Musquin Is The Million Dollar Man | Tomac and Gajser DNF Early
If you put your money on KTM’s Marvin Musquin earning the $1 million payout for winning all three 2017 Monster Energy Cup Main Events, then you were a shrewd gambler at the sports book.
With Kawasaki’s Eli Tomac and Honda’s Tim Gajser in the field, Musquin was a long-shot bet. Yet, the cards fell Musquin’s way and he dealt the field three aces.
1. The two superstars were gone early in Main Event 1. Tomac went down in a vicious high-speed high-side after having swapped the lead multiple times with Musquin in Main Event 1, and Tomac’s night was over. A few laps later, Gajser misplayed a rhythm section while running in fifth place at the midway point, and went down hard. Like Tomac, Gajser did not return. This left the night wide open for Musquin, and Musquin took it.
2. Musquin won all three motos convincingly. Musquin won Main Event 1 by over three seconds, Main Event 2 by over five seconds, and had a huge lead at the end of Main Event 3 following a massive holeshot. Musquin lead all but one lap of Main Events 1 and 2, Tomac and Honda’s Justin Barcia each lead one lap; and all of the final Main Event’s laps. It was, without question, his night when Tomac and Gajser were out.
3. It was three deuces for Husqvarna’s Jason Anderson. Had Musquin stayed home, Anderson would have walked away with $1 million. Like Musquin, Anderson took control of his position. Anderson was in second place for all but two laps of Main Event 1, and all but one lap of Main Event 2, where Honda’s Vince Friese nailed a great start. In Main Event 3, Anderson finished every lap in second place.
4. Husqvarna’s Dean Wilson and KTM’s Broc Tickle tied for third place on points. Wilson’s 3-5-3 hand beat Tickle’s 4-3-4 draw. With the final podium spot on the line, Wilson bested Tickle by just over one second at the end of Main Event 3. Tickle was right behind Wilson the entire third Main Event. The two passed KTM’s Jordon Smith on Lap 2 when Smith went down while running in third place.
5. Smith was a surprise for the night, taking fifth place. Going 5-4-6, Smith was a solid six points ahead of Barcia and Kawasaki’s Josh Grant, who tied at 21 points for sixth, with Barcia’s fifth place in Main Event 3 beating Grant’s eighth place finish. Smith did the deed on a KTM 250SX-F Factory Edition, running against a field that was mainly 450cc bikes.
6. Suzuki’s Justin Bogle and Honda’s Christian Craig didn’t make it to the end. Bogle went down hard in a racing incident, and was knocked unconscious. Main Event 1 was red-flagged and restarted. Craig only ran two laps in Main Event 2 before his night was over.
7. The starting gate was a challenge. It was a downhill start from the open end of the stadium, and the riders started on a metal grate rather than a concrete slab.
8. Instead of being a disadvantage, the Joker Lane this year was a faster line. That was a bad idea, as it encouraged front-runners to build a big lead early and escape the slower riders. The best Joker Lane is one that is slower, as well as unpredictable—something like the Matrix Section in Endurocross.
2017 Monster Energy Cup Supercross Results
1. Marvin Musquin, KTM: 1-1-1
2. Jason Anderson, Husqvarna: 2-2-2
3. Dean Wilson, Husqvarna: 3-5-3
4. Broc Tickle, KTM: 4-3-4
5. Jordon Smith, KTM: 5-4-6
6. Justin Barcia, Honda: 10-6-5
7. Josh Grant, Kawasaki: 6-7-8
8. Benny Bloss, KTM: 7-8-7
9. Vince Friese, Honda: 8-10-10
10. Tyler Bowers, Kawasaki: 12-9-9
11. Justin Hoeft, Yamaha: 11-11-12
12. Alex Ray, Yamaha: 14-14-14
13. Cole Martinez, Yamaha: 20-13-11
14. Chris Blose, Honda: 17-15-13
15. Fredrik Noren, Honda: 18-12-17
16. Chase Marquier, Honda: 15-16-16
17. Christian Craig, Honda: 9-18-21
18. Cyrille Coulon, Suzuki: 16-17-15
19. Jacob Hayes, Kawasaki: 13-20-20
20. Eli Tomac, Kawasaki: 21-21-18
21. Justin Bogle, Suzuki: 22-19-19
22. Tim Gajser, Honda: 19-22-22