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AMA Supercross returned to the Bay Area for round 2 of the championship at Oracle Park, home of the San Francisco Giants. Despite the heavy rain and treacherous conditions, the race went ahead with modified qualifying sessions and shortened main events.

The return visit to San Francisco after a decade was destined to be a muddy affair. The rain throughout the week and on race day made the track extremely challenging. The qualifying sessions were shortened to just one session, and Red Bull KTM’s Aaron Plessinger, known for his skills in mud, topped the charts in the 450SX class.

As the rain continued to fall, the main events were also shortened, and the track was adjusted to ensure a safe and rideable night show. In the 450SX main event, Chase Sexton, in only his second race with Red Bull KTM, made an impressive start. Timing the gate drop perfectly, Sexton took the lead in the first corner and held onto it throughout the race.

Despite the pressure from two-time champion Eli Tomac, Sexton maintained control and secured his first win of the season. However, Sexton acknowledged that the challenging conditions were not indicative of how the rest of the season would unfold.

“I didn’t think we’d get here this fast, to be honest,” said Sexton. “I thought I was going to have to be patient and work my way into a good position with the bike. We were testing some significant changes the week of Anaheim.”

Looking ahead, Sexton expects tough competition from riders like Jett Lawrence and others who consistently perform at a high level. The depth of talent in the field makes it difficult to single out one dominant rider each weekend.

Eli Tomac, despite making late mistakes that cost him a chance at the win, managed to hold off a strong charge from Progressive Insurance ECSTAR Suzuki’s Ken Roczen. Roczen, who had a bad start, fought his way back to secure his first podium of the season.

“For a while, I had no idea where I was at. I just wanted to have fun with it and save the bike,” said Roczen. “I rode in a way that I wasn’t constantly slipping the clutch, and I’m really happy with how it turned out. Thanks to the team and my mechanic.”

The unpredictable nature of the conditions and the level of competition in the 450SX class make it an exciting season to watch. With different riders consistently making it to the podium, it’s anyone’s race each weekend.

While round 2 in San Francisco was a challenging mud race, the upcoming races will likely showcase a different set of conditions and challenges. The riders will need to adapt and adjust their strategies accordingly to stay competitive.

AMA Supercross fans can look forward to an exhilarating season filled with intense battles and unexpected outcomes. As the championship progresses, the focus will shift from the mud of San Francisco to the diverse tracks and varying conditions that lie ahead.

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