2022 Monster Energy Supercross: Atlanta Recap

Hunter Lawarence 2022 Atlanta Supercross

Although the season is well past halfway, Sunday marked the first of two Monster Energy Supercross 250 Showdown rounds. The top 250 East and West riders were pitted against each other in a race that has the potential to turn both title battles upside down. Furthermore, it marked the first time of the year we got to see Jett Lawrence vs Christian Craig. They have been the two best 250 riders all year long and had the chance to line up against each other. More importantly for Lawrence, he had a real chance to clinch the 250 East title, with Cameron McAdoo once again sidelined. Moving to the 450s, Marvin Musquin hoped to go back to back off the momentum from his St. Louis win.

Be sure to catch up on all of our Supercross coverage.

Heat Racing Recap

250 Class

The heats for these Showdowns are set by region, and the East class was up first. Jace Owen one of the Club MX Yamaha riders pulled off the holeshot here. Just behind him, Lawrence went down at the end of the nearly 450-foot start stretch, which had him in last by default. To no surprise, he gained upwards of a dozen spots to get into a transfer spot. Also early on, Owen’s teammate Phil Nicoletti suffered a rough crash that ended his day early. According to the broadcast, he suffered a broken arm, so wishing all the best to Filthy Phil. Getting the lead from Owen shortly thereafter was Mitchell Oldenburg, who led up until the final few seconds when the returning Austin Forkner pulled off a buzzer-beater pass for the win.


Moving to the 250 West Heat, Jo Shimoda on the Pro Circuit Kawasaki pulled off a no-doubter holeshot. His lead lasted until the three-minute to-go mark, when both Craig and Michael Mosiman got by the Japanese Kawasaki rider. Mosiman, while out front also went down with around 10 seconds to go on the clock. This mistake is all Craig needed to pull off a five-second Heat win over Hunter Lawrence.

450 Class

Jason Anderson, after taking the Heat 1 holeshot, took Eli Tomac a tad wide to prevent a pass out of turn one. That ended up proving effective, as he took a full share of the lead into turn two over Justin Bogle. Tomac did end up getting to and by Anderson with 30 seconds to go, but Anderson set himself up perfectly for a crossover pass and retook the lead just as he lost it. Tomac then made a bobble out of the tunnel corner, which effectively ended things, with Anderson coming out on top.

If you had an Alex Martin holeshot down on your bingo card on Sunday, congratulations. Troll Train did so in pretty good fashion as well, giving himself a two-bike length buffer back to Kyle Chisholm at the holeshot line. Quickly, however, Cooper Webb and Chase Sexton made their way into the top two spots. A blitz through the whoops with 2:30 to go gave Sexton the lead and the eventual win. Not a bad start to the day for the fastest qualifier.

250 Class Roundup


After that brutal-looking press day crash, it was the Elder Lawrence brother who came out victorious at the Atlanta East/West Showdown. Both his brother Jett and then Craig each had some trouble on the start, while Hunter came out third behind Shimoda and R.J. Hampshire. Once he made both of those passes, Lawrence completely checked out for an eventual six-plus second win. There’s a large time gap involved, but Lawrence has now won three of the last four 250 West Main Events. A bummer that the one loss was Anaheim 3 where he went down hard in the whoops. If he had ended up finishing second that night like he was going to, he’d only be back eight points with two rounds to go.

No. 28 Christian Craig – Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha (2nd Place)

The only mistake Craig really made yesterday was the on the start. He appeared to make a slight bobble shortly after coming off the metal grate, and that cost him just enough to start around 10th. To Craig’s credit, he was able to move his way through the field, but by the time he made it to second, Hunter was absolutely gone. Far from a bad day, however. In fact, Craig can clinch the 250 West Championship in two weeks’ time at Denver by simply outrunning Lawrence.

No. 18 Jett Lawrence – Honda HRC (3rd Place)

It has been the same story with the Jett for a bit now. Shows a lot of speed, but one crucial error costs him the Main Event win. Yesterday afternoon that was Lawrence going down in the first whoops section, then taking a bit to get going once again. Also, a part of the story as of late are these mad charges through the field, and that was the case in Atlanta. After restarting in 15th, the younger Lawrence brother made up exactly a dozen spots, picking up a podium. Although he didn’t clinch the 250 East Championship, he is very much in line to do so next week at Foxborough. To do that he needs not let Hampshire gain 3 points on him.

