With less than two weeks left until the Monster Energy Cup, supercross fans all across the country are gearing up for what is shaping up to be one of the most intense races of the season, and I’m no exception. This year’s race boasts three different classes of riders: The “super mini” class will feature talented riders in the 12-15 year age group. These riders from all over the country will thrill fans as they showcase their abilities as the up and coming superstars in supercross racing. After the super mini race, the best adult amateur supercross riders in the country will compete head to head in the Amateur All Stars Class. And in the main event, the top professional supercross riders in the world will compete for the Monster Cup itself.
Monster Energy Cup Track Design
The track for the 2013 Monster Energy Cup boasts modifications that should challenge the riders and drive fans to their feet as the racers charge through the action packed course. The track, based on last year’s design (with a reversed layout) will feature a unique “split start,” a joker lane, and a high speed 33 degree bank built directly into the stands. The 80 foot triple that thrilled fans last year is now a whopping ONE HUNDRED feet, there are now two high speed sweeper turns, and the split start will put the riders onto the track at a 45 degree angle.
Ricky Carmichael, the track’s designer, was asked about the changes to the track when the design was unveiled ten days ago. His response: “Adding the distance and extra sweeper is what the Monster Energy Cup is about. This is the perfect blend of air and speed, and what is unique is that each Main Event is only 10 laps so everyone will be fast.” Carmichael, himself a five time Monster Energy Supercross Champion, said that the changes to the track would keep the same dynamics as last year’s track, but wanted to fine tune what he described as “one of the greatest tracks ever seen.”
Monster Energy Cup Tickets
For fans that can make it to Las Vegas for the race, scheduled for Oct. 19 at Sam Boyd Stadium, tickets can be obtained in a large variety of ways. In person, the Monster Energy Cup tickets can be found at the Thomas and Mack Center Box Office, located at 4505 S Maryland Parkway in Las Vegas, or at any University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) ticket outlet. On the day of the race only, tickets can be purchased at the Sam Boyd Stadium Box Office at 7000 East Russell Road. If you’re coming from a distance, you can charge your tickets by phone by calling (702)-739-FANS.
Last but not least, tickets for the supercross 2014 schedule can also be purchased online at a variety of outlets. I recommend www.ticketnetwork.com as an ideal place to pick them up if you’re going to join me at the race.
Race Rules for the Monster Cup
Qualifying runs on the Monster Energy Cup event will be held in the afternoon before the Main Event and will consist of two eight lap heats containing 20 riders each. The top 9 riders in each heat will automatically advance to the Main Event, while riders 10-20 will gain entry into the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) race. The top 4 riders in the LCQ will then advance to the main event as well.
The main event of the Monster Cup consists of three ten lap races across the track with the same 22 riders in each race. Each event will count toward the overall standings at the end of the event. The Amateur All Star and Super Mini events consist of two 6 lap races each.
The finishing order for each event in the Monster Energy Cup will be determined using the Olympic Scoring system, with riders attaining points relative to their finishing position for each main event race- one point for first place, two for second, and so on. Scores are then added up for all three runs, with the top scorer declared the winner of the race overall. In the event of a scored tie at the conclusion of the third main event, the rider with the best score in the third event will be declared the winner.
2012 Monster Energy Cup Race Results
While he failed to win the $1,000,000 bonus paid out to any rider who finishes first in all three races, Justin Barcia took home the Monster Cup and the $100,000 cash prize in 2012 with a 2-1-2 finish in the three races. Ryan Dungey finished second with eight points (3-2-3) and Eli Tomac came in third place with 9 points (4-4-1). Returning champion Ryan Villopoto started off strong with a first place finish in the first main event race, but disappointing second and third races left him in tenth place with 34 points (1-12-21).
Cooper Web gave a solid performance in the 2012 Amateur All Stars event with a first place, five point (2-3) finish, narrowly defeating Adam Cianciarulo, who finished second with 6 points (5-1). Paul Coates rounded out the top three with 9 points (7-2).
In the Super Mini Event in 2012, Austin Forkner dominated the event with a two point win (1-1), finishing with a commanding lead over second place finisher Chase Sexton, who finished with seven points (3-4). Kotaro Takahasi took third place with a ten point day (7-3).
The Bottom Line
If you like supercross racing, speed, noise, or adrenaline, get to Vegas for the Monster Energy Cup on October 19th of this year. Excuses are not accepted. Take a plane, drive, walk, hitch hike, or drag your broken body through a field of hungry zombies if that’s what it takes. Last year’s Monster Energy Cup was the most intense supercross experience in the history of the sport. With the course changes, returning racers, and thousands of supercharged fans, Vegas may never be the same. You can be there, or you can read about it online after the fact while you question your poor life choices. If you’re not in the stands, you’re not with real fans.