SnapDragon is a cool name for a stadium! However, for a big stadium the track seemed tight as well as technical. The weather was nice enough yet it was a chilly night and that can be a problem for riders that don’t properly warm up and Adam Cianciarulo even admitted he got a little tight in his heat race because he wasn’t warmed up properly. Here is some thoughts from “ROUND TWO”!
Eli Tomac: Can you believe Tomac is nailing these starts?! I mean he is even getting good “practice” starts! The Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha team is still pretty tight lipped about number 14 and number 1’s bikes, but they look good right? Tomac’s bike looks like it can go wherever he wants it to go and of course Tomac looks good as always, but there is something a little extra spicy abut his riding this season, if you can believe that. I will say that the Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha team has given both Tomac and Ferrandis bikes that are allowing each rider to excel. I was even critical about the 2023 Yamaha YZ450F growing pains but it looks like I owe the team an apology as the bikes look freaking amazing on the track. Oh and don’t forget Tomac has a great #Homelife, so combine that with an insane machine that he loves and you get what you are seeing. Not shocking. Fun to watch though!
Cooper Webb: I am currently wearing a Cooper Webb hat as I type this (again)! A second place isn’t exactly what he wants but he is in the mix and the closest guy to Tomac at the end of these races. We have seen the chubby jokes all over social media but to me the dude looks strong at the end of these things so call him what you want! When you watch Coop, you don’t see anything flashy as he is very neutral on the bike but holy hell does this guy corner like a SOB. He can cut down on almost flat ground and the KTM looks like its set up for these late race main events when the track goes to crap. #2 is in it for the long haul people and I will continue to ride this train so hop on with me!
Justin Barcia: Barcia is in a lot of these riders heads, but maybe not Anderson. A fun fact for you all: In the last segment of qualifier two, Craig and Barcia had the fastest time and that segment was in the whoops! So I guess we should stop with the steel frame bikes cant go through the whoops crap? How about Barcia saying he doesn’t like to make that kind of pass that he made on Sexton? That is funny! Let’s get passed the “passes” and focus in on how good 51 is riding! If he didn’t crash at A1, I put him on the box there as well! Barcia gets decent starts and most of these other guys are scared to pass the dude. If Barcia pulls holeshot in any race, stand by, there will be fireworks!
Chase Sexton: I don’t know man. This is tough on my heart. The most beautiful rider to watch has some weird crashes. I guess we have talked about that a time or two right? His heat race crash was weird in the fact that his rear end slipped out at the end of the whoops. To me this is a shock setting as we all know there were edges in the whoops, but it wasn’t that bad, that early in the night show. If that happened late in the main, I wouldn’t be concerned but it was early in the night and this leads me to believe that it is a bit of a bike setting. There is not doubt he can run Tomac’s pace and he will get it together, but “we” need to stay off the ground and get away from 51!
Adam Cianciarulo: AC has some fire in there still. Look he was sitting on the couch A LOT last year so let’s give him some time. The top seven riders are GNAR and he was up there for a while, but got ate up quick and salvaged a eighth. AC said he knows what he has to do and was humbled on Saturday night. Another reason why you should all root for this dude! He speaks the truth and is very self aware. His heat race is a glimpse of what he will return too but as of right now, I don’t think this dude wants to repeat A1 where he crashed in every single practice/qualifying session.
Justin Hill: A 13th isn’t a huge accomplishment but Justin has been working hard and I believe he can get into the top ten as he rides into “racing shape”. Again, the caveat here is he HAS to stay healthy. His KTM looks good, especially in the whoops and this year the team switched to KYB/Enzo suspension on the KTM for more comfort when the track goes to crap! It’s working!
Alex Ray: Homelife is the reason why A Ray doing worth a shit. Sam (his fiancé) should be credited for his newfound “calmness” on the bike. Ok, maybe some of this 2023 A-Ray is better because of the bike he is riding most of it is due to his fiancé.
Jett Lawrence: Insert whatever you want in here. I’m fresh out of compliments. Email me your own caption. firstname.lastname@example.org
RJ Hampshire: RJ needs to see Jett early in these mains to latch on and learn his lines as well as braking points. Yes, this is a real thing. If you can see what a faster rider is doing you can learn in a faster manner. I think RJ can make it happen if he pressures the number 18. He is feisty enough and hard headed enough to force a mistake THE JETT. RJ’s bike is better in 23 and his whoop entrance speed is much better than in 22, which he needed badly to keep up with Jett.
Enzo Lopes: What a difference a year makes! Enzo has been on the Club MX Yamaha team for a couple years but this year you can see a huge difference in his riding. I think he still needs to be more aggressive with riders other than Phil Nicoletti. If you haven’t had a chance to check out Club MX’s vlogs you should check it out as it has some good behind the scenes stuff with the team.
Pierce Brown: I can say that Pierce Brown is one of those riders that not a lot of us talk about but has good speed and could be on the podium at any given time, but some mistakes and lack of good starts has held him back from being more consistent. Wil Hahn believes in this kid and that is enough for me to believe that he can podium and even win (with a little luck) because Wil is a tough dude and will not put up with weak minded or riders that are soft. This kid is not soft.
Hunter Yoder: I called Hunter to do the 2023 Kawasaki KX250 intro with me late last summer and he really liked the bike so here we are! The PRMX team has taken him under their wing and as you can tell, he is much better in his sophomore year. If you would of asked Hunter if he was racing Supercross late last summer, he would of told you that he didn’t know and that he could be getting a “real” job. Winning the LCQ may not be a big deal to some, but with every man’s trash is another man’s treasure and this was a great win for Yoder as well as another building block for him to succeed in this sport. Our sport is so quick to chew these young kids up and spit them out. They need more time to get used to Supercross and Hunter is an example of a kid that is very fast that needs just some time to build up his confidence/skills to get a better ride with more money. Kudos to you Team PRMX for giving this kid a chance!
Cameron Mcadoo and Fox Racing had the neon/hi vis on lock in San Diego and I liked bright features against the green Kawasaki. What do you guys think? Nice work, Fox Racing!