The penultimate round of 2019 Monster Energy AMA Supercross


4/25/2019

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It's been a long off-race week but the action returns this Saturday night for the penultimate round of the 2019 Monster Energy AMA Supercross season. Now at the closing bell for this year's championship series, the last round in Denver two weekends ago was yet again an AMAzing night of racing. Round 16 promises to be just as good as the SX450 and SX250 title chases come down to the line.

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It was a surprise to absolutely nobody when Colorado native Eli Tomac ran away with the SX450 main event win in Denver. Born and bred at the higher elevations (significantly higher than Denver) in Cortez, Tomac said his benefit wasn't so much fitness related, but engine performance related. He's used to riding an under-performing 450cc machine (due to the thinner air) on his supercross track whereas none of the other racers are. It played out to his favor, for sure, as after some great battles throughout the evening he ended up running away with his fifth win of the season.

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Tomac is definitely on a bit of a roll now and currently sits alone in second place, 18 points behind leader Cooper Webb. With two wins in a row, he seems to have a bit of steam behind him and after gaining 8 points on Marvin Musquin, he's likely much less concerned about his presence in these final two rounds. The only thing he does need to be concerned with is getting as many riders between himself and Webb as possible. Thankfully, he has a worthy teammate in Joey Savatgy to do just that. 

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These two - Marvin Musquin and Ken Roczen - would probably rather forget their 2019 seasons. This is particulary true of Roczen who, thus far, has failed to win a 450 main event which certainly isn't what was expected of him this season. Musquin, on the other hand, has been in the hunt for wins just about every weekend and has even scored a couple, but consistency hasn't been quite as good as his teammate Webb. Had it not been for Webb's meteoric rise to the top of the field, this could very well have been a two-man showdown between Musquin and Tomac for the title.

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To say Webb's been a revelation this year is a massive understatement. He's managed this championship remarkably well while also battling (albeit more carefully lately) for wins nearly every weekend. He's only been off the podium three times, the worst being an eighth place in the San Diego mudfest. Cooper is up 18 points on Tomac and needs only to not make huge mistakes, even if Tomac wins the remaining two rounds. Expect him to be just fast enough in New Jersey this weekend to be able to roll into Vegas with at least a 12-15 point lead.

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Adam Cianciarulo re-established his dominance on the 250 West region in Denver, pulling out an impressive win over Ferrandis and Nichols in the main event and putting him in a pretty solid spot leading to the Vegas finale. Eight points now separate him from second place Dylan Ferrandis, with the rest of the field way behind.

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Planning to return to action this weekend despite blowing out his knee a few weeks ago in Nashville is Austin Forkner. He's still the SX250 East points leader by 3 over Chase Sexton, who certainly smells blood in the water. Despite not winning a single main, Sexton is there every weekend - albeit behind Forkner - but wasn't able to capitalize on Forkner's DNS in Nashville. If he had won that main event, he'd now be tied for the points lead. Forkner will be at significantly less than 100 percent in New Jersey due to the knee issue, so look for Sexton to really put the heat on him from the very first practice session.

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The track is covered for the imminent thunderstorms in the forecast for Friday, thus the Friday media day riding sessions have been canceled for MetLife stadium. However, Saturday's weather looks to be just fine and this weekend's racing goes off a full 2 hours earlier than usual, with opening ceremonies set for 4:30 p.m. EDT.


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