Features 4 Mar 2020

Quotebook: 2020 Supercross Rd9 Atlanta

Assorted racer comments following the ninth round of Supercross.

In Quotebook, a selection of riders detail round nine of the 2020 Monster Energy Supercross, an FIM World Championship, in Atlanta.


Image: Octopi Media.

Cooper Webb (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) – Third:
That was probably the hardest race I’ve ever had. I was way back and just put my head down and tried to do the best I can. I got a few gifts from the guys ahead of me but man, it was painful. I knew it wasn’t going to be fun or easy, but that’s racing. It’s a long way out but the only thing keeping me going is this championship, so we’ll do whatever we can.

Jason Anderson (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing) – Third:
The main event was just a battle out there and I didn’t get the good end of the stick most of the time. I ended up finishing not as good as my riding was but we’ll move onto next week.

Dean Wilson (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing) – 10th:
I got a good start from the outside but I got hung up in the second corner and came out sixth. Two ninth-place finishes in a row isn’t too bad but I’m just missing a little bit of intensity in the beginning of the race. I feel like I can be a few spots higher but I need to get better starts.

Justin Barcia (Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing) – Second:
What a crazy race! I started middle of the pack and made lots of passes in the beginning. I kind of got into a groove in the middle and was behind a couple guys waiting for some mistakes to capitalize on something. They started falling apart a little and I was able to move into second towards the end and just rode really solid. The track broke down a lot. It was the roughest supercross I’ve ridden in a while, but all in all, I felt really good and the bike was solid. I can’t thank the whole team enough for making good changes on the bike all day and always believing in me.

Aaron Plessinger (Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing) – Seventh:
Atlanta was pretty good. It’s the best race I’ve had so far this season and we keep making forward progress. The track was gnarly. It got really rough, really rutted and the whoops broke down a lot. It was a really high paced race to say the least. I felt really good, but got a little off rhythm for a couple laps but got it back and was able to finish seventh. I’m pretty happy with that. We’ll go back to Florida and keep working, and head into to Daytona with high hopes.

Eli Tomac (Monster Energy Kawasaki) – Fourth:
The main event didn’t go as planned, but the good news is we live to fight another day and line back up next weekend at one of my favorite tracks, Daytona. There are still positives to take away from today – we were fastest qualifier, won our heat race, and we never gave up in the main event, and battled hard all the way to the very end to salvage as many points as possible. We are going to put this race behind us and be ready to rock next week in Daytona.

Ken Roczen (Team Honda HRC) – First:
These wins just keep getting sweeter and more fun each time! I’m so happy with how tonight went and stoked to have the red plate again. The last couple weekends have been tough but I’ve managed to minimize the damage, which was huge for us because it put us in a good position for a situation like today. With all the chaos, we made up seven points in one night and now are tied for the points lead again. The battle continues for the championship.

Justin Brayton (Team Honda HRC) – 12th:
I’m pretty disappointed with tonight’s result. It seems like I can’t catch a break. Last weekend was really tough and I did everything I could this week to rest and recover my body. I felt good on press day, qualified okay, then got a good start in my heat race and finished third. I was hoping for a main event free from chaos, but unfortunately that wasn’t the case. I didn’t get the greatest start, then got hit by Cooper [Webb] and went down in the sand. My results haven’t been reflecting my speed, so I just need to focus on getting better starts and staying out of the mess

250SX East

Image: Octopi Media.

Shane McElrath (Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing) – Third:
I felt really good during the day, even in the Heat race. We made a few bike changes for the Main that we thought was going to be good, which was kind of my call. I was struggling with the track quite a bit, but I’m learning a lot. It was tough to get third. I felt like I should have been able to win, but I was struggling with a lot of things. So we’ll work on those this week and we won’t make those same mistakes twice.

Garrett Marchbanks (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki) – Seventh:
Seventh wasn’t what I felt like I had to give today, but sometimes that’s how racing goes. We’ve been making good progress testing during the week and I’m really looking forward to the outdoor style track next weekend in Daytona.

Jordon Smith (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki) – Fourth:
It felt good to be so close to where I train and grew up. I was ready to breakthrough and have a race track that I was meshing with. I wish I could have kept the front guys closer, but we’ll take it one step at a time and make our way onto that podium.

Chase Sexton (Geico Honda) – First:
I feel like for the whole night show, it [the track] was pretty dry. They put a good amount of water down, but not enough. It was definitely tough to get that rhythm section after the start on my bike. I managed to do it every lap, but it was definitely hard, I think that was make or break. There was one turn with ruts in it and everything else was dry and marbled. It was about being patient. I wasn’t really a fan of Atlanta, this was my first pro race and I broke my leg. So I just wanted to get through it and be safe—it was good to get a win.

Jeremy Martin (Geico Honda) – 19th:
It wasn’t shaping up to be a pretty night of racing after practice in Atlanta but I definitely turned my day around by ripping a holeshot in the heat to race to bring it home for the win. I felt better, and I was excited for the main event and got off to a good start. Was patiently sitting behind Shane [McElrath, running in third] waiting to put in a late charge. Track was tricky so I knew you had to pick your spots. Then RJ [Hampshire] landed on a tough block and I unfortunately didn’t see it and boom, race over. That was pretty disappointing but at least I’m okay. Looking forward to Daytona.

Jo Shimoda (Geico Honda) – Fifth:
Yeah I was feeling really good on my bike but in the time qualifying couldn’t really put good lap in.But I had a good start in my heat and I was able to bump up to second, but then I hit a tough block after finish line which put me down to fifth. In the main event, bad start, but I was able to get to fifth from 13th. That’s a big improvement for me. Main thing I have learned after the first two races was to be more aggressive at the beginning of the race. I made more moves early and that helped me move up.”

RJ Hampshire (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing) – Second:
Each week we’re going to continue to get better. Getting those holeshots felt good and we had a good flow out there. I want to win but I also want to be in this thing [championship] a few weeks from now, so we’re going to continue to fight week in and week out.

Jalek Swoll (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing) – Ninth:
I got a good start from the outside but I got hung up in the second corner and came out sixth,” Swoll said.“Two ninth-place finishes in a row isn’t too bad but I’m just missing a little bit of intensity in the beginning of the race. I feel like I can be a few spots higher but I need to get better starts.”