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2024 Monster Energy Supercross Recap - St. Louis

Coming off the heels of one of the best 450 Main Events I've ever seen, St. Louis was playing host to an Eastern Weekend Triple Crown showdown before the final bye week of the Supercross tilt. I don't think it needs to be reiterated how much can go right or wrong in this format with the three starts, but the point remains the same.

Cooper Webb is, of course, the talk of the town after last week, now 16 points back of Jett Lawrence and seven points clear of Chase Sexton. His opportunities to make a historically unprecedented points comeback are not in bunches, with just five rounds to go after this break. But after last year, and to a lesser extent in 2020, when he kept Eli Tomac honest throughout the SLC residency, we know he's capable of being big-time down the home stretch. So, let's say don't count him out.

Meanwhile, in the 250 West regional, Levi Kitchen has taken this Championship by the throat after a dominant outing on home turf back at Lumen Field. Combine that with Jordon Smith's massive collapse, and his title hopes are effectively ended once again. Having had great success in the triple crown format, he had the opportunity to shut the door on R.J. Hampshire as well. Could the Master Chef get it done?

Daytime Program/Injury Notes: 

- Take a drink every time someone says something to the effect of they like the dirt.

- Lewis Phillips vs. Eli Tomac is allegedly the rivalry of our time.

- This is the final race weekend for Adam Cianciarulo's long-time wrench, Justin Shantie, who has a NASCAR gig lined up.

- 250 Fastest Qualifier: No. 76 Michael Mosiman (55.956)

- 450 Fastest Qualifier: No. 18 Jett Lawrence (54.837) (over a half second faster than anyone else in Q1, with everyone getting closer enough in Q2)

250 West Class Recap

1st - No. 47 Levi Kitchen (Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki) (Clean Sweep)

When you're hot, you're hot, and there's no rider on either side of the pond with more outright momentum than Levi Kitchen right now. With only one non-podium result all year and wins in three of his last four, this is now squarely his Championship to lose, as once again, the Master Chef took the 250 West class to school in the Show Me State. Up 16 points with two rounds to go now, does Kitchen continue to prove a point, or does he play the numbers game with two Showdowns on deck? That's the last big question at this point.

3rd - No. 31 Jordon Smith (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) (3-2-4)

Not that last night's results do much for him at this point, but it was nice to see Smith in a good enough spot health-wise to get back on the podium. All it does, though, is make you wonder what if, which has been all too common in his long career. Hopefully, it doesn't end this way, but it sure feels like his 250 Supercross title window is closing fast.

7th - No. 929 Juilien Beaumer (Red Bull KTM) (6-8-7)

Although the results did not show it again on this night, I was a fan of how long Beaumer could fend off the massive group of riders tailgating him in Main 1. I don't think it was in doubt that they'd all get by; that felt inevitable if anything, but these good starts will lead to good results sooner or later.

10th - No. 35 Talon Hawkins (AEO Powersports KTM Racing) (10-12-10)

What a night for a guy like Hawkins. They hadn't finished in the top 10 all year, but he finally gets to break through in this format, which is one of the better things about this. It's always nice to see some down-the-order guys get a chance to pick up some good results.

250 Class St. Louis Top 10

1st No. 47 Levi Kitchen (1-1-1)

2nd No. 30 Jo Shimoda (2-3-3)

3rd No. 31 Jordon Smith (3-2-4)

4th No. 24 R.J. Hampshire (4-4-2)

5th No. 57 Nate Thrasher (5-5-7)

6th No. 26 Garrett Marchbanks (9-6-5)

7th No. 929 Julien Beaumer (6-8-7)

8th No. 34 Ryder DiFrancesco (7-7-12)

9th No. 41 Carson Mumford (12-10-9)

10th No. 35 Talon Hawkins (10-12-10)

250 Class Point Standings after St. Louis

1st No. 47 Levi Kitchen (156 Points)

2nd No. 24 R.J. Hampshire (141 Points)

3rd No. 31 Jordon Smith (130 Points)

4th No. 26 Garrett Marchbanks (121 Points)

5th No. 30 Jo Shimoda (116 Points)

6th No. 929 Julien Beaumer (93 Points)

7th No. 100 Anthony Bourdon (90 Points)

