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2024 Monster Energy Supercross Recap - Arlington

After a week reset for the 450 class and a multi-week one for the 250 East boys, Supercross kicked things back up for the annual trek to Jerry's World on the outskirts of Dallas, Texas. One of the smaller floors on schedule this year has been a great spot in years past for current title contender Cooper Webb, with five wins since 2019, including a clean sweep of the three races there in 2021. Not exactly bad timing schedule-wise for the No. 2, given how his weekend in Glendale ended, with a seventh putting him 10 points back of the red plate.

Speaking of the red plate, Austin Forkner of Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki hasn't had hold of it in quite some time, but that would change this weekend after he won weeks prior in Detroit. He unloaded off the hauler fast this week as well, finishing second in qualifying to only teammate Seth Hammaker, who's coming off a second-to-last-place outing at Ford Field. Another title contender in the same boat as Hammaker, needing a good result this week, was Haiden Deegan, who was involved in that lap one crash in Detroit, and only managed a 16th that weekend. Now, in the full swing of things, how would this 250 points race look going into a very important round at Daytona?

Daytime Program/Injury Notes: 

- Military Appreciation weekend this week.

- Some 250 West guys lined up on 450s this week (Robbie Wageman, Mitchell Oldenburg, etc.), and Ty Masterpool made his season debut.

- Three weeks in, and I'm fully ready to say I hate the new run sheet with the 450s going first in Heat Racing.

- Lap times in the 44s, we've reached Arenacross territory ladies and gentlemen.

- 250 Fastest Qualifier: No. 31 Jordon Smith (45.216)

- 450 Fastest Qualifier: No. 21 Jason Anderson (43.770)

Heat Racing Roundup

450 Class

Not much of a shock to see things get spread out and in a line in short order with the track size, but Aaron Plessinger's monster start up the middle was the difference in that opening heat early on. Nipping at his heels the entire way was Eli Tomac, who looked as good as he had all year in this one. Corner speed was notably better than anyone else, carrying good speed through the sand section, the whole nine. Unfortunately for AP, Ty Masterpool going down was what cost him the win, but a second here isn't the end of the world.

Lots of action right away in the second 450 Heat. Cooper Webb, in about 20 seconds, went from first to fourth, and Jason Anderson from third to first, with Jett Lawrence and Malcolm Stewart comfortably in the mix. As far as the contact between Lawrence and Anderson goes, I have no reason to believe it was intentional, doesn't feel like a smart move in that spot for Jett. There was a fun battle with Stewart and Lawrence here, but the bigger stories lay with Webb getting left by the top three, and Justin Barcia failing to make it out of the top nine. It's been a nightmare opening month and a half of the year for BamBam, and this more-or-less solidifies that.

250 Class

After how Detroit went down, Haiden Deegan needed to hit the ground running right away, and that he did with a second-place start and an immediate pass on then-leader Jakel Swoll. Less than two minutes in, the No. 38 was about two seconds up on Max Anstie, and over three on points leader Austin Forkner. You could tell based on the eye test and on the ticker, but Deegan was clearly a step or two behind in the whoops here. One lap, he nearly blew that entire lead he had to Anstie. Sure enough, that's where he lost this one to Forkner. Deegan also tried to punt him two corners later, which also cost him third to Anstie, so there's also that.

How Seth Hammaker didn't go down in that opening rhythm section, I have no idea. But the fact he rebounded in short order and was right on the heels of Nick Romano was very impressive. His momentum would eventually stall, leading to a third-to-first charge from teammate Cam McAdoo. While his win was impressive, the headliner here was Max Papi trying to send Hardy Munoz to the shadow realm on the final lap, punting him over into the whoops, and he didn't even get the final transfer spot in the end.

250 East Class Recap

1st - No. 38 Haiden Deegan (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha)

Win No. 1 is in the books for Deegan, and while he certainly wasn't the fastest guy all day, he made some good adjustments after the Heats, and it ultimately paid off on the box score. With that said, The post-race celebration and interview were in very poor taste, given what happened to Austin Forkner. I also wouldn't buy the excuse that he didn't know since it happened two seconds ahead of him. Judging by some of the reactions online I saw in real-time, I'm not the only one in the camp that he handled himself about as badly as he could've. Even though Deegan is still a teenager, he's a professional and should act accordingly. Saying "the pressure got to him" in regards to a guy having a freak accident where he landed back first onto bare concrete, is not it.

6th - No. 37 Max Anstie (Firepower Honda)

Not as good as his ride in Detroit, but a sixth last night was still good enough for Anstie to take over the red plate going into Daytona. One thing to note, he could have realistically made one more pass to get into fifth, which would've been on Pierce Brown of TLD GasGas. Those two were about a second apart going into that final lap, and if Anstie made a pass, he'd be going into next week up six points instead of only four.

