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Eli Tomac places sixth in Seattle; Cooper Webb and Chase Sexton battle for first

On Saturday, Star Racing Yamaha’s Eli Tomac placed sixth overall in the main event in Round 11 of the AMA Supercross series in Seattle. (File photo)
Track conditions led to crashes and upsets

On Saturday, Star Racing Yamaha’s Eli Tomac placed sixth overall in the main event in Round 11 of the AMA Supercross series in Seattle.

In qualifying Heat 1, Chase Sexton claimed the hole shot, with Hunter Lawrence within striking distance of the first-place position. While Sexton and Hunter Lawrence battled for first, Tomac and Ken Roczen pressured each other for third place.

While attempting to pass Tomac, Roczen crashed, allowing Tomac to take command of third place.

Sexton’s bike stalled, putting him in fourth place, while Hunter Lawrence took the lead in the third of nine laps.

At the four-minute mark, Tomac was racing in third as Sexton raced back into the second-place spot. Tomac and Sexton battled, and Tomac pulled off a pass in the eighth lap to finish second.

Lawrence finished first, and was followed by Tomac, Sexton and Justin Barcia.

In Heat 2, Aaron Plessinger took the lead out of the gate, but was quickly passed by Vince Friese.

With a minute left in the race, Jett Lawrence and Plessinger were neck and neck, but Jett Lawrence was able to pull off the win. Plessinger finished close behind in second place.

The main event

The 450SX main event proved to be a nail-biter for fans. Sexton was quick out of the gate, claiming the hole shot and taking a commanding lead from the start.

By the third lap, Roczen was second, followed by Cooper Webb, Jason Anderson, Barcia and Jett Lawrence. Tomac was 11th.

At the 15-minute mark, Webb made a move on Roczen’s position, moving into second place in Lap 5 before beginning to chase down Sexton. Tomac was ninth.

Only a minute further into the race, Tomac was in seventh place, and Jett Lawrence crashed while trying to take the second-place spot from Webb, which commentators noted as a “costly mistake.”

Lawrence found himself fighting to keep position with Anderson and Plessinger on either side as riders entered the eighth lap.

With 11 minutes left in the race, Sexton nearly crashed, but maintained his balance. Though he kept from crashing, the slip-up allowed Webb to gain momentum. Commentators noted the conditions of the track, saying that the deep ruts could cause issues for some riders as they continued to deepen.

In a shocking turn of events, Sexton’s bike stalled, allowing him to be passed by Webb. Undeterred, Sexton charged after Webb, momentarily taking back the first-place position while the crowd cheered and jumped to their feet.

The two battled neck and neck for more than a lap, with Webb barely edging out Sexton for first place in what was the “closest race of the year.”

Behind Webb and Sexton were Jett Lawrence in third, Plessinger fourth, Roczen fifth and Tomac sixth.

The next Supercross race will take place at the Dome at America’s Center in St. Louis, Missouri, starting at 6 p.m. EST.