on Saturday with the second night of a historic action-packed weekend. The
annual visit of Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, to
the heart of the south signified the series' 26th and final visit to
the legendary Georgia Dome. A crowd of 60,074 fans were on hand to bid farewell
at the eighth round of the 2017 season and watched on as reigning 450SX Class
Champion Ryan Dungey led wire-to-wire to secure his
second victory of the season aboard his Team Red Bull KTM Factory Racing
machine. In the Eastern Regional 250SX Class, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory
Racing's Zach Osborne broke through for the first win of his career, taking
over control of the points lead along with it.
Dungey's path to victory started right
off the start of the 450SX Class Main Event, where he earned his second
SupercrossLive.com Holeshot of the season over Smartop/MotoConcepts Racing
Honda's Mike Alessi and RMATV/MC-WPS-KTM's Blake
Baggett. Monster Energy Kawasaki's Eli Tomac, who had
won three of the last four races entering Atlanta, started in ninth.
The clear track
allowed Dungey to assert himself out front and open a
gap of more than a second by the completion of the opening lap. Alessi soon came under fire from Baggett, who was able to
move into second on Lap 2. Alessi then faced a
challenge from RCH/Yoshimura/Suzuki Factory Racing's Justin Bogle and Team
Honda HRC's Cole Seely. Bogle passed Alessi on Lap 3
and briefly held onto the position until Seely took advantage of an inside line
below both riders to jump from fifth to third.
Tomac mounted a charge through the field that saw him move into podium
contention about the halfway point of the Main Event. Laying down some of the
fastest laps of any rider on the track, he moved into fourth on Lap 7 and
closed in on Seely just a couple laps later. Tomac
successfully made the pass on the Honda rider on Lap 9 and fended off a counter
attack from Seely. From there the Kawasaki rider set his sights on Baggett for
second. He made up large chunks of time and soon found himself in a position of
attack, diving under Baggett to start Lap 16 and taking away the KTM rider's
line. At this point Tomac faced a deficit of just
over seven seconds to Dungey with about five and a
half minutes left in the race.
Dungey and Tomac
traded fast laps throughout the remainder of the Main Event, with Tomac closing to within three seconds on the final lap, but
the reigning back-to-back titleholder held on for his 33rd career
win, 1.5 seconds ahead of Tomac.
Dungey's win was his fifth inside the
Georgia Dome in the 450SX Class, tying him for the most all time, and also
signified the third consecutive year he's won in Atlanta. The Dome was the site
of Dungey's first ever Monster Energy Supercross win
in the 250SX Class, all the way back during the 2007 season.
"The start [was
key], for sure. I was really able to drive off the [start] gate good and held
it into the [first] corner. As all the guys shot wide I was able to tuck under
and get the holeshot," said Dungey.
"This track was key for that, it was very hard to really make a lot of
time on guys. I wanted to get out front and we did that. I saw Eli [Tomac] coming at the end, but wanted to just keep things
easy [on myself]. A win is a win."
Tomac's runner-up effort was his first
podium finish of the season that wasn't a win.
[with the result]. That [race] was tough. [The start] didn't really happen in
the Heat Race either, and it's something I'll look back on," said Tomac. "I really need to be better off the start,
that's how important they are. But no excuses, Ryan [Dungey]
straight up beat us tonight and got the start. I did what I could."
Baggett captured his
second career podium result in third.
Dungey moved out to a 25-point lead
over Tomac, who moved into second, in the 450SX Class
standings. Dungey's Red Bull KTM teammate Marvin
Musquin, who finished fifth, dropped to third, 27 points out of the lead.
For the second
straight week, Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM's Jordon Smith grabbed the
SupercrossLive.com Holeshot to start the Eastern
Regional 250SX Class Main Event, edging out Yamalube/Star
Racing Yamaha's Dylan Ferrandis. Behind them, Smith's
Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/KTM teammate Alex Martin and Osborne battled for
third. Ferrandis then crashed out of second, handing
the spot to Martin, while Osborne slotted into third. Entering points leader
and last week's winner Joey Savatgy found himself
outside the top 10 in 11th aboard his Monster Energy/Pro
Circuit/Kawasaki, eventually fighting his way into eight by the completion of
the opening lap.
With Smith holding a
comfortable lead out front, Osborne went to work on Martin and closed in heavily
at the completion of Lap 2. After hounding the rear fender of his KTM rival for
several corners he made the pass stick on Lap 3 and set his sights on the lead.
