Musquin wins Anaheim 1 to open 2018 supercross assault
McElrath makes it a perfect night for KTM with 250SX victory.
Red Bull KTM’s Marvin Musquin has claimed a triumphant victory in the 2018 Monster Energy AMA Supercross championship opener at Anaheim 1.
The in-form Frenchman took control of the 20-minute main event on lap 11 and was never headed, winning from a charging Jason Anderson (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) by 2.579s.
Behind them came Justin Barcia (Monster Energy Knich Yamaha) to complete the podium, leading between laps eight and 10, in what was a strong performance deputising for Davi Millsaps on the factory YZ450F for at least the first six rounds.
German Ken Roczen (Team Honda HRC) qualified fastest and pressed on to fourth in the final on return from a near career-ending injury that saw him sit out much of last year, just 12.826s from victory and ahead of Weston Peick (Autotrader JGR Yoshimura Suzuki).
Early runaway leader Eli Tomac (Monster Energy Kawasaki) crashed on lap eight while at the front and returned to the pit with reported pain in his shoulder, marking a difficult start to his championship campaign tonight.
It was a respectable start for Australian veteran Chad Reed’s year as he rode his privateer Team CR22 Husqvarna to 15th, transferring directly through to the main, albeit finishing a lap down with minimal preparation heading into A1.
In the Western Regional 250SX final it was a wire-to-wire win for Troy Lee Designs Red Bull KTM’s Shane McElrath, jumping out of the gates to lead all 18 laps and win by 2.521s.
McElrath eventually won from Aaron Plessinger (Monster Yamalube Thor Parts Unlimited Yamaha) and Adam Cianciarulo (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki), as his teammate Joey Savatgy and Christian Craig (Geico Honda) filled the top five.
Australia’s Hayden Mellross (51Fifty Energy Drink Yamaha) put forward a consistent run in the 250SX final for 13th position upon return from injuries in the national championship, providing him a platform to build upon as the year goes on.
The 2018 Monster Energy AMA Supercross series will now travel directly to Houston, Texas, for round two of the championship next Saturday evening on 13 January.