Features 12 Jan 2022

Quotebook: 2022 Supercross Rd1 Anaheim

Assorted racer comments following the opening round of the season.

In Quotebook, a selection of riders detail how their races played out at the opening round of the 2022 Monster Energy Supercross Championship, round one of the series at Anaheim, CA.

450SX

Image: Octopi Media

Cooper Webb (Red Bull KTM) – Second:
It was a dog fight tonight! Fun race, but a really tough race. The track got super-rough and a lot of us got out front just duking it out. I felt like I fought hard the whole time, made some good passes and got myself in a really good position. I kind of struggled a little bit with the track, so I was pumped to come out with a second – great points and it’s the best I’ve ever done at the opener, so we’re looking to keep the ball rolling. It’s great to be back in Anaheim and it’s fun to be back racing!

Marvin Musquin (Red Bull KTM) – Fourth:
I’m happy right now. It was a long and tough day, with quite a fight for the main event. I did my best with outside gate pick and I made some good passes, so I was pumped on the riding and the intensity early on. I made a couple mistakes and I lost contact with Cooper, and then Malcolm [Stewart] passed me. I tried to pass him to the inside, but unfortunately he railed the corner and we hit each other – he didn’t know I was coming – and we both went down. I got up and came back to fourth place, that was amazing. I’m pumped on the push and with the results, to be honest, with all the drama that happened during the main.

Aaron Plessinger (Red Bull KTM) – Ninth:
It was a pretty rough day for me actually. I started out in free practice going down and then I went down in the first qualifying practice as well. I turned it around and ran some decent laps in the second qualifier, but it wasn’t a very great position. I got a decent start in the heat race and ran in fourth pretty much the whole time. In the main, I didn’t get a good start at all and I was back of the pack battling. About halfway through, I turned it up a little bit and made some passes up to ninth. Overall, I’m pumped to get through the first round healthy and we’ll back at it in Oakland!

Justin Barcia (TLD Red Bull GasGas) – Third:
That was an awesome race! I had a lot of fun and we had some great battles out there. The pressure is off now and I can work on myself, keep plugging along and having fun. It’s been a great offseason and it’s just good to get this first race out of the way. I’m happy with the result, it’s a good podium finish, and we definitely have some things to build on. I’m really looking forward to the next race, bonding with the guys, having fun and going for it

Dean Wilson (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) – 12th:
My night was a struggle for sure, which is frustrating because I’ve had a really good off-season. In the main, I was pretty far outside on the gate and I came through and made some good passes. I was hovering around top 10 and then got passed and ended up 12th. It wasn’t great, but I believe we’ll just get better from here on out.

Malcom Stewart (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) – Seventh:
I think this was actually one of the better season openers for me since I started in the 450 class. Going into the weekend, I wanted to execute a few things like having a good heat race and I was able to do that. P1 for a qualifying, I’ve never done that before, so I feel like that was a big achievement for me and even though we went down in the main event, it was actually a good ride performance-wise but you know, the results weren’t there. It was a good start, but I definitely feel there are a few things that we need to work on but overall, I’m happy to leave here on a good note and looking forward to Oakland and to keep driving – we’ve got 16 more races to go!

Dylan Ferrandis (Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing) – 16th:
Anaheim 1 is always a little crazy. I was actually feeling pretty good all day – it was my starts that hurt me. In the main event, I got a really bad start, but I moved my way up. I was feeling pretty good, pretty strong, and was coming back to the top five. Then I had an issue and tried to come back but made a mistake and crashed, so it was not a really good night, but I know now that I’m capable of riding out front in the 450 class. We’re going to regroup and be ready for next weekend.

Eli Tomac (Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing) – Sixth:
It was a little bit of a slower start than what we wanted this season. It really came down to two things tonight – the starts and I was struggling a little bit with the whoops. It was a tough track, probably one of the toughest A1s that we’ve had in quite some time. On a positive note, I had really good qualifying sessions all day, so I know I can be fast and be there. I just have to put it all together. It’s always easier said than done, but it’s possible. We’re going to try and fix the little things and come back next week.

Ken Roczen (Team Honda HRC) – First:
My weekend and the team’s weekend went great here at Anaheim 1. I didn’t really know which way it was going to go. We had a little bit of a difficult December, but this couldn’t have gone any better. Our practice was okay – nothing to really rave about, but we executed every single start tonight. We won the heat race and then in the main event, I knew it was going to be a long battle. The track was really, really rough tonight and it made for some crazy racing. There was a lot of carnage and crazy stuff going on behind me. I was actually really glad we had those good starts, because it helped me stay away from that and really ride my own race. Chase [Sexton], my teammate, was putting a lot of pressure on me, and we had a really good battle for the first half of the race. Luckily I came away with the win and I couldn’t ask for anything better. I’m just really happy with how the team and I excelled today.

