Wrapping things up in Houston, Texas on Saturday, the Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GASGAS Factory Racing Team and Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Teams Max Vohland enjoyed a solid run at NRG Stadium with plenty of historical moments in the first three rounds of the 2021 AMA Supercross Championship. Proving himself as a serious title contender, Justin Barcia sits tied for second overall in the early 450SX standings and he’s got plenty more to give after another impressive performance aboard the MC 450F. Teammate Michael Mosiman ran up front all day, coming away with a top-five finish in 250SX East division. Rookie Maximus Vohland continues to improve and impress, racing his way to a season-best sixth-place in the 250SX Eastern Regional division.
In a strange turn of events, Barcia came into round three sporting the shiny red numberplate backgrounds aboard his MC 450F, which is always an exciting look and feel for the team. He kept it light and fun during the heat, jumping out front with a stellar holeshot. He led the first seven laps but his perfect heat-race record slipped away when he came into contact with a lapped rider and went down. Barcia was able to quickly get going again to maintain second in the heat. As the gate dropped for the Main Event, Barcia found himself just inside the top-10 with his work cut out for him early on. About 10 laps in, Barcia started clicking off consistently fast lap times and it wasn’t long before he was in podium contention. A small mistake cost him some time in the sand section but he reclaimed fourth and kept it on two wheels all the way to the finish.
Barcia: “I felt good going into the Main Event. The track was pretty rough and beat up and I came off the line a little bit late and didn’t get the best of start but I worked my way up to fourth. I was behind third and made a mistake in the sand and went down. All-in-all, I should have been on the podium but we’ll regroup and be ready for Indy. We are in a good spot, the bike feels great, I’m feeling good and the speed is definitely there, I just need to keep it on two wheels, keep nailing the starts and put myself in a good position to be in the fight.”
All smiles heading into the night show, Mosiman kicked off the day with a solid top-four position in qualifying. He wasted no time getting himself up front in the heat race, where he scored a second-place finish. In the Main Event, he jumped right into the mix up front as he pressured the podium battle early on from the fourth spot. Five laps in, Mosiman went for the pass on third and after some back-and-forth combating, he fully assumed the role. Mosiman found himself in another intense battle for third later in the race but this time he was on the unfortunate end of the bar-banging. After coming together with another rider and going down, Mosiman quickly peeled himself off the ground and finished strong with a top-five on the night. After three rounds, Mosiman maintains a top-five running in the overall standings.
Mosiman: “I was just a little bit off all day but I brought it together for the night show. In the heat race I was really frustrated; I feel like Jett kind of walked away from me. I made a couple little mistakes, but I think I had the speed. In the Main Event, I made some adjustments, got a better start and then there was chaos. I was in third and things were looking good, I got into some lapped traffic and Jett caught up to me and absolutely plowed me. There is blood in the water and it’s going to be an exciting season.”
Vohland got off to a great second-place start in 250SX Heat 2 and he powered his way into the lead by the second lap. Leading the first five heat-race laps of his young career, Vohland eventually got passed by a class-veteran and he raced his way to a solid second. In the Main Event, Vohland shot off the line aboard his KTM 250 SX-F to capture a great top-three position off the start and he diced back-and-forth in podium contention early on. He encountered a minor setback with a broken spring in his shifter, but he adapted and overcame the issue to ultimately secure sixth overall and take one step closer to a career-first top-five finish.
Vohland: “Tonight was great! The heat race was awesome, I got off to a really good start and was able to get out front early and lead a majority of the laps. I felt really comfortable riding up front. In the main, I got off to another good start and I got into third early and was hanging onto those guys but I got into a run-in with another guy and ended up breaking a spring in my shifter. I couldn’t shift and I let that get to me a little bit but I was still able to come back and get sixth so overall it was an awesome night. I learned a lot and I’m looking forward going into Indy.”
The Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GASGAS Factory Racing Team will enjoy a full week off from racing before getting back on the gas Saturday, January 30 for the first of three rounds in Indianapolis, Indiana.