Recalling the Aussie's heroic Anaheim win two years ago.
For a number of years selected fans and industry personnel have hinted time and time again that they feel it’s time for Australia’s Chad Reed to hang up his boots. Each time the determined competitor has proved them wrong, laying down amazing performances adding to his lengthy list of AMA Supercross wins – 44 to be exact.
One of those performances occurred during the 2014 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship within Anaheim’s Angel Stadium during the second Anaheim round of the season. At that point Reed had not won a 450SX main event for 22 races. The then 31-year-old stunned onlookers with a come-from-behind win, putting himself into title contention with his first race victory in two years.
Reed began the 20-lap main event outside the top five, a tough position take the race win from when the likes of Ryan Dungey, James Stewart, Ryan Villopoto and Ken Roczen were between himself and the top podium spot.
He knuckled down aboard his Discount Tire Racing Kawasaki and began to chip off one rider at a time to the delight of the crowd. The veteran then made his move for the lead, passing his rival of many years, Stewart, for the lead with just three laps remaining.
The two-time Monster Energy AMA Supercross Champion took the chequered flag and the crowd erupted, Reed later commented that the win was possibly the most emotional of his lengthy career.
“I would say this is probably the most emotional win of my career,” Reed beamed. “It just took way too long to get [career win] 42. It seemed like the amount of effort and work and time that went into getting this one, the 41 other ones seem like they came a hell of a lot easier.”
Being owner and rider of his Discount Tire Racing outfit, Reed did what nobody was able to achieve before; create a factory level race team from scratch and put himself at the pinnacle of the sport as a rider at the same time. This impressive feat is something Reed was understandably proud of.
“Just proud, proud of the team for doing what they did in the off-season,” he added. “And I just worked my butt off. So it was a team effort, it’s nice to work hard and come here and do well and win races.”
Reed then went on to take yet another impressive victory at A3, leading the third Anaheim main event of the year from start to finish, again electrifying the American crowd and cementing himself as a serious premier class title threat heading into San Diego’s Qualcomm Stadium, where he held the record for the most main event wins of all-time.
Unfortunately for Reed, that is where his 2014 championship campaign ended with a crushing racing incident involving Ken Roczen aboard his Red Bull KTM at the time. Reed would find himself on the ground and injured badly, sidelining himself for the remainder of the 2014 season. It was a tough blow for the Aussie legend.
Fast-forward two years and we’re seeing a resurgence of the Reed of early 2014 with his recent performance at round two of the 2016 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship. Now on board the all-new Monster Energy/360fly/Chaparral/Yamaha Factory Racing YZ450F, Reed rode his way to a strong second place finish behind defending champion Ryan Dungey.
With his recent form and the level of comfort Reed looks to have found on his new Yamaha, it’d be hard to look past the ‘TwoTwo’ as a possible race winner this year. As confidence builds and the returning factory team gels, he’ll go from strength to strength.