The eleventh round of the 2021 Monster Energy Supercross, an FIM World Championship series—round 4 of the 250SX Western Regional Championship—went to Arlington, Texas for the second of three in a row inside AT&T Stadium and the 2021 Arlington 2 SX.
In the 450SX class, Cooper Webb (1st) won his fifth main event of the year and the final two spots on the 450SX podium were occupied by Eli Tomac (2nd) and Ken Roczen (3rd)—returning to the podium after missing it the last three rounds. Heading into round 12, Webb now leads Roczen by 12 points in the 2021 450SX Championship points.
In the fourth 250SX West main event of 2021, Australian Hunter Lawrence (1st) scored the first-ever win of his professional career—the third first-time winner this season and the fourth different winner over the highly contested first 4 rounds of the 250SX West. The final two spots on the 250SX podium were occupied by Jalek Swoll (2nd) and Cameron McAdoo (3rd). Lawrence will now wear the red plate for round 5 of the 250SX West.
After the racing was over, we gathered quotes from many of the top riders in Arlington. Check out what the riders had to say below.
Cooper Webb: (1st in 450SX) “That was a huge confidence booster for me, to lead the whole race again with that amount of pressure. Eli was probably the faster guy tonight but I just tried to hit my marks and not make any mistakes. After that [practice] crash today, sometimes it’s good for you to get those big hits, get that fear back in you and ride the thing that kicked you off. I’m super pumped on that Main Event, to battle with those guys and be able to lead wire to wire, it’s awesome.”
Eli Tomac: (2nd in 450SX) I would definitely say tonight was a bounce-back kind of night. This past Saturday was frustrating, to say the least, but I like these Tuesday races because it only gives you a couple days off and another chance to redeem yourself, and we did just that tonight. I enjoyed the track layout today. I was able to find a good flow all day and put myself in a great qualifying position, and then in the heat race I got second. In the main event, my KX450 put me in a great position down that long front straight and I was able to come out in second place again behind Cooper (Webb). I fought the entire race and tried to find a clean line to pass him and then with about four minutes left, I was going in for the pass and grabbed a little too much throttle that caused me to spin out before the whoops which allowed him to get away just enough before the end of the race. All in all, I am happy with tonight’s performance and ready to improve on it this coming Saturday.
Ken Roczen: (3rd in 450SX) (3rd in 450SX) “Arlington 2 was a lot better than Arlington 1. We threw a little bit of something at the bike and made a change and left it in all the way through the heat race. And after the heat race, I decided to go back to base and what I knew, and that was definitely the right way to go. In the main event, we started near the front, and I just stuck in third there. I got messed up by lappers a little bit, and unfortunately it just wasn’t good enough for the win tonight. We settled on third and lost a little bit more points in the championship, but as long as we’re keeping the dream alive, I’m looking forward to bouncing back next Saturday. It felt good to be back on the podium after a couple rounds of not being there. I’m proud of my team and how we’ve been working together, and looking forward to a couple of days off and coming back on Saturday.”
Hunter Lawrence: (1st in 250SX) “Amazing day here in Arlington–couldn’t have dreamt it any better! I got off to a good start, made some good passes in the first few laps and just rode my race. I’m extremely, extremely grateful and thankful to do what I’m able to do. I can’t thank everyone that supports me enough–everyone in the team and away from the track. It’s a team effort and believing in myself and man, it feels amazing. It’s awesome, and I’m stoked that we could get this one under our belts at round 4.”
Jalek Swoll: (2nd in 250SX) “I’m so happy right now, I can’t even put the words together. It was such a long road but I kept my head down and I knew I was going to get here. First podium – I’m pumped and just happy to reward the people who have stuck behind me. I definitely want to carry the momentum into Saturday.”
Justin Barcia: (4th in 450SX) “My riding was awesome in the Main Event. I just pushed through and got as far as I could but unfortunately missed out on the podium, which is frustrating, but all-in-all it was a good ride and I’m looking forward to getting back up on the podium on Saturday. The bike is really good, the team is good and I’m good, so we just need to nail those starts and we’ll be up there.”
Cameron McAdoo: (3rd in 250SX) “Today was one of those days that you just want to move on from. I felt really good all day. I qualified in third and won my heat race. In the main event, I had a decent jump out of the gate and was about eighth off of the start, and by Lap 6 I was right behind the front three guys, but when I entered into the whoops, I caught an edge and it took me down. I got up as soon as I could and charged back up to seventh. They say you win championships on your bad days and, unfortunately, the AMA docked us positions, but we have to focus on what’s ahead of us and not behind us now and focus on getting that red plate back.”
Chase Sexton: (5th in 450SX) “It was an okay day. Qualifying was pretty average–I got sixth, which was okay for me but I just didn’t get a really good lap in. In the heat race I got a good start, battled for the lead near the end and almost had the win. I had a good gate pick for the main event, which was good because the ruts were pretty messed up after the gate. I got a good start in the main and put myself in a good position, but I couldn’t keep the pace after six or seven laps. I didn’t feel super comfortable and faded backwards a bit. I was a little flat but was still top-five–not a great result, but we’ll keep building. I’m looking forward to testing a little bit on Thursday and coming back for Saturday.”
