A Matthes Report: Houston

Steve Matthes on a few topics

· 3 min read

Supercross history is going to be made this weekend, everyone! For the first time in the sport's forty-plus year history, we’ll see three main events deciding an overall winner. For ninety-eight percent of the sport's history we have seen one main event that is twenty laps long. In 1985 there were two mains that were, I believe, twelve lappers and then an overall winner on the night was figured out. Technically, the season before wasn't even an AMA series. The real AMA series was four races or something. Yeah, we don't understand any of this either. Let's just skip it.

I, for one, am stoked on the changes and cannot wait to see how this plays out. I'm not sold on the three mains being different times but, hey, you have gotta start somewhere. I think having the two last chance qualifiers in the daytime is really missing the boat. Some of the best races of the night involve those races and to not start the night off with these and hype them up as the last chance to make the main is a loss in my opinion. Besides, the night show programme is missing two races out of it with this new format anyway!

Justin Barcia should excel in the shortest 450SX main event (Monster Energy Media/Octopi)

Anyway, this is awesome and everyone buckle in!  Some other news and notes in clearing out the brain.

– Everyone wants to know who is racing this weekend. All the people around the three main guys hurt are on lockdown so there's not a lot of info leaking out but it looks like Dean Wilson of the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team will be a go. Monster Energy Kawasaki's Eli Tomac rode this week and is a go and I have no idea on Red Bull KTM's Marvin Musquin. All three riders have shoulder injuries and are behind the eight ball to start the season.

– If you're looking for a surprise winner in one of the three main events, check out MCR Honda's Justin Brayton. He's generally a good starter, he can go the speed needed for eight minutes (the first main event time) and he has been pretty good to start the year.

Eli Tomac is expected to return to racing at Angel Stadium (Monster Energy Media/Octopi)

-Last week on our Racer X Houston wrap-up podcast, we talked about how Honda's Ken Roczen got caught and passed by Husky's Jason Anderson. It was unusual to see the #94 get caught like that and I theorised that perhaps he got a bit winded. Practicing is one thing, but racing is another and Kenny had done one week of that in the last year. I mean, just last week at the opening round we saw Roczen set the fastest qualifying time so speed didn't seem to be an issue. Anyways, a day or two after the podcast I got a text from "someone" close to Roczen that insisted he didn't get tired, there were a bit of suspension issues on the rough and rutty track and, hey, Jason Anderson rode well. There you have it. Trust me when I say the texts were from someone who would know.

– I talked to a Yamaha team member and enquired what would happen if Davi Millsaps comes back from injury and Justin Barcia, who was on just a six-race deal, is still riding this well. His response? "Well, I guess we will build a third bike," which sounds about right. You cannot let Barcia go at this point, not with how he has been riding. From what I hear, the odds of Millsaps racing again seem remote (he crashed and knocked himself out before the season) but it'll be interesting to see Yamaha expand on its original deal.

Words: Steve Matthes | Lead Image: Monster Energy Media/Octopi

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