Sexton and Shimoda Race for 250 and 450 SMX Championship

Published On: 9/20/2023

Monster Energy’s Chase Sexton and Jo Shimoda poised for title runs at LA Coliseum SMX Championships

Through two of three rounds of racing the inaugural SuperMotocross World Championship (SMX), Monster Energy’s Chase Sexton (Honda) and Jo Shimoda (Pro Circuit/Kawasaki) are in perfect position to be crowned champions in their respective 450 and 250 classes.

Not only that, given the SMX finals will pay double points this Saturday (Sept. 23) when gate drops at supercross’ Ground Zero venue – the iconic LA Memorial Coliseum, which hosted the very first “Superbowl of Motocross” in 1972 (later changed to “Supercross” in order to fit in a Motocross Action magazine headline), Monster Energy has several more racers that have either a legitimate or mathematical shot at the SMX titles – and the $1,000,000 (450 class) & $500,000 (250s) bonuses that go with it.

Overall SMX Standings (2 of 3 rounds)

450 class                                                            250

1st - Sexton, 90 points                                        2nd - Shimoda, 86 points

5th - Ferrandis, 71 points                                    3rd - Deegan, 82 points

6th - Anderson, 58 points                                   4th - Kitchen, 63 points

Joining Shimoda high on the list of the 250 guys with a title shot is Monster Energy’s Haiden Deegan (Star Racing/Yamaha), who’s just four points back of Shimoda in 3rd place, with Honda’s Hunter Lawrence leading the 250 charge with 89 points to Shimoda’s 86 – which is basically a tie between Lawrence, Shimoda and Deegan given the double points awarded at LA. Nineteen points back (63) is Deegan’s Monster Energy teammate, Levi Kitchen (Star Racing/Yamaha), who certainly has the capability of running up front and shaking things up with the three lead 250 SMX racers.

“I’m going full Deegs,” said Deegan from the podium of this past weekend’s SMX’s Chicagoland Speedway, regarding the upcoming LA Coliseum SMX Finals.

On the 450s the next two Monster Energy racers are a bit further back than SMX class leader Sexton, but both have the capability of winning. 2022 MX Nationals overall champion Dylan Ferrandis (Star Racing/Yamaha) sits in 5th place with 71 points and was on the podium (3rd place) for the SMX opener at zMAX Dragway at Charlotte Motor Speedway. And a few more clicks back, but no doubt possessing the speed capable of winning, is Monster Energy’s Jason Anderson (Kawasaki), who checks in with 58 points.

“Going into next weekend it’s back to supercross, which is nice,” said Sexton, the defending Monster Energy AMA Supercross champion, about the SMX track layout at the LA Coliseum. “Very excited about that. We’ll see what happens. I’m very motivated. And it’s my birthday weekend next weekend. So it’s gonna be a fun one.”

Win, lose or draw, the SuperMotocross World Championship will be a financial windfall for those booting up and racing this weekend’s final round at the LA Coliseum as promotors and sponsors have pumped some $10 million into the coffers for Monster Energy AMA Supercross and the Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing.

From the SMX promoters: “With more than 50 years of experience in producing and promoting successful championships, Supercross and PRO Motocross have united to create the world’s first SuperMotocross World Championship™, combining the technical precision of stadium racing with the all-out speed and endurance of outdoor racing on the world’s most challenging tracks…all leading to the sport’s most coveted title and biggest prize.”