Features 7 May 2015

Top 10: Crashes of 2015 AMA Supercross

The big hits of this year's Monster Energy AMA Supercross series.

No two ways about it, supercross is a gnarly sport. Even the baddest dudes on the planet are extremely lucky to get through a season without coming off their bikes at some point. When the stakes are high and everyone’s on the gas, mistakes happen, and this year’s AMA Supercross championship threw up some of the gnarliest crashes we’ve seen in years. For your viewing pleasure we bring you our top 10 get-offs, bingles, stacks and mishaps from a ripper of a series.

1. I’ve got your back:
There’re few worse feelings than being in the air and knowing you’re powerless to stop the inevitable from happening. Trey Canard knows that feeling all too well. After a similar crash a couple years ago, TC was following Jake Weimer early in a semi race at Detroit when Weimer made a mistake through a rhythm section. Trey had nowhere to go and landed square on Weimer’s back, ending the season for both riders. Weimer certainly got the raw end of the deal: he suffered a concussion, a bruised lung, bruised vocal chords, a large gash on his chin, a broken Adam’s apple and a broken elbow. Trey fractured his arm in the incident.

2. Roczen ejects twice at Atlanta:
Atlanta 1 was rough on RCH Suzuki’s Ken Roczen. First he wrecked hard in practice when he exited the track stage left and ploughed into the steel track barriers hard enough to rattle the fillings of spectators sitting in the nosebleeds. If that wasn’t enough punishment, the German hotshot had an epic get-off through a rhythm section in the main event that made mothers cover the eyes of their kids in horror. The two crashes combined effectively ruled him out of the series.

3. Stacks on, fellas:
Santa Clara’s debut to the circuit saw the biggest first-turn pile-up we’d seen in years. In the 250SX main, Chris Alldredge tagged the rear of Zach Osborne under brakes and the resulting crash looked like someone had snatched the front wheel axles out of almost every bike in the field. Only six of the 20 riders escaped the mayhem without hitting the dirt.

4. Webb’s trip to pain-town:
It’s crashes like this where you wish you’d taken up parkour and learnt how to tuck and roll. 2015 West Coast champ Cooper Webb nose-cased the first triple of a 3-3-3 section during practice at San Diego and was quickly and brutally punished for his lack of judgement. Oh, and yes he still lined up for the Main and still won the night like the savage that he is.

5. The most bizarre crash of all time?:
Houston produced one of the craziest crashes we’ve ever seen. In the second heat, Malcolm Stewart ran into the back of Zach Osborne when they chose different lines through a rhythm section. Stewart went down faster than a lead balloon and his bike flew into the next lane of the track. Osborne rounded a 180 hairpin, jumped a double, then ploughed straight into Mookie’s bike, sending him over the bars as well. You couldn’t make that shit up.

6. Don’t come up short:
Anyone who’s ridden a dirt bike will testify that there’s nothing worse than coming up short on a jump. When that jump is a triple, the consequences and pain factor are also tripled. At Oakland Ken Roczen barged his way past Chad Reed in the main, only to come up about 1m short on the biggest triple on the track. Against all logic and thinking, and obviously in a world of hurt, Roczen still circulated to finish the race, but it proved to be the beginning of the end of his campaign.

7. Tickle takes up FMX:
Look, Broc, we realise your team boss, Carey Hart, is one of the pioneers of FMX, but that doesn’t mean you’ve got to give freestyle a go yourself. On the final lap of the 450 main at New Jersey, Broc Tickle executed a near-perfect nose-manual to No-handed Front-Flip to Ghosty. To make the feat even more remarkable, Tickle landed on his feet and looked around as if to say “are you not entertained?” We certainly were, Broc, just don’t try it again, okay?

8. 100 to zero real quick:
Andrew Short’s starts have been next-level this year and it’s more of a surprise if he doesn’t round the first turn inside the top three or four. At St Louis Shorty tore the gizzards out of the holeshot, but on the next rhythm section eventual champ Ryan Dungey casually drifted across and invaded his personal space. Short had no option but to change his angle and ended up cartwheeling spectacularly into the tuff blocks. With his bike munted, Shorty had no option but to return to the pits and shake out the cobwebs.

9. Assassin’s Reed:
Settle down, kiddies, we’re not talking about the game. We’re talking about the incident between Chad Reed and Trey Canard that sent keyboard warriors across the world into a hysterical frenzy. At Anaheim 2 Trey tried to jump to the inside of Reedy and sent both of them searching for pennies. Reedy was furious and after they both remounted, the Aussie came up the inside and shunted Canard into the haybales again. Reed was black-flagged from the Main and broke the internet at the same time as millions of fans vented on Facebook and forums.

10. Bowers turns hitman:
Before 2015 Tyler Bowers and Cooper Webb were mates, but it’s fair to say the two won’t be trading Christmas cards this year. At Oakland Bowers lined the Star Racing Yamaha rider up in a hairpin and didn’t use him as a berm as much as he did a wall to bounce off like a squash ball. It was that big hit that we swear our TVs rattled. Webb had the last laugh however when he repaid the favour the next week at Anaheim 2, but even still, his shunt lacked the violence that Bowers’ one had.