New Years is just a couple days away, and with that we’re about to enter a new season of Supercross! With 2018 fast approaching, let’s take a look back at each rider’s highs and lows in the 2017 season.
2. Cooper webb
2017 was Webb’s rookie year in the premier class. Because of that, no one really knew what to expect of him, although he most definitely had a lot of pressure placed on him after dominating the 250 class the previous year. Despite being a rookie, Webb was a beacon of newfound hope in the class. His confidence (dare I say cockiness?), motivation, and aggression was the perfect mixture to vie for wins in the 450 class. Unfortunately, we never saw the Webb that we all expected. He started the year off slowly, seemed to find his speed halfway, but then a shoulder injury set him all the way back. Rumors are he didn’t gel well with the Yamaha 450, and that a brand new 2018 bike will be exactly what he needs. Only time will tell.
3. Eli tomac
We all witnessed Tomac bloom in 2017. Previously, we knew Tomac was capable of winning, but he never seemed to find his speed on the Kawasaki. After starting the Supercross season extremely slow, Tomac blossomed into the rider that we all anticipated: a serious threat for championships. Tomac was the man to beat week in and week out, and most nights, no one was even close to matching his speed. He coulda, shoulda, woulda won the championship if not for Dungey’s pure consistency and Tomac’s own mistakes. The one downfall really was his own mentality: he can never seem to handle the pressure.
4. Blake baggett
Baggett’s Supercross season was unremarkable, if not totally unforgettable. His biggest highlight was a massive loop-out off the start of one the races (although he did have some good races halfway through with a podium and a few 4ths). Baggett has never been super impressive in Supercross, although a strong motocross season in 2017 was somewhat promising. He showed there that he has the speed to beat the best riders in the world outdoors, but it’s still to-be-determined as to whether or not that applies in Supercross as well.
10. Justin Brayton
Brayton joined a new team for 2017, and his relationship with the team seemed to be a bit rocky. He pitted out of HRC’s rig a few times, and showed clear mistrust and annoyance with teammate Vince Friese. Brayton has shown to be a consistent top 10 rider in years past, but he struggled a lot to show that same consistency in 2017. Truthfully, I was expecting a big year for him after a stellar off-season in 2016, but he never amounted to what I had anticipated. A couple of 6th place rides, and that’s about it.
14. Cole Seely
2017 was supposed to be a big year for Seely. Honda HRC decided to keep him over Canard, which must have been a big confidence boost, and he had a friendly rival in new teammate Ken Roczen. But, as always, only a few riders end up living up to the pre-season hype, and unfortunately for Seely, he wasn’t one of them. A couple podiums and some top 5 rides was all Seely could muster up; he still hasn’t shown the winning pace that resulted in his first and only Supercross win back in 2015.
15. Dean Wilson
This is a real tear-jerker, a true comeback story: 2017 went as well as Deano could have ever possibly imagined. Wilson showed his raw passion and commitment to the sport at the beginning of the year by doing a full privateer effort and pitting out of his box van with his dad. Consistency and hard work paid off quickly, and he was picked up by Rockstar Energy Husqvarna. His results continued to improve, and with that, Husky signed him on for another year as well. He made it all the way up to a podium spot in a few outdoor races, got signed by Shift MX, and even won an Aus-X main event during the off-season.
18. Davi Millsaps
Can you believe that Millsaps ended up 5th overall in the Supercross championship last year? He only finished in the top 5 a few times, but consistent top 10s paved the way to a good overall position by the end of the year. Otherwise, it was a very unremarkable year for him, but I feel like that’s always the story for Davi: consistent, unmemorable finishes leading to a surprisingly good overall result. This seemed to be noticed by Factory Yamaha by deciding to sign him on for 2018, but a bad crash this offseason ruined the end of an otherwise good year for Millsaps.
19. Justin Bogle
I can’t think of a more up-and-down season for anyone in terms of pure speed and race finishes. At times, Bogle was a huge disappointment on the track, seemingly coasting around without his usual flare. And then suddenly, he would find speed from nowhere and win a race! I guess the occasional show of speed was enough to convince JGR to sign him on for 2018 though.
20. Broc Tickle
Slowly but surely, every year seems to be a bit better for Tickle. In 2017, this trend continued with him getting his first podium in Supercross and showing signs of real speed. An injury offset him for the outdoors, but he was able to get hired to Red Bull KTM for 2018 nonetheless.
21. Jason Anderson
Anderson has to be happy with his 2017 year. Steady improvements year after year, which ultimately resulted in him being the 4th best guy all year in Supercross. One step off the podium all year has to be frustrating, but the continual increase in speed is promising. In the motocross championship, he was in a position to battle for the title, but an injury ruined his chances.
22. Chad Reed
Reed entered 2017 with his dream ride onboard a Factory Yamaha. Thoughts were that Reed would retire with the team, but a bad 2017 Supercross season seemed to ruin that for him, as he is now left rideless. Reed had two good races: a 2nd in Phoenix where he came through the pack in an outstanding ride, and then a near-win at the final round in Las Vegas. Other than that, nothing spectacular from Reed. Unlike Tickle and Anderson, he seems to be gradually getting worse every year, and 2017 showed that for sure.
25. Marvin Musquin
Much like Tomac, Musquin seemed to find his true potential in 2017. It was an amazing learning year for Marvin, and he seemed to continually improve race after race. He finally found that first win, and in many races was the second best guy to Tomac (even faster than Dungey). In outdoors, he came on well in the latter half of the season and was basically unstoppable; clearly the fastest guy. To wrap it all up, he had an amazing off-season by winning everything imaginable: Bercy, Straight Rhythm, Monster Million at Monster Cup, etc.
51. Justin Barcia
Barcia can never seem to get it together for the beginning of the Supercross season, which seems to haunt him for the entire year. The past few years he has entered with some type of injury, and 2017 was no different. Unfortunately for him, that resulted with him losing his ride with JGR for 2018. Fortunately for him, Millsaps won’t be ready for the opening few rounds, and Barcia has an opportunity to fill-in on Yamaha.
94. Ken Roczen
2017 will definitely be one that Roczen wants to forget. Roczen was absolutely stunning in the opening couple of rounds, but his massive crash in Anaheim II was probably the worst crash that has happened to a top rider in a long time. The rest of the year was spent off the bike trying to save his arm and rehabilitating it, eventually resulting with him returning to the bike in preparation for the 2018 season.