Saddlemen

Musquin Captures 2018 Supercross Opener in Anaheim

| 10 January 2018 2:16 pm
Marvin Musquin celebrates his victory at the season opener with his iconic heel-clicker.

Marvin Musquin celebrates his victory at the season opener with his iconic heel-clicker.

Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series
Round 1: Angel Stadium

Courtesy of Feld Entertainment
ANAHEIM, CA, JAN. 6, 2018

Marvin Musquin won the opening round of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, in front of 45,050 fans at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California, on January 6.

KTM Factory Racing’s Musquin fought his way to the front of the pack after a fifth-place start in the 450SX main event. One by one, Musquin picked off each of his competitors to lead 14 of the 24 laps.

“To win tonight definitely was not expected,” Musquin said. “It was a difficult day, but I tried to stay calm, and I guess we made it happen.”

Musquin, the million-dollar winner of the 2017 Monster Energy Cup, was joined on the podium by Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Jason Anderson and Monster Energy/ Knich/ Yamaha Factory Racing’s Justin Barcia. It was the first podium finish for Barcia since 2014.

Anderson, who’d started sixth, charged through the pack to claim second, ahead of Barcia.

Team Honda HRC’s Ken Roczen – last year’s Anaheim 450SX-class winner, who has not raced since Anaheim II in 2017 – came out swinging after a 12th-place start and climbed to fourth by the time the checkered flag flew.

Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Eli Tomac, winner of nine main events in 2017, nabbed the holeshot and led the field for seven laps until a mishap eventually forced him out of the competition.

The 450SX-class podium.

The 450SX-class podium.

Ken Roczen (94) made his highly anticipated return to racing in Anaheim.

Ken Roczen (94) made his highly anticipated return to racing in Anaheim.

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In the Western Regional 250SX class, Troy Lee Designs/ Red Bull KTM’s Shane McElrath earned his second consecutive Anaheim I win after qualifying first, taking the holeshot and leading all 18 laps of the main event.

“This is a big year,” McElrath said. “The West Coast has got a lot of competition from a lot of teams, too. I’ve never really felt that much nerves.”

Shane McElrath (28) captured his second consecutive Anaheim opener 250SX win.

Shane McElrath (28) captured his second consecutive Anaheim opener 250SX win.

Meanwhile, Yamalube Star Racing Yamaha’s Aaron Plessinger captured his second consecutive second-place finish at Anaheim I, after a fourth-place start.

Third place went to the second-fastest qualifier, Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Adam Cianciarulo, in his first career Anaheim start.

Anaheim Stadium
Anaheim, California
Results: January 6, 2018 (Round 1)

450SX: 1. Marvin Musquin; 2. Jason Anderson; 3. Justin Barcia; 4. Ken Roczen; 5. Weston Peick; 6. Cole Seely; 7. Justin Brayton; 8. Broc Tickle; 9. Joshua Grant; 10. Cooper Webb.

250SX: 1. Shane McElrath; 2. Aaron Plessinger; 3. Adam Cianciarulo; 4. Joey Savatgy; 5. Christian Craig; 6. Mitchell Oldenburg; 7. Justin Hill; 8. Chase Sexton; 9. Justin Cooper; 10. Kyle Chisholm.

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