Saturday Night Live: Arlington

Saturday Night Live: Arlington

By Kyle Scott and Steve Matthes

In the 250 class, what started off as setup for great racing ended with championship tragedy for Shane McElrath. McElrath started the race out front and gapped the new series points leader, Justin Hill by several seconds before having bike issues. It is unclear at this point to what caused the issue, but it seemed like the bike was cutting out intermittently. Shane pulled on and off the track a few times, seemingly torn between just trying to finish and salvage points versus risking his safety. When he went into the mechanic’s area, it looked like they all just shrugged and then he went back out on the track. I believe he pulled off eventually, but McElrath ultimately finished in last and gave up 24 points to Hill.

Hill had another perfect day. He qualified fastest, won his heat, and won the main. That's four wins in a row after this weekend. Even though Hill didn’t get the win tonight in the manner he wanted, he stretched his points lead to 17 over Aaron Plessinger, who finished third tonight. “I’ll take it. But yeah it’s emotional for me. Shane’s a good guy and I don’t want to him to have troubles. It’s a dangerous sport and you have to have confidence in your machine. When you have issues, it’s a bummer. I want to beat these guys straight up.” 


Plessinger found himself on the box again for the fourth time this season, but he didn’t make it easy on himself. Plessinger’s poor starts have forced him to come through the pack almost every race this season and for most of his career. By lap two, he was in 12th place. He put on a charge and made it to 5th with five minutes to go, plus one lap. Plessinger got around Jimmy Decotis who got his second fourth place finish in a row.

Austin Forkner notched his best supercross finish by one spot tonight with a second in the main. He challenged Hill for the win in the heat race and pressured Hill in the main as well. Forkner is an impressive 17-year-old, that is not doubt. In the post-race press conference Forkner mentioned that he hurt his back casing a quad back in November and is looking forward to at least 10 days off the motorcycle with the upcoming break for the 250 West riders as we begin the 250 East next weekend in Minneapolis.


As crazy as the 250SX main event was, the 450SX main was one of the wilder races we’ve seen a in while. First off the start MCR Honda’s Justin Brayton went down and appeared unconscious which forced a red flag while Monster Yamaha’s Cooper Webb was out front with Honda’s Cole Seely second. 

On the restart it was Red Bull KTM’s Marvin Musquin who got a fantastic start and quickly put some time on the rest of the field. Part of the reason why was Musquin wheeling into the second set of whoops, touching down once and then jumping out the rest of the way. It was very fast.

Musquin’s win was the first of his career and the first for a French rider in the premiere class since David Vuillemin won in Indianapolis 2002. Thanks to Le Cobra himself for that trivia stat! Musquin said that the 26 lap main event, the longest one of the season so far, was really long and hard to concentrate on his six second lead. It was a fantastic ride by Musquin who was fast all day long in practice as he traded the pole position with Monster Kawasaki’s Eli Tomac all day long.


"I grabbed the holeshot on the restart and just tried to focus on what was in front of me. It was so easy to make a mistake out there tonight," said Musquin. "This [victory] feels so good, to stand up here [on top of the podium] for the first time in my career. I've dreamed of this since I was a little boy in France and would like to dedicate this to my brother, who has been so supportive of me and gone through difficult times the past few years."

Speaking of Tomac, he came into the race on a two race winning streak but he got a poor start in the main, was ripping through the pack when he tipped over in a turn and encountered a front brake problem that forced him to pull into the pits to get the line cut.

And Webb was up near the front also when he encountered a flat and had to pull in to change a wheel. Both Tomac and Webb went back out and scored points that could prove to be valuable near the end of the series.

Once Webb went out, Cole Seely of Honda rode a lonely race in second, never close enough to Musquin to make a run and only late did he have to worry about Rockstar Husqvarna’s Jason Anderson who ended up third.

Rockstar Husqvaran’s Dean Wilson and your points leader, Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey battled for fourth place practically the whole main event before Dungey got around Wilson before the first whoop section. Despite finishing off of the podium, Dungey still managed to leave Texas with a larger advantage in the championship due to Tomac's troubles. He now holds an 18-point lead over Musquin and sits 22-points ahead of Seely, who both surpassed Tomac, who finished 15th, in the standings.


Ride 365’s Malcolm Stewart went down on the first start and tweaked his bike all up. He did end up with a season best tenth overall but said that his crash in the first main didn’t help things out.

Yamaha’s Chad Reed got a flat in the main event just like Webb but it was so late in the race that he didn’t have time to rejoin it. Reed’s runner-up in Glendale continues to be the high point for the vet. RCH Suzuki’s Justin Bogle won a heat race which had to be a season high for him and was second early in the main before going down. He did eventually make it up to eleventh while teammate Broc Tickle took advantage of the chaos around him to get a season-best sixth.