Chase Sexton (Team Honda HRC) – Fifth:
Today was pretty good, practice was good, heat race was good. In the main event, I made a few costly mistakes, which was frustrating. My speed is really good and I feel really good on the bike – we did a lot of good work during the off-season and it’s looking promising. Finishing fifth after crashing twice is pretty good I guess, but I have to figure out how to get my marks up and not make bonehead mistakes. The track was really good… I actually had fun on it all day. The mistakes I made were my fault. The bike felt good on the track, we had a good base, and I just really enjoyed it. I won a heat and got fifth in the main because of my mistakes, so I’m looking forward to improving. Kenny won, so it proved that we put in some good work on the bike. We’re healthy, and on to the next round.

Brandon Hartranft (Twisted Tea Suzuki) – 17th:
Today started out a little rough. I crashed in the whoops in the first practice, but every time I got on the track after that, I rode better and better. It’s been raining recently in California, so the dirt’s soft from that. The track was pretty basic, but it was so soft and rutted that it became more technical. All in all, we had a solid night – I’m looking forward to the next 16 rounds and I have a lot to show. I can’t thank everybody from Suzuki and my team enough… we’ll kick some butt next weekend.

Justin Bogle (Twisted Tea Suzuki) – DNQ:
It was a rough night all the way around. It was not how we wanted to kick-off my first race with the new team, but on the positive side we are healthy and going back to work to get better for next weekend. I had a crash while in transfer position in the heat, then again in the LCQ. It was just a couple mistakes on my end that I need to correct and be better.

Adam Enticknap (Twisted Tea Suzuki) – DNQ:
I got some good jumps out of the gate, but I was not riding like I wanted so we’re going to make some adjustments to my technique and try to get that figured out. I feel like I have all the big pieces in line, I just need to get a few little things sorted and work on that first lap sprint speed. Oakland is kind of my home race, I’m looking forward to the dirt, looking forward to the stadium, looking forward to the fans and looking forward to another try to kind of turn around this A1 result. It’s not exactly what we wanted, but we came out healthy and we’re ready to go for the second one.

250SX

Image: Octopi Media.

Seth Hammaker (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki) – Second:
We had a pretty good day all around and a good start to the season. Qualifying sessions went well, I ended up with the fourth-fastest lap time in my class and finished second in my heat race. I got out to a second-place start in the main event and tried to make my way to the front but ended up dropping down a spot for a moment before taking the position back. I rode comfortably in second for a while, but started to feel some pressure from behind late in the race, which made for an exciting ending. I still have some small things to clean up before next weekend but I’m happy with the ride and how my KX250 performed tonight.

Jo Shimoda (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki) – Seventh:
That was a crazy race tonight! I was caught behind the gate after the person next to me flinched and had to battle my way through the pack. A small mistake in the whoops midway through set me back again, but I pushed all race to finish in seventh. Not exactly how I wanted the night to go, but we still have a lot of racing left this season to make up those points. I know I have the speed to win – I just need to work on some things and we’ll be ready for Oakland next weekend. Thank you to the entire Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki team for the help today.

Hunter Lawrence (Team Honda HRC) – Third:
My night was okay. I just kept pushing and charging, doing everything I could. It was close to second and I hope it was interesting to watch! I’m a little frustrated, a little satisfied, not just with the result, but where I’m at. I think I’m riding great and I can’t wait to go to the next race.

Michael Mosiman (TLD Red Bull GasGas) – Sixth:
Anaheim 1 is in the books and boy was it a crazy one! I had so much fun throughout the day, honestly more fun than I’ve ever had at a SX. I felt super-confident on the bike and everything was clicking, just riding well within my abilities. It’s unfortunate how the main started out and once I was back in the pack, it’s pretty hectic back there, but I’m proud of how I rode and I’m leaving with a ton of positives. I think I’m very much in it for the championship and very healthy and couldn’t ask for anything more.

Christian Craig (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) – First:
I don’t think anything can top last year’s win in Houston, but I would say this is just as good. Having all the fans back and having my family here, winning at a hometown race is a dream come true. I’ve been coming here since I was three years old, so this means everything to me. It was an awesome main event and I felt awesome all day. I didn’t get the best of starts, but I made my way through the pack and made clean passes. Once I got up front, I just clicked off my laps and rode a smart race. We’re going to try and keep this thing going into the next round in Oakland.

Nate Thrasher (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) – 12th:
It was a tough night, but I felt like I was riding well. Somebody hit the gate and it moved, so I went and hit it too. Then I was working my way up through the field and was going for another pass, but the guy got cross-rutted and I ended up going down. After that, I tried to push my way back but just didn’t have anything left, so it was kind of a bummer because I felt like I was riding well and could have made it to the top five. It was just a tough night, but we’ve got the speed, so I’m going to come back next weekend and put it on the box.

Carson Mumford (BarX Chaparral Suzuki) – 10th:
My starts were key. My bike has such great, controlled power it made it easy to get strong starts with how short the start straight was. I got a little tight in the end of the main after running in fifth place for over half the race. Hearing the crowd go crazy all the time was new for me and was awesome! I’m looking forward to next week and finishing stronger.

Dilan Schwartz (BarX Chaparral Suzuki) – 15th:
Anaheim 1 was tough. I struggled all day with the track and getting comfortable which led to a couple crashes. I’m glad I was able to get through the night healthy enough to keep racing. I’m going to keep working and improving my results!

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