No. 30 Jo Shimoda – Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki (4th Place)

Rounding out the Geico Honda alum 1-2-3-4 day was Shimoda, who was on point with his starts yesterday. 2-for-2 on holeshots, and was able to spend a fair amount of time out front. The title aspirations for Shimoda went out the window a while ago, but this was a good reminder that Shimoda can go with the best of them. A couple of more good finishes could bode well going into the Motocross Season.

250 East/West Showdown Atlanta Top 10

1st No. 96 Hunter Lawrence

2nd No. 28 Christian Craig

3rd No. 18 Jett Lawrence

4th No. 30 Jo Shimoda

5th No. 49 Nate Thrasher

6th No. 29 Michael Mosiman

7th No. 33 Austin Forkner

8th No. 24 R.J. Hampshire

9th No. 54 Mitchell Oldenburg

10th No. 44 Pierce Brown

450 Class Roundup

No. 21 Jason Anderson – Monster Energy Kawasaki (1st Place)

Coincidently in the event where Anderson has looked the best he has in weeks, he picks up a dominating win. This also was nearly a mirror image of Lawrence’s win as well. Anderson started in third, made a pair of passes to get to the lead, then checked out on the field. The only difference was that Tomac cut his lead nearly in half on the final lap, but that was inconsequential in the end. El Hombre’s title hopes still hang on a thread, but this was as good as it gets for a race day performance. On a side note, Alpinestars murdered it with his kit for this weekend. Second only to the Blue Angels kits earlier this year in San Diego speaking personally.

No. 3 Eli Tomac – Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha (2nd Place)

Not a bad day for ET3 either yesterday. His start was actually up in the top five yesterday but had to deal with Sexton and Justin Barcia ahead of him. He even fell behind Webb before he made his big push into the runner-up spot. Despite this being the first time Tomac has gone two straight weeks without a win, his podium streak extends to now seven consecutive rounds. As far as the 450 Monster Energy Supercross Championship goes, the odds are he wraps it up next week in Foxborough. The most likely scenario is Tomac simply outrunning Anderson, or only allowing him to gain one point on him.

No. 23 Chase Sexton – Honda HRC (3rd Place)

If Sexton didn’t tip the bike over after the sand rollers, he more than likely wins yesterday instead of Anderson. In the opening and closing thirds in Atlanta, he was the fastest rider in the 450 Main Event. That one small tip over ended up being a 10-second swing, putting him down eight to Anderson when he got back up in sixth. Some big passes on Malcolm Stewart, Webb, and Barcia got him back into a podium spot. Once Sexton can really put these Main Events together, this field will have a big problem. This speed with the No. 23 is no longer a question, he can hang with the Tomac’s and Anderson’s just fine.

No. 1 Cooper Webb – Red Bull KTM (4th Place)

Although he let up a sure podium finish coming back after a week off, Webb should feel pretty good going into these last few rounds. The reigning Champion spent the bulk of his day running in second behind Anderson, but lost both second and third in the final six minutes. Would assume Roger DeCoster wasn’t thrilled about that, but seeing as he was coming off of injury, this was a good day for Webb.

450 Class Atlanta Top 10

1st No. 21 Jason Anderson

2nd No. 3 Eli Tomac

3rd No. 23 Chase Sexton

4th No. 1 Cooper Webb

5th No. 27 Malcolm Stewart

6th No. 51 Justin Barcia

7th No. 10 Justin Brayton

8th No. 11 Kyle Chisholm (!!!)

9th No. 41 Brandon Hartranft

10th No. 25 Marvin Musquin

Week 14 PulpMX Fantasy Supercross Lineup

250 West: Hunter Lawrence (All-Star +2), Carson Mumford (+8), Nate Thrasher (+2), Mitchell Oldenburg (+1)

450: Eli Tomac (All-Star, No Handicap), Brandon Hartranft (+3), Jeremy Hand (+13), Brandon Scharer (+14)

On a final note, a big shoutout to Steve Matthes and the PulpMX gang on episode No. 500 last Monday. They, by some miracle, were able to secure Ricky Carmichael and Jeremy McGrath to come in studio with Daniel Blair and Jason Thomas and it was fantastic stuff. Absolutely worth the watch if you have the time.

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Main Image via Honda HRC


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One Response

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