Red Bull KTM’s statement isn’t exactly an apology, but…
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing officially weighed-in regarding the controversial last-lap incident in which team rider Marvin Musquin went off the track and failed in his bid to win his first career 450cc main event at the Atlanta Supercross last Saturday night.
After appearing to go off the track all by himself when he came up short while trying to triple a set of obstacles in a rhythm section, Musquin squarely placed the blame on Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart, who as being lapped at the time, saying “Stewart was in the way, and man, I got so scared of him. I just went sideways because I heard him coming, and he was a lap down. I am really mad right now because I feel like the win was for me.” Not only that, but Musquin’s mechanic, Frank Latham, verbally berated Stewart when Stewart rode past the mechanic’s area after the race.
Whether it is in the interest of setting the record straight or whether it is a response to anti-Musquin/KTM backlash that has arisen since the incident, Red Bull KTM released the following today:
“MURRIETA, Calif. – Following an intense moment on the final lap of Saturday’s 450SX Main Event in Atlanta, the Red Bull KTM Factory Team would like to issue a clarifying statement regarding a highly discussed incident between Marvin Musquin and James Stewart.
“While racing his teammate Ryan Dungey for what would have been his first career 450SX Class victory, Musquin made a mistake on his own that ultimately caused him to come up short on a triple and lose the lead position. Stewart, who was not competing for the lead, happened to be near Musquin during his error and has since received undeserved criticism for the incident. The Red Bull KTM Factory Team would like to clarify that there are no hard feelings toward Stewart.
“Red Bull KTM Factory Team Manager Roger DeCoster added, ‘After the race a lot of blame was given to James and I just want to make things clear that the mistake from Marvin was not directly caused by James and we shouldn’t blame him for it. Credit to Marvin, he rode an amazing race and was under tremendous pressure from Ryan for the majority of the race. To lead for 19-consecutive laps is no easy task and how quickly he has adapted to the big bike class in just eight rounds is very impressive.’”
“Musquin went on to capture a career-best second place finish at the Georgia Dome, while his teammate Dungey took his fifth victory of the season.”
The 2016 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series continues this weekend with the Daytona Supercross by Honda at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.