Gardner
9. 526 Colton Aeck
10. 388 Brandan Leith
11. 383 Casey Brennan
12. 321 Bradley Lionnet
13. 149 Tallon Lafountaine
14. 137 Martin Castelo
15. 262 Connor Pearson
16. 275 Johnny Jelderda
17. 797 Robin Kappel
18. 976 Josh Greco
19. 240 Bryce Stewart
20. 87 Chris Howell
21. 141 Robbie Wageman
22. 138 Blake Lilly

450
5. 723 Tyler Enticknap
6. 722 Adam Enticknap
7. 374 Cody Gilmore
8. 291 Kyle White
9. 606 Ronnie Stewart
10. 792 Bracken Hall
11. 891 Jeff Alessi
12. 848 Joan Cros
13. 501 Scotty Wennerstrom
14. 918 Michael Akaydin
15. 713 Chad Cook
16. 151 Dakota Tedder
17. 447 Deven Raper
18. 509 Alex Nagy
19. 181 Dustin Pipes
20. 471 Logan Karnow
21. 377 Christophe Pourcel
22. 282 Bubba Pauli

Next week the series heads back to Anaheim, California. Will we see new winners in either class?

-Kyle Pesci




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