Anahiem, California’s Angel Stadium played host to the “40th Anniversary Celebration Race” of Monster Energy Supercross and one of the best races the sport has witnessed to date. Former Supercross Champion and team owner Chad Reed claimed victory in front of a crowd of former Supercross Title Champions and 40,682 fans. In the 250SX class Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil/Honda’s Cole Seely set the pace early on in the main and set a gap too big for Jason Anderson to close. Seely walked away with his first Supercross win of the year after two close second place finishes to Anderson in the first two rounds.
Ryan Dungey took the Nuclear Cowboyz Holeshot on his Red Bull KTM, followed by Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Jake Wiemer, Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart and last year’s Supercross Title Champion Ryan Villipoto on his Monster Energy Kawasaki. After winning a hard fought battle with Villipoto in Heat Race one, Justin Brayton had a lot of work set out for himself with a mediocre start alongside Justin Barcia and Discount Tire Racing/TwoTwo Motorsport’s Chad Reed.
Dungey set the pace early on in the moto, but not far behind him was a crowd thrilling wheel to wheel to wheel battle in lap 3 between Stewart, Villipoto and Red Bull KTM’s, Ken Roczen.
German rider and 450SX class rookie Ken Roczen stuck a pass for third on former champ, Ryan Villipoto, trading some paint with his fellow training buddy.
Coming out of the whoops section the slippery track conditions got the best of race leader Ryan Dungey and after picking up his bike he re-enters the race in 6th place just behind Reed.
Going into lap 8, Roczen closes the gap on Stewart to 1.3 seconds but Ryan Villipoto shuts the door on Roczen, taking the inside line and taking second place.
With sights set on a win in Anaheim, Villipoto tries to take the inside on Stewart but Stewart manages to get his foot stuck in the front tire of Ryan Villipoto’s bike. Villipoto goes down and Stewart manages to ride it out and holds onto the lead.
Turning the fastest lap time in lap 12, Reed is on the move with a spell of determination, claiming the back and forth battle with Ken Roczen in lap 13.
Reed manages to close up the gap on Stewart and makes a clean pass on the inside to take the lead.
After getting out front and taking a breath from the hard fought battles of one of the most exciting Supercross races of all time, Reed puts a few seconds between himself and the rest of the pack to take the win in Anaheim.
Stewart and Roczen take second and third.
In the final corner before the finish line Dungey slams Villipoto taking both riders out and allowing Justin Brayton to take 4th . Villipoto takes 5th and Dungey finishes in 6th.
In celebration of what was obviously a very emotional win for Chad Reed, he jumps onto the stands as the crowd roars and not long after finds himself in tears of joy amongst his family and race team on the top of the podium. In his 42nd career win, Reed admits, “I had to work way too hard for this one. I’ve had 41 of these [wins] before tonight and they came a hell of a lot easier than this one”.
Rookie Ken Roczen reclaims the points lead with 60 points followed by Villipoto with 59 points, Reed and Dungey tied for third with 57 points and Justin Brayton within 5 points of the leader with 55 points.
In the 250SX class Yamalube/Star Racing/Yamaha’s Cooper Webb grabbed the Nuclear Cowboyz Holeshot out the gate, followed by Cole Seely, Dean Wilson and Malcolm Stewart.
Jason Anderson, the winner of the previous two rounds goes to work on his disappointing start early in the race making a pass on Malcolm Stewart for 4th in lap 2 and setting his sights on Dean Wilson, sitting in third.
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Dean Wilson gets a little sideways in the whoops managing to get tangled up with Geico Honda’s Zach Osborne, once again, after battling it out last week in Phoenix for the last podium spot. Both riders re-enter the race at the back of the top ten.
As Wilson and Osborne go to work on making their way back through the pack, Anderson makes the pass for second on Cooper Webb in lap 7, 9 seconds behind race leader Cole Seely.
Unfortunately time ran out for Jason Anderson, as Seely set the pace early in the moto, putting some time between himself and last week’s race winner Jason Anderson.
Seely takes the win in Anaheim, Anderson holds onto the points lead and Cooper Webb celebrates his first ever career podium.
Broc Tickle was unable to race the 450SX main after coming up short on a triple in Semi two. Hopefully we see Tickle back next week, as he is absolutely a contender in the 450SX class.
After getting together with Jake Weimer in the first lap of his Heat Race at A1, Eli Tomac has been out with a left shoulder rotator cuff contusion. He said he will return for Oakland next week, at the earliest.
Unfortunately Australian rider Matt Moss had a disappointing start in the main event, however, after leading some laps and picking up the Nuclear Cowboyz Holeshot at Phoenix he is definitely on the radar and one to watch next week in Oakland.
Coming in as the Series points leader after a win in Phoenix, Ryan Villipoto definitely walked away this week with some disappointing results, but as seven-time Supercross Champion Jeremy McGrath stated, “Ryan Villipoto is a fierce competitor and in order to beat him you have to do everything better than he does. It’s not impossible but it’s hard”. Ryan Villipoto will be sure to put on a show next week for fans in Oakland with a clear point to prove that he is here to win.
Dungey also walking away from A2 with some things to work on for Oakland. It will be exciting to see if he brings his new aggression to Oakland, or if he will return to his modest, consistent style.
As the sport continues to get faster, the field continues to get deeper and the stakes continue to get higher, the 2014 Supercross Season promises to be the most exciting season yet. Round 4 in Oakland promises to hold some exciting battles as the top 5 remain within 5 points of each other and the emotion of victory becomes sweeter and more heart-felt with every round.
250SX CLASS RESULTS
- Cole Seely
- Jason Anderson
- Cooper Webb
- Malcolm Stewart
- Justin Hill
- Shane McElrath
- Dean Wilson
- Zach Osborne
- Michael Leib
- Jessy Nelson
250SX POINT STANDINGS
- Jason Anderson-72
- Cole Seely-67
- Zach Osborne-53
- Cooper Webb-51
- Dean Wilson-50
- Malcolm Stewart-47
- Justin Hill-44
- Jessy Nelson-35
- Dean Wilson-31
- Shane McElrath-29
450SX CLASS RESULTS
- Chad Reed
- James Stewart
- Ken Roczen
- Justin Brayton
- Ryan Villipoto
- Ryan Dungey
- Weston Peick
- Josh Hill
- Andrew Short
- Jake Weimer
450SX POINTS STANDINGS
- Ken Roczen-60
- Ryan Villipoto-59
- Chad Reed-57
- Ryan Dungey-57
- Justin Brayton-55
- James Stewart-44
- Justin Barcia-42
- Andrew Short-38
- Wil Hahn-30
- Broc Tickle-26