Two wins for number Two!
Heading into the first of three races in Orlando the talk of the series was Team Honda HRC rider Ken Roczen who won three races in a row and led the standings by a valuable 16 points. HOWEVER! The performance of Red Bull KTM Factory Race team Cooper Webb, after three second place finishes in a row, clearly looks to be on the rise and in full pursuit of his second World Championship.
A significant amount of rainfall over Friday night lead to perfect track conditions which made for a great day of racing. After the final qualifying results on Saturday, Cooper Webb was second fastest again only this time it was to Monster Energy Kawasaki Adam Cianciarulo, which landed him in heat race 1 among teammate Marvin Musquin and series defending champion Eli Tomac. Tomac came away from heat 1 with a win, earning the first overall gate pick, something no rider wants to give up to Tomac. Heat 2 saw the fiery hot Roczen lead the field to a win while the number one qualifier Cianciarulo finished third.
The main event proved to be a great race with Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Zach Osborne getting the holeshot while battling with Justin Brayton in second, Ken Roczen in third, followed closely by Cooper Webb. We have been waiting for Osborne to break out this year in supercross but to no avail. Fans hoped that this would be the beginning after a great start, but that hope was quickly dashed as he started to fall back in the field ultimately finishing third overall. Webb took this opportunity to make a two for one pass on Roczen and Brayton and jumped to first. He did not relinquish that position the rest of the race leading to his second race win this season.
The 250 East Coast Championship is shaping up to be a battle of teammates. The Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha has the top two riders in the series with Colt Nichols leading the way
followed by Christian Craig. The two have been fighting it out all season and no surprise here they qualified 1 and 2, with Craig getting the best of Nichols. Series fan-favorite Aussie, Jett Lawrence, came in just behind those two on his Honda HRC bike. In the first heat, we saw Nichols run away with the race gapping his nearing rider by 9 seconds. He was clearly in the mood to fight for a 250 main event win. Heat race 2 was a different story. While leading the race Christian Craig came up short on a triple and then took a hard crash which gave Lawrence the lead. Craig would leave the race with a wrist injury however, he went to the Last Chance Qualifier and like a warrior finished the night on the podium in third.
The main event belonged to Jett Lawrence. He grabbed the holeshot and led every lap! This is his second win of the season and this youngster is heading into the 10-week break with a big confidence boost. Fans are reacting to this special rider with so much personality like we have never seen before. His humility shines through all his interviews and his hysterical personality leaves us laughing and looking forward to a bright future.
250 West riders will take over this upcoming weekend and we get set for the second Orlando event on February 20th.