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2024 Monster Energy Supercross Recap - Nashville

From 21 points up to none, things are not looking too hot for now-450 Supercross points co-leader Jett Lawrence. A brutal start in Gillette Stadium turned this entire season upside down, and this Championship between he and Cooper Webb is now a four-round fight to the finish. Not only that, the pair were once again slated for a Heat Racing duel, qualifying first and third, respectively, in the afternoon. Now, in what is without a shadow of a doubt the most high-pressure situation of his young career, how would Jett respond?

Now, onto the 250 division. It's the first of two showdown weekends to end the year, and the West regional came to play, taking 7 out of the 10 fastest qualifying passes, led by R.J. Hampshire, Jordon Smith, and Levi Kitchen. While the latter of those three entered this weekend with a comfortable enough gap, that wasn't the case for Cameron McAdoo, who held the 250 East red plate after Foxborough. His advantage was just four points over Red Bull KTM's Tom Vialle, and McAdoo had some issue to end qualifying. On a night when a ton can go wrong, that's the last thing he needs.

Love Moto Stop Cancer

I don't think this was a secret by any means, but Nashville is this year's annual St. Jude's benefit race, and there are some excellent one-off bike looks and gear sets. None of which (for my money) are better than Dean Wilson's "Sketch Street" wrap on his Firepower Honda.

Simply spectacular, 10/10, S Tier, etc. His teammate Max Anstie was also rocking a Lightning McQueen bike, complete with eyes on the front number plate, and there were some other sick one-off bikes designed in part through St. Jude or made simply for the weekend. It's a really good batch this year if you ask me. Then there was some spectacular one-off gear made, with even some of the energy drink-sponsored guys getting in the mix.

As for the annual auction, it begins at the very end of this month and runs through May 14th. There should be some cool stuff up for grabs like in years past, and it goes to an excellent cause.

Daytime Program/Injury Notes: 

- Aaron Plessinger officially signs a one-year extension with Red Bull KTM. He's additionally done for SX with an elbow fracture.

- Evan Ferry has parted ways with Triumph effective immediately.

- Filthy Phil is retiring at the end of the season.

- 250 West Fastest Qualifier: No. 24 R.J. Hampshire (50.129)

- 250 East Fastest Qualifier: No. 16 Tom Vialle (50.929) (Cameron McAdoo, who ended up second, would've been eighth in 250 West).

- 450 Fastest Qualifier: No. 18 Jett Lawrence (49.879) (Ran the two best laps of session two, the latter of which was a little over three-tenths faster than anyone else's best)

Heat Racing Roundup

250 Class

The 250 West Heat had a ton of things happen right off the bat, most notably Garrett Marchbanks going down very hard early in the race, which led to a red flag in the exact middle of this one, and he was unfortunately down for a while, leading to about a 10-minute delay. The biggest winner of the ensuing staggard start was Levi Kitchen, who got the chance to catch back up to the pack after he had an off-course excursion avoiding another rider. Although he only finished sixth, that was much better than the alternative. Meanwhile, Ryder DiFrancesco, who led nearly all of this race, lost out on first and second after R.J. Hampshire did a triple-triple-triple through the whoops to get the lead and win, with Smith in tow.

The East Heat had a tight start of their own, which led to Haiden Deegan wrecking out of fourth trying to go for the jugular on Pierce Brown in the entrance to the sand section. After another issue, he used the finish section's landing ramp to get into the ensuing rhythm lane. Both he and McAdoo, who was racing clearly under 100 percent, ended up 8th and 9th, respectively, while Tom Vialle led this one wire to wire.

450 Class

Ken Roczen, Adam Cianciarulo, and Justin Cooper paced things early on the 450 side, and the latter had quite the ride on the opening lap. Cooper had to make a great save after missing the second roller between the start gates, which led to Hunter Lawrence and Chase Sexton getting by. Then you had a Ken Roczen stall here, a Hunter Lawrence monster pass in the sand on Adam Cianciarulo for the win there, and Josh Hill of the couch got into the Main Event. It was a very eventful race, but once again, there were not a ton of meaningful passes up at the front through these first three.

The second Webb-Jett Heat battle in a row didn't end much different than the first, with Lawrence having a mostly clean outing to take home another Heat win. I thought he looked excellent in the sand section, which felt like where he was making up most of his time. Behind those two, you had Mookie Stewart, who's had a miserable season, and Eli Tomac, who blew the first corner, handing Jett the holeshot. Those two swapped P3 a couple of times, but it was Tomac seeling that position up after a strong run through the whoops.

250 Class Recap

1st - No. 24 R.J. Hampshire (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing)

I'd imagine this wasn't how Hampshire wanted to take over the points lead with just two races left, but you can only control so much. Take him winning this first Showdown of the year and leading every lap, for example. It was a fairly routine win, having his lead peak over five seconds but never going under two afterward; the 24 is now in the driver's seat for this one. No worrying about the Lawrence Brothers, no worrying about Christian Craig, etc.. This is now his to lose with just Denver and Salt Lake City to go, but if tonight was a reminder, nothing's over until that final checkered flag.

3rd - No. 16 Tom Vialle (Red Bull KTM)

You could copy and paste the general lump summary of Hampshire's night here; only Vialle didn't end up on the podium's top step. Even so, the Frenchman has a notably larger point gap to play with, with just two races left. He said postrace that he didn't really know his point situation while out there, but now, playing the numbers game is very much a good play. Hell, if Haiden Deegan has enough go wrong in Philly, Vialle could clinch before we even get to Salt Lake City.

