Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing’s Shane McElrath and Colt Nichols finish second and third, respectively, at the penultimate round of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship on Wednesday night at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City.
With three points separating the title contenders and one last race for the Eastern Regional 250SX class before the East-West Showdown, the battle was intense. McElrath got off to a great start, leading flag-to-flag to score a dominant Heat race win. In the Main Event, he quickly took the lead and held it for four laps, but his rival, Chase Sexton, was able to close the gap. The defending 250SX East Champion went for the pass in the right hander after the start straight and made contact with McElrath, taking over the lead. The North Carolinian put his head down to try and close the gap on the race leader, but ultimately had to settle for second. He now heads into the finale trailing by six points.
His teammate Nichols had a solid start to the night with a second-place finish in his Heat. Unfortunately, a bad start in the Main Event made for a tough race to the top. The Oklahoman was able to quickly work his way from sixth to fourth and went to chase down third. Around the halfway mark, he made the pass coming out of the whoops to take that final podium position, his third podium after returning from injury when racing resumed on May 31st.
The entire Monster Energy Star Racing team will battle at the East-West Showdown this Sunday, June 21, at the season finale at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City.
Wil Hahn – Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing Team Manager
“Tonight we put ourselves in a great position early on, but we did not have the intensity that we needed to bring home the win. Plain and simple, we have to be better than this. Sunday is going to be exciting having the East-West Showdown. We’re going to come back and fight for some championships.”
Shane McElrath – Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing
“Man, second place isn’t bad, except in this situation. I really needed a win tonight and unfortunately came up short. I was just a little behind all day today, but I’m fired up and I’m making a statement at the last round.”
Colt Nichols – Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing
“Overall it was a good race to get third and on the podium, I just had a bad start and that really hurt me. I also didn’t have the intensity that I needed, so I’m a little bummed. I felt like I left a little bit out there, but it’s all good. I have one more race on Sunday and I’m ready to do battle with the guys from the East and West.”