News 17 Apr 2024

How consistency has kept Brown in the 250SX East conversation

Without a podium finish yet, Pierce Brown is hanging on to a chance at a title in 2024.

Only one rider in 250SX East this year has landed inside of the top five every single round through the first six races of the championship and that is Troy Lee Designs Red Bull GasGas’ Pierce Brown. With three rounds of the championship remaining, Brown has used this consistency to hang close in the title fight sitting just 15 points off points leader Cameron McAdoo.

Image: Octopi Media.

Amazingly, despite landing in the top five every week, Brown still has not quite broken through for a podium in 2024. His scores of 5-5-5-4-4-4 almost look like a glitch in the results as his consistency throughout stands out as opposed to the usual up and down results seen in the 250SX class. The problem for Brown is that the three riders in front of him in the championship, McAdoo, Red Bull KTM’s Tom Vialle, and Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing’s Haiden Deegan, all keep landing on the podium nearly every week. Barring a first turn crash at Detroit that left all three of those riders outside of the top 10, those three have filled the podium at three of the five rounds after that and have been the only riders to win a race since the opener.

It’s not as though Brown is not capable of mixing it up with that group either. Now racing his fifth season of Monster Energy Supercross, Brown has landed on the podium four times in his career, and even last did so at the highly competitive 250SX East/West Showdown at Salt Lake City in 2022. Really one of Brown’s strong suits early in his career was that he showed flashes of speed often but also crashed a fair amount as well.

Image: Octopi Media.

This consistency in 2024 has yielded his best season to date, but it’s also something that history showed might have been coming anyway. Thinking back to last year, which was the first year on the new generation GasGas motorcycle for Brown, he crashed in the heat race at the opening round and had to miss the first two races. When he came back, he put in 5-8-5-7-4 results before breaking his hand in a practice crash late in the season. Perhaps those results weren’t quite podium efforts expected out of a factory rider, but it did show that he was building into consistent form behind a strong front group of talent that then consisted of Jett Lawrence, RJ Hampshire, and current title combatant Cameron McAdoo.

Even before the season started in 2024, Brown was excited about how strong of an offseason he had. Getting a full year on the updated GasGas under his belt and having seen where things were headed before he got hurt, Brown felt that he maybe wasn’t being looked at as someone who could be in this position in the championship.

“I feel like I’m coming in a little bit low key, but I like it that way,” said Brown before the season. “The bike has improved from last year and I feel like everything went smooth this offseason. I think we’re as prepared as we’re going to be.”

Image: Octopi Media.

Having built himself to a point where he’s become the next guy behind the race winners so far this season, Brown is in a position to capitalize on anything that could go wrong ahead of him. With two of the three final rounds of 250SX East being Showdowns where both coasts come together, it’s a not a stretch to believe one weird night could flip the title fight upside down.

Brown only finished three seconds behind Tom Vialle for P3 in Foxborough by the time the checkered flag waved and had a large gap behind him. He’s become the rider that really is being talked about the least, but maybe it’s time to start talking about him. This East/West Showdown in Nashville could be a deciding factor for what Brown’s actual championship prospect looks like this weekend. If this is where his first podium of the season comes, it could be on for the final two rounds.