TOMAC AND MUSQUIN INJURIES
Shoulder injuries for both Eli Tomac and Marvin Musquin were the biggest stories of the weekend because the two predicted title contenders are now way out the championship chase. As we mentioned last week, reports of Tomac’s injury were unclear and we expected a press release to come on Friday, but instead saw Tomac at the Kawasaki test track on Thursday. His pace in the practice sessions showed that there’s something serious to the injury and when he pulled out of competition on Saturday night, we immediately talked about with Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Manager Dan Fahie. The team’s plan on the situation is to take it day by day and if they thought that Tomac couldn’t have handled riding in Houston, they would not have made him try. At this point, ET3 is forty-nine points out of first place in the championship.
Musquin’s issue is just as uncertain because it looked like his shoulder was knocked out of place, something those close to him also agreed with. We ran to the pit area after his crash and saw the visibly frustrated rider try to establish a plan with the team. Musquin hoped to ride the LCQ in hopes of making the Main Event and salvaging points, but he decided that he could not ride the bike just before the start of the race. The team and rider have stated they will undergo full evaluation this week with hopes of racing Anaheim Two, but there has been no statement regarding the severity of the injury. Musquin went from leading the championship to now being ranked tenth, with a twenty-three point deficit from the leader.
Check back as the week continues for more updates on both riders.
ALEX MARTIN UPDATE
Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM rider Alex Martin sat out Houston due to the clavicle fracture he suffered at Anaheim One. It was a strange week for AMart because a first medical report said there was a small fracture, then a second evaluation stated it was actually an old injury, but a third and final check-up determined that the break was indeed a new issue. According to the team, there is no need for surgery but it sounds like he might sit out Anaheim Two to let it heal a little more.
WHERE WAS TYLER BOWERS?
We heard concerns from a few fans regardings the absence of Tyler Bowers in Houston and clearly, those people didn’t read Kickstart from A1. Bowers never planned to race Houston, as he was already slated to complete his deal with a team in the ADAC Supercross series with another team. This was a wise move for Bowers, because his win abroad helped him claim the series championship. He’ll be back on his privateer Kawasaki at Anaheim Two.
We felt for the truck drivers and privateers that made the trip to Houston as the long drive, 3,069 miles from Angel Stadium to NRG Stadium and back to Angel Stadium, has to be done in a short period of time (a hassle for the truck drivers due to the new digital log books that monitor their hours behind the wheel) and was a financial hit for guys that compete for purse money. Then there’s the fact that Houston is actually located further east than Arlington, which is the kick-off for the 250 East Coast SX swing…
Wow, what a night for Bracken Hall. The Kawasaki-mounted privateer rocketed out of the gate and to the front of the pack in his 250 Heat Race, then crashed out of qualifying position midway through. Just when it seemed like Hall was set for redemption in the LCQ, another issue dropped him out of the race altogether.
When Austin Politelli went down and crawled off of the track in his 450 Heat Race, we were concerned that the Honda-mounted privateer was seriously injured. So imagine our surprise when Politelli not only made start of the LCQ less than an hour later, but won the damn thing! Something must have come up in the Main Event, however, because the 981 pulled out after two laps.
CRAIG ANKLE INJURY
When we saw a shot of Christian Craig’s swollen ankle on Thursday afternoon, we wondered how the GEICO Honda rider was going to get his foot in a boot, let alone race. CC32 told us that the severe sprain happened when he overjumped an obstacle and his ankle folded off the peg, but no crash occurred. After a few innovative therapy sessions, the swelling went down and Craig made the trip to Texas. If the pain was a problem, it sure didn’t show because Craig hammered his way around the track and nabbed a fifth-place finish in the Main Event.
Anyone surprised by Chase Sexton’s success after two rounds? The GEICO Honda rider claimed a podium finish in only his second Supercross Main Event. The teenager has made quite the impression on some in the pits, but he tells us his skill on tight tracks is greatly aided by the time he spent riding Arenacross during the winter months in the Midwest.
A few more laps and Cole Seely could have snaked that 450 Heat Race win away from his Team Honda HRC teammate. Seely was quick all day in Houston and his battles with Justin Barcia for a podium spot had our full attention for a while. There must be something about Houston for CS14, because he was the 450 Main Event winner the last time the series hit the city in 2015.
SAVATGY RIDING STYLE
We were surprised to hear Joey Savatgy admit that he’s altered his riding style as a result of last year’s championship-deciding run-in with Zach Osborne. In the post-race press conference, the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider said that he’s noticed that he takes tight lines in turns more often now so that a rider cannot run it in on him, even though it’s probably not the fastest way through a corner. Jeannie might have some drills ready for him to try at the GOAT Farm soon.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN ATV-MC/WPS/KTM EXPERIENCE
Our friend Jason Thomas told us that he still has spots open for select rounds in the Rocky Mountain ATV-MC/WPS/KTM VIP Experience. We’ve met plenty of people through JT’s program over the years and everyone seems to enjoy the unique experience offered, including extended time in the pit area and track walk in the morning. Want more info? Contact JT at firstname.lastname@example.org.