Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing’s Christian Craig swept all three Anaheim rounds of the season with a start-to-finish dominating win last night inside Angel Stadium for Round 6 of Monster Energy AMA Supercross. The Californian extended his championship lead to 28 points as the 250SX West Championship riders head into a five-week break. Nate Thrasher had a good main event going but was forced to retire early when a rider went down in front of him, scoring him 20th.
Craig started the day the same way he has at nearly every round this season – taking his fifth top-qualifying position. The heat race was stacked with his closest title contenders, but the red plate holder went out and led from start to finish. Knowing the start would be key on the slick track, Craig put his YZ250F into the lead after just a few sections of the track and never looked back. He ended up crossing the line 25 seconds ahead of second for his fourth victory of the season and now sits in the driver’s seat of the championship with over a one-race lead.
Thrasher started the day by grabbing the fourth spot in qualifying. After a tough start, he had a lot of work to do in his heat race but quickly went from outside the transfer line to finish the heat second. Ready to show off that speed in the main event, Thrasher came around the first turn just outside the top five. While running in sixth just a minute and a half into the race, a rider went down in front of him at the end of the whoops, leaving him with no option but to hit the downed bike. He tried to rejoin but ultimately had to withdraw from the race.
The Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing team welcomes the start of the 250SX East Championship of Monster Energy AMA Supercross on Saturday, February 19, at the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing 250 Team Manager
“Anaheim sent us into the 250SX West break feeling pretty good! We started the day off qualifying very well, with Christian getting pole and Nate qualifying fourth. In a stacked Heat 2, Christian quickly got into the lead to cruise to the win. Then in the main, he once again got off to a great start and found himself in the lead very early. Christian was able to avoid the many crashes that seemed to be happening all over the track and come home with a very substantial lead for another win.
“Although Nate didn’t get off to a good start in Heat 1, he fought back to finish second. Nate was doing great in the main when another rider went down in the whoops in front of him, causing him to go down also. He remounted the bike but was unable to finish the race. Overall we are very happy to go into the break with a healthy points lead. We’re also very excited to start the 250SX East Championship next weekend in Minneapolis to show how hard those boys have been working!”
Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing
“It was a good day here in Anaheim. Practice went well, and I was gelling with the track, feeling comfortable. I got off to a good start in my heat race and put in my laps. Then in the main event – I really focused on my start. I knew if I could check that one off, then the rest would kind of play out by itself, and I’d be in a good spot. I was able to get into the lead in the second turn, and from there, I just focused on my laps. The track was pretty crazy, and some of the rhythm sections and the whoops were sketchy, but I was able to just do my laps and let the rest play out behind me. We get a little break now, and we’ll try and keep the momentum going for Seattle.”
Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing
“It was another tough night for me. I felt like I was riding well and had the speed, but unfortunately, another rider went down in front of me, and I had nowhere to go. I’m really bummed. It’s not how I wanted to finish the West Coast run, but we have a break and will get back to work and regroup.”