All is good in the world before Anaheim 1. Before Monster Energy Supercross begins, everyone is a contender, everyone believes, and everyone has hope. While the year won't work out as planned for everyone, it's certainly going to be fun to watch the stories unfold—stories like the battle for the 450SX title, and smaller ones like young kids trying to build a career. It's all on the table starting this Saturday, and the only way to make sense of all is to start listing all the reasons we'll be watching. You should, too.
1) Pro Circuit searches for gold
The powerful PC squad hasn’t won a 250SX Regional title since 2011 with Broc Tickle. Mitch can’t be a happy camper.
2) Barcia goes blue
For the first time in his professional career, Justin Barcia will be on a brand other than Honda. How will it work out?
3) Dungey goes for two
His second title is within reach. Can he grab it in 2015?
4) Weston Peick is factory
Put his 2014 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross tour with RCH/Soaring Eagle Suzuki in the background. For the first time in his career, Weston Peick will begin a season with factory equipment.
5) Davi Millsaps returns
May 2013 was the last race Millsaps competed in prior to the Monster Energy Cup. But, remember, he was the supercross runner-up in 2012 and 2013 and won the Monster Energy Cup in October.
6) Arnaud Tonus makes the move
Another European tries to stake a claim in America. The Swiss rider will race 250SX East for Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki. Can he handle supercross?
7) Honda fights for first premier title since 2003
It’s been a long time since Ricky carried the torch to the top for the Red Riders. By all appearances, Honda is going all-in this year. Can Canard, Tomac, or Seely deliver?
8) Star Racing hopes to shine in stadiums
Jeremy Martin provided the team its first Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship last summer. Will he or Cooper Webb deliver again?
9) 250 class full of talent
Combine GEICO Honda’s RJ Hampshire and Jordon Smith with Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha’s Aaron Plessinger, CycleTrader.com/Rock River Yamaha’s Luke Renzland, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Chris Alldredge, FMF KTM’s Dakota Alix, and Traders Racing Kawasaki’s Nick Gaines and you have a lot of young 250SX talent.
10) GEICO Honda Goes for Five
GEICO Honda has won a regional 250SX title every year since 2011. Will they make it five straight in 2015?
11) Big Bore rookies out to take it all
Four rookies, four factory rides. The quartet of Jason Anderson, Dean Wilson, Cole Seely, and Blake Baggett have high expectations.
12) Josh Hansen is back
Josh Hansen is once again saying this is his last, best chance, and he’s working harder than ever. He’s said this before, and it nearly led to a West Region 250SX title…all the way back in 2011. He hasn’t raced Monster Energy Supercross since March 31, 2012 in Houston. What will he bring to the table?
13) Nico Izzi Returns
Nico Izzi is trying to revitalize his career in 2015. The last time we saw him in Monster Energy Supercross was 2012. What should we expect?
14) Ken Roczen Moves back to Suzuki
How will the biggest move of the off-season pan out?
15) RCH ready to rule
Related to above: Is a team once known for top-privateer status and pit parties ready to become the best of the best?
16) Wil Hahn goes green
Hahn has been out since March with some big injuries, but returns Saturday night.
17) Tyler Bowers back in SX
Remember, the four-time Amsoil Arenacross Champion began his career in Monster Energy Supercross (2008) and has a 250SX win to his credit.
18) Can Davalos finally win a title?
He got the race-win monkey off his back last year. Will he do the same with the title this year?
19) AC out again
Who will fill his shoes at PC?
20) TLD goes KTM
After eleven years with Honda, TLD will be orange in 2015 and beyond.
21) Justin Brayton returns to KTM
The surprise of the early 2014 season wants to bang bars with the elite pack again.
22) Chad Reed has a teammate for the first time
Will Josh Grant relieve some of the pressure on Reed?
23) Back-to-back Atlanta races
Will they be turning privateers away from MTF and GPF the week in between?
24) there are Two new venues
Petco Park (rather than Qualcomm) in San Diego, CA and Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, CA.
25) Supercross returns to East Rutherford
The supercross gods will give us better weather the second time around, right?
26) Who will capitalize the most in RV's absence?
Your guess is as good as ours.
27) Half of GEICO Honda's 250 squad from 2014 is now at Rockstar Energy Husqvarna
The Zachs, Osborne and Bell, have new digs in 2015.
28) Did you say Husqvarna?
Yes. The storied brand is back, under the same tent that once flew Rockstar Suzuki and Rockstar KTM colors. The white bikes will be contenders right from the start.
29) Justin Hill is On Orange
After two years at Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki, the younger Hill is headed to Red Bull KTM. Is this his year?
