New Yoooooooork, New Yoooooork! Okay, I get it, this race is technically in New Jersey but most associate this event with the world’s most famous city, New York, NY. Held at MetLife Stadium, the NFL home of the New York Giants and New York Jets, this race always carries a bit more pizzazz than many rounds, simply because it sits in the shadow of the Big Apple. Most will find themselves in the city at some point this weekend, even if just for dinner and to check it off the list. I enjoy this event for that reason alone. Monster Energy Supercross takes us all over this great country and I look forward to seeing more of it this weekend.
The track in New Jersey is often a little soft and rutty. Spring weather is in full effect with rains sweeping through the northeast regularly. We should have nice weather for Saturday but the dirt will likely show some residual effects of the repetitive saturation.
The start this weekend spans nearly the length of MetLife Stadium before bending into a long left-hand 180. A rhythm section greets riders exiting the first corner and with it, a chance to pull a big combo. Riders could go 3-4-3 here assuming the dirt holds up and the angles are built agreeably. I do question if riders will opt for a 2-1 at the end of the section so they can stay to the inside in the upcoming 90 degree corner but big picture, that’s not a big deal.
After the left hand 90, riders will jump a small double and then single past the Mechanics’ Area. They will fly into a bowl berm before ripping back across the same stretch (also the start straight) and into an inside/outside right hand 90. This switchback section is similar to Detroit, only in the opposite direction.
The next rhythm section offers a choice to go inside or outside but the rhythm should remain the same. The inside is a tabletop-to-single while the outside is a step on-step off. Both of those set up for a 3-1 into the next bowl berm.
The only set of East Rutherford whoops is up and watch for these to break down by main event time. This tighter layout coupled with deteriorating whoops could be a Godsend to Cooper Webb.
Riders exit a flat 180 right after the whoops and scream back down the start straight but instead of turning left, they turn right and into the final corner before the finish line jump. A small double after the finish line fires riders into a netted bowl berm and back down the home sideline of MetLife Stadium.
This rhythm section should be fairly straight forward but that doesn’t mean it will be easy. The elite should be able to go 3-3-3 and into the outside but similar to the opposite side of the stadium, I believe many will go 3-3-2-1 and stick to the inside in the following 90. Protecting the inside line typically trumps all other variables.
The only standard supercross triple spans the width of the stadium before bending into another 90 left and back into the first rhythm section of this week’s layout.
Overall, it will be challenging to pass on this track. Riders will be hugging the insides in every corner and there are not many 180’s that will allow block passing. The corners before and after the finish are possibilities and the whoops will be critical. I would expect most to hug the left side of the whoops, protecting the inside for the next 180 so they can dive to the inside rut. Passing will need to be setup and planned for, otherwise they will likely be left stuck following in frustration.
East RutherfordDave Coombs Sr. East/West Showdown + Supercross Futures
Saturday, April 22
Chase Sexton did everything right in Atlanta. The tacky dirt likely helped the front end woes he’s been fighting, yes, but his form and speed are a big problem for, well, everyone.
Justin Barcia continues to impress, landing another podium. In even better news, he announced a new two-year contract to stay with TLD/Red Bull/GasGas.
Ken Roczen found his way onto the podium and was solid all day long. It’s always challenging to gauge a season for someone like Roczen because we know what he’s capable of. So while he isn’t getting on the podium every week, I still consider this a success in the big picture.
Hunter Lawrence just keeps on winning. He came incredibly close to visiting the Alpinestars Mobile Medical Unit but close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and social distancing.
Haiden Deegan seriously impressed me in Atlanta. This kid is the real deal as a racer, regardless of whatever social media, YouTube, outside noise he has going on.
Nate Thrasher had a huge get off and will be out for an extended period.
Eli Tomac just looked a little off his normal pace in the main event, finishing 5th. Luckily, his closest rival was literally right in front of him, minimizing the damage. Even still, he’s the red plate holder and defending champion so maybe I’m an idiot for putting him in this list.
Jett Lawrence hosts SNL after his main event win in the shadow of NYC.
NBC executives fixate a shock collar on Cooper Webb to ensure he doesn’t drop curse words during the live broadcast.
I offer fans a unique opportunity to rev my rental car in the MetLife parking lot. The cost is $20 per pedal punch and I accept cash, crypto, and rare spices.
I make my bi-yearly jaunt into Manhattan and find myself muttering “I could live here” and then someone recommends that I do something horrific to myself, my mother, and anyone I care about for changing lanes in heavy traffic. I then realize I will not be moving to the area.