The third annual Monster Energy Cup was held this past Saturday, October 19, at Las Vegas' Sam Boyd Stadium and 33,845 fans were on hand to witness some of the most exciting racing of the year. 2012 Cup Champion and Team Honda Muscle Milk rider Justin Barcia made a valiant effort but was unable to defend his title, finishing eighth overall with 7-2-18 scores.
For the second year, the Ricky Carmichael-designed track featured a Joker Lane—an additional sand section that each rider was required to run through one time in each main event, but it was up to the rider to determine the most strategic time during the race to tackle the Joker Lane. After qualifying fourth quickest in practice, Barcia got off the line in moto one to a sixth place start. On the second lap of the race, he made the mandatory run through the Joker Lane, ultimately dropping him back two positions to eighth. Throughout the remainder of the 10-lap race, Barcia was able to recover one spot, finishing seventh.
In the second main event, Barcia grabbed a fourth place start and made quick work of the rider in third to take over the position. On lap seven, Barcia strategically decided to take the Joker Lane in hopes of closing in on the leaders when they decided to take the lane later in the race. After the leader crashed on the final lap, Barcia was able to take over the second-place position, which is where he finished.
In moto three, Barcia went down while running fourth, sending him outside the top 10. He remounted his Honda CRF450R only to go down again the next lap and was unable to get the bike restarted, forcing him to pull off the track. Barcia's 7-2-18 marks left him eighth overall in the standings.
"I am pretty disappointed with how tonight played out," stated Barcia. "I really wanted to defend my title, and of course a million dollars would have been nice too. The track was awesome and I felt good on it at press day and throughout practice but couldn't put it all together in the motos. I didn't get a good start in the first moto, which made it tough to try and work through the other riders."
"I got a much better start in the second moto and was able to pass Dungey pretty quickly for third," continued Barcia. "I could see the battle going on between the leaders and they hadn't taken the Joker Lane yet, so I decided to take it thinking I could close the gap when they did decide to go through it. I took over second on the last lap after Villopoto missed the lane and crashed. The third race was terrible all around. I got an OK start but crashed twice and the last time I couldn't get the bike started. I'm bummed for sure but I just need to keep working hard and looking forward to 2014."
Team Honda Muscle Milk's Trey Canard elected to sit out of the event and focus on the 2014 Supercross season.
Monster Energy Cup Class Overall Results
1. James Stewart 8-1-1
2. Ryan Dungey 6-3-2
3. Ken Roczen 4-4-4
4. Eli Tomac (Honda) 5-6-3
5. Marvin Musquin, 2-9-8
6. Cole Seely (Honda) 13-7-5
7. Broc Tickle 10-8-9
8. Justin Barcia (Honda) 7-2-18
9. Dean Wilson 20-5-6
10. Josh Grant 15-10-7
Amateur All-Stars Class Overall Results
1. RJ Hampshire 1-3
2. Zachary Commans 5-4
3. Jordon Smith (Honda) 9-1
4. Mark Worth 6-6
5. Jace Owen 2-10
6. Darian Sanayei 11-2
7. Ryan Surratt 7-8
8. Thomas Covington 8-9
9. Paul Coates 3-15
10. Keith Tucker 4-18
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About Muscle Milk
Muscle Milk® Ready-to-Drink is a protein-enhanced functional beverage that promotes workout recovery, lean muscle growth, and sustained energy. Muscle Milk takes the guesswork out of high performance nutrition, delivering a precise blend of premium proteins, complex carbohydrates, functional fats, vitamins & minerals. CytoSport™, the maker of Muscle Milk®, is among the largest sport nutrition protein beverage companies in the U.S. and offers a complete line of protein-enhanced powders, shakes and bars. Muscle Milk® was named Ready-to-Drink Beverage of the Year by bodybuilding.com, Best Functional Beverage and Beverage of the Year by BevNet and Company of the Year by Beverage Forum presented by Beverage Marketing Corporation and Beverage World.
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