Supercross Preview: Pressure builds heading into Nashville Supercross

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Marvin Musquin is applying pressure and Cooper Webb is feeling it heading into Round 14 of the 2019 Supercross season.

When Webb took the red plate early in the season, the first question was whether he could maintain his composure until the end of the year. He answered that with victories and podiums every week, even in events where he struggled in timed qualification.

Even when Webb stumbled and finished off the podium with a fourth at Seattle, he failed to lose points because his closest championship rival, Musquin, was penalized for failing to roll safely through a crash site where medical attention was being administered.

Musquin’s back-to-back wins at Indianapolis and Seattle put pressure on Webb, however, which was noticeable by the aggressive way he treated his teammate at Houston. Webb won the day, but Musquin (2nd in points, -17) is determined that the war isn’t over.

Eli Tomac (3rd in points, -26) and Ken Roczen (4th in points, -36) are hoping the two KTM factory riders get so focused on one another that they make a mistake which turns this two-man battle into something more.

Now the series rolls into a new market for an inaugural race. Long straights and big jumps will play into Webb’s favor. If he gets off to a slow start, which he has on several occasions this season, he has ample space to make up ground.

After two weeks off, the 250 East riders will be back in action and the question on everyone’s mind in that division is whether anyone can beat Austin Forkner. With the exception of the first East/West Showdown in Atlanta, he’s won every race – and in that event, he was the top-finishing East rider.  A precedent has been set as Dylan Ferrandis has finally been able to cut into Adam Cianciarulo’s lead in the West.

MORE: The Supercross champion will have a tale of perfection to tell 

Schedule:

Qualifying: 1 p.m. on NBC Sports, Gold
Race: Live, 8 p.m. on NBC Sports, Gold and NBCSN

Last Week:

Cooper Webb swept the podium in three Mains last week at Houston to take his sixth win of the year over Marvin Musquin and Dean Wilson.
In 250s, Dylan Ferrandis made it back-to-back wins over RJ Hampshire and Colt Nichols.

Last Year:

This will be the inaugural race in Nashville.

Winners

450s:
[6] Cooper Webb (Anaheim II, Oakland, Minneapolis, Arlington, Atlanta, and Houston)
[3] Eli Tomac (San Diego, Detroit and Daytona)
[2] Marvin Musquin (Indianapolis and Seattle)
[1] Justin Barcia (Anaheim I)
[1] Blake Baggett (Glendale)

250 West:
[4] Adam Cianciarulo (Glendale, Oakland, San Diego and Atlanta)
[2] Dylan Ferrandis (Seattle and Houston)
[1] Colt Nichols (Anaheim I)
[1] Shane McElrath (Anaheim II)

250 East:
[5] Austin Forkner (Minneapolis, Arlington, Detroit, Daytona and Indianapolis)

Top-5s

450s:
Marvin Musquin (11)
Cooper Webb (11)
Ken Roczen (10)
Eli Tomac (10)
Blake Baggett (7)
Joey Savatgy (4)
Dean Wilson (3)
Chad Reed (2)
Justin Barcia (2)
Jason Anderson (1)
Justin Bogle (1)
Justin Brayton (1)
Aaron Plessinger (1)
Cole Seely (1)

250 West:
Adam Cianciarulo (8)
Dylan Ferrandis (6)
Shane McElrath (5)
Colt Nichols (5)
RJ Hampshire (4)
James Decotis (4)
Jacob Hayes (1)
Garrett Marchbanks (1)
Jess Pettis (1)
Michael Mosiman (1)
Chris Blose (1)

250 East:
Austin Forkner (6)
Justin Cooper (6)
Chase Sexton (6)
Jordon Smith (3)
Martin Davalos (3)
Alex Martin (2)
Mitchell Oldenburg (2)

Points Leaders

450s:
Cooper Webb (288)
Marvin Musquin (271)
Eli Tomac (262)
Ken Roczen (252)
Blake Baggett (215)

250 West:
Adam Cianciarulo (182)
Dylan Ferrandis (177)
Colt Nichols (142)
RJ Hampshire (126)
Shane McElrath (123)

250 East:
Austin Forkner (151)
Chase Sexton (125)
Justin Cooper (123)
Alex Martin (92)
Martin Davalos (89)

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Red Bull driver Verstappen wins Formula One’s Brazilian GP

NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP via Getty Images
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Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won Formula One’s Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday for his eighth career victory in a race which ended disastrously for both Ferrari drivers.

Verstappen controlled nearly all the race at Interlagos, which saw a dramatic late collision between Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc when they fought for the fourth position. Both failed to finish.

Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly got his first F1 podium after finishing second ahead of six-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton. The Mercedes driver was third but faces an investigation after an incident that caused Red Bull’s Alexander Albon to spin.

Hamilton, who won at Interlagos in 2018, said Verstappen was “just quicker than us on the straights” and “there was nothing more we could do.”

Dutch driver Verstappen said “Lewis was very quick so I had to keep pushing… we had two good moves with him, and from there onward I could control the race.”

McLaren’s Carlos Sainz was fourth, and could be promoted to third if Hamilton is punished.

The Brazilian GP on Sunday was the penultimate race of the season, with only Abu Dhabi left on Dec.1.

Hamilton had already secured the season title in the previous race in the United States. His Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas, who did not finish the race, had also secured the runner-up spot.