Features 11 Mar 2023

Racefeed: 2023 Supercross Rd9 Indianapolis

Direct updates from round nine of the season at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Follow the 2023 Monster Energy Supercross Championship with direct updates from tonight’s ninth round of the season at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis through Racefeed.

Shane McElrath prepares for the 2023 Indianapolis Supercross.

Image: Octopi Media.

250SX qualifying one:
Jordon Smith made Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing the first team to lead a timed session for A-group riders inside Lucas Oil Stadium with the fastest lap in the first round of 250SX East qualifying. At 47.563s, Smith’s session-topping time put his Yamaha YZ250F a mere 0.053s clear of the Fire Power Honda-prepared Honda CRF250R of Max Anstie, who was second fastest. Nate Thrasher (Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing) landed third to kick off the day, 0.206s off Smith’s pace. Points leader and Team Honda HRC representative Hunter Lawrence was fourth ahead of a third Yamaha, this time from Muc-Off FXR ClubMX Yamaha, ridden by Jeremy Martin. Chris Blose (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki), Haiden Deegan (Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing), Tom Vialle (Red Bull KTM), Cullin Park (Phoenix Racing Honda), and Jace Owen (Phoenix Racing Honda) comprised the remainder of the top 10.

450SX qualifying one:
Chase Sexton extended his 2023 450SX qualifying prowess to Indianapolis with the fastest lap to begin the day among the premier class. By way of his 46.032s best lap, the Team Honda HRC rider and championship hopeful was a full 0.375s separated from Jason Anderson (Monster Energy Kawasaki) in second. Christian Craig (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) had enough speed for third on the timesheet over Ken Roczen (Progressive Insurance Ecstar Suzuki) and Justin Barcia (TLD Red Bull GasGas) in the top five. Cooper Webb and Eli Tomac, owning the top two positions on the championship leaderboard for Red Bull KTM and Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing, were sith and seventh, while Justin Hill (Team Tedder Monster Energy Mountain Motorsports), Adam Cianciarulo (Monster Energy Kawasaki), and Dean Wilson (Fire Power Honda) filled out the top 10. RJ Hampshire (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) and Aaron Plessinger (Red Bull KTM) were notably just outside the top 10 in 11th and 12th.

250SX qualifying two:
Lawrence remained atop the 250SX East division as the A-group riders returned to the challenging Indianapolis track. With a 46.06s lap, the points leader eclipsed Smith by half a second. Thrasher, Blose, and Martin were quick enough for the top five, while Deegan, Vialle, Devin Simonson (Partzilla PRMX Racing), Anstie, and Owen filled up the top 10. Crashes for Hardy Munoz (Namura, Invictus Speed Crew) and Marshal Weltin (Progressive Insurance Ecstar Suzuki) limited their speed in the session, with Michigan native Weltin notably only qualifying 27th on the combined timesheet.

450SX qualifying two:
On a quickly fading track characterized by constant ruts, Sexton was first to produce a 45s lap time, taking a 45.215s revolution of the Lucas Oil Stadium track to the top in the second round of premier-class qualifying. A late effort by Roczen added his Suzuki to the top portion of the results with the German 0.12s off Sexton’s pace. Anderson was competitive throughout the session and was third fastest, followed by Barcia and Tomac in the top five. Webb, Craig, Cianciarulo, Plessinger, and Hill were the rest in the top 10. Craig was the last rider under 46s.

250SX heat one:
Smith struck first with a 7.76s victory in the night’s opening race. Blose initially led aboard his Kawasaki KX250 but was leapfrogged by the Star Yamaha rider as the two separated themselves from the rest of the field. Deegan turned a poor start into a third-place finish, while Park, Owen, Jeremy Hand, Michael Hicks, Talon Hawkins (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna), and AJ Catanzaro claimed the remaining transfer positions. Munoz notably missed out after contact with Hawkins.

