Lawrence collects first Triple Crown win in Arizona
Tomac climbs to second all-time with 450SX triumph.
The standout 250SX West rider in 2023, Jett Lawrence put his previous Triple Crown misfortune in the past with his first victory in the alternate format of racing during the 2023 Monster Energy Supercross visit to Glendale, Arizona while Eli Tomac ascended to second all-time with the 51st victory of his career.
Scores of 1-3-1 put Lawrence atop the class for the fifth of six races thus far in 2023.
Levi Kitchen of Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing and Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s RJ Hampshire both had enough speed to pressure Lawrence during each of the three races, with Hampshire reaching the checkered flag first in Race 2.
Hampshire claimed second overall on the strength of his race win, while Kitchen took 3-2-2 results to the final podium step.
Pierce Brown was fast all day aboard his TLD Red Bull GasGas machine, finishing 4-4-5 for fourth overall on the night. Unfortunately, Brown fell in the first turn after the night’s first gate drop and hit the ground again after Race 1 was red-flagged and restarted.
Failing to fully capitalize on the absence of newly injured Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki rider Cameron McAdoo, Enzo Lopes (Muc-Off FXR ClubMX Yamaha) finished seventh, fifth, and fourth in Glendale for fifth overall.
Derek Kelley was competitive for the local team AEO Powersports throughout the event and finished sixth overall. Kelley led Mitchell Oldenburg (Smartop MotoConcepts Racing), Max Vohland (Red Bull KTM), Robbie Wageman (Bar-X Suzuki), and Carson Mumford (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki) in completing the top 10.
Returning to competition after a violent crash last time out at Seattle, Stilez Robertson (Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing) crashed and was hit by three riders in the first race. The incident brought out the red flag and put Robertson and Luke Kalaitzian out for the night.
With six rounds down and three to go for the west region 250SX category, Lawrence leads Hampshire by 26 points, with Kitchen a further 26 back. The series will return to action for the year’s first 250SX East/West Showdown at East Rutherford’s MetLife Stadium on April 22.
Held in the midst of a fierce 450SX championship battle, the 2023 Triple Crown at Glendale will forever have a place in the sport’s history as the round at which Tomac moved past James Stewart for second on the all-time win list.
Race results of 1-2-1 for the Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing rider were more than enough to secure the overall victory inside this year’s Super Bowl-hosting State Farm Stadium.
Chase Sexton (Team Honda HRC) executed a wire-to-wire victory of the night’s second race for the premier class, getting past Tomac at one point but taking control right back with a remarkable pass through the whoops. Sexton’s night of 4-1-3 race scores culminated in second overall.
The following positions were closely contested throughout the night, with TLD Red Bull GasGas rider Justin Barcia collecting his first Triple Crown podium on the strength of 3-6-2 results in the trio of races.
Cooper Webb (Red Bull KTM) could do no better than fifth in Race 2, limiting his potential on the night as he turned 2-5-4 results into fourth overall. With Tomac more successful on the night, Webb forfeited his stake in the championship lead leaving the season’s 12th round.
Fast in qualifying and competitive during the evening program, Ken Roczen added his Progressive Insurance Ecstar Suzuki to the overall top five with 5-3-5 race results.
Adam Cianciarulo (Monster Energy Kawasaki), Aaron Plessinger (Red Bull KTM), the returning Colt Nichols (Team Honda HRC), Dean Wilson (Fire Power Honda), and Jason Anderson (Monster Energy Kawasaki) comprised the remainder of the top 10.
It’s the long-awaited first top-10 result of the 2023 Supercross season for Wilson, aided by misfortune for Anderson. A crash for the Kawasaki rider in the night’s final race ended his night early.
As the series heads east to visit MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, Tomac will take to the track with a seven-point advantage over Webb in the 450SX standings. Sexton heads into the 13th round 25 points in arrears of Tomac.