Jett Lawrence With Big Daytona Win

Jett Lawrence is determined to claim all the crown jewel races in his rookie season.

It was a near perfect night for the Australian, qualifying fifth, winning his heat race and being victorious in the main event.

“It felt great,” celebrated Lawrence who also won at Daytona in 2022 in the 250SX class. “I felt good all day, but like I said, we came here for business… I’m just happy to come out of here with a win. Now I only hope we can keep clicking them off. I improved on my mistakes from last weekend, so I’m pumped about that and I’m ready to go on to the next few… [This win] means the world. The first time coming here and already winning at Daytona, it’s awesome. It’s like a home race for me.

“I gotta thank the crowd, they’re wild.”

It was his third victory in the 450SX Monster Energy AMA Supercross division, with his first coming at the opening race and first crown jewel event Anaheim 1. His other win was a 28-lap race in Detroit, all led by himself.

Second belonged to seven-time Daytona winner Eli Tomac. Tomac has only finished worse than second once in his career with a fourth in his rookie season in 2013. During the race, it appeared the No. 3 Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing machine was suffering an engine failure as smoke billowed from the pipes. The bike was able to stay together and cross the finish jump 5.9 seconds behind Lawrence.

“No, to be totally honest I didn’t look over at my pit board so I didn’t see anything,” Tomac elaborated about his potential engine failure. “I didn’t feel anything, the motorcycle’s fine. There are treacherous conditions out there. For me, I’m on the clutch a lot and with the ruts that deep, obviously [those conditions] make the bike hot. But I powered through there.

“Thinking back to the race, [I’m] frustrated I didn’t do the quad; [that] cost me. So gotta take more risks next time. That’s all what it came down to. And then I moved over to the right side and the depth of the rut was a lot smaller, and [I’m] just bummed that I didn’t take that [line] earlier. But, try to live and learn and go to the next one.”

Chase sexton and eli tomac battle for position during the 2024 450sx daytona supercross race.
Chase Sexton and Eli Tomac battle for position during the 2024 450SX Daytona Supercross race. Photo by Lexi Lovelace / Kickin’ the Tires

On the other side of the podium was Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider Chase Sexton. He led the opening four laps of the main event, but couldn’t hold off Lawrence and Tomac.

“It’s definitely a step in right direction,” said Sexton with a smile. “I’ve had a rough couple weeks with my hand being hurt… It was a good first couple laps. I was doing this section next to the tunnel jump pretty good. Then I started getting a little sketchy and stopped doing it, and I paid the price for it [with slower lap times]. So overall this is a building block, and we’ll go back to work this week. I finally got to ride this week with my [injured but healing] hand, and yeah, we’re not done yet.

“Just gotta keep building and keep moving forward.”

Currently, the No. 18 Team Honda HRC rider sits atop the championship standings with 160 total points, ten ahead of last week’s winner Cooper Webb and 13 marks ahead of last year’s champion Chase Sexton.

For Lawrence, he looks to complete the crown jewel sweep in the final event of the 17-race calendar at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City in May. The series heads back to the south in Birmingham at Protective Stadium for Round 9 with a gate drop scheduled at 7:00 p.m. ET.

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