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Salt Lake City Supercross Preview

SLC supercross preview

Salt Lake City Supercross Preview

Marvin Musquin and Ryan Dungey have shown that they can indeed make it happen, but with a hard charging Eli Tomac it will be a demanding challenge. Tomac made a gnarly come back to go into the Salt Lake Supercross races with a red plate, but it isn’t over yet. That leaves two Kawasaki motorcycles with the red plate and with the potential to sweep the Championship series. Honestly, not that surprising from Mitch Payton.

Salt Lake City Supercross
Who will take the lead after Flames go off in SLC (Racer X)

The season is winding down and with only 3 more races to go with a tie in the 450 points standing, every position matters. There haven’t been any orders from the team managers to settle down or to help the champ out; it’s kind of just an “every man for themselves” ordeal. I think that is exactly how it should be as well. If you aren’t fast enough to hang with the big boys by the end of the race, you shouldn’t deserve to win over a teammate that can.

Salt Lake City Supercross

In regards to who will be racing at the Salt Lake Supercross races, we will see the usual suspects and may be graced with the presences of Austin Forkner and Jeremy Martin. Martin, unfortunately, missed the last race in Seattle and it is still unconfirmed with the Honda Geico team whether or not he will be in Utah.

Austin Forkner on the other hand has been confirmed to race this weekend in Salt Lake City. I believe I commented that he was going to miss Seattle after taking a digger in practice during the week prior. The young gun is fired up to get back on the bike this weekend. 17 years old, filled with excitement and an itch to go racing, Austin Forkner is going to put on a show for us in Salt Lake City, Utah!

Salt Lake City Supercross
Austin Forkner returns to the races this weekend (Racer X)

Christian Craig & HRC

A change between two Honda teams has allowed Christian Craig to give the factory-prepperd CRF 450R a couple spins around the supercross track. He was offered a deal for the 2017 Motocross Championship to fill in for the injured Ken Roczen and has been given a chance to rip the Salt Lake City Supercross track to get some bike time. Craig will be finishing the SX championship aboard his Gieco 250, but he will be riding at the Salt Lake City Supercross races this weekend on the HRC 450.

He doesn’t have much experience on the 450 in supercross races other than a couple races at the MEC in 2012 and 15’, so this will be a perfect learning curve! So far, he has had 3 days on the bike and he has fallen in love. Who doesn’t love riding a 450? I hoped on one when I was 7 years ago and never looked back, but then again I don’t think I’d like ripping it on a track; little too gnarly for my liking haha. Regardless, Craig is going to get some well needed bike time this weekend and he is “really excited to debut on the Honda CRF450R this weekend in Salt Lake.”

Salt Lake City Supercross
Christian Craig will give the HRC 450 a go in Salt Lake City, Utah (TWMX)

Salt Lake City Supercross 450 Breakdown

Although the fight for the champion is between two riders, that doesn’t discourage others from racing for the W in any of the races. I am looking forward to see Cooper Webb finish out the season strong after battling a deep tissue bruise in his shoulder. I’m also looking forward to seeing Marvin Musquin battle with Dungey and Tomac to try and mix things up.

I know I said that team tactics may not be in place, but we really never know until the gate drop/post-race interviews. Along with these two, Jason Anderson is another individual I would love to see on the box again.  All three of these riders have the capacity to stir the pot and all we have to do is sit back and enjoy the action.

Salt Lake City Supercross 250 Breakdown

As far as the 250 class goes, Aaron Plessinger  was a man on a mission last weekend. The long break did him solid and he definitely put in the work during to come out swinging in Seattle. I thin k that will be the case again this weekend at the Salt Lake City Supercross races. He was by far the fastest rider on the track and made passes with ease on anyone he wanted. He had the big triple – triple combo dialed which allowed him to make moves to the front of the pack with a quick “braaaap”.

Salt Lake City Supercross
Can AP23 grab another 1st place finish in Salt Lake City? (TWMX)

Justin Hill will have his hands full if Plessinger’s confidence is the same. I do not see a reason why it wouldn’t be either! The blue machine and Plessinger were definitely functioning as one unit and flowed effortlessly around the rugged and beat up track in Seattle. Track conditions may be fairly similar which most likely means Plessinger be one of the guys to beat.

Mitchell Oldenburg

Mitchell Oldenburg was another rider who excelled in Seattle’s rough conditions two weeks back. He has been fairly consistent throughout the series, and is learning more each weekend. Oldenburg, and the entire 250 KTM team have a great piece on Racer X. Check it out here  he finished third last weekend and I believe that he increased his confidence levels a few percentages with that podium finish. I am certain that he put in the work over the break and is going to be trying to edge Justin Hill and Aaron Plessinger off of their pedestals.

Cheers!

-Nick B.