Just when we thought it couldn’t get any better. After a three-year hiatus, the Monster Energy Supercross Series made its return to Seattle for the fourteenth round of the 2017 season. And yeah, it was a hell of a return. Days before we boarded our flight for the Northwest, we got the idea that this was going to be something special with a high chance of rain, the tight points chase, the return of the West Coast 250 riders, and the cut-throat action of the sport as a whole. If you ever get the chance to travel to Seattle, make it a point to for a Supercross or just a quick vacation because it’s a must-see city. Here’s Kickstart, thanks for coming.
– Unfortunately Marvin Musquin’s second career 450 SX main event win was overshadowed by the riders behind him. The Red Bull KTM rider got into the lead on the opening lap with a swift pass on training partner Jason Anderson, then took off completely uncontested to the checkered flag. The post-race celebration was classic, as Musquin wheel-tapped up a dragon back then accidentally tapped neutral which sent him over the bars. Coming into Seattle many felt that Musquin would be a favorite for the win, and he did just that.
– Uh, can we talk about Eli Tomac? The Monster Energy Kawasaki rider was without question the faster rider in the field during the main event and he made moves on a completely destroyed track that we did not think were possible. His charge from a mid-pack start to second place had a few issues, like a strong defense from Cooper Webb and a wild endo crash over the end-zone double, but he still found his way to second place at the checkered flag.
– As the laps in the 450 main event clicked off, we knew that we were seeing Ryan Dungey at his best. Sure the start didn’t go well for the Red Bull KTM rider because he hit the deck in the first turn with Justin Bogle (who put that Suzuki block that far out in the first-turn by the way?), but he charged hard to take fourth on the final lap with a pass on Davi Millsaps, a pivotal move in the series. There was nothing easy about that ride and Dungey made it look somewhat simple. If only we could have heard his thoughts on it in the press conference.
– So with all of that said, the championship is now tied with Tomac and Dungey at 294 points each with three rounds to go. Who would have thought we’d see that at the start of the season, after Ken Roczen crashed in Anaheim, or when Tomac had issues in Arlington? We’re in for an incredible finish to the year, no matter who comes out on top.
– Even though they are tied, it sounds likes Tomac will run the red plate in Salt Lake City due to his race win total compared to Dungey (eight for Tomac, two for Dungey).
– Cooper Webb had a hell of a crash late in the 450 main event, but he managed to shake it off and rejoin the race. The Monster Energy/Yamalube/Chaparral/Yamaha Financial Services/Yamaha rider told us in How Was Your Weekend that his rookie season hasn’t gone exactly as we expected, yet he feels the challenges and knowledge gained will only help him going forward as he sets his sights on becoming a championship contender for the Nationals.
– The results won’t show it, but Jimmy Decotis had a great day in Seattle. The GEICO Honda rider battled hard with close friend Aaron Plessinger in the heat race and then went down during the main event with a weird buck on the finish line with a few laps to go. Still, he managed to get up and finish sixth. A podium finish could be coming soon.
– A couple of guys were missing from the lineup in the 250 class, including Jeremy Martin, Austin Forkner, and Tyler Bowers. All three were dealing with injuries that hindered their season, but all hope to make it back before the close of the SX season for Salt Lake City or Las Vegas.
– The schedule at Seattle was weird to say the least. On Friday it was announced that the whole daytime program would be pushed far back into the afternoon and limited to one practice session. At first we figured it was due to weather-rain, until multiple teams told us that it was because the track conditions couldn’t support that many motos. The durations of the main events were also clipped three minutes shorter. Never the less, the racing was exceptional. Maybe we need one really sandy/strange SX like this each year?