The 2014 Monster Energy Supercross series certainly has not disappointed this year, as the action has been breathtaking at all three of the rounds that have been run thus far. But, the third round might go down as the best, as we were privy to some excellent racing, and intriguing battles. So, join us as we break down some of the riders’ lap times from Angel Stadium.
Ken Roczen vs. Ryan Villopoto (450SX Main Event):
Ken Roczen (2nd):
Ryan Villopoto (5th):
Surprisingly, Ken Roczen managed to catch, and pass Ryan Villopoto straight up in the 450SX main event on Saturday. If my memory serves me right, I think that Ken is the only rider that has done that in a main event this year. Obviously, there is a very interesting sub-plot to this story, as the two riders started training together during the off-season last year. Clearly, this is paying dividends for Roczen. In the lap times highlighted above, Ken was just as fast as RV, evidently. I was really quite excited about the speed that the German was showing.
The Red Bull KTM rider found a way around Villopoto, and into third place, on lap three. This was also the only lap in the table that RV dropped out of the fifty-two second range, which is actually surprising. If you go back and watch that lap, you will see that Villopoto was faultless – the only place that he could have lost time was when Roczen got around him, which meant that he had to change up his line a bit. It really did not look like that cost him a whole second though, as he was right behind Roczen again in the next corner. It proves how valuable every second is in supercross.
Chad Reed vs. James Stewart (450SX Main Event):
Chad Reed (1st)
James Stewart (2nd)
In the off-season, Chad Reed admitted that his fitness was not where it needed to be, and he was looking to improve on that aspect of his program heading into this year. Well, judging by how he performed at Anaheim 2 that problem has now been rectified. Reed got faster as the race progressed until he set his fastest time on lap eighteen. In fact, he was the only guy that set a lap time in the fifty-one second range. It was on that lap that he made a pass on James. Chad sprinted away immediately, which proves how confident he was that he had the speed to drop his former title rival.
James Stewart was not slow at Anaheim 2; he kept [Ken] Roczen at bay, after all. But, James didn’t have that little bit extra inside of him, where he could drop his times by a second, like Reed did. It is quite bizarre, as the roles are usually reversed. But, something just clicked for Chad this weekend, evidently. Stewart seemed a bit out of sorts, again; he did not have that same level of aggression that he had at round one. Stewart did salvage a second though, his best finish this season. So, it was not all bad; I would bet that he was upset about Reed catching and passing him though.
Words: Lewis Phillips
Image: James Lissimore