14th - No. 47 Levi Kitchen (Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki)

The fact that Kitchen got up from that opening lap crash, let alone finished this one out, was remarkable. All things considered, things should've been much worse than a 14th and sitting two points out of the West Championship. The bad news is that he and Pro Circuit are expecting broken ribs, which would certainly complicate things moving forward, but if he can push through, he's not out of this by any stretch.

DNF - No. 63 Cameron McAdoo (Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki)

As painful as it is to say, I can't say the same for Kitchen's teammate McAdoo, who went into last night's Main Event less than 100 percent and rode off early, even less than where he was at to begin with. I'm not sure what the root cause of the "Pro Circuit Curse" is, but tonight was the clearest indicator to me that there is one. Both regional championship leaders go down hard on the same wreck and lose red plates? In a year where Austin Forkner and Seth Hammaker have also fought injuries?

For McAdoo, he's only 16 points out, but barring something truly unprecendented, he's not coming back in this title fight. Another year down the drain where he's looked good but couldn't go the distance, a shame.

250 Class Nashville Showdown Top 10

1st No. 24 R.J. Hampshire

2nd No. 30 Jo Shimoda

3rd No. 16 Tom Vialle

4th No. 31 Jordon Smith

5th No. 33 Jalek Swoll

6th No. 38 Haiden Deegan

7th No. 37 Max Anstie

8th No. 48 Chance Hymas

9th No. 929 Julien Beaumer

10th No. 36 Phil Nicoletti

250 East Class Points After Nashville

1st No. 16 Tom Vialle (136 Points) (New Points Leader)

2nd No. 38 Haiden Deegan (123 Points)

3rd No. 63 Cameron McAdoo (120 Points)

4th No. 39 Pierce Brown (116 Points)

5th No. 69 Coty Schock (105 Points)

6th No. 37 Max Anstie (94 Points)

7th No. 33 Jalek Swoll (89 Points)

8th No. 59 Daxton Bennick (88 Points)

9th No. 48 Chance Hymas (84 Points)

10th No. 65 Chance Hymas (74 Points)

250 West Class Point Standings after Nashville

1st No. 24 R.J. Hampshire (166 Points) (New Points Leader)

2nd No. 47 Levi Kitchen (164 Points)

3rd No. 31 Jordon Smith (148 Points)

4th No. 30 Jo Shimoda (138 Points)

5th No. 26 Garrett Marchbanks (121 Points)

6th No. 929 Julien Beaumer (106 Points)

7th No. 100 Anthony Bourdon (96 Points)

8th No. 57 Nate Thrasher (89 Points)

9th No. 41 Carson Mumford (88 Points)

10th No. 36 Phil Nicoletti (77 Points)

450 Class Recap

1st - No. 18 Jett Lawrence (Honda HRC)

Bell: Answered. That was the exact result, and fashion of getting it that Lawrence needed, and walking into Philly up five instead of three is also a huge bonus. He deserves a ton of credit for those in-race line adjustments he made. Otherwise, I think Tomac would've made that race very interesting down the stretch. Cutting inside to make that triple n before the whoops was some brilliant racecraft, and that made all the difference. Just a spectacular outing for win No. 6 this year.

3rd - No. 2 Cooper Webb (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha)

Even before he fell off a cliff, you could tell that Webb wasn't feeling some of the bigger lines that Jett, Tomac, and Roczen were doing, and then you could tell based on how quickly he dropped from that front pack. Now, if this ends up being Webb's mulligan from here on out, you can live with that if you're Star, but Webb probably has to win 2-of-3 realistically now. It's certainly doable but by no means easy.

DNF - No. 94 Ken Roczen (HEP Progressive/Ecstar Suzuki)

Roczen's wreck was as bizarre as any I've ever seen. There were numerous times when guys did that exact triple-in, and only on that one pass Roczen made did we see a catastrophic rear shock failure. The good news, though, is that Roczen is relatively okay, according to Kellan Brauer. That's a massive relief to hear, based on how long he was down and how he looked coming off.

DNF - No. 1 Chase Sexton (Red Bull KTM)

Sexton also got out of Nashville relatively unscathed, but the fashion he did lead me to believe something happened with the throttle. Sure enough, that's precisely the case. A stray rock hit Sexton's throttle body, which led to what happened. I'm glad to hear he's all good, but this effectively ends his title hopes, and he is possibly finishing the top three in points as well.

450 Class Nashville Top 10

1st No. 18 Jett Lawrence

2nd No. 3 Eli Tomac

3rd No. 2 Cooper Webb

4th No. 21 Jason Anderson

5th No. 51 Justin Barcia

6th No. 32 Justin Cooper

7th No. 96 Hunter Lawrence

8th No. 67 Benny Bloss

9th No. 27 Malcolm Stewart

10th No. 125 Vince Friese

450 Class Point Standings after Nashville

1st No. 18 Jett Lawrence (286 Points) (New Sole Points Leader)

2nd No. 2 Cooper Webb (281 Points)

3rd No. 3 Eli Tomac (253 Points)

4th No. 1 Chase Sexton (246 Points)

5th No. 21 Jason Anderson (224 Points)

6th No. 94 Ken Roczen (223 Points)

7th No. 7 Aaron Plessinger (198 Points)

8th No. 32 Justin Cooper (177 Points)

9th No. 51 Justin Barcia (166 Points)

10th No. 96 Hunter Lawrence (163 Points)

Next Up: Lincoln Financial Field (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) (3:00 EST gate drop live on Peacock and NBC)

Main Image via Honda HRC


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