Vital MX Perspective: The Best-Ever Night of Supercross?


Vital MX Perspective: The Best-Ever Night of Supercross?

We've seen a lot of Supercross over the years. But this much tension, excitement, and awe-inspiring action in one night? Mmm, probably not. This race capped a great season quite nicely, thanks.

As the sun started to set on another Supercross season, the crowd was buzzing with excitement. Two hotly contested titles would be decided before the night was over.

With three riders vying for the 250 East title and only one point between them, there were plenty of butterflies as the riders waited for the start of the main. After the gate dropped, Jordon Smith was the leading East competitor...until a rather nasty crash took him out of contention.

Adam Cianciarulo scored the holeshot when the gate dropped for the 250 main. Behind him, Zach Osborne was down in the first turn, and he came around in 21st spot, and a long ways behind the pack. Things were not looking good for Zach's chances at the title.

Joey Savatgy had a crash of his own early in the main, but quickly remounted. He'd dropped from second to seventh, then rebounded to fourth, but after a few laps he started to slide back through the pack to eighth.

We're not sure what the biggest win is for Adam Cianciarulo...scoring two wins (including the main event here), or actually just finishing the season healthy. Either way, it's been a solid season for him.

Justin Hill had the easiest mission of the night, since he'd wrapped up the title at the previous West round in Salt Lake City. He finished second for the night.

After remounting from his crash, Zach Osborne was on the gas and moving forward. It took three laps to make an actual pass (not counting Jordon Smith, who crashed out). He moved into 15th by lap seven, and tenth on lap ten. Even by then, the chances of catching Joey Savatgy looked slim. But he was regularly lapping faster than Joey, and by now you've all likely seen the very aggressive pass—with two turns to go—that earned him the crown.

All the tension and relief came flooding out after the finish line. That was just pure emotion from Zach, after laying it all on the line, never quitting, and coming out on top. He'd had a rollercoaster season, had fought to earn the plate, and people will remember that one for a long time.

Adam was a little frustrated to find out that he'd come so close to winning the title. A mere two points separated himself and Zach, which translates to two finishing positions somewhere during he '17 season. He obviously couldn't have done better in Vegas, but you have to wonder if he thinks back across the season and where he might have picked up those extra points.

Congratulations on a well-deserved title, Zach.

Here's your top three 250s on the night, with Adam Cianciarulo, Justin Hill, and Aaron Plessinger.

When the gate dropped for the 450 main, Ryan Dungey quickly charged out in front, with Eli Tomac close pursuing. Eli took over the lead after lap one.

It quickly became apparent that while Eli had to score the maximum points possible, he wasn't going to run away and hide from everyone. Ryan Dungey was looking to avoid getting too close, but the pace allowed pursuing riders (Jason Anderson, Chad Reed, and Josh Grant) to catch up.

Ryan Dungey needed to finish fourth or better if Eli Tomac won, so he had to not only play offense, but defense.

Just like in the 250 main, the crowd was on their feet for the duration of the 450 main. These two kept things close.

Josh Grant played the part of good teammate, and not only applied lots of pressure from the rear, he landed himself on the podium in the process.

Dungey went by Eli twice for the lead, and each time got mildly roughed up. Afterwards he admitted that he shouldn't have gone by Eli. It was definitely a chess game out there, and unfamiliar territory from their usual wide-open racing.

Jason Anderson ran in third throughout most of the main. But Chad Reed was charging, and got by Jason Anderson for third in the closing stages. But a bump and run by Jason put Chad into the Tuf-Blox, and out of podium contention. After a crazy last lap where Ryan passed Eli (who was creeping along slowly to encourage a pass), Eli then bumped him in a corner, but Ryan didn't go down. Anderson moved to the lead, Eli settled into second, Grant third and Dungey was fourth...exactly where he needed to be at the end.

Post-race with Jason Anderson and Chad Reed. This would have been an interesting conversation to listen in on.

Lindsay Dungey was quickly on the scene to congratulate Ryan.

Short of a couple of bad races, this could easily have been your 2017 Monster Energy Supercross 450 Champ. You can't fault his plan for trying to try and pressure Dungey during the main event. The bad news for the other competitors? You now get to race Angry Eli throughout the 2017 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship season.

Jason Anderson was pumped on scoring a win before the season, and getting that monkey off his back. The team had plenty of fun celebrating his win and Zach's championship.

Kudos to the Red Bull KTM crew. That's three 450 titles in a row for Ryan Dungey.While there have been rumors of him retiring (and Ryan shut them down at the pre-race press conference), saying no decision had been made yet), we feel he's been a bit of an underappreciated champ, and people won't realize how much he'll be missed until he's gone.