Practice Report: OaklandSaturday, January 26, 2013 | 8:45 PM
Welcome to the Oakland Supercross practice report, coming to you from the brisk press box in O.Co Coliseum. Coming into the weekend there was a slight chance of rain, but right now, there’s barely a cloud in the sky, and things are looking good for a dry night of racing. Tonight’s track is looking a little one lined in places, and the guys will really have to work hard to make passes happen. For a closer look at the track, check out the Morning Report from earlier today.
When the first 250 qualifier got under way, it quickly became apparent that Ken Roczen was on the gas. He looked great in the whoops, got into attack mode early and was brilliant through the sand. He set the fast time almost right away, and the only rider to top that time was Rozcen himself. When the session ended it was Roczen with a 56.339, Jason Anderson (57.017), Martin Davalos (57.438) and Eli Tomac (54.451).
Roczen was very fast in practice
The second 250 qualifier took place on a slightly different track. Between practices they built a lip exiting the sand section and added lips on a pair of tables in the ensuing rhythm lane, which allowed guys to jump in easier and use the table-to-table option more consistently. The changes didn’t stop Roczen from quickly setting the fast time and keeping it the entire time, however. He finished it out with a 55.164, followed by Anderson (55.362), Osborne (55.905), Tomac (56.241), and Davalos (56.457). Osborne, who was having a great second session, unfortunately ended it by crashing hard, getting up slowly and pulling off the track.
In 450SX action, the #7 of James Stewart quickly set a fast time that was nearly two seconds faster than anyone else. As practice wore on the rest of the field slowly chipped away at the gap, but nobody was fast enough to top it, except for Stewart himself, who would turn his 55.764 into a 55.147 by the time the checkered flag flew. Ryan Villopoto was second with a 56.377, then Trey Canard (56.427), Justin Barcia (56.604), Ryan Dungey (56.661), Chad Reed (56.673) and Davi Millsaps (57.449).
Stewart was fastest again here in Oakland
In the final 450 qualifier, Reed looked aggressive early on, and it was reflected on the leaderboard when the #22 shot to the top. Several laps later Stewart roosted into the lead with a 55.441, only to go down hard in the whoops a few laps later. He got back up and finished out the qualifier, but the crashed looked like it had temporarily taken a bit of the wind out of his sails, and he did not retaliate when Dungey topped his time with a 55.333, which would be the fastest lap of the session. Stewart was second with a 55.441, followed by Villopoto (55.625), Canard (55.718), Reed (55.753), and Millsaps (56.005). Check out the top five, they’re all in the 55-second range!
One of the coolest parts about this track is watching the guys come over a triple and slam into the sand section and absolutely blow the dirt up. The section itself is pretty one lined, but it sure looks good when someone rails it. Roczen especially looks good here, and if he’s going to get a win this season, it may come tonight. He looks very good, and excluding Stewart, Roczen’s fastest lap was faster than all of the 450 guys. And speaking of Stewart, he's got a perfect record here in Oakland, having won here the last two years in a row since the series returned to Oakland in 2011. Will he have a three-peat in Northern California?
Keep checking back at Racer X Online for updates from the night show, and follow us on Twitter, @racerxonline.
Combined Qualifying Times
For a complete listing of times, visit results.amasupercross.com
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The 2013 FIM Motocross of Nations at Teutschenthal, Germany, hosted teams from a record forty countries. Here’s how it played out for each of them. Page 90.