Skip to content

What Really Happened at Glendale?

By Fowlers Facts

Our intent with this column is to cut through the opinions and hyperbole of what was said or what people thought they saw. This is a facts based approach to breaking down what really happened on the track. Agree or disagree, let me know what you think on Twitter or Instagram

450 Main

Ken Roczen had the most dominant race of the season! While Jett’s A1 and Detroit main events were strong, Roczen’s entire in Glendale day was filled with nearly unmatched speed . Here’s the scoop:

  • Fastest overall lap. It was only 0.02 seconds faster than Jason Anderson’s fastest, but he was still fastest. It was the 34th time (in 139 starts, 24%) he’s been fastest in a main event.
  • Fastest overall heat race lap. He didn’t just set the fastest lap though. He set the 6 fastest laps of his heat and all of his 7 heat race laps ranked in the fastest 13 laps of his heat race. When you combine all heat race laps, including both heat 1 and 2, every one of his laps were faster than 36 of the 40 riders. Folks, his slowest heat lap was faster than 36 of the 40 riders including names like Eli Tomac and Cooper Webb
  • Set 8 of 13 fastest laps in the main. Nearly half of his main event laps ranked in the top 10. I’d heard from Justin Brayton that Kenny was fired up heading into Glendale. Whatever it was that got him fired up, he needs that every weekend.

Also, we shouldn’t be surprised – Roczen’s won twice before in Glendale (2016 and 2020) and had been on the podium in 6 of 9 races in the Phoenix market. Most notable, his 2020 win was a full sweep of all three triple crown races to take the overall win. That’s a feat yet to be repeated!

15 Fastest Main Event Laps
Ken Roczen in Glendale, AZ en route to career win #22. Photo: Garth Milan

Jason Anderson proved again he’s back to 2022 form. It started with securing fastest qualifier in the morning – the 16th time in his career and first of the season. He then backed it up with 2nd in his heat and the main event.

Notable: he was second fastest to Roczen in both combined heats and the main event. I thought this may simply be one of his better venues, it is his home race after all, but he’s ‘only’ averaged 5th here which makes it his 11th best venue. So much for the home venue theory – clearly he was just on the gas.

Join Us in The Garage

This analysis is free (keep scrolling for more) but if you want ALL the depth and insights, join us in The Garage, our premium content fan experience zone. Click the graphic below for more info.

The Garage is We Went Fast’s premium content and fan experience zone. Tap the bike to join us!

Jett Lawrence’s starts continue to be inconsistent. He had the speed, especially in the second half of the race, where he was fastest in 5 of the 10 second half laps. But he rounded the first lap in 9th position and had to work his way through the field.

Notable: this is 1 of 4 times someone has started outside the top 5 and got a podium (others are Ken Roczen in SF and Detroit, Eli Tomac A2*).

Jett Lawrence’s 1st Lap vs. Finish Position

Eli Tomac was fastest on the track in lap 13 (see blue shaded chart below), but then was 7th-9th-9th fastest on laps 14-15-16. This is important because Jett passed him on lap 15. He went from fastest to a 5-10th pace when faced with the first real battle with Jett Lawrence. Not what you’d expect from the legend but I’ll point back to history that when Eli’s not comfortable he’s not going to push it. That said, it’s really interesting to me that he did push it on lap 13.

Quietly, Hunter Lawrence got his first career top 5 in the premier class. The difference from the previous 5 rounds is speed – he was the 6th fastest rider in Glendale (previous best was 8th fastest). Most impressive is from laps 8-20 he had top 3 speed (see the blue shaded chart below). It was a rough start to the 2024 season but keep an eye on the ‘other’ Lawrence brother as we head east. He looks to be figuring things out in the premier class.

Hunter Lawrence and the Arizona sun inside State Farm Stadium. Photo: Garth Milan

Malcolm Stewart finished a season best 8th in Glendale. Great ride from the Factory Husqvarna rider who improved as the race unfolded. His average lap time in the first half ranked 8th and then improved +3 positions to 5th in the second half of the race. Most notable, Malcolm was 1 of 5 riders to improve his speed in the second half of the race. It’s been a forgettable season for the likeable Floridian but it looks like Mookie had a bit more fun in Glendale.

Riders Who Got Faster in Second Half

Aaron Plessinger got a great start and then unfortunately crashed on lap 2 – and the collective fan base experienced deep sadness. No question he’s the fan favorite in opening ceremonies these days!

Back to what really happened: he was 2nd fastest on the first lap, but was only able to repeat that speed one more time after the crash (lap 10 – see the blue shaded chart below). He ultimately only had 3 laps that ranked top 5. I’ll write it off as having to come through the field, but if he wants the red plate again, he’ll need to have that podium speed, like laps 2 and 10, every lap.

450 Main Lap Rank

250 Main Event

RJ Hampshire has been the fastest in the 250 West region, but mistakes have kept him from holding the red plate since round 2. While he doesn’t have the red plate now, he did get his 2nd win of the season and 4th of his career in Glendale. He did so with top 3 laps in 15 of 16 laps (See shaded blue chart below).

As you can see from the table right here though, remove the two mud races and he’s had the speed and finishes! It’s almost like he’s the Jett Lawrence of the 250 West region…

RJ Hampshire Speed vs. Finishes
RJ Hampshire got his 4th career win at State Farm Stadium. Photo: Align Media.

Levi Kitchen was in perfect position to extend his series points lead with a holeshot and rounding the first lap in first, but he’d ultimately finish 2nd to RJ Hampshire. As shown in the blue chart below, he didn’t have the leaders’ pace early in the race. It wasn’t until the 10th lap that he found the speed and by that time RJ Hampshire had a comfortable lead. Makes you wonder if there was some red plate pressure early on.

Let me know if you’ve heard this before – Jo Shimoda needs to figure out his starts. That said, Glendale was his best first lap position of the season – 7th! But that’s not enough when the top 3 in points started 1-2-3. If there’s a silver lining, Jo had the 3 fastest laps of the second half of the race AND he had top 3 speed in 13 of 16 laps.

Jordon Smith woulda, coulda, shoulda won this one. At least that’s what being fastest in 3 of the first 4 laps hints. Alas, crashes on lap 6 and 8 relegated him to his second non-podium finish of the season.

250 Main Lap Rank
250 class Lap time ranks from the 2024 Glendale supercross.

Last, take a look at Carson Mumfords first 3 laps! He had top 5 speed, but looks like he used up his energy as his 2nd half pace was +2.112 seconds slower. That’s nearly double the average drop-off and only 4 other riders had a bigger 2nd half drop. Fitness? Arm pump? Keep an eye on him when the west series returns in Seattle to see if he can keep that pace the whole race.

There you have it folks. There was a lot of cool stats to explain what really happened on the track last weekend at round 6 of the 2024 supercross season.

Have ideas for future What Really Happened?! posts, drop us a note.