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AMA Nationals: Hangtown predictions

AMA Nationals: Hangtown predictions
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Andy McKinstry: The heavily anticipated AMA Nationals returns this weekend for the first round at Hangtown, at last the great outdoors are back!

So, who is going to do the winning at the first round of the series? It’s going to be an interesting one! In the MX2 class, Cooper Webb is coming into the season with a wrist injury, if he gets a top five overall result that would be a good start. I really rate Cooper and after winning his second Supercross title on the bounce he will be full of confidence. Cooper is my favourite to take the title!

Obviously, the defending champion Jeremy Martin will be fast and win plenty of races, I see him as Webb’s biggest challenger. He is my favourite to take advantage of Webb’s injury and win the first round. After those two guys we have Arnaud Tonus, Adam Cianciarulo, Austin Forkner, Joey Savatgy, Zach Osbourne and Aaron Plessinger who could all podium on their day.  It is very important for Adam Cianciarulo to stay for this year, he simply can’t keep getting injured every season!

Another rookie to look out for as the season progresses is Tristan Charboneau on his Geico Honda. His more experienced team mate, Christian Craig will also be fast. The 250 class is really deep this year!

Hangtown predictions:

  1. Jeremy Martin
  2. Adam Cianciarulo
  3. Cooper Webb

Championship predictions:

  1. Cooper Webb
  2. Jeremy Martin
  3. Arnaud Tonus

In the 450 class I see it being a three horse race for the title between Ryan Dungey, Eli Tomac and Ken Roczen. Consistency wins you titles and Dungey will be at the front every weekend. However, Roczen and Tomac have the speed, when it clicks for them they could run away with moto’s.

This is a title that Dungey and Roczen have already won but I am backing Eli Tomac to win his first outdoor 450 title on his Kawasaki. He was so fast last year before his injury, he just needs to calm down and stay smooth instead of going balls out when he’s already got a massive lead – that cost him last year.

Other riders capable of podiums and race wins are James Stewart, Marvin Musquin, Trey Canard and Justin Barcia. Hopefully one of those guys can get amongst the front on a regular basis to cause a surprise in the championship race.

Hangtown predictions:

  1. Eli Tomac
  2. Ryan Dungey
  3. Ken Roczen

Championship predictions:

  1. Eli Tomac
  2. Ken Roczen
  3. Ryan Dungey

 

Jonathan McCready 250 The 250 class is a mouth-watering series of potential rivalries. You have Webb and Martin, teammates at Star racing Yamaha going for the title with a history of not being the best of friends. The you have Cianciarulo and Webb who just can’t stand each other and Cianciarulo trying to fend off new rookie teammate Austin Forkner plus dangerous Joey Savatgy and the talented Arnaud Tonus. All four will think they can be top dog in the team.

Add in Zach Osborne, Aaron Plessinger and the Geico Honda team and you have a fast top ten who could all make the podium.

For Hangstown Jeremy Martin could well come out swinging and with Cianciarulo having more time to prepare than everyone he might just take second. With Webb’s injury and lack of outdoor preparation he might just miss the podium but will get stronger as the year goes on.

For the title I think Martin will be hard to beat now that Webb isn’t coming in at 100 percent. But Cooper could make it close once he gets into his groove and start closing the points down, with Cianciarulo ready to pick up the pieces in third.

Hangtown:

1. Martin
2. Cianciarulo
3. Satvatgy

Title:

1. Martin
2. Webb
3. Cianciarulo

450 This is a hard one to predict. You have the big three of Tomac, Roczen and Dungey plus the talent of Marvin Musquin, Justin Barcia, Trey Canard, James Stewart and Jason Anderson all capable of getting in amongst the main contenders and taking wins on their day.

For Hangtown I will go for Tomac to win, he has a point to prove on the Kawasaki and always goes well Hangtown. Dungey will be strong but Ken Roczen was faster recently an on pure speed and talent and might be able to give Tomac a run for the win. Both riders won’t want Dungey getting away from them in the points like he did in supercross, this is their second chance at beating Dungey in 2016.

For the title it’s hard to look past Dungey, just because of his consistency and race fitness in the heat. The man is a machine, even if Tomac and Roczen might show more speed and win more races, Dungey’s consistency makes him very hard to beat. But if any of the three win the championship I don’t think anyone would be surprised!

Hangtown:

1. Tomac
2. Roczen
3. Dungey

Title:

1. Dungey
2. Roczen
3. Tomac

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