2022 Supercross Power Rankings after Round 7: Jett Lawrence challenges Christian Craig in 250s


Eli Tomac remains atop of the Monster Energy Supercross Power Rankings after Round 7. It is his fifth consecutive week at the top of the standings as older results begin to drop from the formula.

The 450 Supercross Power Rankings look at the past 45 days to give us recent snapshot of which riders are currently strongest. Both Tomac and second-place Jason Anderson struggled in the opening round, compared to how they have raced since, so the needle did not move much this week.

With the Anaheim 1 race aging out of the formula, Tomac lost his worst result of the opening races. He finished sixth in that feature. Between then and Minneapolis in Round 7, Tomac swept the top five in his heats, Triple Crown races, and mains. And then, Tomac struggled once more with another sixth-place finish in last week’s feature to reset the clock and allow Anderson to close the points gap the three.

MORE: Jason Anderson earns third win of 2022

Anderson was dominant in last week’s feature after finishing fourth in his heat. His worst result of the year also aged out of the formula as his 10th-place feature finish and eighth in the A1 heat aged out of the formula, but Anderson still has a poor showing at Petco Park in San Diego that drags him down.

Malcolm Stewart is solidly in third. In the past 45 days, he has not finished outside the top five in any race. Last week, he won his first heat of 2022 and was in sight of a podium finish in the main when he crashed. A fourth in the feature not only keeps his hopes alive in the championship, that strong run keeps him at the front of fans’ minds.

Chase Sexton was well on his way to a second feature win last week until he hit the front of a jump and twisted his tire. The hit was hard enough to bend the wheel and put him on concussion protocol between Minneapolis and Dallas. His 16th-place finish in the feature will weigh him down in the rankings for a while, but it is offset somewhat by a win in last week’s heat.

Justin Barcia holds onto the fifth-place position in the points with his seventh-place heat and fifth-place feature finish. With a third in the Anaheim 3 feature, he currently has back-to-back top-fives.

450 Rankings

1. Eli Tomac (last week: 1); [2 feature wins, 4 heat and wins]
2. Jason Anderson (4); [3 feature wins; 2 heat wins]
3. Malcolm Stewart (3); [1 heat win]
4. Chase Sexton (2); [1 feature win, 5 heat wins]
5. Justin Barcia (5); [1 heat win]
6. Cooper Webb (6); [1 heat win]
7. Marvin Musquin (8)
8. Ken Roczen (7); [1 feature, 1 heat win]
9. Aaron Plessinger (9)
9. Dylan Ferrandis (10)
11. Dean Wilson (12)
12. Shane McElrath (11)
13. Justin Brayton (13)
14. Brandon Hartranft (17)
15. Mitchell Oldenburg (16)
15. Joey Savatgy (14)
17. Kyle Chisholm (18)
18. Josh Hill (20)
19. Max Anstie (15)
20. Justin Bogle (19)

The 250 Supercross Rankings after Round 7 require a slightly different formula to accommodate the different divisions. With the West and East races occurring in clumps, the formula needs to be extended so that the data pool does not become too shallow. The formula looks at the past 145 days, so that about the time the West riders take to the track again, their earliest results will begin to age out of the system.

The 250 East riders hit the track for the first time in 2022 at Minneapolis and early indications are that Jett Lawrence will challenge Christian Craig for 250 supremacy, setting up an interesting matchup when the first East/West Showdown takes place in Atlanta this April.

The East pool is shallow because only one race is in the books, but Lawrence is only a fraction behind Craig as he leads his series.

The points are as volatile in the first race in the East as they were in the West, and given another couple of weeks, some of these drivers will slip down the order. For now, RJ Hampshire and Austin Forkner had solid performances in their first round and are tied for third.

Forkner gets the tiebreaker with his second-place finish in the feature, but Hampshire is not far behind by virtue of winning his heat.

Hunter Lawrence rounds out the top five with a feature and two heat wins to his credit. If not for an accident in the A3 feature, he would challenge his brother Jett for the second position in the Supercross Power Rankings after Round 7.

