Hunter Lawrence mired in 14th in 250SMX with pain following Friday crash.
Moving closer to the conclusion of the 2023 SuperMotocross World Championship season with the year’s final rounds of qualifying, the sport’s return to the Los Angeles Coliseum kicked off with Chase Sexton and Justin Cooper setting the fastest laps in the 450SMX and 250SMX divisions.
Multiple quick laps were turned in during the closing moments of the final 450 qualifying session of 2023, but the 1:07.986s lap set by Sexton (Team Honda HRC) stood firm as the fastest in the class.
Just 0.039s separated Sexton from Jason Anderson (Monster Energy Kawasaki) on their best laps, earning Anderson the second qualifying position — and first-moto gate pick — to start the season finale.
Strong throughout both qualifying sessions, Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing newcomer Cooper Webb placed third, beating out Jett Lawrence (Team Honda HRC) and Adam Cianciarulo (Monster Energy Kawasaki) in the top five.
Winner of the most recent moto at Chicago, Ken Roczen (Progressive Insurance Ecstar Suzuki) landed sixth, ahead of Dylan Ferrandis (Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing), Ty Masterpool (HBI Racing Kawasaki), Garrett Marchbanks (Muc-Off FXR ClubMX Yamaha), and Aaron Plessinger (Red Bull KTM) in the top 10.
After Haiden Deegan set the mark to beat in the first 250SMX qualifying session, it was another bike under the Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing tent that later turned the fastest lap in the class.
With a 1:08.512 in the second go-around of qualifying on the Supercross-focused Los Angeles Coliseum track, Justin Cooper earned the distinction of being the last top qualifier in the 250 class in 2023.
RJ Hampshire (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) qualified second, coming within 0.017s of Cooper on their respective best laps. Pierce Brown (TLD Red Bull GasGas) landed third on the combined qualifying timesheet, followed by Deegan and Maximus Vohland (Red Bull KTM) to complete the top five.
Jordon Smith (Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing), Jo Shimoda (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki), Jalek Swoll (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna), Ryder DiFrancesco (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki), and Levi Kitchen (Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing) filled the rest of the top 10 and will head to the gates accordingly for the final two motos of the season.
Battling pain following a crash during free practice Friday, Hunter Lawrence (Team Honda HRC) earned the 14th gate pick with a best lap 1.904s off Cooper’s.