20th - No. 64 Austin Forkner (Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki)

What can I say at this point? There's cursed, and then there's Forkner since Nashville 2019, where he tore his ACL. These last two notable wrecks are hard to watch, and tonight was certainly the worst of the two. Not going to speculate too much, but you can see the replays for yourself, he landed in about as bad a spot as he could of, and on all concrete at that.

250 East Class Arlington Top 10

1st No. 38 Haiden Deegan

2nd No. 63 Cameron McAdoo

3rd. No. 16 Tom Vialle

4th No. 43 Seth Hammaker

5th No. 39 Pierce Brown

6th No. 37 Max Anstie

7th No. 48 Chance Hymas

8th No. 69 Coty Schock

9th No. 83 Guillem Farres

10th No. 59 Daxton Bennick

250 East Class Points After Arlington

1st No. 37 Max Anstie (38 Points) (New Points Leader)

2nd No. 39 Pierce Brown (34 Points)

3rd No. 59 Daxton Bennick (32 Points)

4th No. 69 Coty Schock (32 Points)

5th No. 38 Haiden Deegan (31 Points)

6th No. 63 Cameron McAdoo (29 Points)

7th No. 64 Austin Forkner (27 Points)

8th No. 48 Chance Hymas (27 Points)

9th No. 83 Guillem Farres (27 Points)

10th No. 65 Henry Miller (26 Points)

450 Class Recap

1st - No. 2 Cooper Webb (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha)

I had to run the numbers postrace, but Cooper Webb now has two times as many 450 Supercross Main Event wins in AT&T Stadium as the Dallas Cowboys have home playoff wins since the stadium opened in 2009. It wasn't his prettiest run, wasn't even his best, but it was indeed a win. It's not often we see Webb trying to play defense in late-race situations, and even with Vince Friese partially playing a role in Lawrence going down a second time, I thought the two-time Champion did an excellent job of not allowing Jett to go lower than him in the bulk of those final few corners.

And now, with two wins under his belt, Webb is just three points out of the lead going into Daytona, where he's historically been great, even without a 450 Main Event win. This is where he effectively won the title in 2021, can he do it again in 2024?

2nd - No. 3 Eli Tomac (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha)

As good as the result, but more so, the path to get there was for Tomac on Saturday, because that was the closest thing we've seen to pre-injury Tomac since the Achilles tear. After that tip-over in the bowl corner going into the whoops, he was pretty much 1.75 seconds per lap faster than anyone else and closed up shop a hair under three seconds back of Webb. Then he follows things up with that podium interview, and let me tell you, this is not what the four guys ahead of him in points are trying to hear, especially with Daytona on deck.

4th - No. 18 Jett Lawrence (Honda HRC)

A very 2023 Sexton-esque night for the points leader, who still maintains sole possession of first, but could've left Texas with a 13-point lead instead of the handful of points he now holds over Webb, Plessinger, and Sexton. Had he not committed to the inside of the whoops on the final lap, I would've been very interested to see how Jett was going to race Coop. But I have no clue what Jett was expecting in that spot. As fun and historically accurate as it is to pile on Vince Friese, he did the right thing taking the whoops super low there. Add that with the tuff block landing minutes before, and this was a hyper-frustrating night for the SMX Champion.

5th - No. 96 Hunter Lawrence (Honda HRC)

Not a headline-generating outing for the No. 96, but Hunter has put up his best two runs of the year in the last two rounds, being a pair of fifths. Especially after missing out on the Anaheim 1 Main Event, I think he's done a great job managing things, and you can see the week-to-week improvement.

6th - No. 1 Chase Sexton (Red Bull KTM)

Two weekends since the wrist injury, and you can get the sense that Sexton is doing the best he can given the injury, but to come out of the weekend sixth still in a good points position is as good as things could've turned out. Daytona won't be as forgiving, but I'd feel good about his prospects moving forward if he can leave there in good standing.

450 Class Arlington Top 10

1st No. 2 Cooper Webb

2nd No. 3 Eli Tomac

3rd No. 7 Aaron Plessinger

4th No. 18 Jett Lawrence

5th No. 96 Hunter Lawrence

6th No. 1 Chase Sexton

7th No. 32 Justin Cooper

8th No. 94 Ken Roczen

9th No. 27 Malcolm Stewart

10th No. 21 Jason Anderson

450 Class Point Standings after Arlington

1st No. 18 Jett Lawrence (132 Points)

2nd No. 2 Cooper Webb (129 Points)

3rd No. 7 Aaron Plessinger (128 Points)

4th No. 1 Chase Sexton (127 Points)

5th No. 3 Eli Tomac (122 Points)

6th No. 21 Jason Anderson (118 Points)

6th No. 94 Ken Roczen (116 Points)

8th No. 14 Dylan Ferrandis (93 Points)

9th No. 96 Hunter Lawrence (86 Points)

10th No. 32 Justin Cooper (75 Points)

Glendale Lit Kit Recipient - Alpinestars Factory Riders

Next Up: 2024 Daytona Supercross (Daytona Beach, Florida) (7:00 EST gate drop exclusively live on Peacock)

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