Supercross Preview: Three races, three winners – will Oakland make four?

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Three weeks have produced three different winners in the 450 and 250 classes in Monster Energy Supercross competition and with the absence of some big names on the top step of the podium, Oakland might well produce another unique victor.

That is especially likely in 450s, where two of the three winners in 2019 have scored their first career wins. Blake Baggett ascended to the top for the first time In Glendale, Ariz. Last week, Cooper Webb grabbed his first win in the second Anaheim race. Even Justin Barcia in Round 1 had only two previous wins to his credit.

Take last year’s champions Jason Anderson out of the mix after a practice crash early in the week left him with a broken arm, cracked rib and lengthy recovery, and it’s anyone’s race to win. Anderson will be out for an estimated eight weeks as he recuperates.

The course this week will be made up of mostly doubles including one on which the riders will get major air before slamming into a hairpin that leads the whoops, another 180 and the finish line.

Ken Roczen keeps the red plate for the second week, but he’s still looking for his first win since his injury. Last week, it appeared he was on his way to a great event when he led 13 of 14 laps in the first Main of the Triple Crown only to be passed by Webb on the final lap. In the second and third Mains, he finished fifth and fourth to get an overall finish of fourth.

Colt Nichols also hangs onto his red plate for another week. His overall finish of third last week was just enough for a two-point advantage over the Anaheim II winner Shane McElrath.

During the week, Barcia was evaluated for a bruised tailbone after he took a hard landing and was helped from the track in the third Main at Anaheim II. He is expected to ride at Oakland.

Schedule:

Qualifying: 4 p.m. on NBC Sports, Gold
Race: Live, 9 p.m. on NBC Sports, Gold (Replay: Jan. 27, 3 p.m. on NBCSN)

Last Week:

Cooper Webb beat Marvin Musquin and Eli Tomac in the 450 class.
Shane McElrath beat Dylan Ferrandis and Colt Nichols in the 250 class.

Last year:

Jason Anderson beat Ken Roczen and Blake Baggett in the 450 class.
Aaron Plessinger beat Joey Savatgy and Justin Hill in the 250 class.

Winners

450s:
[1] Justin Barcia (Anaheim I)
[1] Blake Baggett (Glendale)
[1] Cooper Webb (Anaheim II)

250s:
[1] Colt Nichols (Anaheim I)
[1] Adam Cianciarulo (Glendale)
[1] Shane McElrath (Anaheim II)

Points Leaders

450s:
Ken Roczen (63)
Eli Tomac (61)
Cooper Webb (57)
Justin Barcia (56)
Marvin Musquin (56)

250s:
Colt Nichols (70)
Shane McElrath (68)
Dylan Ferrandis (63)
Adam Cianciarulo (62)
RJ Hampshire (57)

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Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
Extreme E
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”