It’s hard to figure out where to start recapping the 2019 Monster Energy Supercross season, because so little of what happened on track was anything close to what we were expecting.
Defending 450 champion Jason Anderson only made it through three inconsistent rounds before a horrible practice crash took him off the bike for the rest of the season. Instead of ironing out his inconsistencies, incoming favorite Eli Tomac suffered another frustrating runner-up finish in the championship, thanks in part to another set of struggles at MetLife Stadium. And Red Bull KTM’s Marvin Musquin, the other incoming title favorite, wasn’t even the best rider on his team.
Instead, it was Cooper Webb who shocked the world by scoring seven victories in total and clinching his first 450 title with a podium in Las Vegas’ Sam Boyd Stadium on Saturday. Webb, who was bounced from Monster Energy Yamaha when Aaron Plessinger was promoted after winning last year’s 250 West title, jumped onto a KTM and scored his first career victory during the Anaheim Triple Crown race. He was nearly unstoppable from there, owning a number of holeshots and rarely missing the podium from then on.
Webb’s unshakeable consistency allowed him to take the championship lead in the early months of the season, and strong finish after strong finish helped the points pile up. He entered Las Vegas with a 23-point advantage over Tomac and the tiebreaker on wins; needing to finish only 20th or better to earn the title, Webb refused to lay up, still coming home third despite some pressure from a surging Zach Osborne.
Ken Roczen continued his march back from serious injuries over the past few years to earn a solid fourth place in points for Honda, and was rewarded with a three-year contract extension that will see him riding red through 2022. Blake Baggett was the best of the privateers, scoring a victory in Glendale for Rocky Mountain ATV/MC KTM and completing the top five in points. A number of other riders also had strong results throughout the year, from Anaheim 1 winner Justin Barcia for Yamaha to Dean Wilson and Osborne as they picked up the slack for Anderson at Rockstar Energy Husqvarna.
Both of the 250 classes ended up with surprise champions, though, as the Pro Circuit Kawasaki riders who dominated each division both ended the season empty handed. Austin Forkner dominated the East division until a crash in Nashville injured his knee, and he completely tore his ACL with a hard landing in New Jersey in the penultimate round of the season, forcing him out of the season-ending East-West Showdown in Las Vegas. Instead, Geico Honda rider Chase Sexton claimed the points lead with a win at MetLife Stadium and hung on to beat Justin Cooper for the title.
Adam Cianciarulo looked set to avenge his championship loss to Plessinger in the West last year until a crash in Saturday night’s final damaged his bike as he ran in position to claim the crown. That handed the championship to Dylan Ferrandis, as the Star Racing Yamaha rider succeeded Plessinger in bringing the blue team a title by claiming three victories—including the most important one in Las Vegas.
The top teams in the sport will enjoy an off weekend before heading straight into the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross season with the Hangtown Motocross Classic on May 18. That season will run through to the end of August, when Ironman Raceway hosts the last of 12 championship rounds. But never fear: Supercross is back in action on October 19, with the Monster Energy Cup returning to Las Vegas with the promise of another $1 million bonus to any rider who can win all three races, as Tomac did last year.