“Say it ain't so, Chad”
As the Monster Energy Supercross series winds down the battle for the Championship Title heats up between Dungey and Tomac. Unfortunately, Chad Reed cost the fans a chance to witness the two best Monster Energy Supercross riders go at it on a track that was challenging and designed for good racing. Chad was apparently upset at Dungey for coming over on him during the start in Detroit, along with his comments after the heat race. I have watched Detroit several times and don't see anything other than guys funneling into a tight first turn, I call Detroit a racing incident. Reed started his assault on Dungey during the heat race by crossing the whoops in front of Dungey on the first lap. I am of the opinion that whoops are like big jumps, riders are committed and this is not a section to get aggressive. The riders are in 3rd or 4th gear wide open and changing directions can cause them to drop a wheel which ultimately could be catastrophic. Now if a 250 rider made that move I might chalk it up to inexperience, but as a seasoned veteran Reed knew better. The move before the finish line was aggressive, maybe a little too rough for a heat race but I didn’t have an issue with the move.
If this were a car race Reed would have been black flagged in the Main. I know I have been very critical of John Gallagher, but as the FIM Competition Director this behavior falls under his jurisdiction. I would like to know where he is viewing the race from along with how many other officials have eyes on the track. If he is trying to do the job by himself, he is doomed to fail as it is impossible for one person to see everything. Mr. Gallagher should have been on high alert after the heat race incident between Reed and Dungey, while not many people anticipated Reed blocking Dungey, Mr. Gallagher or someone in his crew should have noticed this and black flagged Reed. Due to the inconsistency of punishments handed out lately I understand the hesitation, but something should have been done. I would sit Reed out for Seattle, a similar punishment to Kyle Chisholm when he blocked Reed in 2009. With millions of dollars and the prestige of a Supercross Championship on the line, it’s perplexing Reed chose this move. If the Championship is decided by under 6 points many will look back on this moment in infamy.
With four rounds left the intensity is as high as any series I can remember with so many questions to be answered in both classes. Who will be champion? Will mud be a factor? Will somebody other than Reed play spoiler? Will we see team tactics? Is this Dungey's last season? Will Joey Savatgy ever smile? Can Mcelrath make up the points lost to Hill in Dallas? Will Forkner get a win? Will the mixed East/West shout out decide both 250 titles? Whoever says Supercross isn't exciting clearly isn't paying attention. We have drama both on and off the track, stay tuned!