The Moment: Anaheim 2

The Moment: Anaheim 2

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Racing is a funny thing. Whether you’re a pro or a C Class weekend warrior, you’ve no doubt ridden the undulating wave of racing that delivers extraordinary success in one week, and bizarre catastrophe the next. If your name is Justin Barcia, this pattern could not have been illustrated any more clearly than it was in the past two races.

We all know what happened at Phoenix. Barcia straight disappeared and laid waste to what is probably the most competitive field of 450SX racers in history. In short, it was jaw-dropping, and Barcia’s composure, both during the race and after, made him look like a seasoned veteran who had been winning premier class races for years, not a rookie with less than three 450SX races under his belt.

Barcia’s accomplishment was stunning. Not because he won a race, that was expected to happen sooner or later, but because he did it so quickly. The speed and perceived ease in which he got that first win triggered thoughts of 1993, when another Factory Honda rookie started winning. Would Barcia follow in Jeremy McGrath’s footsteps and start reeling off victories?

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Barcia (front) suffered a DNF in Anaheim after blood flowed through his goggles after casing a triple in the main event.
Simon Cudby photo

That question was answered early, and abruptly, in the main when Barcia’s shot at two in a row was vaporized like a drop of water on a hot exhaust pipe after he badly cased a triple and cracked his face on the handlebars. Barcia, who withdrew from the race almost immediately after, must’ve been in excruciating pain, but the real reason he pulled off was because blood was flowing into his goggles, blocking his vision. In a fraction of a second, Barcia went from the previous week’s winner to the current week’s first DNF of the night.

Unfortunately, that’s just the way racing goes sometimes. One moment you’re on top of the podium surrounded by Monster girls as you pop champagne, and the next you’re blinking feverishly and pawing at your face in an attempt to see through streams of your own blood. After the race, Barcia tweeted the following comment: “Maybe broken nose some stitches in the eye and some glue on the nose I will be all good thanks everyone!”

What will be delivered when racing’s next wave hits Barcia?

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