Hangtown - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
Someone forgot to tell Zach that this class was "absolutely stacked." I mean, I figured that either Zach or Jeremy Martin would walk away from Hangtown victorious. But I didn't expect either of them to go 1-1, especially in such dominating fashion. This is the best Zach Osborne has looked his entire career, and you have to give some of the credit to Aldon Baker. Before Zach paired up with the legendary trainer he was fast, but he was missing a few things that were holding him back from being a legit title threat. But since he's been with Aldon he's really put it all together, and now he's a Supercross champion and the favorite for the motocross championship. Pretty impressive, eh?
One thing's for sure: if he dominates Glen Helen next week, all of the attention is going to slowly shift from the championship battle, to everyone battling behind Zach.
The Bad: Joey Savatgy | 7th Overall
Yeah, that happened. I almost bought into the idea that Joey would come out absolutely swinging at Hangtown. He did it last year, why couldn't he do it this year as well, right? Well, it didn't go well–at all. He got a mediocre start in the first moto and worked his way up to seventh by the end. I wasn't too concerned at that point; it's a pretty talented class and guys are gonna have a hard time slicing through the pack when they start outside the top 15. That second moto, though, was pretty terrible. He straight up faded back after getting a great start. He could not have set himself up better to try and run away with the win, but nope. He got passed by Zach Osborne, and then he slowly dropped all the way back to seventh. It could have been the heat, but maybe he just didn't have the pace to run up front. We'll get a better idea of what Joey Savatgy we're going to get this season next week at Glen Helen, but right now, it's not looking so good.
The Ugly: Jeremy Martin | 11th Overall
I wouldn't say that Jeremy Martin was the heavy favorite coming into the season, but he was the pick by many to win the title. Unfortunately, that's going to be a whole lot harder now as he only scored 20 points on the day due to a broken bike in the first moto. That really sucked to watch, because I do think he's the only one in the class that could challenge Osborne in the long run. He's obviously not completely out of it yet, as Osborne could have issues at any of the remaining 11 rounds–but hoping for something like that is not the position Jeremy wants to be in. On the bright side, maybe Jeremy will go all-out for the rest of the season since he has nothing to lose.
The Ugly Bonus: Dylan Ferrandis | 41st Overall
The day was going pretty well for Dylan Ferrandis until he crashed during the first moto. The crash didn't look all that bad to me, but he actually ended up with a concussion because of it. That's gotta be frustrating for both him and the Yamalube Star Racing Yamaha team. He could have challenged for this title, but now he's sitting 50 points back and may not even be able to race next week. I hope he's good to go for Glen Helen, but I also want him to make sure he's 100% before he comes back...because head injuries are no joke. There's absolutely no reason to come back from a head injury before you are completely ready.
Get well soon, Dylan.
The Good: Eli Tomac | 1st Overall
If Eli continues to ride like he did at Hangtown, it's going to be a loooong summer for everyone else. Marvin Musquin, who many of us pegged as the one guy who could challenge Eli, got straight up beat on Saturday. He was in front of him in the first moto, but Eli got a decent start and was able to make the move. The second moto, though, he should have been gone. He got a great start while Eli was back in around tenth or so. This would have been a good time for him to sprint away and let Eli know that he won't just cruise to victory every week. But no, Eli hunted him down, passed him, and dropped him towards the end of the race. I do think that Musquin will be able to steal some wins away from Eli at certain rounds, but for now, it's all about Eli.
The Bad: Blake Baggett | 6th Overall
Blake was actually my pick for third place at Hangtown behind Tomac and Musquin. I mean after his great Supercross season, who wouldn't think he'd be even better outside? Well, I guess I was wrong. Of course, it didn't help that his starts weren't amazing, but he's been a hard charger in the past so I was surprised that he couldn't at least get close to fourth. I do think that he's one of the riders that we'll see get better and better as the season goes on, especially as he gets more comfortable on the KTM. Heck, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised to see him on the overall podium within the next few rounds.
The Ugly: Jason Anderson | 13th Overall
Jason was looking to have a great day up until the start of the first moto. He got hit by a rock, which gave him a pretty nasty cut above his eye, and he then crashed with a couple of other riders. Blood filled up his goggles so fast there was no way he could continue riding. He was able to come out and ride the second moto, though, and he salvaged a respectable sixth-place finish. He's pretty much out of the championship chase now, but don't be surprised if he snags a few podiums here and there throughout the season.
Words by Grant Dawson