2017 Supercross Week 17 -- By-The-Numbers Recap: Las Vegas [Charts Only]
(Note: now interactive, so hover over the lines to see the Rider/Lap/Position.)
What a fascinating race, coming down to the final seconds. Eli Tomac was faced with the choice of whether to take off, securing 1st, or to try to squeeze Ryan Dungey back toward the pack and hope for things to get messy. Clearly he chose the latter, slowing by nearly 3 (!) seconds in Laps 7, 8, and 9, waiting for Dungey to catch up:
(Travis Marx (@imtravismarx) documented this right after the race in a very timely tweet here.)
Then Dungey was faced with his own no-win choice. He could trail behind Tomac, keeping the gap close enough to maintain his championship points lead, but if he did that, the other riders like Jason Anderson, Josh Grant (gulp), and Chad Reed (double gulp, considering their recent tiff) would have a shot at interfering with Dungey. On the other hand, Dungey could try to pass Tomac, making Tomac speed up to pull away from the other riders, but by doing that Dungey would open himself up to contact from Eli via block passes (and otherwise). Dungey seemed to go with option number 2, trying to keep Tomac honest by going for the pass when he could.
Whatever the case, it's amazing how close Tomac, Dungey, and Anderson rode for the entire second half of the race (save the last half lap), as you can see in that graph. In the laptimes tool below, add in Chad Reed, to see how he took advantage of the situation, making up a ton of ground in Laps 13, 14, and 15, right up until his collision with Anderson.