After the hardships of 2020, we are finally back to some good ol’ Supercross Racing but this time from NRG Stadium located in Houston, Texas as the opening round for the 2021 Monster Energy Supercross season. Many will argue that Houston has some of the best dirt for racing as during qualifying and practice, long ruts began to form along with plenty of traction going up the jump faces. Thankfully for the riders, this is their first of two races that they will be having in Houston before traveling north to Indianapolis leaving many West coast riders jealous of the riding conditions. For some 450 riders, they will revert to their old settings and adjust their bike with a few tweaks as is the case for Eli Tomac and Adam Cianciarulo. But for others such as Ken Roczen,  Chase Sexton, and others that recently joined a new team, they were handed a brand new bike with very little development. However, the two that many were worried about being on a new bike, Ken and Chase, qualified exceedingly well showing that despite being on a new set of wheels, their speed makes up for it. So who will be your pick for the Houston opener? Will Eli Tomac show that brilliance that we saw last year as he won the championship? Will Cooper Webb pull ahead of the competition and score another championship under his belt? Or will some of the younger 450 riders like Chase Sexton and Adam Cianciarulo show they have what it takes to make an impression on the 450 vets? Scroll down below to find out.


Photos by Brian Converse


Ken Roczen sliding in Houston 1.

The main event took off with Cooper Webb barely taking the holeshot away from Justin Barcia. The pack was incredibly tight as Justin Barcia and Justin Brayton scraped by the former SX champion. Webb fell behind the pack letting half of the field to make a pass. Adam Cianciarulo and Ken Roczen moved up into third and fourth place but then the two traded place shortly after. Two laps in, Chase Sexton got caught up with Martin Davalos and lost many positions. Justin Brayton lost his position to Ken Roczen as Ken gained ground on the 51 of Justin Barcia. Marvin Musquin then made the pass on Justin Brayton earning him fourth place while Cianciarulo held onto the third place position. Justin Barcia’s lead was narrowing as Ken made progress on the rear fender but Justin combated this by riding as smooth as possible. The two red bikes were on each other’s fenders heading into the 12 minute mark. Malcolm Stewart also made short work of Justin Brayton gaining the fifth position. While there was a battle for first place, there was a battle for third between Marvin Musquin and Adam Cianciarulo. The past year’s champ sat in thirteenth after having a run-in with Vince Friese and then had another run-in with Vince several laps later. The battle for the lead grew even tighter as Ken Roczen and Barcia came close to each other almost swapping spots in a few turns. With four minutes left, Ken was running out of time to get the lead position but Barcia refused to let him get by easily. With a minute left, Justin Barcia would steadily grow the gap in between the two veteran 450 riders. The two red riders were more than 14 seconds ahead of third place as they raced their own race. And for the first time in 25 years, Justin Barcia would go ahead and win his third in a row season opener.

1 51 Justin Barcia
2 94 Ken Roczen
3 25 Marvin Musquin
4 9 Adam Cianciarulo
5 27 Malcolm Stewart
6 10 Justin Brayton
7 14 Dylan Ferrandis
8 7 Aaron Plessinger
9 2 Cooper Webb
10 16 Zach Osborne
11 17 Joey Savatgy
12 15 Dean Wilson
13 1 Eli Tomac
14 23 Chase Sexton
15 21 Jason Anderson
16 40 Vince Friese
17 20 Broc Tickle
18 36 Martin Davalos
19 11 Kyle Chisholm
20 722 Adam Enticknap
21 28 Brandon Hartranft
22 83 Alex Ray

2021 Supercross_Houston 1_Justin Barcia-8138Justin Barica would win his third season opener in a row.


Joey Savatgy would end up eighth in his heat race.

