News 30 Jan 2019

Discomfort causes late race fade for Roczen

Team Honda HRC contender bumped to second in points standings.

Image: Supplied.

Discomfort in the 23-lap main event at Oakland’s fourth round of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship is what caused Ken Roczen to fade in the closing stages of the encounter.

The German ace was challenging in second position before a four-way battle unfolded where positions were traded on multiple occasions, however Roczen played it safe while not feeling entirely comfortable, settling into fourth before relinquishing one more spot in the dying moments.

Crossing the line in fifth as two-time main event winner Cooper Webb (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) captured victory, the Team Honda HRC contender was ultimately demoted from the top of the points table, handing the red-plate to Webb in the process.

“Oakland started off pretty good,” Roczen explained. “I felt super good in practice and was super-happy with the bike. I was confident going into the night show and happy to have first gate pick. We had a decent heat race, finishing in second. We had to do some little bike adjustments, just as the track changed.

“I didn’t have a great start at all but fought my way up to second for a bit. I was struggling in the whoops and started feeling uncomfortable and unfortunately, I went back to fifth. That’s not ideal but we’re leaving healthy.

“We lost the points lead but only by a couple points – it’s a long season, so if we can take this as our worst race, that’s pretty good. It’s time to regroup and hopefully get back on the podium in San Diego.”

The number 94 still holds down second in the standings, two markers behind Webb and one point ahead of Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Eli Tomac heading into San Diego’s fifth round this Saturday night.