Following a rough start to the season, Webb and the team went back to the drawing board with a ready to race plan that proved to be nothing less than solid as they emerged victorious for the first time this season, this event round three of the 17-round series and the third consecutive race in Houston.
In 450SX Heat 1, Webb powered his KTM to a third-place start and he raced it in for a solid third. In the main event, he came out swinging to capture the holeshot and early lead. He got passed by Honda’s Ken Roczen a few laps in but he maintained a strong pace to keep the leader within striking distance all race long.
Webb closed the gap on Roczen in the final laps to create an intense head-to-head battle on the final lap. Dodging lapped traffic in a dash to the finish, Webb was able to edge out Roczen in the final turns to secure the win.
Roczen finished runner-up with Kawasaki’s Adam Cianciarulo completing the podium, while Gas Gas rider and series points leader Justin Barcia and Kawasaki’s defending champion Eli Tomac rounded out the top five.
Roczen now leads the standings, but just one points from Webb and Barcia.
“It was a close race the whole time and Kenny [Roczen] rode a solid race with not many mistakes. The track was really tricky, easy to over-ride and get impatient,” said Webb.
“The lappers there at the end was a bummer, I felt like we were going to have a really good battle, and obviously we did, but the lappers were really tough tonight. I hung in there and I pounced on that last lap and made it happen. I’ve really got to give it up to my team, they’re amazing.”
French KTM rider Marvin Musquin, who came into Saturday tied for third in 450SX points, experienced a tough night all around.
Grabbing a top-three start in 450SX Heat 2, Musquin was in the early battle for the lead when another rider came into him exiting the whoops, leaving the French rider on the ground early on.
Losing substantial time in the chaos, Musquin made an impressive charge from 19th all the way up to secure an eighth-place transfer into the main event. With a not-so-favourable gate choice for the main, Musquin struggled to get off the line cleanly and found himself down on the opening lap. He once again made a charge from the back of the pack, where he ultimately finished 13th.
Next Race: Indianapolis, Indiana – January 30, 2021
Results 450SX Class – Houston 3:
- Cooper Webb (USA), KTM, 26 laps
- Ken Roczen (GER), Honda, +00.468
- Adam Cianciarulo (USA), Kawasaki, +14.431
Standings 450SX Class 2021 after 3 of 17 rounds:
- Roczen, 60 points
- Webb, 59
- Barcia, 59
Results 250SX East Class – Houston 3:
- Colt Nichols (USA), Yamaha, 20 laps
- Christian Craig (USA), Yamaha, +03.478
- Jett Lawrence (USA), Honda, +16.392
Standings 250SX East Class 2021 after 3 of 9 rounds:
- Nichols, 70 points
- Craig, 70
- Lawrence, 64
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