Eli Tomac wins Denver Supercross, Cooper Webb slices through field

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Even if the picture went black on the television set, one would have known the moment Eli Tomac took the lead in Round 15 of the 2019 Supercross season at Denver. On Lap 7, Colorado native Tomac blazed past Marvin Musquin and rode off into the sunset with his fifth win of the year and second consecutive.

Once he snatched the lead from Musquin, Tomac steadily improved his lead – doing all in his power to turn the 450SX championship into a battle.

“That’s like what I dreamed of,” Tomac told NBCSN after the race. “That was by far the coolest crowd. The best atmosphere. They were so loud. … Coming over the triple there, battling for the lead, it was the loudest I’ve ever heard. I was so special. Frickin’ cool.”

But once again, Cooper Webb showed the composure that championships require, as he has all year long.

With less than five minutes remaining in the race, he chased down Musquin and earned his 10th podium finish of the season. Musquin was forced to settle for third and lost two more points to Webb.

Webb entered Denver with a 21-point advantage over Tomac and his teammate Musquin. On Lap 1, Webb was outside the top five. Panic could have caused him to make a mistake, but he set his sights on the top five while his two principal challengers settled into the top two spots.

Webb passed Justin Bogle for fourth on Lap 6, then had to show some patience when he caught Joey Savatgy on Lap 12. He challenged hard but smartly and climbed to the final step of the podium on Lap 13.

Bogle held on to finish fourth with Savatgy rounding out the top five.

Dean Wilson crashed on Lap 10 to bring out the red cross flag. He walked to the Medical Mule under his own power.

Complete Results
Points Standings

In 250SX, the athletes from the West had their last chance to battle without the East riders potentially clogging up their standings in the season finale East/West Showdown at Las Vegas.

The points battle is down to a two-man show between Adam Cianciarulo and Dylan Ferrandis, but Michael Mosiman did not let that keep him from grabbing the holeshot or riding Cianciarulo hard over the first seven laps.

On the seventh circuit around the track, the two swapped the lead several times before Cianciarulo was finally able to get the point with nine minutes remaining in the feature. He watched Mosiman make life difficult for the second-place rider, as Cianciarulo scored his fifth win of the year and heads to Nevada with a lead of eight points.

“The first obstacle was to get the start out of the way,” Cianciarulo told NBCSN after the win. “Michael Mosiman was rim riding so good the last couple of weeks. Shout out to him. Man, he really battle me for that win – a little bit more than I wanted him to, but it was great to see him not scared and not backing down.

“I’m always at my best when my back is to the wall.”

That allowed Dylan Ferrandis to make up ground lost on Lap 1. On the first lap around the Denver track, Ferrandis fell to fifth. By the time Cianciarulo settled his difference with Mosiman, the Frenchman had climbed to third and had his sights set on the runner-up position.

But Mosiman was an equal opportunity beast – challenging Ferrandis just as hard as he had the points leader.

By the time Ferrandis got around, he was nearly seven seconds behind the leader with five minutes on the clock and no chance of making up the ground. The pair were three seconds behind Cianciarulo when they began their battle; Ferrandis lost four seconds making the difficult pass.

Mosiman laid his bike down as the clock ran out and the final lap began. Colt Nichols took advantage of the fall to climb to third.

RJ Hampshire slipped past on the white flag lap with Mosiman rounding out the top five.

After fighting so hard to get into the Main with his LCQ win, Garrett Marchbanks went down hard on Lap 1 to finish 22nd.

Complete Results
Points Standings

450 Heat 1: Justin Bogle jumped out from the fifth spot on the gate to take the early lead. … Blake Baggett stayed within two seconds, but never seriously challenged and was passed for second by Zach Osborne as time was running off the clock. … Baggett held on for third. … The biggest battle of the heat was deeper in the field as Ken Roczen and Marvin Musquin battled for fourth and fifth with Roczen getting the advantage at the end,

450 Heat 2: Cole Seely rode to an easy win as the battle for supremacy heated up behind him. … Eli Tomac and Cooper Webb went handlebar to handlebar early in the heat as Tomac pushed Webb a little wide. Webb survived in third, but as he caught Joey Savatgy, he bobbled on a triple jump and made the race for second into a three-man show. … When the dust settled, Tomac grabbed second, Webb was third and Savatgy settled for fourth.

450 Last Chance Qualifier: Alex Ray got the holeshot and held the advantage throughout the LCQ. … He beat Carlen Gardner to the line by a little under two seconds. … John Short slipped around Charles Lefrancois on as time was running off the clock with a short battle. … Adam Enticknap was 2.765 seconds behind the final transfer.

250 Heat 1: Colt Nichols grabbed the lead at the start and ran away with the win. … James Decotis finished nearly four seconds behind. … Chris Blose ran into the back of Cameron McAdoo, but McAdoo got back up quickly and recovered to finish third. … Blose finished 10th and failed to transfer. … Derek Kelley was in a transfer position until he crashed in the rhythm section with time running off the clock. He finished 17th.

250 Heat 2: Points leader Adam Cianciarulo snatched the lead from RJ Hampshire on Lap 4 and stretched his lead to more than three seconds at the end. … Hampshire grabbed the holeshot over the two title contenders with Cianciarulo and Dylan Ferrandis falling into second and third on Lap 1; he held on for second. … Ferrandis was able to close the gap on Hampshire in the final laps, but settled for third. … Logan Karnow took ninth and the final transfer spot. 