30) Day race Hits New Jersey
For the first time in history, Monster Energy Supercross will get live network coverage of a supercross (the East Rutherford race airs on Fox, not the Fox Sports 1 cable channel). And it’s a day race!
31) Seventeen Rounds Are Live on TV
32) Chad Reed will turn 33 during the season.
Age is just a number, right?
33) Canard is on KYB suspension
He was so hot (like Hansel hot) down the stretch in Lucas Oil Pro Motocross and again at the Monster Energy Cup. Will it continue?
34) Will this finally be Marvin Musquin's year to win a US title?
It’s now or never as this could be his last year in 250SX.
35) nick wey returns...again
Another go round, but is it the last?
36) Mookie gets a shot with GEICO Honda
Can he do well enough to get a 450 gig for the summer?
37) Missing Mains
We can easily count more than twenty-two riders who should routinely make the 450 field. So who will miss?
38) Freddy Noren Makes His 450SX Debut
His beautiful summer with Team Honda results in some back door CRF support, siphoned to the MotoSport.com/GPI Honda team (known as Crossland Racing in 2014). But can Freddy do supercross?
39) Tommy Hahn Comes out of retirement
The elder Hahn has been around the block. He raced the 125 class in his first year!
40) Brett Metcalfe Returns to Supercross
For the first time since 2012, we will see Metty on the line at Monster Energy Supercross.
41) Will Andrew Short ever not be competitive?
Maybe when he’s like 100.
42) it's Privateer Island
Several privateers made a name for themselves in 2014, like Ronnie Stewart, Nick Schmidt, Cody Gilmore, and Seven-Deuce Deuce Adam Enticknap. Can they keep rolling in 2015?
43) Matt Lemoine looks for another podium
A sleeper in the East Region. Mark our words.
44) Can Vince Friese go top-three again?
He’s back with SmarTop/MotoConcepts, but will we see a repeat performance in 250SX East Region?
45) Will Mike Alessi still be Holeshot King?
Are we seeing the end of an era, or does Alessi still rule the starts?
46) Joey Savatgy seeks his first win
Injuries thwarted his progress, but he’s back and ready with Pro Circuit power.
47) Matt Bisceglia looks for breakout second year
The GEICO Honda team sets a high standard; we’ll see if he can reach it.
48) Zach Bell hopes to stay healthy
Hasn’t happened yet. Will a team switch help?
49) Zach Osborne looks for first win
Zacho has been around awhile—this year is a must win.
50) Jessy Nelson could be the breakout star
Rejuvenated with great rides last summer, Nelson looks for career SX win no. 1.
51) Shane McElrath looking to improve in second year
Not a flashy rookie season, but he gets another shot with Lucas Oil/TLD KTM.
52) Can Ken Roczen go the distance?
Ken Roczen is usually stronger in the first half of championship—can he maintain the pace all the way to the end this time?
53) Will Jeremy Martin qualify for the first race?
He didn’t the last two years running. It can’t happen three years in a row, can it?
54) Broc Tickle back with RCH
He’s been out since Toronto with injury. Can he make a quick return to form?
55) Josh Hill to Valli
It came together late, but Josh Hill returns to Yamaha for 2015.
56) Darryn Durham hopes to regain form
It’s been a tough stretch for Double D, but remember this guy is a former race winner.
57) Weimer tries to revitalize career with Team Tedder
Skills are there, but what about confidence?
58) Tomac's tough
Pretty much everything about Eli’s first 450SX season sucked. Year two will not.
59) Whither JS7?
Will we see James at the races at all?
60) Wilson rebounds
Several bumps in the road the last few years for the multi-time 250SX race winner. Will his talent shine through in his first 450 foray?
61) Can Baggett Pull it Off Indoors?
Same question, new year, new class: Can El Chupacabra get ‘er done in the stadiums?
62) Chizz looks for a team
The gritty veteran could be a prime candidate if a factory spot opens up.
63) Can Reed be consistent?
Reedy hasn’t made all the races since 2011—is he now injury prone or just unlucky?
64) Rodriguez Full of Speed
Anthony Rodriguez showed dazzling speed his rookie year, but couldn’t stay healthy. Will anything change in 2015?
65) 450SX has stacked field
Barcia, Tomac, Canard, Millsaps, Reed, Dungey and Roczen all have a shot. Who will fill RV’s shoes?
66) Alex Martin goes west
Will the elder Martin shine out west?
67) Vicki Golden Goes for History
Her quest to become the first women to qualify for a supercross main event starts in Arlington.
68) Jimmy D
69) bogle goes for Repeat Performance
Justin Bogle ruled the East Region a season ago; will it happen again?
70) ANAHEIM 1 is here
It all starts Saturday. Enjoy 2015!