2015 Indy 250SX Commentary | Upside/Downside

2015 Indy 250SX Commentary | Upside/Downside KTM Marvin Musquin
KTM's Marvin Musquin
2015 Indy 250SX Commentary | Upside/Downside KTM Marvin Musquin
KTM’s Marvin Musquin

A red-flagged Heat race was the worst thing that could have happened to one rider Saturday night at the Indianapolis round of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross 250SX East Regional series, and it wasn’t the one who went down. It took a bit of fire out of the title chase, but there were still some good action in the Main. While the top three positions are becoming pretty clear, the bottom half of the top-10 chase is quite competitive, separated by a mere 10 points.

2015 Indy 250SX Commentary, Upside

Marvin Musquin – Red Bull/KTM: Musquin has hit the sweet spot – h controls his own destiny from here on out. Again, Musquin led every lap in his Heat on his 250 SX-F, and all but the first lap of the Main, winning by the largest margin this year – 22 seconds – so it’s another dominating display of speed and skill. It’s hard not to start looking toward the East/West showdown in Las Vegas for someone to seriously run with Musquin. Maybe the likeable Frenchman is thinking the same thing, as Musquin said from the podium, “At one point I was looking back and I was like, ‘Where are they?’”

RJ Hampshire – GEICO Honda: Hampshire was having a great night in Indianapolis and was on track to take a season’s best fourth-place finish, which would be impressive enough for the rookie. However, on Lap 9 he was gifted the last podium position after Joey Savatgy’s bike malfunctioned. “I I was feeling great after my fifth last weekend at my home race in Daytona. I got second in the heat race here and got a good start in the main and kept pushing to the front,” Hampshire said. “I was mainly focused on getting in the top 10, so it was a huge bonus to make it to the podium.”

Jordon Smith – GEICO Honda: Fellow GEICO Honda teammate Smith is also moving in the right direction. Last week at Daytona, Smith finished 12th. This past weekend he finished 4th after battling with veteran rider, Vince Friese, for several laps. “Both main events that I have been in so far, I’ve been basically dead last coming out of the first turn,” Smith said. “I need to work on getting a good start, get through the first lap clean, and then I can hopefully run up front.” It was the rookie’s third career start and second career Main–talk about a quick learner.

Kyle Cunningham – AG Motorsports/Honda: Cunningham had not yet finished in the top ten this season, so it was great to see the veteran rider bring his CR250F to a fifth place finish at Indy. Surgery during the off-season to fix a nagging foot injury looks to have put the Texas native back on track.

2015 Honda CRF250R: Although they didn’t win on Saturday, the bike took the nine remaining slots in the Top 10.

2015 Indy 250SX Commentary | Honda's Justin Bogle
Honda’s Justin Bogle

2015 Indy 250SX Commentary, Downside

Jeremy Martin – Yamalube Star Racing Yamaha: Martin wasn’t riding smart all day and, in the end, it bit him big time. Making a mistake early in his Heat, Martin went down hard on his YZ250F. He then unwisely tried to force the issue too soon on the last lap by passing in an inopportune 90-degree right-hander, and was run off the track for his efforts.

At the gate for the LCQ Martin acknowledged, “[I] was trying to qualify and hit a guy for 9th and he knew it was on the line. He cleaned my clock, and said I’m having ninth place.” Prophetically he added, “The LCQ is pretty much kill or be killed.” Martin did not have a great start in the LCQ, but by the end of Lap 1 had moved into 6th place and had plenty of time to pick off two riders in front of him to qualify for the Main. Whether it was impatience or cloudy judgment from hitting his head earlier, Martin pushed too hard and went down again.

Joey Savatgy – Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki: Winning races takes both rider and bike to be executing, and on Saturday night Savatgy’s KX250F let him down with six laps to go when he had the last podium position on lockdown. The 20th place finish mars his consistent top-five finishes this year. Bummed, but looking forward to Detroit, Savatgy tweeted: “Stuff happens… Podium was us all day, learn and move on… On to the next weekend… Thanks to my team for all the hard work.”

Martin Davalos – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna: Davalos’ results this season reflect the struggle he’s been having with his health: “I didn’t have any adrenaline or fire in me – which isn’t me. I went to the doctor to get checked out and found out that I have a flair of Epstein-Barr.” While we’ve seen bursts of speed, Davalos has been making mistakes, and his fitness hasn’t been on point. At Daytona he pulled a holeshot and led the first lap, only to go down in the whoops on Lap 2, and eventually brought his FC 250 to a season’s-worst 15th place finish. Said Davalos after the race, “I’m struggling with my energy levels, and my adrenal glands aren’t working. I just wanted to save as much energy as I could for the main event. I got a good start, and my bike is awesome, but I’m just not on point.”

2015 Indy 250SX Commentary, Upside/Downside

Justin Bogle – GEICO Honda: As good as Bogle is riding, coming in second won’t get it done. He hasn’t been off the podium this season, but he’s still falling behind Musquin every week. Said Bogle after the race: “I got shuffled back a bit in the first couple corners and then just started losing the wheel, which turned into me trying a little too hard. I made a few mistakes at that point. I jumped off the track and went down pretty hard in the rhythm section later in the main. After that I was kind of struggling and it turned into survival.” Bogle is the only one left standing who could possibly take the championship, but only if Musquin has a DNF in the next four races.

2015 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Eastern Regional 250SX Results – Round 5 – Indianapolis:
1. Marvin Musquin – KTM 250 SX-F Factory Edition
2. Justin Bogle – Honda CRF250R
3. RJ Hampshire – Honda CRF250R
4. Jordon Smith – Honda CRF250R
5. Kyle Cunningham – Honda CRF250R
6. Jimmy Decotis – Honda CRF250R
7. Kyle Peters – Honda CRF250R
8. Colt Nichols – Honda CRF250R
9. Vince Friese – Honda CRF250R
10. Jace Owen – Honda CRF250R
11. Luke Renzland – Yamaha YZ250F
12. Gannon Audette – Kawasaki KX250F
13. Mitchell Oldenburg – Yamaha YZ250F
14. Justin Starling – Yamaha YZ250F
15. Martin Davalos – Husqvarna FC 250
16. Anthony Rodriguez – Yamaha YZ250F
17. Daniel Herrlein – Honda CRF250R
18. Taylor Potter – Honda CRF250R
19. Logan Karnow – Honda CRF250R
20. Joey Savatgy – Kawasaki KX250F
21. Nick Gaines – Kawasaki KX250F
22. Dakota Alix – KTM 250SX-F

2015 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Eastern Regional 250SX Season Standings (after 5 of 9 rounds):
1. Marvin Musquin, 122 points
2. Justin Bogle, 106
3. Jeremy Martin, 85
4. RJ Hampshire, 74
5. Joey Savatgy, 73
6. Martin Davalos, 62
7. Vince Friese, 58
8. James Decotis, 57
9. Kyle Peters, 57
10. Anthony Rodriguez, 52