250 Last Chance Qualifier: Garrett Marchbanks rode to an uneventful win over Chris Blose. … Third-place Enzo Lopes was a distant 7.65 seconds behind with Blaine Silveira nearly nine second behind Lopes (20.4 behind Marchbanks)

Points Leaders

450SX
Cooper Webb (332) (6 wins)
Eli Tomac (314) (5 wins)
Marvin Musquin (309) (2 wins)
Ken Roczen (283)
Blake Baggett (255) (1 win)

250SX West
Adam Cianciarulo (208 points) (5 wins)
Dylan Ferrandis (200) (2 wins)
Colt Nichols (163) (1 win)
RJ Hampshire (145)
James Decotis (128)

250SX East
Austin Forkner (151 points) (5 wins)
Chase Sexton (148)
Justin Cooper (144)
Martin Davalos (115) (1 win)
Mitchell Oldenburg (105)

Top 5s

450SX
Cooper Webb: 12
Marvin Musquin: 11
Eli Tomac: 11
Ken Roczen: 9
Blake Baggett: 8
Dean Wilson: 4
Joey Savatgy: 4
Chad Reed: 2
Justin Barcia: 2
Justin Bogle: 2
Jason Anderson: 1
Justin Brayton: 1
Aaron Plessinger: 1
Cole Seeley: 1
Zach Osborne: 1

250SX West
Adam Cianciarulo: 9
Dylan Ferrandis: 7
Shane McElrath: 5
Colt Nichols: 6
RJ Hampshire: 5
James Decotis: 4
Jacob Hayes: 1
Garrett Marchbanks: 1
Jess Pettis: 1
Michael Mosiman: 1
Chris Blose: 1
Michael Mosiman: 1

250SX East
Austin Forkner: 6
Justin Cooper: 7
Chase Sexton: 7
Jordon Smith: 3
Martin Davalos: 4
Alex Martin: 2
Mitchell Oldenburg: 2
Kyle Peters: 1
Brandon Hartranft: 1

Next race: April 27, MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ.

Season passes can be purchased at NBC Sports Gold.

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Eli Tomac’s near-perfect season ended perfectly

ProMotocross.com
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From the start, Eli Tomac wanted to go into the season-ending race at Ironman Raceway with the 2020 red plate already in his possession. That final race has been know to devolve into muddy conditions and it is best not to leave things to chance.

For a rider with an almost perfect record of overall podium finishes, one would not have thought there would be much drama at the end of Round 11 at Budds Creek, but it took until the last lap of the final moto for Tomac to achieve his goal.

One reason was that Tomac’s near-perfect season was not so perfect. From the very beginning at Hangtown, Tomac struggled with poor starts to his events. Getting a bad jump out of the gate and finishing fourth in Moto 1 that weekend was not the auspicious beginning he wanted in search of his third consecutive 450 outdoor championship.

The hallmark of Tomac’s season has been overcoming bad starts. He rode through the field at Hangtown and nearly stood on the podium. Then he won Moto 2 and finished second overall. It was his first of nine consecutive overall podiums. Tomac came back the following week for a perfect sweep at Pala.

In Round 3, Tomac once again got off to a bad start. He finished fifth in Moto 1 at Thunder Valley – and then won Moto 2 in a duplication of his opening round.

In Round 5, Tomac had his worst performance until that time. He finished seventh in Moto 1. Nearly halfway through the season, a pattern was firmly established with his Moto 2 win.

Vanessa O’Brien, Kawasaki USA

One should recall that the hallmark of Tomac’s season was strong finishes. Four the next four weeks Tomac failed to podium only one time in a moto. On that occasion, he would stumble in Moto 2 at Spring Creek in Round 8 before scoring his second perfect race at Washougal.

And that is where it got interesting. Tomac left Washougal with a 50-point advantage over Marvin Musquin. It was just the scenario Tomac had seesawed his way through the season to achieve. But it was too good to be true.

In most of his previous bad performances, there was an extenuating circumstance for Tomac’s bad start: a fall or an off course excursion. This time, he simply rode an uninspired race and finished seventh again to match his worst single moto performance. He could not fully rebound in Moto 2 and finished third.

For the first time in 2019, Tomac failed to stand on the overall podium in fourth. Worse still, he lost 10 points to Musquin and no longer had his one-race cushion.

But this is a season of recovery for Tomac. At Budds Creek last week it was reported that Tomac’s lackluster performance in Washington was due to his overdoing his chores on his Colorado ranch. Rested and restored, Tomac scored his third perfect race with Moto 1 & 2 wins. And this time, he looked sharper than he had in any previous race.

Tomac did all the could do by winning both motos, but in the closing laps at Budds Creek he needed a little help to clinch the title. As it turned out, Tomac needed the perfect performance to clinch his third consecutive championship.

In Moto 1, he narrowly edged Ken Roczen and Musquin, to give the three championship contenders a sweep of the top three spots; that was not enough to regain his cushion.

Roczen was close enough to force Tomac into The Ironman needing to score points to permanently affix the red plate on his Kawasaki in 2020, but just as Tomac’s season has been marked by second half improvements, Roczen’s has been marred by a lack of performance in the second motos.

Musquin passed Roczen late in Moto 2 last week and could have extended the drama one more week if he could have caught second-place Jason Anderson. Musquin could not erase an 11-second deficit to the runner-up and now Tomac’s almost perfect season has a distinctly perfect feel to it.

Vanessa O’Brien, Kawasaki USA

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