8th No. 41 Carson Mumford (88 Points)

9th No. 57 Nate Thrasher (80 Points)

10th No. 85 Hunter Yoder (73 Points)

450 Class Recap

1st - No. 3 Eli Tomac (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) (Clean Sweep)

First things first, I give full credit to this win to Lewis Phillips, who clearly got Tomac fired up enough a matter of hours before. Even with the second Main Event win being on a technicality, this was the best we've seen of post-injury-Tomac throughout a whole night of racing, and it paid off with win No. 52. Funny enough, St. Louis is the same venue that both Ricky Carmichael and James Stewart (so good by the way) got the final wins of their careers. Not to say this is undoubtedly the case for Tomac, but that would be one hell of a coincidence if it were. Also, the most combined premier class podiums in history isn't exactly a bad milestone to notch either.

2nd - No. 2 Cooper Webb (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) (5-6-2)

Here's your single biggest winner on the night, more so than either Tomac or Kitchen. The two-position penalty he got was rendered meaningless, and he's now just eight points back of Jett Lawrence with only a handful of rounds to go. Much like last year, this is why you race every round, and Webb getting a second chance in this title bout is the worst possible news for Jett Lawrence.

3rd - No. 96 Hunter Lawrence (Honda HRC) (8-2-4)

It's nice to see Hunter come on as strong as he has these last two weeks, especially after his Daytona injury. The fact he missed A1 certainly set the tone for the early portion of the year, but Hunter did rattle off a pair of fifths before his first injury. Getting that first career podium notched before the end of the year is an excellent way to go into this break, especially given that he wasn't 100 percent.

6th - No. 51 Justin Barcia (TLD/Red Bull GasGas Factory Racing) (6-4-10)

I think most people have the same question after Saturday: What was BamBam thinking? Now, this was something that I didn't even notice until after the fact, but the guy right behind him going into that corner was Vince Friese. I don't think it's reckless to speculate that Barcia got into him and was trying to ensure he wouldn't get punted into the shadow realm in the next corner. I think you're misguided if you believe Barcia ran into Jett intentionally because it's reasonable enough for him to think Jett wouldn't cut down there. Still, he was carrying a lot of speed into that corner without much of a plan.

8th - No. 18 Jett Lawrence (Honda HRC) (2-3-21)

Depending on how things went on Saturday, we could've begun talking about Jett clinching this title a round early. Now, though, he might not even be the favorite to win this thing despite still having the points lead. With no real update on his health at this point, and based on that third Main Event, there's zero chance he's at 100 percent right now, and it's hard to say how much a week off will help. The saving grace here is that he still has an eight-point buffer, but who knows how he will be when the time comes for Foxborough.

450 Class St. Louis Top 10

1st No. 3 Eli Tomac (1-1-1)

2nd No. 2 Cooper Webb (5-6-2)

3rd No. 96 Hunter Lawrence (8-2-4)

4th No. 7 Aaron Plessnger (3-8-6)

5th No. 1 Chase Sexton (10-5-3)

6th No. 51 Justin Barcia (6-4-10)

7th No. 27 Malcolm Stewart (7-9-8)

8th No. 18 Jett Lawrence (2-3-21)

9th No. 32 Justin Cooper (9-10-9)

10th No. 12 Shane McElrath (12-11-7)

450 Class Point Standings after St. Louis

1st No. 18 Jett Lawrence (244 Points)

2nd No. 2 Cooper Webb (236 Points)

3rd No. 1 Chase Sexton (224 Points)

4th No. 3 Eli Tomac (215 Points)

5th No. 94 Ken Roczen (202 Points)

6th No. 7 Aaron Plessinger (198 Points)

7th No. 21 Jason Anderson (188 Points)

8th No. 32 Justin Cooper (147 Points)

9th No. 51 Justin Barcia (138 Points)

10th No. 96 Hunter Lawrence (133)

St. Louis Lit Kit Recipient - Chase Sexton (Alpinestars) (Slide No. 4)

Next Up: Gillette Stadium (Foxborough, Massachusetts) (7:00 EST gate drop exclusively live on Peacock) (Bye Week Next Weekend)

Also, happy Easter to you and yours if you celebrate.

Main Image via Yamaha Motorsports


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