Team Honda HRC’s Ken Roczen backed up his Round 4 450SX Class win with a dominating victory at the second Indianapolis round, Round 5 of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross inside Lucas Oil Stadium.
Opening round winner GASGAS Factory Racing’s Justin Barcia held off defending champion Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Eli Tomac to fill out a podium of 2021 race winners.
Action in the Eastern Regional 250SX Class presented plenty of drama, but when the dust settled it was Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha’s Colt Nichols grabbing his third straight win to extend his points lead.
After four rounds with four different winners, the first repeat victor emerged when Roczen jumped into the lead shortly past the holeshot stripe and gapped the field on the rutted, technical track.
Holeshot winner Justin Barcia was comfortably in second until the race clock ticked down to the eight-minute mark in the 20-minute plus one lap race when Eli Tomac reached his rear wheel. Barcia managed to fend off Tomac’s repeated attacks without losing much time on the leader, who’d stretched the lead to nearly ten seconds.
Tomac spent the night fighting forward with his CP-Carrillo power, seeming to get caught up in other riders’ paces as he’d reach them. He still managed third place points for the night, keeping him squarely in the title hunt.
“I felt good all day aboard,” said Tomac. “After setting the fastest time in the first qualifying session, I didn’t have to change much on the bike. I had a small mistake in my heat race while pushing for the lead but still managed to put in some solid laps and finish in fourth. In the main event, I got stuck behind a group of riders on the opening laps and knew I had to quickly cut my way through the field because I could see Ken (Roczen) was pulling away. I put my head down and started charging and made it up to fourth behind Adam (Cianciarulo) before the half-way mark. After getting past Adam, I could see second place and I eventually ran out of time before I could make a pass stick. I feel like I rode well tonight and, with a better start, could have challenged for the win.”
“I feel like I was struggling to find a flow out there tonight,” said Cianciarulo. “The track was challenging, and I made far too many little mistakes. Sixth place isn’t something I’m normally pleased with, but mentally I kept it together out there, even after the mistakes, and I’m proud of that. It’s a long season and there’s still much to improve on. I can’t wait to get back out there on Saturday.”
2019 champion and Round 3 winner, Red Bull KTM’s Cooper Webb, rounded the first lap mid pack. He climbed up through the field a notch slower than Tomac, reaching fourth before the checkers flew on the second of three Indianapolis races.
It was a wild night for the Eastern Regional 250SX Class riders but at the checkers it was Yamaha’s Colt Nichols grabbing his third consecutive win out of four total in his career.
It was GASGAS Factory Racing’s Michael Mosiman who grabbed the holeshot and started to pull away in the opening laps. He’d earned GASGAS its first 250SX podium one race before and looked destined to give the brand its first 250 win in its debut Supercross season.
But a lapped rider crashed on a rhythm section, and Mosiman bumped the rider and had to nearly stop to swerve around the downed bike. Nichols took the opportunity to grab the lead and never looked back…until crossing the checkered which seemed to the riders to come out one lap early.
Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha’s Christian Craig rode steady and managed second after passing Mosiman with just over five minutes left on the race clock.
Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Jo Shimoda overcame being caught up in a first turn crash to come back and finish fourth at the second round inside Lucas Oil Stadium. The fifth round of the season proved that Shimoda was able to overcome adversity and helped him maintain his fourth place in the points standings.
“I have been able to avoid being involved in any crashes so far on the start, but it got me this time,” said Shimoda. “All I could think was to get up as fast as I could and just start putting in solid laps. The track was tough in spots and I just did my best to not make any mistakes. I won’t know if I would have been up there able to pass for the podium, but we get another chance in Indy this weekend. I definitely want another podium so we’ll be working to get back up there.”
Absent on the line was Team Honda HRC’s Jett Lawrence, who took a hard fall in practice and another in his heat race. After winning the Last Chance Qualifier, Lawrence determined he was not healthy enough to race with what appeared to be a right shoulder injury from his heat race crash; the 2021 race winner walked away from his bike on the line before the gate dropped.
With the second-ever SuperTuesday race in the books, the riders will line up on a brand-new track inside Lucas Oil Stadium this Saturday, February 6 for the final event of the Indianapolis triple-header.
Tickets for the upcoming Atlanta triple-header are now on sale for preferred customer purchase, with general public availability beginning Tuesday, February 9. All tickets are sold in a pod-style, limited-attendance seating format.
story, photo and video courtesy of Supercross