Craig clinches 250SX West crown as Thrasher wins SLC
Four in a row from Anderson to complete 450SX in Salt Lake City.
Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha’s Christian Craig was crowned 250SX West champion in a main event nail-biter won by teammate Nate Thrasher, while Jason Anderson made it four in a row in 450SX.
With the western regional title on the line, it was Hunter Lawrence (Team Honda HRC) who took the Showdown holeshot and led the opening few laps, before Thrasher stormed to the front.
That left Lawrence in second and champion-elect Craig directly behind him in third, which would be exactly what the latter needed to get the job done.
However, things got interesting on lap six when Craig went down in the turn after the whoops, dropping back to fifth in the process – Jo Shimoda (Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki), teammate Austin Forkner and Michael Mosiman (TLD Red Bull GasGas) making their way by him in proceeding laps also.
Up front, Lawrence kept the pressure on, but it wasn’t to be as Thrasher went on to hold on by 0.432s, with Pierce Brown (TLD Red Bull GasGas) charging to third position in his home race.
Fourth was the end result from RJ Hampshire (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) despite falling on the final lap in the whoops, ahead of Shimoda, Forkner and Mosiman. Eighth place was enough for Craig to clinch, as Chris Blose (AJE Motorsport Motul GasGas) ended his career in P9 and Jalek Swoll (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) completed the top 10.
The 2022 Monster Energy Supercross Championship finals saw Jason Anderson continue his winning streak to end the season on a high in Utah.
Another commanding ride from Anderson saw him make it four-straight 450SX victories to cap-off the season, 2.364s clear of Chase Sexton (Team Honda HRC), but much of the attention was on the battle for third.
TLD Red Bull GasGas’ Justin Barcia made an aggressive pass on Malcolm Stewart (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) in a move that ended up being for the final podium position. Stewart was able to claw his way back onto Barcia in the closing laps, but didn’t quite get close enough to counter.
In the end, that was the podium in Salt Lake City as Anderson topped Sexton and Barcia, with Stewart’s P4 enough to secure third position in the final standings.
Red Bull KTM duo Marvin Musquin and Cooper Webb – the outgoing champion – were next in line, fifth and sixth respectively, followed by the retiring Justin Brayton (Smartop Bullfrog Spas MCR Honda) in seventh to conclude his career. Eighth, ninth and 10th on the night were Barndon Hartranft (Twisted Tea Suzuki), Justin Starling (GasGas) and Ryan Breece (Yamaha).
In terms of the championship, Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha’s Eli Tomac was crowned last weekend in Colorado before being ruled out with an MCL injury, followed by Anderson and Stewart to fill the series podium.