'It can go in your favour or sometimes it can not'.
Current SX2 leader Max Anstie says the updated World Supercross Championship (WSX) race format is a positive step forward, implemented at round two with a break placed between finals two and three of the night program.
Until last month’s second round in Etihad Arena, finals were run under a back-to-back-to-back schedule, leaving little time to recover, while also putting added stress on riders and machinery.
Abu Dhabi saw finals one and two in each class run in succession, before a break ahead of the third final while other activity was on track. The general feeling is that this change – which will used again in Melbourne – is an improvement, and also featured in Newcastle’s Triple Crown at round two of the Fox Australian Supercross Championship (AUSX) two weeks ago.
“It doesn’t necessarily make much difference, apart from you have time to switch a clutch out [laughs] and work on any little bits and pieces that you need to,” Anstie outlined. “The bikes get hot in those back-to-back races, even in Newcastle, I could feel the bike was getting hot.
“Doing three back-to-backs is hard on the bikes, because supercross engines are not supposed to be run at that high of a temperature, like an outdoor bike. I think the two mains, then a break, then a third main is good. It gives you a little bit of time to reset, refocus and go again.
“It can go in your favour or sometimes it can not… Sometimes if you are on a roll, it’s good to just bang them out. It’s also good for the track, I felt like in Abu Dhabi the track was hammered by the last main. The first main that we did was pretty flat, so I think it makes it more interesting, makes it harder for the guys to move forward – it is a good thing.”
Anstie will compete for back-to-back Australian SX2 titles tonight in Melbourne, and enters Saturday’s WSX finals with the 250 class red plate, 32 points clear of defending number one Shane McElrath (Mobil 1 Rick Ware Racing).