In Houston, we had a problem. In Indy, we find the ‘Temple of Doom’ (Indy, Temple of Doom, can you see what we’ve done there?)
It was a wild evening of action inside the Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday night. We saw takeouts, crashes, and false starts to name but a few of the dramatic twists and turns. These are some of the guys that lady luck seemed to neglect…
The tough and technical circuit in Indy claimed a number of victims on Saturday. Max Vohland became the latest star of the 250 division to suffer what appears to be a season ending injury. The young rookie – who had started off his professional career in a great way in Houston – crashed through the whoops during qualifying and has reportedly dislocated his hip. We wish a speed recovery to the Red Bull KTM star.
Another man who was unable to line up for the night show was Rockstar Husqvarna’s Dean Wilson. Deano picked up a foot injury mid-week whilst preparing for the race, as detailed on his Instagram page. The Scotsman valiantly attempted to compete despite his injury, but the pain became too much to bear for the Husqvarna pilot during the afternoon’s qualifying session, and he was forced to sit out the night show. Another big get well soon goes out to Wilson.
The soft Indiana dirt caused problems for many riders throughout the day’s on-track action. Jump faces became increasingly gnarly, meaning that riders were getting cross-rutted left, right and centre. The main problem jump was the second of the two large doubles after the finish. This obstacle caused problems for many riders, including the likes of Dylan Ferrandis and Ken Roczen – who both leapt straight off the track.
The worst of these incidents came during 450 heat one. Vince Friese got the jump seriously wrong, which saw him hit the eject button mid-air. The Bull Frog Spa’s Honda rider came crashing down in a heap off the track, but his stricken bike lay directly on the main line of the landing. Alex Ray was collected by Friese’s bike and the popular privateer was sent over the bars to slam hard into the next berm. A scary crash indeed.
Friese was able to dust himself off to finish second in the LCQ and advance to the main. A-Ray wasn’t quite so fortunate, he hurt his wrist in the crash and was unable to finish the LCQ.
Unexpected Last Chance Qualifier
Jason Anderson has struggled to discover his mojo so far in 2021. The former champ has yet to find his way on to the Main Even podium so far this year, and his fortunes did not improve on Saturday night.
Anderson sat in a solid qualifying spot in 450 Heat two. But a mistake in the latter half of the race knocked him outside the top ten and forced him into the dreaded last chance qualifier.
This was the first LCQ of Anderson’s 450 career. He started off inside the top four and quickly moved into the leading spot. He went on to take the win and advance to the main, where he salvaged a seventh-place finish.
Anderson had this to say on Twitter after the LCQ, ‘First W of the season… FML.’
The Husqvarna rider knows that he’s got a lot of work to do in order to get back to where he belongs.
Zach Osborne is one of the fiercest competitors in the sport today. The current 450MX champion certainly won’t be happy with how his season has panned out so far. The Rockstar Energy Husqvarna pilot has shown incredible speed and real heart thus far in 2021, but bad starts and mistakes have wreaked havoc on his title ambitions. This trend of ill-luck continued for Zacho on Saturday. In a total brain fart move he jumped the gun early and got caught in the gates at the start of the race. Leaving him absolutely dead last.
After this Osborne rode like man possessed to work his way back to fifth place. At one point he was even in the battle for the final podium place. A truly incredible ride from Zach. Just imagine what he could do with a holeshot…
Is Justin Barcia racing for Troy Lee or Bruce Lee? If his dramatic karate kick on Malcolm Stewarts bike is any indication it seems as though JB has been watching a little too much Cobra Kai.
Barcia has certainly lost the momentum that he gained by winning the opening race in Houston. He crashed on the last lap of his heat race, and then crashed gain on the opening lap of the Main.
After a bad start the GasGas rider got mixed up in a multi-rider collision that saw him hit the deck along with Malcolm Stewart. Stewart’s bike was piled on top of Barcia’s TLD machine, so Bam Bam employed his best roundhouse in order to get rid of the Star Yamaha. After this setback Justin could only muster a 13th place finish.
We saw a number of takeout moves in Indy on Saturday, and unfortunately for him Jett Lawrence was on the receiving end of most of them. Michael Mosiman got his revenge on the Australian in 250 Heat two, the GasGas rider put The Jett on the floor on lap one, giving the teenager plenty of time to recover a qualifying spot.
Then, after a hard-fought battle through the field in the Main Event Lawrence looked to make a pass on Christian Craig for second on the final lap of racing. But Craig was having none of it. The veteran rider tried to push Jett wide in the corner to stop him from making the pass. But with his experience Craig should have known better. He forced them both off the track, allowing Michael Mosiman and Jo Shimoda to take over the podium positions.
This was a particularly bad move on Craig’s behalf, as he was actually the only one of the two to hit the deck. Lawrence recovered to finish in fourth and Craig remounted to finish fifth. With that Christian Craig not only lost control of the red plate but he also lost a handful of incredibly valuable points in the championship fight, which has allowed his teammate to open up a nice eight-point lead. This is certainly not how Craig wanted to start off his time in Indy.
Was Craig’s move dirty or fair game? Let us know what you think…