Today’s Supercross Round 16 in Salt Lake City: Start times, TV, info

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It seems a three-man battle again for the 450 championship, but one rider still could close out his first Supercross title tonight in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Eli Tomac, who has finished on the podium in all five events at Rice-Eccles Stadium since the season restarted after an 85-day layoff, could clinch the championship today with his eighth victory of the season.

But defending series champion Cooper Webb, who is ranked third in the title standings, has won the past two Wednesdays in ripping off a career-high seven consecutive podium finishes.

Tomac has a 25-point lead on Webb and is 24 points ahead of second-ranked Ken Roczen, who rebounded from a case of shingles for a dominating victory Sunday in Round 15 that ended a streak of three consecutive races off the podium.

It was the 15th career 450 victory and first since Feb. 29 at Atlanta for Roczen.

Here are the details for today’s Round 16:

(All times are ET)

BROADCAST/STREAMING SCHEDULE:  TV coverage of Round 16 will begin at 7 p.m. today on NBCSN. The event also will be streamed on NBCSports.com, the NBC Sports App, and NBC Sports Gold’s Supercross Pass.

SCHEDULE:

7:05 p.m: 250SX Heat #1 – 6 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 20 riders (1 – 9 to Main)
7:19 p.m.: 250SX Heat #2 – 6 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 20 riders (1 – 9 to Main)
7:34 p.m.: 450SX Heat #1 – 6 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 20 riders (1 – 9 to Main)
7:48 p.m.: 450SX Heat #2 – 6 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 20 riders (1 – 9 to Main)
8:11 p.m.: 250SX Last Chance Qualifier – 5 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 22 riders (1 – 4 to Main)
8:24 p.m.: 450SX Last Chance Qualifier – 5 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 22 riders (1 – 4 to Main)
8:51 p.m.: 250SX Main Event – 15 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 22 riders
9:29 p.m.: 450SX Main Event – 20 Minutes/Plus 1 lap – 22 riders

TRACK LAYOUT: Though all seven races are being held at Rice-Eccles Stadium, the course will be changed for each event. Here’s a rendering of the Round 16 layout from @SupercrossLIVE:

WEATHER: Weather Underground forecasts temperatures around 62 degrees at race time under sunny skies.

FORMAT: A standard event format will be used for the seven remaining rounds, except for the season finale on June 21, which will include an East/West Showdown in the 250SX class.

    • 450SX Class – 40 Riders based on current point standings and 2020 top 100 number or combined season qualifying results
    • 250SX Class – 40 Riders based on current point standings and 2020 top 100 number or combined season qualifying results
    • Two qualifying sessions will be held for gate pick
    • 250SX Class – Two Heat Races and a Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ)
    • 450SX Class – Two Heat Races and a Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ)
    • 250SX Class Main Event
    • 450SX Class Main Event

SEASON FINALE: The season will conclude Sunday at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah, starting at 3-4:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN and moving to NBC from 4:30-6 p.m. ET.

ROUND 15 RECAP: Ken Roczen overcame recent fatigue from a case of the shingles to win for the first time in the 450 class since Feb. 29. Click here for details.

STANDINGS AFTER ROUND 15: 450 points | 250 West points| 250 East points

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH IN RESTART: A look at some of the burning issues as Supercross restarted its 2020 season after a nearly three-month interruption.

COVID-19 IMPACT: Earlier this month, Feld Entertainment senior director of two-wheel operations Dave Prater confirmed that protocols for the final seven races will include COVID-19 testing for everyone on-site at Rice-Eccles Stadium. A negative result will be required to enter the stadium’s perimeter; only one test will be necessary as long as the person remains in Utah throughout the seven-race stretch.

The Associated Press reported that Prater said no one tested positive among more than 700 officials, riders and team members in the initial screenings.

Additional protocols include temperature checks (administered when someone enters the stadium perimeter), face masks, increased sanitation efforts and social distancing.

Lessons learned in three rounds of Extreme E pay huge dividends in the Copper X Prix for Tanner Foust

Foust Copper X Prix
McLaren Racing
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To paraphrase the Grateful Dead, what a long, unique trip it’s been for Tanner Foust in his first season with the Extreme E series as he took his early season lessons to Chile to compete in the Copper X Prix. And he’s learned his lessons well.

In February, McLaren announced they would expand their motorsports program with an Extreme E entry. They signed two talented rally drivers in Foust and Emma Gilmour – and paired them for the opening round in Neom, Saudi Arabia with just a few days of testing under their belts. Baked by the Arabian desert sun, it was trial by fire.