250 Rankings

1. Christian Craig – W (1); [4 feature wins, 7 heat wins]
2. Jett Lawrence – E (NA); [1 feature win]
3. Austin Forkner – E (NA)
3. RJ Hampshire – E (NA); [1 heat win]
5. Hunter Lawrence – W (2); [1 feature win, 2 heat wins]
6. Pierce Brown – E (NA); [1 heat win]
7. Michael Mosiman – W (3); [1 feature win, 3 heat wins]
8. Cameron McAdoo – E (NA)
8. Jeremy Martin – E (NA)
10. Jo Shimoda – W (5)
10. Stilez Robertson – E (NA)
12. Vince Friese – W (4)
13. Levi Kitchen – E (NA)
14. Enzo Lopes – E (NA)
15. Nate Thrasher – W (6)
16. Jordon Smith – E (NA)
16. Devin Simonson – E (NA)
18. Mitchell Oldenburg – E (NA)
18. Phil Nicoletti – E (NA)
20. Garrett Marchbanks – W (7); [1 heat win]

Triple Crown wins included with Heat wins

POWER RANKINGS AFTER ROUND 1 AT ANAHEIM: Ken Roczen, Christian Craig have a perfect weekend

POWER RANKINGS AFTER ROUND 2 AT OAKLAND: Justin Barcia climbs to the top spot

POWER RANKINGS AFTER ROUND 3 AT SAN DIEGO: Consistency pays off for Eli Tomac

POWER RANKINGS AFTER ROUND 4 AT ANAHEIM: Eli Tomac remains on top as competition levels

POWER RANKINGS AFTER ROUND 5 AT GLENDALE: Malcolm Stewart move up as Eli Tomac stays No. 1

POWER RANKINGS AFTER ROUND 6 AT ANAHEIM: Jason Anderson closes the gap

Alexander Rossi ‘fits like a glove’ with his new IndyCar teammates at Arrow McLaren Racing

Alexander Rossi McLaren
Nate Ryan

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. – There are more than three dozen fresh faces on the Arrow McLaren Racing IndyCar team, but there was one that Felix Rosenqvist was particularly keen to know – Alexander Rossi.

The driver of the No. 7 Dallara-Chevrolet is the most high-profile new hire for McLaren, which has expanded to a third car to pair with the No. 6 of Rosenqvist and No. 5 of Pato O’Ward.

And there is another layer than Rossi just being the new kid. McLaren marks only his second team in NTT IndyCar Series after seven seasons at Andretti Autosport, where he began with a victory in the 2016 Indy 500 and was a championship contender for several seasons.

Rossi is a mercurial talent, and when things go wrong, the red mist quickly descends (and sometimes has led to feuds with teammates). He went winless during two of his final seasons at Andretti and was out of contention more often than not, often bringing out the prickly side of his personality.

Yet there has been no trace of the dour Rossi since joining McLaren. The pragmatic Californian is quick to remind everyone he hasn’t worked with the team yet at a track (much less been in its car), and there surely will be times he gets frustrated.

But it’s clear that Rossi, who made five Formula One starts in 2015 after several years racing in Europe, already is meshing well with an organization whose England-based parent company has deep roots in F1.

“I’ve been pleasantly surprised,” Rosenqvist said Tuesday during IndyCar’s preseason media availabilities. “I think Alex kind of has that bad-guy role a little bit in IndyCar. He’s always been that guy, which is cool. I think we need those guys, as well.

“Actually having gotten to know him, he’s been super nice, super kind. He fits like a glove in the team. I think it fills a role where Pato is kind of like the crazy guy, I’m somewhere in the middle, and Alex is the more engineering guy in the team. I think Alex has more experience, as well. He just feels like a guy who knows what he wants.

“Yeah, good addition to the team and great guy at the same time.”

There are many reasons why Rossi’s transition from Andretti to McLaren should be smoother than his abrupt move from F1 to IndyCar seven years ago. Namely, he no longer is the only newcomer to the team’s culture.

“It’s been kind of a good time to come in because everyone is finding a new role and position and kind of learning who’s who, finding everyone’s strengths and weaknesses,” he said.

