Chase Sexton tossed his name back in the hat for the 2023 Monster Energy Supercross championship as the results from Atlanta show him as the victor. Cooper Webb and Eli Tomac failed to stand on the podium for only the fourth time each this season.
Sexton entered last week’s round in Glendale, Arizona with the unwelcome distinction of having lost 35 points in recent races due to mistakes. He rode a clean race there, but finished second to Tomac who was just a little better. With something still to prove, Sexton rode flawlessly again at Atlanta and the result was his third win of the Supercross season. Sexton entered the round 25 points behind championship leader Tomac and cut that deficit by eight.
With 17 points still to make up, he needs for Tomac and Webb to have a few more problems in the final seven rounds, but if they begin to concentrate on one another, like they did in Atlanta, Sexton has an opportunity to take the title.
RESULTS: Click here for full 450 Results; Click here for 250 Results
Justin Barcia scored his fifth podium of the season, giving him the most among riders not realistically in contention for the championship. Four of these came in the last five weeks and since Daytona, he has swept the top five. In the post-race news conference, he spoke about riding with a new attitude and avoiding controversy.
Barcia is now fourth in the standings with 36 points to make up on Sexton. It’s unlikely he will move up, so he need to watch Ken Roczen closely to insure he does not fall back.
That might be an easy task. Roczen ended Atlanta on Barcia’s back tire in third. This was his third podium of the season, but he has made up for the lack of appearances on the box with consistency. Roczen failed to finish in the top 10 this season once and the majority of his results are in the top five.
The Supercross results from Atlanta were exactly what Sexton needed with two riders other than Webb and Tomac stealing a coveted podium.
Click here for 450 Heat 1 | Heat 2 | Last Chance Qualifier | Lap Chart
Webb was extremely dissatisfied with his riding at Atlanta. It was the second consecutive race in which he failed to stand on the podium. After a bad restart, the only thing he could manage was to keep Tomac from gaining additional points on him and he accomplished that task. The only other time this season Webb finished off the box in back-to-back weeks, he won the following round in Tampa.
Tomac has had difficulty sustaining momentum this season. After winning consecutive races to start the season, he struggled at Anaheim 2 and finished sixth. After scoring three straight podiums from Oakland through Daytona, he finished eighth at Indianapolis and he’s failed to maintain his momentum once again. Tomac entered Atlanta with three podiums and wins in the last two races. A poor finish in his heat and a poor start in the main dropped him as far back as eighth in the opening laps. He moved forward but stalled once he caught Webb.
Click here for 450 Overall results | Rider Points | Manufacturer Points
Hunter Lawrence dominated another race and scored his sixth win of the season by eight seconds over Jordon Smith. His race was not without drama, however, as Lawrence nearly crashed on Lap 1 while battling Haiden Deegan. Overjumping one of the obstacles, Lawrence was forced off track to keep from wrecking. It took two laps to recover and get his heartrate back where is should be, but he steadily pulled away from the field afterward.
The last time Smith and Deegan raced together, an aggressive block pass by the younger rider started a sequence of events that kept Smith from making the main. This time, the two riders raced cleanly and Smith slipped by on Lap 3 on his way to his fourth podium of the season.
Click here for 250 Heat 1 | Heat 2 | Last Chance Qualifier | Lap Chart
Deegan fell back to third but is living up to the hype surrounding his elevation to the 250 class with podium finishes in three of his last four starts. Completely forgotten are the days when anyone marveled at him earning fourth-place finishes in his first two 250 Races because he now has top-fives in 71 percent of his starts.
Jo Shimoda made his first start of the season after missing the first six rounds to shoulder injury. One can only imagine how the championship battle would have been with Shimoda in the mix after such a solid Lucas Oil Pro Motocross campaign last year because he narrowly missed the Atlanta podium after the long break.
Click here for 250 Overall results | 250 East Rider Points | 250 Combined Rider Points
Max Anstie finished fifth for his sixth top-five of the season. A crash in Detroit is the only thing that keeps the British rider from a perfect record of top-10s. With three rounds remaining, Anstie needs to make up 10 points on Deegan to claim second in the 250 East championship.
Finishing eighth, Talon Hawkins scored the first top-10 of his career. He came close in his first start at Houston in Week 4 of the season with an 11th-place result.
Round 12: Eli Tomac, Jett Lawrence win
Round 11: Tomac bounces back with sixth win
Round 10: Chace Sexton wins, penalized
Round 9: Ken Roczen wins
Round 8: Tomac wins 7th Daytona
Round 7: Cooper Webb wins second race
Race 6: Tomac, J Lawrence win
Race 5: Webb, Hunter Lawrence win
Race 4: Tomac, H Lawrence win
Race 3: Sexton, Levi Kitchen win
Race 2: Tomac, J Lawrence win
Round 1: Tomac, J Lawrence win
2023 SuperMotocross Power Rankings
Week 12: Eli Tomac gains momentum
Week 11: Cooper Webb, Tomac overtake Chase Sexton
Week 10: Sexton leads with consistency
Week 8: Sexton unseats Tomac
Week 7: Jason Anderson narrowly trails Tomac
Week 6: Perfect Oakland night keeps Tomac first
Week 5: Webb, Sexton close gap
Week 4: Tomac retakes lead
Week 3: Ken Roczen takes the top spot
Week 2: Roczen moves up; Sexton falls
Week 1: Tomac tops 450s; Jett Lawrence 250s