Arlington - 450SX

- Arlington, TX

1Marvin Musquin La Reole, France KTM450 SX-F Factory Edit
2Cole Seely Newbury Park, CA HondaCRF 450
3Jason Anderson Edgewood, NM HusqvarnaFC450
4Ryan Dungey Belle Plaine, MN KTM450 SX-F Factory Edit
5Dean Wilson Scotland, United Kingdom HusqvarnaFC450
6Broc Tickle Holly, MI SuzukiRM-Z450
7Jake Weimer Rupert, ID SuzukiRM-Z450
8Davi Millsaps Cairo, GA KTM450 SX-F Factory Edit
9Justin Bogle Cushing, OK SuzukiRM-Z450
10Malcolm Stewart Haines City, FL SuzukiRM-Z450
11Trey Canard Shawnee, OK KTM450 SX-F Factory Edit
12Vince Friese Cape Girardeau, MO HondaCRF 450
13Mike Alessi Apple Valley, CA HondaCRF 450
14Cooper Webb Newport, NC YamahaYZ450F
15Eli Tomac Cortez, CO KawasakiKX 450F
16Jimmy Albertson Mount Vernon, MO SuzukiRM-Z450
17Blake Baggett Grand Terrace, CA KTM450 SX-F Factory Edit
18Austin Politelli Menifee, CA YamahaYZ450F
19Chad Reed Kurri Kurri, Australia YamahaYZ450F
20Alex Ray Jackson, TN HusqvarnaFC450
21Cade Clason Arcadia, OH HondaCRF 450
22Justin Brayton Fort Dodge, IA HondaCRF 450
Full Results

450SX Standings - 2017

1Eli Tomac Cortez, CO319
2Ryan Dungey Belle Plaine, MN316
3Marvin Musquin La Reole, France270
4Jason Anderson Edgewood, NM228
5Cole Seely Newbury Park, CA211
6Blake Baggett Grand Terrace, CA190
7Davi Millsaps Cairo, GA190
8Broc Tickle Holly, MI167
10Dean Wilson Scotland, United Kingdom158
9Chad Reed Kurri Kurri, Australia158
11Josh Grant Riverside, CA141
12Justin Brayton Fort Dodge, IA120
13Cooper Webb Newport, NC111
14Jake Weimer Rupert, ID96
15Malcolm Stewart Haines City, FL86
16Vince Friese Cape Girardeau, MO78
17Justin Bogle Cushing, OK75
18Justin Barcia Monroe, NY70
19Mike Alessi Apple Valley, CA59
21Trey Canard Shawnee, OK51
Full Standings

Arlington - 250SX West

- Arlington, TX

1Justin Hill Yoncalla, OR KawasakiKX 250F
2Austin Forkner Richards, MO KawasakiKX 250F
3Aaron Plessinger Hamilton, OH YamahaYZ250F
4Jimmy Decotis Peabody, MA HondaCRF 250
5Dan Reardon Queensland, Australia YamahaYZ250F
6Jeremy Martin Millville, MN HondaCRF 250
7Martin Davalos Quito, Ecuador HusqvarnaFC250
8Cole Martinez Rimrock, AZ YamahaYZ250F
9Hayden Mellross Australia YamahaYZ250F
10Kyle Chisholm Clearwater, FL HondaCRF 250
11Noah Mcconahy Spokane, WA YamahaYZ250F
12Ryan Surratt Corona, CA KawasakiKX 250F
13Justin Hoeft Castaic, CA YamahaYZ250F
14AJ Catanzaro Portland, CT YamahaYZ250F
15Justin Starling Deland, FL HusqvarnaFC250
16Killian Auberson Switzerland KTM250 SX-F
17Scott Champion Temecula, CA YamahaYZ250F
18Chris Alldredge Powell Butte, OR YamahaYZ250F
19Chase Marquier Newcastle, OK HondaCRF 250
20Broc Shoemaker Agua Dulce, CA YamahaYZ250F
21Chris Howell Spokane, WA HusqvarnaFC250
22Shane Mcelrath Canton, NC KTM250SX-F
Full Results

250SX West Standings - 2017

1Justin Hill Yoncalla, OR180
2Shane Mcelrath Canton, NC154
3Aaron Plessinger Hamilton, OH143
4Martin Davalos Quito, Ecuador142
5Jimmy Decotis Peabody, MA122
6Austin Forkner Richards, MO105
7Dan Reardon Queensland, Australia96
8Kyle Chisholm Clearwater, FL85
9Cole Martinez Rimrock, AZ73
10Mitchell Oldenburg Alvord, TX60
11Justin Starling Deland, FL57
12Jeremy Martin Millville, MN55
13Phil Nicoletti Cochecton, NY54
14Hayden Mellross Australia53
15Joshua Hansen Elbert, CO45
16Tyler Bowers Danville, KY44
17Noah Mcconahy Spokane, WA39
18Ryan Surratt Corona, CA37
19Killian Auberson Switzerland30
20Chase Marquier Newcastle, OK28
Full Standings