Heading into Southwick, what's new with the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship predictions? Ken Roczen slightly extends his lead in the 450 class,
and Eli Tomac opens an even bigger gap between 2nd and 3rd. The Lites find some stability at the top, with Cooper Webb looking more and more like
the favorite, although it's still open for several riders to step up and claim #1.
Pro MX Outdoor - 2016 Predictions After Week 6
Before the racing at Southwick starts, check out the 2nd-half of the season charts to look at the range of possibilities for each rider.
450MX SEASON PREDICTIONS
Marvin Musquin slides in just ahead of Justin Barcia, overtaking 3rd. Benny Bloss makes a move up the chart with his #10 finish at RedBud -- his times overall in the first half haven't been especially impressive, but as a youngster we predict improvement as the season goes along, which has been the case for him so far. The same is true for Matt Bisceglia, who improves a spot this week.
After taking into account riders' injury history, Bloss moves up while Bisceglia moves down. Both projections together:
250MX SEASON PREDICTIONS
Some stability in the 250 predictions this week, finally with Webb maintaining his substantial lead over Jeremy Martin, Joey Savatgy, and Alex Martin:
Last week's worse that expected result for Aaron Plessinger was the straw that broke the prediction camel's back. Up until week 6, his mediocre results were bad enough that his pre-season #3 ranking looked a bit silly, but the results weren't so bad that he actually dropped down in the updated rankings. Now, though, he falls to 7th -- which is appropriate because his lap times have been closer to 6th fastest, not in the top 3. So--now that he finally dropped down in the rankings--he'll probably out-race everyone to the top of the podium this week.
After factoring in the injury projections, Mitchell Harrison is elevated to #14, which makes sense, considering he sits #15 in the actual standings right now. Colt Nichols slips down to #17, which also seems about right since he is #16 in actual points right now:
The 250 injury and non-injury predictions together:
Who's got the talent and primed to win this week at Southwick? The "This-Week" rankings look at the rider's perceived ability (aka "true talent") as well as injuries and the rider's history at the upcoming track.
Here are the predictions for the 450 class this weekend:
After Roczen and Tomac, the final podium spot is tightly contested with Barcia and Musquin, with Blake Baggett and Broc Tickle not too far behind. With the unusual sand conditions at Southwick, it's certainly all up for grabs. The surprise performer is expected to be Andrew Short, climbing all the way up to 11th -- see the Track Adjustments below.
Three major Track Adjustments are in the This-Week rankings, where Justin Bogle and Justin Brayton lose some spots due to poor prior results at Southwick while Andrew Short improves. One thing to keep in mind is that these comparisons are from 2012/2013 since Southwick hasn't been a National race since then:
Justin Bogle finished 4 places worse at Southwick than at other tracks (granted, that was in the 250's), so the adjustment drops his points by 4 and moves him from 10th to 12th.
Justin Brayton has finished 20th on average at Southwick compared to 13th everywhere else, which drops him down to 19th in this year's prediction.
Andrew Short, on the other hand, finished 8th and 5th at his two years racing Southwick, compared to 9th everywhere else. His 5th in 2013 was tied for his best result of that year. The Track Adjustment moves Short all the way up to #11.
Here are the predictions for the 250 class at Southwick:
Things get a little wacky in the Top 5 once we consider the Track Adjustment -- again, taken with a big grain of salt since these mostly involve only 1 race that was 3 years ago. Hold tight while I explain:
-Cooper Webb falls out of 1st due to him finishing 7 / 34 at Southwick in 2013.
-Jeremy Martin would slide up from 2nd to take over 1st, but he also has a downward Track Adjustment since he finished 35 / 6 in 2013.
-That leaves Joey Savatgy, who could move up from 3rd, but he had an even worse 2013, logging a 37 / 40 (probably a DNS in Moto 2).
-Aaron Plessinger then could leap up from 4th but he has no has not history at Southwick that I can find.
-Instead, Plessinger and all the others get passed by Alex Martin, who in two tries at Southwick put up a #7 and a #10 finish, which were 2 of his 3 best results in all of 2012 and 2013. AMart actually has the most solid adjustment since it's based on two years. It jumps him up to #1, and that may be the most sane thing about the whole This-Week 250 prediction.
-Next, Austin Forkner benefits from the other riders having negative Track Adjustments, although he has no history at Southwick that I can find, so who knows how he'll handle the sand.
-Last is Zach Osborne, who finished 5 / 3 in his motos in 2013. He moves up to #5, but that might be selling him short since he beat all of these other riders in 2013. Every single rider who beat him in either moto from 2013 is now a 450 guy (Tomac, Roczen, Baggett, Bogle). After typing that, I wish the numbers had put Osborne even higher -- but they are what they are.
While we're still on Track Adjustments, Mitchell Oldenburg had a less than impressive 2013 at Southwick, finishing 21 / 20, which drops him a spot in the prediction.
So there we have it -- in the 250's, after all that, it's AMart, then Webb, then JMart for the podium, followed by Forkner, Osborne to round out the Top 5. And in the 450's, no surprises up top with #1 & #2 expected to be Roczen then Tomac and one of Musquin, Barcia, Baggett, or Tickle taking the 3rd spot.