Mike LaRocco won the World Supercross Championship today in Leipzig, Germany, his second place finish to Jeremy McGrath enough to wrap up his first world title.
With David Vuillemin not in attendance and with a new points system in place (25 to the winner, and then 20, 16, 13,11, etc. like FIM road racing and the 2001 MX GPs), LaRocco and Greg Albertyn were the favorites for the title even with McGrath turning out to be the quickest rider during practice.
In the first semi, LaRocco got a bad start with the race being led by Joshua Coppins – followed by Rodriguez, Turpin and Lalloz. Coppins kept the lead for two laps, but then LaRocco went past, easily winning the race.
McGrath grabbed the holeshot in the second semi and won the race quite handily. Meanwhile, Albertyn and Thain battled for second, with Thain crashing on the second lap.
McGrath again nailed the holeshot in the main, followed in the first corner by LaRocco, Albertyn and Coppins. LaRocco was pushing really hard to follow McGrath, but crashed on the third lap.
LaRocco remounted in 17th and with Albertyn sitting in second it looked as though the South African would win the World Championship. LaRocco, however, didn’t give up and he fought his way all the way back to second place – giving him the title.
“I didn’t know my position, said LaRocco after the race, and I was giving 110% during all the race as I wanted to take the title.”
Larocco passed Albertyn on the 16th lap, then got around Thierry Bethys.
Naturally, McGrath was happy with the win.
“It’s always really good to finish the season on a win, especially after my problems in the last European races,” McGrath said. “I like Leipzig, the track is a mix of American and European track and the atmosphere is always crazy here.”