Photos by Rich Shepherd
It’s hard to think there are only 11 rounds left of the Monster Energy Supercross Series, an FIM World Championship. In fact there are a lot of “hard to believes” so far this year. Nobody had Davi Millsaps to be leading the points as the series heads into his home state this weekend. Or what about the inconsistency from two-time champion Ryan Villopoto? Or even more bizarre, James Stewart has yet to even hit the box this year. It’s been a crazy but very entertaining season thus far. This past weekend marked the opening round of the East Coast 250 series with fresh names, numbers and some Canadians to cheer for. Once again, this round did not disappoint as far as action goes. It took its toll on some riders who hit the dirt hard but it also showcased two big names that are back on top. Dean Wilson and Ryan Villopoto dominated every lap of their main event from start to finish. The east is underway. Enjoy some pics from the Arlington SX.
Dean Wilson hadn’t raced for over ten months. It sure didn’t look like it as he took the opening East round of the Lites class with superior ease. The rest of the pack better find about 2 seconds a lap if they want to compete with this kid.
As a title sponsor, you have certain obligations you need to uphold. Monster Energy brings the best, and I mean the very best, of everything to Supercross. The ladies that sport the M claw at each round are some of the most beautiful women in the world. These girls make dreams come true for every man that has a Monster Energy Supercross ticket. Jaw dropping beauty.
The Arlington Stadium is a really nice place.
Canadian Cole Thompson showed his skill on Saturday night by qualifying 8th, then grabbing 4th in the first heat. When we thought it couldn’t get any better, he passed for a podium spot on lap 7 in the main and looked in total control. I guess looks can be deceiving because he eventually cased it hard in the rhythm section which sent him over the bars. He finished a disappointing 17th. Look for this kid to amaze us again this weekend in Atlanta.
Zach Bell had a highlight reel crash in his heat race. In fact it has sparked a huge debate throughout the industry as to how could he be allowed to ride after such a big crash. It was really scary but he did get up. According to the asterisk medical crew, he was fine to race.
Watch this Video and you decide for yourself:
For the second time this year they used a staggered start after the red flag was waved. It makes for some interesting bench racing when this happens.
James Stewart looked to be on his game after catching and passing Villopoto in his heat. Then on the gate of the main event his Suzuki 450 broke a clutch and he was unable to race. This is not supposed to happen at the factory level but apparently nobody told James that. It’s kind of embarrassing really at this level in the sport for something like that to happen.
As I said, fresh faces and numbers are seen when the east coast starts up. Blake Wharton of the Rockstar Energy Racing team started out the night by having to make the main through the LCQ. He managed to win that and grab 2nd in the main behind Dean Wilson, but he was way off the pace of the PC rider.
Mr. Smiles, Bobby Kiniry, is having a good year so far. His results are not what he wants to see but he’s made every main except one. Steady as she goes is the way Bobby seems to be riding this year; almost a little more conservative than his usual self. There are also some team rumours that Velocity 3 has folded so maybe that is what’s frustrating him.
Nicky Beatty is showing that money and the absolute perfect set up isn’t needed to chase your dreams. Look for Nicky to be even better this weekend in Atlanta.
. Jon Jon Pauk hails from Alberta and has been riding SX for a couple years now. He managed to just make the night show in Texas.
Justin Barcia had a rough night, but once he finally got into the main event he settled down. He’s a bit hot and cold so far in his rookie 450 campaign.
These kids have to be stoked that the KTM JR SX Challenge is back after a couple years off. The future stars of Supercross are right here.
Kevin Windham is still showing up at each round to give his loyal fans a glimpse of his skills before he fully retires. High fives to Feld for keeping KDub a part of the opening ceremonies.
This was our first chance to see French import Marvin Musquin in the 250 class. He was fast all day but crashed in turn one in the main event and had to charge from dead last to 6th.
There was no stopping Villopoto on this night. He was smooth, smart and fast. This marked his third win of the season but he only closed the points gap by three as points leader Davi Millsaps managed a 2nd. He now sits 24 points back of the lead.
All smiles from Dean Wilson who was so darn excited just to be back at the races. The win was just a bonus.
Your 250 Texas SX podium: Wilson 1st, Wharton 2nd and Hahn 3rd.
The 450 podium from Arlington: Poto 1st, Millsaps 2nd, Dungey 3rd.