Five Things We Learned…is a new-ish installment to the Vurb line of race coverage. It’s a quick hitting piece where I break down five trending topics from the weekend. We’ll put facts behind what happened and break down how it will play out. As always, please feel free to give your thoughts on these topics in the comment section. If you’d like to discuss any of these topics further or have a question for me you can reach me at t[email protected].
Suzuki Is Back!
For the first time in a long time I truly felt that Suzuki was up in the mix during the night show. Obviously, when you have a guy like Ken Roczen riding your brand you’re going to be in contention for a win or podium. Still, the 250 BarX riders Derek Drake (12th in main) and Robbie Wageman (15th in main) and HEP Suzuki’s Dilan Schwartz (20th in main) did well all day. Even with Shane McElrath and Kyle Chisholm each having different issues and missing out on the 450 main event you could tell that everyone came in ready. Suzuki has a big presence this year and the more brands in the mix, the better.
I feel so bad for Austin Forkner. He gets in the most violent looking crashes, comes back after a lengthy period of time off, and has the speed to win. The process repeats itself again… and again. The motocross gods just couldn’t allow him to get one main event in this season? You can only get kicked so many times. I hope Forkner isn’t out very long. If he is, I think he would benefit from a new environment or even a class change. This guy has incredible talent and heart. This sport only benefits when he is on the track. Hopefully this injury isn’t so bad and he can get back on the gate sooner than later.
No Star In the 250 Top Five
Not a single Star Racing Yamaha rider finished inside the top five. Levi Kitchen finished seventh and Stilez Robertson finished ninth. If this keeps happening Bobby Regan is not going to be a fun person to be around. I know it’s Anaheim 1 and the track was brutal and we shouldn’t judge anything off of these results, but I don’t think Mr. Regan cares. He wants to win and be in title contention at every race. We don’t have team rebuilds at Star even though we lost two title winners to the 450 class and factory teams this season. Oakland should be a different story, but if it’s a mud-fest anything can happen.
All I did was tweet out that Nichols finished sixth in his rookie 450SX debut and it blew up. Colt is a fan favorite and absolutely delivered by getting the holeshot and holding his own. He was consistent on a brutal track that was taking down a lot of the top guys. Anaheim 1 is always weird when it comes to results, but I believe that Colt is here to stay and will only get better. He’s spent a ton of time testing for Honda in the off-season and that’s going to benefit him in the long run. Also, he did a walk-in photo and the movement has begun as it seems like A LOT of riders coordinated their outfits as well for photos.
If you wrote off Cooper Webb before this season, well I feel bad for you. How could you do that first of all? He’s a two-time 450SX Champion. When he feels like he’s counted out, that’s when he performs the best? Doesn’t that remind you of someone? Oh yeah, Chad Reed. Cooper charged his way to the front from a mid-pack start and had a chance to win it there at the end if some things went differently. I think Coop will be in this title chase until the very end and it’s very possible that he can be a three-time champion when the season is over.
Main image: Honda HRC