Cooper Webb wins Supercross Round 10 at Arlington, takes points lead from Ken Roczen
Cooper Webb took the lead on Lap 1 of Monster Energy Supercross Round 10 in Arlington, Texas and never looked back as he won his fourth race of the 2021 season and took the points lead from Ken Roczen.
An aggressive move by Webb on the first lap of last week’s race drew the ire of Roczen at Daytona. On Saturday night, Roczen never came close to silencing Webb as he scored fifth consecutive finish of second or better.
Roczen hoped to rattle the 2019 champion when he said that Webb was afraid of him. Instead, Webb used it as motivation to run away with the win.
“I love that [expletive]; it gets me going,” Webb said in the post-race press conference after the race. “It was a good week for that and we made the most of it. It is what it is obviously, and these times with Instagram and everything, you are able to see a bunch.
“It creates a good story for sure. I love it and I feed off it.”
POINTS, RESULTS: All the postrace statistics from Round 10 in Supercross
In fact, Roczen was silenced early. He was racing for third in his heat race when he crashed and lost an opportunity to start the Main with a good starting position.
Roczen fell out of the top five in that race and ultimately finished seventh, which forced him to pick his gate after all the good slots were taken. His best option in terms of his relative position to Webb had a deep rut in front of it, which caused Roczen to get a slow start.
Roczen slipped sideways on the start and watched other riders surge ahead. Roczen was 11th at the end of Lap 1. He rebounded to finish sixth, but that cost him nine points to Webb. Roczen entered Round 10 of the Supercross season with a two-point advantage and left with seven-point deficit.
It was not the way Roczen wanted his 100th Main event to unfold. He has not stood on the podium in three straight races.
“Start position was key here tonight and I really messed that up with the heat race,” Roczen told NBCSN after the race. “I went into (the Main) with a clean set of mind, but obviously didn’t get the start I wanted. And on this track in particular it was really difficult to make passes. It wasn’t really the night I was hoping for but we go back and we regroup.
“There’s lots of racing to go and one thing I’ve learned is you can’t be afraid of failing.”
Justin Barcia settled into second early in the race.
“It was a good week leading up to this. I did a lot of testing with my team. Got me comfortable again. Tonight was very special for us. To charge into second was cool.”
After winning the opening round for the third consecutive year, Barcia struggled in two of his next three starts. He finished second at Indianapolis 2 and was 19th in the next round, but has now finished sixth or better in his last four attempts. Barcia ended the night fourth in the standings with last year’s champion Eli Tomac in sight.
Jason Anderson finished third. He had an eventful night that drew the attention of the Supercross series. Midway through the race it was announced they were looking into a couple of on track incidents when he aggressively rode Malcolm Stewart wide and contributed to a crash by Dylan Ferrandis.
“I’m just up there racing,” Anderson said afterward. “I just want to do good. I’ve been following those guys all year. I just want to be on the podium ... I’m going for it and that is all there is to it.”
Anderson’s third-place finish was his first podium of the season.
Stewart attempted to retaliate for the on-track incident, but only succeeded in taking himself out of contention.
Chase Sexton also had a season-best at Arlington with his fourth-place finish.
He crashed out of Round 2 at Houston and was forced to sit out the next six events. Last week he returned to Daytona and finished eight.
Aaron Plessinger earned his first career podium at Daytona. He kept his momentum alive with a heat win and fifth-place finish in the Main.
Roczen ended the night sixth with Joey Savatgy in seventh.
Eli Tomac hoped to capitalize on last week’s Daytona win. But he also struggled in his heat. Like Roczen, a less than optimal gate pick mired him in the pack. After finishing Lap 1 in 14th, he was able to climb to eight at the checkers, but lost more ground in the points and trails Webb by 33 with seven events remaining.
Tomac is still mathematically in the running to defend last year’s championship, but realistically needs to win multiple times in the closing races.
Dean Wilson in ninth and Martin Davalos rounded out the top 10.
Marvin Musquin crashed in his heat with time running off the clock. Several riders had to pick there way between the rider and his bike at full speed. Musquin was unable to start the Last Chance Qualifier after getting stitches for a gash in his arm.
The 250s class had its second first time winner in as many weeks.
At Arlington, Seth Hammaker followed up last week’s inaugural win by teammate Cameron Mcadoo with one of his own.
“That was the longest race of my life,” Hammaker told NBCSN after the race. “Literally, every time I went past the flagger I was like, ‘Dude! Where is the white flag. What are you doing. Let’s get it over with.’ I was just trying to hit my lines steady, clean.
“I’m not going to lie, I was a little tired out there, but I’m super stoked to get this win.”
Hunter Lawrence scored a career-best second.
“I am super pumped,” Lawrence said. “Second is a good building block for us from where we were six months ago.
“Even two months ago, we were happy to be top five. That was the goal, so to be here at the third round, we are super pumped.”
Mcadoo held onto his points lead with his third-place finish. He battled Justin Cooper over the last several laps as the the two championship leaders swapped position.
“That was a hard-fought one,” Mcadoo said. “I made a mistake off the start. That was on me, big time, and I was pretty buried.
“I was happy with parts of the way I rode and not so much with others. Hunter and Seth were riding amazing. They were going fast. Same with Justin. It was a dogfight out there. I got to third and just couldn’t make anything happen.”
On the final lap, Cooper made a bold attempt but lost traction and fell while trying to tack the final spot on the podium.
“I was close,” Cooper said. “I had to try something and after that quad I tried to dive to the inside and it was really slick there. I went down pretty quick. I was able to get up and get fourth. I’m just going to give it my all every time out.”
Mcadoo holds a six-point advantage over Cooper.
Garrett Marchbanks rounded out the top five.
ROUND 1, HOUSTON: Justin Barcia wins opener for third consecutive time
ROUND 2, HOUSTON: Eli Tomac rebounds, wins after Round 1 disappointment
ROUND 3, HOUSTON: Cooper Webb wins, Ken Roczen denied revenge
ROUND 4, INDIANAPOLIS: Ken Roczen makes it four winners in four races
ROUND 5, INDIANAPOLIS: Ken Roczen goes back to back for first time since 2017 injury
ROUND 6, INDIANAPOLIS: Ken Roczen is perfect in Indy for third straight win
ROUND 7, ORLANDO: Cooper Webb trims Ken Roczen lead
ROUND 8, ORLANDO: Cooper Webb sweeps Orlando to put pressure on Ken Roczen
ROUND 9, DAYTONA: Eli Tomac ties Ricky Carmichael at Daytona; Ken Roczen, Copper Webb war