But while Rossi might have questions about the team, he has none about the series. Unlike when he arrived at Andretti without any oval experience, Rossi joins McLaren with his IndyCar credentials secured as an established star with eight victories, seven poles and 28 podiums over 114 starts.

Even in his swan song with Andretti, Rossi still managed a farewell victory last July at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course that snapped a 49-race, three-year winless drought. It seems reasonable to believe he immediately could re-emerge in his 2017-19 title contender form.

“I know the series, and I know kind of everything that goes into American open-wheel racing vs. the European open-wheel racing, which is really the biggest transition,” Rossi said. “Certainly it’s the largest kind of team switch. I’ve obviously driven for different teams in the past in Europe, in sports cars, whatever, but never really in my full-time job. I’ve driven for the same organization for a very long time and have a lot of respect and fabulous memories with those people.

“So it has been a big kind of shift, trying to compare and contrast areas that I can bring kind of recommendations and experience to maybe help fill the gaps that exist at Arrow McLaren. Again, all of this is in theory, right? I don’t really know anything. We’ll have a much better idea and plan going into St. Pete (the March 5 season opener).”

He has gotten a good handle on how things work at its Indianapolis headquarters, though, and has been pleased by the leadership of new racing director Gavin Ward (who worked in F1 before a championship stint with Josef Newgarden at Team Penske). McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown also seems omnipresent on both sides of the Atlantic, making appearances at IndyCar races seemingly as much as in the F1 paddock.

“I think what’s very cool about Arrow McLaren is we do have the resources of the McLaren F1 team,” Rossi said. “They very much are being integrated in a lot of respects. It’s not two separate entities. McLaren Racing is one organization that has its people and resources and intellect in kind of everything. It’s been pretty cool to see how that can be an advantage to us in terms of people, resources, simulations, software, kind of everything. We’ve been able to kind of rely on that and use that as a tool that maybe other teams certainly don’t have.”

That will be helpful for Rossi with the methodologies and nuances of racing a Chevrolet for the first time after seven seasons with Honda.

And of course, there will be the relationship with O’Ward, who has been McLaren’s alpha star since 2020.

Rossi was in a similar role for Andretti, which raises questions about how McLaren will handle having two stars accustomed to being the face of the team. But O’Ward said IndyCar regulations should allow each driver to maintain their own style without being forced to adapt as in other series.

“At the end of the day, as much as teammates will help in order to gather data, it doesn’t mean they’re going to specifically help you in what you need because it’s a series where you can really tailor the car to what you want,” O’Ward said. “Rather than in Formula 1, (it’s) ‘This is the car, you need to learn how to drive this certain car.’ In IndyCar, it’s very different where you can customize it to what you want it to feel like or drive like.

“From past experience, I think Alex likes a car similar to what I do. I do think we have a very strong car in certain areas, but I definitely think he’s coming from a car where that other car has been stronger than us in other racetracks. I feel like if we can just find gains where we haven’t quite had a winning car, a podium car, that’s just going to help all of us.”

Though Thursday at The Thermal Club will mark the first time the trio works together at a track, Rosenqvist said he’s hung out a lot with Rossi (both are 31 years old) and deems his new teammate “well-integrated” in the simulator.

“I think the fit has been good with him, me and Pato,” Rosenqvist said. “On a trackside perspective, it’s obviously huge to have always a third opinion on things. Every driver’s opinion is valuable in its own way.”

Said O’Ward, 23: “It’s been great. (Rossi has) been great to have around. I think he needed a fresh start. I think he’s excited to really work with all of us, create the strongest package.”

Ever the realist, though, Rossi still is tempering some of his enthusiasm.

“Again, we haven’t really done anything yet other than some meetings and some team activities together,” he said. “I have a lot of respect for what they’ve done in IndyCar and also their prior careers. I think that we all bring something a little bit different to the table, which I think is really unique in terms of not only personalities but driving styles and experience levels.

“I think we have the ingredients to really be able to develop the team and continue to push the team forward to even a better level than what they’ve shown in the past. It’s been a really positive experience. Really I have nothing at all negative to say and can’t actually wait to get to work, get on track and start working together.”