The AMA Supercross Championship will come to Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tennessee for the first time ever. It seems long overdue to have a Supercross there as almost all of today’s pro riders have logged time at the Loretta Lynn’s Amateur Nationals, just over an hour away. This will be the final stretch in Cooper Webb’s run for the title in what has been an unpredictable season.
Here’s the situation by numbers: Webb has a 17-point lead coming into round 14 in Tennessee. There are four chances for him to mess up. If he finishes second to Marvin Musquin in every round, Webb still wins. If, however, Webb crashes or DNFs a single round, it can reset the season in an instant. Often, the leading rider has a full race in the bank ( 26 points) by this time. This season probably won’t be decided until round 17 ends.
Ken Roczen seemed like the fastest rider in Houston. He won the first of three main events, then fell in the second. “The first main event tonight was seriously so good!” he said. “We grabbed a great start and got out front right away, pulling a 10-second gap on the rest of the field. It was amazing to see the checkered flag before anyone else; unfortunately, it was only in one main. In the second one, I got tangled up with Dean’s [Wilson] rear wheel and went down pretty hard. I smashed my toe and originally thought I had an ankle injury but luckily that wasn’t the case. My bike was also so bent up after the crash. I got checked out and it actually started to feel better, instead of worse, after 15 to 20 minutes. That was good but my toe was still in a lot of pain. Luckily I was able to just jump back on the bike and do what I could in the third main, salvaging an eighth-place and getting 10th overall. It’s not really how we wanted to end tonight, especially with how well the day and first race went, but again we’re healthy and moving on to the next one. At one point, it will come.” Roczen is 36 points down, now, so his shot at the title will take a small miracle at this point.
Marvin Musquin was also fast at Houston, but couldn’t stop making costly mistakes. Some of those mistakes were assisted by his teammate Cooper Webb. “Cooper is very aggressive and he pushed me off the track,” said Musquin afterward. “Its not always the fastest guy who wins the overall. I feel like a did a clean pass; I never touched Cooper. He’s my teammate but also my competition.”
Webb didn’t deny that he was riding aggressively. “I got frustrated and and let it affect me. That’s not the way to do it, for sure. I’ll try to contain the emotions a bit better. We are teammates and training partners, but we are one and two in the championship. I’ll try to learn from it. I’ll try to be better for sure moving forward.”
Nashville will be the seventh round of the 250 East championship. These guys have been on break since Indy, so nothing has changed. It’s still a runaway for Austin Forkner. He now has a 26 point lead in the standings, so he could take a weekend off and still be on top. He won’t do that.
The venue is new, but it is an open stadium. With a few long rhythm sections and mostly 180 degree turns, it should make for good racing and, as of now, it looks like temperatures in the high 70s and only a 10 percent chance of rain.
450 STANDINGS AFTER 13 OF 17 ROUNDS
1. Cooper Webb 288
2. Marvin Musquin 271
3. Eli Tomac 262
4. Ken Roczen 252
5. Blake Baggett 215
6. Dean Wilson 201
7. Joey Savatgy 173
8. Cole Seely 160
9. Chad Reed 151
10. Justin Barcia 150