Cycle News Staff | April 17, 2021
2021 Atlanta 3 Supercross Rnd 15 Results: What a night of racing as the Supercross series concluded its residency at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. Both classes provided action-packed main events, with Nate Thrasher (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) and Cooper Webb (Red Bull KTM) coming out on top in their respective races. With the win, Webb pulled back a few points and now leads Ken Roczen by 16 points in the championship with two to go.
Roczen (Honda HRC) was looking to maintain his newfound momentum for tonight’s race and executed as needed when the gates dropped for the 450SX main event. The number-seven of Aaron Plessinger (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) nabbed the holeshot and early lead with Roczen, Anderson (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna), and Webb hot on his heels.
On the opening lap, Dylan Ferrandis (Monster Energy Star Racing Yamaha) jumped into the rear end of Anderson and forced the two to the ground. Anderson had an amazing start to the day, logging the fastest qualifying lap and a heat race win, but would go on to finish 11th in the main.
Roczen made his way around the leader, Plessinger, and looked to put a gap on his title rival Webb. The number-94 machine checked out from the field, opening up a 10-second lead by the halfway point of the race.
Meanwhile, the pressure was on for the rest of the podium positions. Justin Barcia (Red Bull/TLD/GasGas) ran fourth with Eli Tomac (Monster Energy Kawasaki) rounding out the top five. This group of four riders seemed evenly spaced, but all looked to improve before the checkers.
With Barcia closing on Webb, the KTM rider looked for an opening around Plessinger. The two raiders locked into a brief battle, but the number-two machine was able to squirt away from the hungry hopefuls.
Tomac found his way around Barcia during the same lap but faced a gap of three seconds to the duo of Webb and Plessinger.
With his lead growing and seven minutes remaining on the clock, Roczen swapped in the whoops and dismounted from his motorcycle. He quickly jumped back on board uninjured, but his lead was cut down by more than half.
Tomac, not wanting to be left behind, passed Plessinger and began to pressure Webb. This forced Cooper to pick up his pace, and with blood in the water from Roczen’s crash, Webb mounted a massive charge towards the front.
The race for the lead was on with two minutes left. Roczen was now within sight of Webb, and it seemed as if Cooper was using that as extra motivation to track down the leader.
The KTM-rider passed for the lead before the first whoop section with only two laps to go. Undeterred, he quickly opened up a lead of just over one second in the final stages of the race.
As heart rates soared, both riders resorted to jumping through the whoops. Mistakes were aplenty, as Webb swapped brutally in a crucial rhythm section….
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