Cooper Webb’s 2021 SX Title – What You Didn’t Know!
Before our attention shifts entirely to the AMA Pro Motocross Championship – which is scheduled to kick off at SoCal’s Fox Raceway on May 29 – let’s reflect on some things you might not be aware of about Cooper Webb’s resounding 2021 AMA 450SX title win…
- Cooper Webb’s second AMA 450SX title win was KTM’s fifth (since Ryan Dungey gave KTM its first premier-class AMA SX title in 2015). In those seven seasons, KTM has either won or posted a closely fought runner-up position in the 450SX title chase. Not bad for a brand whose first ever AMA 450SX race win came in 2012 (Dungey, at Phoenix) – the same year KTM went on to win its first ever AMA Pro MX Championship (with Dungey).
- Webb worst finish in the 2021 season was a 9th at the opening round. But from there, he charged up the points table, took over the red plate shortly after the mid-point of the season, and ended up winning the title by 35 points. The 25-year-old Webb posted 13 podiums (eight of which were race wins) along the way during the 17-round series.
- 2021 was the fifth consecutive season that the 450SX title came down to the final round (in stark contrast to Dungey’s 2015 title – KTM’s first – which he wrapped up with three rounds to spare. Interestingly, the 450SX class had never previously gone more than two consecutive seasons where the title went down to the final-round wire.
- The super-strong back half of the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing team’s 2021 SX season was topped off by back-to-back 1-2 podium sweeps at the final two rounds, with Webb and Marvin Musquin sending an ominous message to their rivals.
- Webb only needed to finish 19th at the final AMA SX round to seal the 2021 title, but he didn’t look interested in anything but a win. And that’s what he did, clinching the title in dominant style.
- Aside from impressing the big brass at KTM’s race department, Webb also spearheaded a trifecta of 2021 AMA SX wins for apparel brand, Thor (the 2021 250SX East and West titles were wrapped up by Thor-clad Yamaha riders, Justin Cooper and Colt Nichols). Incidentally, Nichols finished every round of the season on the podium, a feat not accomplished since KTM’s Marvin Musquin en route to his 250SX-class title win in 2015.
Perhaps the ultimate compliment for Cooper Webb came from the legendary Roger De Coster, five-time World MX Champion and now the Director of Motorsports for KTM North America: “There have been many great champions over the years, but when it comes to racecraft and the really deep desire to win, Cooper is special and he ranks at the very top.” Wow! Now there’s some lofty praise from a guy who’s not renowned for dishing it out without good reason.