250SX heat two:
Paused due to a red flag after a heavy crash for Larry Reyes, the second 250SX East race of the night ultimately saw points leader Lawrence cruise to the victory over rival Thrasher. Coty Schock (Phoenix Racing Honda), Vialle, and Anstie were early leaders after the initial gate drop, but it was Lawrence, Anstie, and Thrasher up front after the staggered restart. Anstie gave up second to Thrasher, who took the checkered flag 1.382s in arrears of Lawrence. Vialle, Martin, Henry Miller (Ti-Lube, Storm Lake Honda), Schock, Brock Papi, and Weltin punched the remaining tickets directly to the main event.

450SX heat one:
Webb and Cianciarulo led the field through the opening lap to kick off a thrilling first premier-class race of the night. Roczen immediately began pressuring the leaders and soon led himself, moving forward as Barcia did the same just behind. Roczen and Barcia detached from Webb and a mistake by Roczen promoted Barcia to the race lead. Webb tipped over as the checkered flag neared, gifting third to Cianciarulo. Webb recovered for fourth, finishing ahead of Hill, Twisted Tea Suzuki Progressive Insurance riders Shane McElrath and Kyle Chisholm, Kevin Moranz, and Grant Harlan. Cade Clason and Alex Ray were first to miss out, finishing 10th and 11th.

450SX heat two:
Daytona winner and points leader Tomac rocketed to the early lead with Anderson and Plessinger in tow. With this lead group in his sight right away, Sexton wasted no time moving forward and soon had moved into the race lead. Tomac dropped from the lead to fourth after further passes by Plessinger and Anderson. Craig finished fifth ahead of Josh Hill (Team Tedder Monster Energy Mountain Motorsports), Wilson, Justin Starling, and Josh Cartwright in the other transfer positions.

250SX LCQ:
Caden Braswell cruised to the LCQ win by 8.734s ahead of Luke Neese, Munoz, and first-time qualifier Lane Allison. Devin Simonson and Jack Chambers were notable readers in or near transfer positions when they made mistakes that cost them a main event gate.

450SX LCQ:
Karnow led the opening lap ahead of Joan Cros, Cade Clason, and Scott Meshey, with Kaeden Amerine (Rocky Mountain ATV MC Rides Unlimited Racing) and Freddie Noren (MaddParts.com Kawasaki) trailing behind, seeking transfer positions. Clason worked past Karnow to control the race while the lead group of four lapped the track together, somewhat separated from Chase Marqueier (Partzilla PRMX Racing). A late pass on Cros by Noren turned the running order into Clason, Karnow, Noren, and Cros at the checkered flag. Marquier, John Short, Jared Lesher, and Meshey were first to miss out, with notable riders Alex Ray and Benny Bloss scored 17th and 22nd after misfortune in their final on-track action of the night.

250SX main event:
Lawrence led from the drop of the gate to the checkered flag to capture his ninth Supercross victory and further extend his 250SX East points lead. Blose’s strong visit to Indianapolis continued in the night’s first main event as he slotted in behind Lawrence through the opening lap, followed closely by all three Star Racing-prepared factory Yamaha machines. Martin soon moved past Deegan, who fell midway through the whoops in one of the few sequences of passes for position near the front. Benefitting from Deegan’s mistake, Anstie finished fifth ahead of Blose, who managed sixth after his second-place start. Deegan, Vialle, and Phoenix Racing teammates Park and Schock completed the top 10.

450SX main event:
First to the first turn after the night’s final gate drop, Roczen led the entirety of the 450SX main event to deliver the Progressive Insurance Ecstar Suzuki team its first main event victory. Roczen was initially pursued by Sexton, but had less pressure to deal with when Sexton went over his handlebars after dragging his foot pegs through a rut onto one of the track’s one-off tables at one end of the stadium floor. On a severely deteriorating track, Barcia stalked Roczen, particularly during the race’s closing two minutes. The two opted for opposing rhythms through certain sections with Barcia closing to within a single bike length at one point entering the whoops section. An off-track excursion near the whoops for third-placed Webb further dialed the focus on the two-rider battle for the win, with Roczen ultimately holding Barcia off by just over seven-tenths of a second at the checkered flag. Webb was 8.852s back to claim the final step of the podium, nearly half a lap ahead of Plessinger in fourth. Kawasaki teammates Anderson and Cianciarulo finished next in fifth and sixth, with Craig, Tomac, Hill, and Sexton filling the rest of the top 10.