Aaron Plessinger: (6th in 450SX) “It started out a little shaky. We made some changes to the bike that I didn’t really gel with, so we decided to go back to what we had before, and it was better. We got a really good start in the heat race, and I pulled off the win again. So with two heat race wins under my belt, back-to-back wins, I was feeling pretty good going into the main. I got a decent start but got pinched off by a couple of guys. The track was super hard-packed, kind of slick and sketchy, and the whoops broke down a lot. It was a solid race, but not the result we wanted. We’ll come back and be better on Saturday.”
Jason Anderson: (7th in 450SX) My riding was actually really good once I figured out some issues we were having. I had a little mishap in the heat race and ended up eighth. In Main Event, I had a not-so-good of a gate pick and had a first corner fall, starting in dead last, but I was able to get back up to sixth. I’m looking forward to the next round, I think we can do some damage.”
Justin Cooper: (5th in 250SX) “The day started well again, with a good qualifying and heat race. In the Main Event, I started off fourth or fifth and it wasn’t the usual guys up front, everyone was shuffled back. I came out of the whoops, and a rider banked off of that turn off of the whoops and cut out. I was already next to him and had the forward momentum so I just got his back wheel and went down. It’s a bummer and I’m disappointed. I’m trying to get back up to the top, and just every time, something’s happened. It’s hard to take in right now, but we’re not going to give up. The points are closer now so I’ve just got to keep my head up and keep trying.”
Dean Wilson: (10th in 450SX) “It’s not an amazing ride for me but I’ll definitely build from it. I need to keep being in the top-10 and then to the top-five and eventually on that podium. It’s been a tough season so far with injuries but I’m working through it and trying my best. Thank you to the team, my bike was awesome!”
Jordon Smith: ( in 250SX) “Tonight was a step in the right direction. This entire season has been a bit of an uphill battle for me as I have had to fight through injury after injury. While I truly believe we are capable of much more than seventh place position, I think we did a lot of things right today and have a solid foundation to build on. I will spend the next few days giving my body more time to rest and studying race film with the team to see where we can improve upon for Saturday’s race. I can’t thank the entire Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team enough for sticking behind me and giving me the tools to succeed each time we lineup.”
Malcolm Stewart: (13th in 450SX) “I washed out the front end in the Main Event, which sucks when you do that early in the race because everyone is running strong. We made a few mistakes and kind of let the race go at the end. There were a few riders ahead of me still, but when you’ve got blue flags, you have to respect them. It was just bad timing. I shouldn’t have been back there in the first place. Overall, there were some positives to take away. Practice went great, the heat race was a good race, and I’m finally starting to figure out my starts. I think we’ve got the bike in a better place than what it was at Arlington 1 and I felt better. I’ve just got to avoid hitting the ground, keep the rubber side down and keep moving forward. We’ve got a couple of days off and we’re going to talk with the team and come up with a plan. I’ve got nothing to lose at this point. I’m just ready to get back up there and battle with the boys.”
Nate Thrasher: (9th in 250SX) “It was a good night, we started off a lot better in qualifying in seventh. Then the heat race was really good and I finished fourth. In the main, I felt really good. I was coming through the pack, battling and making passes but just had a little arm pump that set me back. We’ve got to be better. I feel like we’ve got the podium speed, we just need to get a good start and put it up there. It’s tough to pass in these Main Events, the tracks are just super tight. We’ll be better for Saturday.”
Dylan Ferrandis: (8th in 450SX) “It was a tough day for me. My leg was hurting me a little, but I was lucky to have a shot from the medical crew to get rid of the pain. Unfortunately, I had a big crash in the second timed qualifying, and I couldn’t get a good lap. After that, I gave everything I had for the main. I didn’t get a good start, and then there was a racing incident, and I had to go off track. I still didn’t feel the best on the bike, and also had a little bit of arm pump for pretty much the whole race, so it was hard to manage. It’s good to be back in the top 10, but it’s not where I want to be. It’s part of racing, though. We’ll come back Saturday and work to get a better result.”
Seth Hammaker: (11th in 250SX) “It was a pretty good day overall for me. I was able to qualify in second during the day and then in the first heat race of the night, I was able to pull the holeshot and get another heat race win under my belt which felt really good. In the main, I didn’t get the best jump out of the gate which didn’t put me in the best position and resulted in me crashing as I was trying to pass guys to get to the lead group. I got back up and started clicking guys off but made another mistake and ultimately had to settle for 11th. Tonight was a bit of a learning lesson for me, but the good news is that we are healthy and ready to fight another day.”
Jarrett Frye: (DNQ in 250SX) “Tonight was really tough, but the day had started out better. I got a good start in my heat and was running fifth but then had an issue and had to go through the LCQ. I didn’t get the start I needed and then went down trying to work my way to a transfer spot. It’s very frustrating, but we’ve got a few days before the next one and will come back looking for a better result.”