James Stewart is back, much to the chagrin of Marvin Musquin, as Ryan Dungey made a quick pass on the final lap to take his fifth win of the 2016 Monster Energy Supercross season on Saturday at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, GA.
The rookie Musquin led 19 laps fending off several challenges by his teammate and the reigning champion Dungey, and looked headed for his first career 450SX class win as the two entered a whoops section ready to lap Stewart. However, instead of getting out of the race line as a lapped rider, Stewart engaged in the battle as if he were fighting for the lead which led to Musquin changing his line, nearly tangling with Dungey, before bobbling and riding off the track. He managed to get back on the track and finish a career best second-place.
"I just went sideways because I heard (Stewart) coming. He was a lap down and I'm really mad right now because I felt like the win was for me," Musquin said. "Second is my best result ever but to me I don't want to think about it because I was going to win the race."
Marvin Musquin kept the field and Ryan Dungey in his rearview for 19 laps
It was Musquin's second podium this season besting his third-place result in Oakland. Dungey's 27th career win extended his podium streak to 25 and he now boasts 19 consecutive rounds in the Top 2. He also capitalized on a bad start by Ken Roczen, last week's winner, who finished in sixth-place and is now 33 points behind Dungey in second-place in the Championship standings.
"A win's a win but Marvin rode his butt off today. For us two to be out in front just putting the pace like at home, got to give credit to Marvin. I'm so glad we didn't connect because it was
Despite playing spoiler, Stewart rode well in his first action since Round 4 when he didn't finish the Main after concussion symptoms stemming from a Round 1 collision with Dungey returned, forcing him off the track. Stewart took 14th place (third in his Semi) in his first complete Supercross race since the fateful Seattle round in 2014 when he finished second to Ryan Villopoto and later it was revealed he failed a drug test ultimately leading to a 16 month racing suspension.
Chad Reed got back on the podium in Atlanta and moved to fifth-place in the standings
Lost in all the commotion with Musquin and Stewart was a third-place by Chad Reed, last year's winner, who followed the two leaders for the entire race. It was Reed's first trip to the podium since Round 3 and helps erase a season-worst 12th place from last week. Reed moves into fifth-place in the standings, switching spots with Eli Tomac who had his worst outing of the season finishing in 11th. Musquin retains his hold on seventh-place in the standings. Jason Anderson and Cole Seely, third and fourth in points, also had their worst outings of the year finishing seventh and 10th, respectively after colliding mid-race.
On the opening lap of their Heat race, Andrew Short, Wil Hahn and Phil Nicoletti endured a brutal crash leaving Hahn holding his arm with Short and Nicoletti carted off the track. The three did not return. Hahn suffered a broken collarbone and Nicoletti appears to be OK though he'll have an MRI on his knee as a precaution. Short suffered his second concussion in three months and said he's not sure when he'll return to the track. Watch the crash below:
Short made the 2016 season his swan song but so far he's had a rough year. He missed the first five rounds after a crash in November required surgery on his shoulder. He crashed in his Heat race for Round 6 but qualified for the Main and finished 14th.
Round 8 opened the season for the 250SX East class and Martin Davalos, who finished 10th in this class for 2015, made the first statement with a resounding win leading all 15 laps. Malcolm Stewart, James Stewart's brother, followed in second despite colliding with a downed rider in the sand section. Aaron Plessinger, who won his first career Moto and overall last year in Motocross took third.
Davalos, a veteran whose first Supercross race was in 2006, endured a bout with Epstein-Barr during the off-season and though he's a title contender it was unclear how the illness would affect him. Looks like he answered that question. Additionally, he won his Heat by eight seconds and qualified second.
"I had a solid race, I felt Malcolm the whole time," said Davalos after taking his third career win. "I just wanted to do consistent laps and that's what I felt like I did."
Martin Davalos celebrates his third career Supercross win and opening round victory in the 250SX East class
Stewart is another title contender as long as he remains consistent. Last year he opened the 250SX West class in last. Stewart qualified first this year, winning his Heat race by nearly nine seconds.
"The one thing I can take away tonight is try and dodge some riders," he said with a smile. "That was totally my fault. I didn't even see him down until he picked his bike up and I committed. I'm going to take this, it's a lot better than where I started last year, 22nd."
Jeremy Martin, the two-time 250 class Motocross Champion, took fourth and Justin Hill rounded out the Top 5. RJ Hampshire who was knocked out at Straight Rhythm in October finished sixth.
Round 9 is Saturday at the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona, FL. Buy tickets online or at the box office.
2016 Monster Energy Supercross Atlanta Results
Atlanta Supercross 450SX Class Results
- Ryan Dungey
- Marvin Musquin
- Chad Reed
- David Millsaps
- Justin Brayton
- Ken Roczen
- Jason Anderson
- Justin Bogle
- Christophe Pourcel
- Cole Seely
Atlanta Supercross 250SX East Class Results
- Martin Davalos
- Malcolm Stewart
- Aaron Plessinger
- Jeremy Martin
- Justin Hill
- RJ Hampshire
- Darryn Durham
- Tyler Bowers
- Alexander Frye
- Jimmy Albertson
2016 Monster Energy Supercross Season Standings
450SX Class Season Standings
- Ryan Dungey (191)
- Ken Roczen (158)
- Jason Anderson (145)
- Cole Seely (134)
- Chad Reed (132)
- Eli Tomac (129)
- Marvin Musquin (114)
- David Millsaps (103)
- Justin Brayton (98)
- Jacob Weimer (77)
250SX East Class Season Standings
- Martin Davalos (25)
- Malcolm Stewart (22)
- Aaron Plessinger (20)
- Jeremy Martin (18)
- Justin Hill (16)
- RJ Hampshire (15)
- Darryn Durham (14)
- Tyler Bowers (13)
- Alexander Frye (12)
- Jimmy Albertson (11)
Written By: AndrewT