The 28 of Brandon Hartranft got in front of the pack within the first turn at the beginning of the second 450 heat race but Cooper Webb made quick work of the Twisted Tea HEP Suzuki rider. Despite not having spectacular qualifying results, Zach Osborne got a good start and remained in third with Marvin Musquin chasing his tail. Aaron Plessinger sat in the second position making time on the Factory RedBull KTM rider of Cooper Webb. Malcolm Stewart and Marvin Musquin raced each other for the fourth position and the Yamaha rider would make the pass. With one minute remaining, three riders were battling for the lead that Cooper Webb held. Zach Osborne, Aaron Plessinger, and Malcolm Stewart were all within a second of each other as they put the charge on Cooper Webb. Zach Osborne took the lead with two laps to go and put a huge lead in front of Webb. Aaron Plessinger fell behind and Chase Sexton made the pass for fourth place. Zach Osborne would end winning the heat race.

1 16 Zach Osborne
2 2 Cooper Webb
3 27 Malcolm Stewart
4 23 Chase Sexton
5 7 Aaron Plessinger
6 21 Jason Anderson
7 40 Vince Friese
8 25 Marvin Musquin
9 14 Dylan Ferrandis
10 28 Brandon Hartranft
11 83 Alex Ray
12 805 Carlen Gardner
13 722 Adam Enticknap
14 57 Justin Rodbell
15 43 Fredrik Noren
16 114 Nick Schmidt
17 282 Theodore Pauli
18 421 Vann Martin
19 952 Ludovic Macler
20 330 Aj Catanzaro

Malcolm Stewart would end up getting third in the second heat race.

Zach Osborne would end up winning his heat race.


Past year’s 450 champ Eli Tomac in front of Justin Barcia and Cooper Webb.

The 51 of Justin Barcia took the holeshot on the brand new GasGas and the rest of the pack was on his back. Both Adam Cianciarulo and Ken Roczen were putting the pressure on Justin Barcia as they battled neck and neck for the first place position. Last year’s champ, Eli Tomac, sat in the sixth position but began to make up spots in the first heat race. The number 10 of Justin Brayton sat in fourth but started to feel Eli Tomac on his heels within the first two laps. Adam Cianciarulo sat three seconds behind the two red riders. Justin was making some moves that Ken was not able to compete with but Ken had some tricks up his own sleeve as he made progress towards the 51 rider. As the final lap began Justin put some ground in between him and Ken Roczen and ultimately, the GasGas rider would ride away with a heat win.

1 51 Justin Barcia
2 94 Ken Roczen
3 9 Adam Cianciarulo
4 1 Eli Tomac
5 10 Justin Brayton
6 15 Dean Wilson
7 36 Martin Davalos
8 17 Joey Savatgy
9 20 Broc Tickle
10 11 Kyle Chisholm
11 981 Austin Politelli
12 606 Ronnie Stewart
13 280 Cade Clason
14 81 Justin Starling
15 37 Benny Bloss
16 184 Scott Champion
17 848 Joan Cros
18 309 Jeremy Smith
19 509 Alexander Nagy
20 976 Joshua Greco

Justin Barica looked smooth on his GasGas 450 with his all-new WP Air Shock

Adam Cianciarulo would take the third position in his heat race.


Kyle Chisholm would win the LCQ and move onto the main event.

Brandon Hartranft nearly got the holeshot at the beginning of the LCQ but the 848 of Cros would sneak by and take it away from the Suzuki rider. After a lap, Brandon Hartranft charged through a rhythm section and took the lead followed by Kyle Chisholm. Another lap later, Kyle Chisholm would make the pass on Hartranft and Adam Enticknap would sit in third followed by Alex Ray. With a minute remaining, Kyle put a several second gap in between himself and the competition to get a comfortable lead heading into the main event.

1 11 Kyle Chisholm
2 28 Brandon Hartranft
3 722 Adam Enticknap
4 83 Alex Ray
5 848 Joan Cros
6 606 Ronnie Stewart
7 981 Austin Politelli
8 184 Scott Champion
9 805 Carlen Gardner
10 81 Justin Starling
11 282 Theodore Pauli
12 309 Jeremy Smith
13 114 Nick Schmidt
14 37 Benny Bloss
15 330 Aj Catanzaro
16 280 Cade Clason
17 421 Vann Martin
18 509 Alexander Nagy
19 43 Fredrik Noren
20 952 Ludovic Macler
21 976 Joshua Greco
22 57 Justin Rodbell



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