After rough riding incidents and the resultant crashes caused Jason Anderson to lose points on several occasions in Monster Energy AMA Supercross last year, the hope was that he'd stay out of the drama and stay in the championship fight in '23. Unfortunately for Anderson fans, contact is taking place at an even more rapid pace this year, and now Anderson finds himself under AMA probation. In Tampa, Anderson ran Justin Barcia into the tough blocks trying to make a pass early in the Tampa 450 main, causing both riders to go down. The AMA deemed that "Rough Riding" and has given Anderson six months of probation. The Tampa penalty report, released today, is below.
It's hard to define what probation means going forward, but we can follow Barcia's season last year as a guide. Barcia found himself on the probation list last year, first for knocking down Justin Bogle in San Diego. That led to a three-point penalty and $3000 fine for his next incident, when he knocked Anderson down in Indianapolis. When Barcia hit Malcolm Stewart with a super-aggressive pass at the Salt Lake City finale, he was hit with a 10-point penalty.
For Anderson, who would hope to still get back into this title chase, the threat of losing points the next time he hits a rider is real.
As indicated, this is far from the first incident between Anderson and Barcia, and you only have to go back a few weeks ago to San Diego for more examples. There, Anderson knocked Barcia down in a heat race. Barcia, for sure, has dished out contact many times (see his 2022 list of transgressions above) but in Tampa, he was just an innocent victim. Anderson slid up high in a corner, leaving Barcia with nowhere to go but down. Anderson later passed Barcia as they came through traffic, Barcia did not retaliate.
Here is the incident from the 450 main in Tampa with Anderson and Barcia:
Just last week, Anderson said he was trying to change his ways.
“Yes, it’s on me for getting caught up in the BS I get caught up in,” Anderson said a week ago in Houston. “That’s something I have to take responsibility for. I really just want to do my best, try to grow and avoid that. I’m going to try my best and change that aspect of me.”
So far he's avoided points penalties from the AMA, but in a way, he's already received them. Anderson was very quick in Tampa. He was second fastest in qualifying and just four hundreths off of Chase Sexton's top time, and then won his heat race. A good main event could have followed, but the early-race crash sent Jason to the back of the pack. He rode well, but only took sixth, behind series' leader Eli Tomac in fifth. Tampa was a prime opportunity for Anderson to make up points on Tomac, but an ill-advised pass attempt cost him.
The rest of the AMA Penalty report shows Carter Biese losing a qualifying time from practice due to cutting the course. Also, Hardy Munoz was penalized one position in his heat race for cutting the course. That was a big penalty, because it knocked Munoz from ninth in his heat to tenth, forcing him to the LCQ (this actually pushed rookie Caden Braswell into his first career 250 main event). Munoz was able to come back and win the LCQ to secure another spot in the main.