The duo performed well in their debut, advancing into the final round and finishing fifth. As Extreme E headed to another desert halfway across the globe for Round 4, it was a good time to catch up with Foust and ask about McLaren’s progress. The Copper X Prix was held this past weekend in one of the most extreme regions in the world: the Atacama Desert.

MORE: McLaren considering Kyle Busch for Indy 500

“The shock going into the first race was the speed,” Foust told NBC Sports. “It was much higher than we had tested. We spent a lot of time around 100 miles per hour [in race trim] and our testing speeds were more in the 60 to 70-mile range. Then, once we sort of got around that, the car got updated so you can drive it even faster.”

In rally racing, some incidents are out of a driver’s control. Even peeking around another car can be dangerous because of potholes that have recently been gouged in the ground or large bushes that seem to sprout up between laps. A couple of rollovers brought Foust back to earth – but the pace was there and that was important.

“We had some challenges this season,” Foust said prior to the Copper X Prix. “We had a good start; made the final, which is a difficult thing to do in this series. I had two rolls in the first three events, but I have improved each time. Now we come into Round 4 in Chile in a pretty strong position. We have competitive times as a team. We are communicating really well and have our heads around this Odyssey vehicle.”

Foust’s words proved to be prophetic.

He won the Crazy Race – Extreme E’s version of a Last Chance Qualifier – and did so after passing the field. It was the same manner in which he qualified for Saudi Arabia’s finale, but this time things would be better. There were those hard-earned lessons on which to lean – and Foust had reps under his belt. He was not going to be caught off guard by any random obstacles.

Tanner Foust passed Sebastien Loeb heading to the Switch Zone in the Copper X Prix. (Photo by Sam Bagnall / LAT Images)

In the Copper X Prix finale, he pressured one of the best rally drivers in the history of the sport.

Pitching sideways through a tight left-hander late in his stint, Foust put his McLaren Extreme E Odyssey at the head of the pack in front of Sebastien Loeb as they headed to the Switch Zone. There, he would turn the car over to his co-driver Gilmour.

The Extreme E series pairs male and female drivers with both taking a turn behind the wheel.

After the driver change, Gilmour lost the lead momentarily to Loeb’s teammate Cristina Gutierrez, but as they charged toward the finish line, she surged ahead and crossed under the checkers first.

“What an improvement for the team over this year,” Foust said after the race. “We have struggled through some of the events, being in our first year in competition. We showed true pace this weekend; overtaking Sebastien Loeb was a highlight.

“Emma put in a great run in the Final. I was fortunate to go from last to first in the Crazy Race and then first in the Final but with some flag penalties, we had 20 seconds added to our time, which put us into fifth. It was a great feeling crossing the line first, I love this wide style track and the NEOM McLaren Odyssey was fantastic here.

“Hopefully we can continue that momentum into Uruguay.”

Loeb and Gutierrez were elevated to the top of the podium, but no one can take away the feeling of crossing under the checkers first.


Racing Responsibly

Since cars were first invented, racing has played a socially responsible role by improving safety. As Earth reaches a tipping point with climate change, racing needs to adapt to these new needs and requirements, which is where Extreme E’s unique strategy becomes increasingly important.

The Extreme E experience is more than simple racing. Each race is accompanied by a legacy program designed to offset damage done by climate change and to erase the footprint caused by the events.

Foust, a biology major from the University of Colorado, was given the chance to rekindle his interest and give back to the environment ahead of the Copper X Prix.

The Atacama is the oldest desert in the world at 150 million years. It is the driest place on earth and has the highest degree of ultraviolet light. And yet somehow life perseveres through underground rivers with oases dating back to Incan times. Foust participated in preparing a local habitat for the reintroduction of a critically endangered water frog to Chile’s longest river, the Loa, which snakes its way through the desert.

“I’m loving the experience,” Foust said. “I’m putting on a lot of Chapstick, a lot of sunscreen. What a fascinating part of the world. I never would have come here otherwise.

“I honestly am very honored to be a part of this sport. I am a huge believer in the fact that motorsports has done us good in the last 100 years. I think we benefit every single time we put our seatbelts on and drive down the road to the lessons learned in racing since the turn of the century. And I really hope motorsports continues that tradition.

“I think that motorsports like [Extreme E] does it in a responsible way, a gender-neutral way and a carbon-neutral way.”