Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing’s Eli Tomac came back from a tough start to finish sixth in Saturday night’s drama-filled 450SX Main Event at the Monster Energy AMA Supercross season opener at the Angel Stadium of Anaheim.
His teammate Dylan Ferrandis was fighting his way back for a top-five result in the challenging conditions but ultimately finished 16th.
Both Tomac and Ferrandis showed speed early, qualifying second and fifth, respectively. After finishing third in his heat race, Tomac was looking to build off that result but did not get the start he was hoping for and found himself 11th after the first lap. He kept pushing and rode a smart race to finish sixth amidst the war of attrition in the challenging conditions.
Ferrandis also struggled with starts at Anaheim 1. He finished fifth in his heat race and had another difficult start in the main, but immediately went to work and advanced to 11th behind his teammate by Lap 3. The 2021 450MX Champion moved past a couple of laps later and continued his forward charge to sixth. During the heat of battle, he had an issue in the whoops and was shuffled to 11th with eight laps remaining. He tried to begin another forward charge but unfortunately crashed and went on to salvage some points in 16th.
The Monster Energy Star Yamaha Racing team heads up to Oakland, California, next weekend for Round 2 of Monster Energy AMA Supercross at RingCentral Coliseum on Saturday, January 15.
Team manager Jeremy Coker: “Anaheim 1 was off to a very good start for us, and both Eli and Dylan were very comfortable and qualified well. Unfortunately, we did not get the results we were looking for in the race. We need to go back to work and execute our starts. Starting in the back makes it very hard to get to the front of this stacked class. We are going to put our heads down and come back stronger in Oakland.”
Eli Tomac: “It was a little bit of a slower start than what we wanted this season. It really came down to two things tonight: the starts and I was struggling a little bit with the whoops. It was a tough track; probably one of the toughest A1s that we’ve had in quite some time. On a positive note, I had really good qualifying sessions all day, so I know I can be fast and be there. I just have to put it all together. It’s always easier said than done, but it’s possible. We’re going to try and fix the little things and come back next week.”
Dylan Ferrandis: “Anaheim 1 is always a little crazy. I was actually feeling pretty good all day; it was my starts that hurt me. In the Main Event, I got a really bad start, but I moved my way up. I was feeling pretty good, pretty strong, and was coming back to the top five.
“Then I had an issue and tried to come back but made a mistake and crashed. So it was not a really good night, but I know now that I’m capable of riding out front in the 450 class. We’re going to regroup and be ready for next weekend.”