Just a lap later Osborne closed in onto Smith's rear fender as they completed
Lap 4. He dove inside heading back onto the start straight and easily took over
the lead, quickly opening a gap. As Osborne continued to pull away the KTM
teammates of Smith and Martin engaged in battle for second, with Martin getting
the upper hand on Lap 10 after Smith bobbled in the whoops.
The battle between
the teammates wasn't over yet, however, as Smith was able to mount a challenge
of his own to get back by. They fought side-by-side on Lap 15 and made contact,
which sent Smith to the ground. Martin continued in second, while Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha's Colt Nichols moved up into
third, with Savatgy jumping into fourth and Smith
remounting in fifth.
unchallenged over the remainder of the Main Event and easily took the win 6.3
seconds ahead of Martin, who posted a career-best result in second in just his
third trip to the podium. Nichols grabbed his second career podium result in
third, while Savatgy salvaged a fourth-place finish
to keep things close in the points.
Osborne's maiden win
came in his 49th career start. He became the 104th
different 250SX Class winner in Monster Energy Supercross history. He's the 13th
different rider to claim his first career win in Atlanta, and is the 22nd
different 250SX Class winner inside the Georgia Dome.
explain [the feeling]. It hits home. I've worked so hard for this and there are
hundreds of people that helped get me to this point," said Osborne, who
finished third last weekend. "Tonight was my night. I felt like I missed
out on one [a win] last weekend. After I got a good start I felt like it was my
turn to just get in there and make it happen. I got into the lead about halfway
and it was easy from there."
Osborne surpassed Savatgy atop the Eastern Regional standings and now holds a
slim two-point lead over his Kawasaki rival. Smith dropped to third, seven
points out of the lead.
The 2017 Monster
Energy Supercross season continues next Saturday, March 4, with the
championship's lone visit outside the U.S. The ninth round will commence from
Canada's largest city of Toronto, inside the Rogers Centre. Broadcast coverage
can be seen via tape delay on FS1 at 7 p.m. PT / 10 p.m. ET.
Georgia Dome -
February 25, 2017
450SX Class Results
Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine,
Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki
Blake Baggett, Grand Terrace, Calif., KTM
Jason Anderson, Rio Rancho, N.M., Husqvarna
Marvin Musquin, Corona, Calif., KTM
Cole Seely, Sherman Oaks, Calif., Honda
Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha
Justin Brayton, Mint Hill, N.C., Honda
Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Kawasaki
Dean Wilson, Clermont, Fla., Husqvarna
Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine,
Minn., KTM - 174
Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Kawasaki - 149
Marvin Musquin, Corona, Calif., KTM - 147
Cole Seely, Sherman Oaks, Calif., Honda - 138
Jason Anderson, Rio Rancho, N.M., Husqvarna - 121
Davi Millsaps, Cairo, Ga.,
KTM - 98
Dean Wilson, Clermont, Fla., Husqvarna - 84
Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha - 83
Blake Baggett, Grand Terrace, Calif., KTM - 83
Broc Tickle, Holly, Mich., Suzuki - 76
250SX Class Results
Zach Osborne, Abingdon, Va., Husqvarna
Alex Martin, Millville, Minn., KTM
Colt Nichols, Muskogee, Okla., Yamaha
Joey Savatgy, Thomasville, Ga., Kawasaki
Jordon Smith, Belmont, N.C., KTM
Luke Renzland, Hewitt, N.J., Yamaha
Adam Cianciarulo, Port Orange, Fla., Kawasaki
Fredrik Noren, West Farmington, Ohio, Honda
Kyle Peters, Greensboro, N.C., Suzuki
Hampshire, Brooksville, Fla., Honda
250SX Class Championship Standings
Zach Osborne, Abingdon, Va., Husqvarna - 45
Joey Savatgy, Thomasville, Ga., Kawasaki - 43
Jordon Smith, Belmont, N.C., KTM - 38
Colt Nichols, Muskogee, Okla., Yamaha - 31
Adam Cianciarulo, Port Orange, Fla., Kawasaki - 30
RJ Hampshire, Brooksville, Fla., Honda - 29
Luke Renzland, Hewitt, N.J., Yamaha - 28
Kyle Peters, Greensboro, N.C., Suzuki - 24
Alex Martin, Millville, Minn., KTM - 23
10. Fredrik Noren, West Farmington, Ohio, Honda - 21