Supercross "This Week" Predictions -- Daytona 2017
Eli Tomac is keeping the pressure on, but the ratings still don't see him as the automatic favorite over Ryan Dungey on any given week. Remember, Tomac has had some off nights, while Dungey hasn't yet finished lower than 4th. Who's got the talent and primed to win at Supercross week 10 in Daytona?
As usual, the updated 2017 Supercross Prediction puts the whole season in perspective, while the "This Week" rankings look at the riders' perceived ability (aka "true talent") as well as taking into account injuries and the riders' history at the upcoming track.
**For those not familiar, a brief explanation of the components that factor into the "This Week" rankings:
The standard MotoXGraphs prediction of rider performance, based on the current and prior seasons, weighing recent results more heavily. It differs from the "Full Season" prediction in that it is not worrying about the rider's current point standings (which obviously are a crucial part of the full season prediction), only about their current ability.
Attempts to account for riders competing at less than 100% due to injury. Full research behind the Injury Adjustment can be found in The MX Book (or eBook). While this adjustment is only an estimate (what predictions aren't?), the purpose of the Injury Adjustment is less about trying to make an exact prediction and is more about indicating that a rider is recovering from injury so the viewer can take that into account at whatever scale he or she chooses.
Provides an increase or decrease in expected points for the riders based on their historical performance (over the past 4 years, where applicable) in the upcoming city/stadium. Also validated by research in The MX Book ( or eBook). The track/location effect has a slightly muted nature in Supercross compared to outdoors since the tracks are not exactly the same in Supercross sites from year to year (or even within the same year for sites like Angel Stadium or Petco where there are often multiple races in one season).
Here are the predictions for the 450 class this weekend.
At first glance, the Top 3 look pretty normal -- but once the Track Adjustment is figured in, Tomac becomes the favorite at Daytona. Dungey is naturally the next up, with a big gap between the others. And though Marvin Musquin is still projected 3rd, his is much farther behind Tomac/Dungey than last week (and is assumed to be back to full health).
Trey Canard is listed above, though questionable with a head injury, and as such loses several spots after the Injury Adjustment (as does Davi Millsaps whose wrist was still bothering him last week). While Canard gets some of those spots back after the Track Adjustment (6th place in his last 3 attempts at Daytona; 8th everywhere else), Millsaps gets a further downward adjustment (9th in 2015 and 19th in 2016; 10th everywhere else).
Justin Martin makes his 450SX debut, and while the predicted adjustment for riders moving from 250SX to 450SX (especially when it's a midseason fill in) is not all that reliable, he slots in at 12th before the Injury/Track adjustments and at 11th after (in 250SX at Daytona he was 6th in 2014, 3rd in 2015, and 1st in 2016).
The biggest mover in the Track Adjustment is of course Tomac (who finished 2nd in 2015 and 1st in 2016), but Josh Grant also has a large positive adjustment, moving him up 3 spots into 10th (he finished 10th, 11th, and 7th at Daytona; 12th everywhere else -- his 7th in 2016 was his best result of the season).
So there it is -- will Tomac respond to the expectations of an expected win at Daytona, or will the weight of having to win every remaining race be too much in the end?