Jalek Swoll: Supercross podium denied

With two laps remaining in the eighth round of the Monster Energy Supercross 250 East division, Jalek Swoll saw an opportunity to get around Seth Hammaker for the runner-up position. The leader, Max Anstie, was still in sight.

A lot was at stake.

Swoll sought his first win. Triumph was about to get their first podium after entering the series at the beginning of the year.

Swoll was riding a wave of success entering the feature. Earlier in the program, he gave Triumph their first heat win by beating points' leader Tom Vialle to the checkers. Eventual race winner Anstie finished third in this heat.

In a rhythm lane leading into a deep sand section during the Main Event, Swoll gained momentum over successive laps and executed a long triple jump that landed with him slightly ahead of Hammaker.

Caught off guard, Hammaker either needed to react more quickly or he mistakenly believed Swoll would make a tighter turn. When that didn't happen, the two made heavy contact that sent both to the ground.

"I've had a little bit of everything, highs and lows," Swoll told NBC Sports before the race. "I feel like I should have been on the box in Birmingham. But as a whole, new bike, new team, honestly, pretty good. We've been in the mix even with my back being broken early in the year; we've been able to persevere, put in some decent results, and get better and better."

Swoll finished sixth in Birmingham and at Detroit in the 250 East season opener.

But the best was yet to come. In the first East / West Showdown, Swoll scored the first top-five for Triumph. Finishing fifth overall, he was second in his division to Jo Shimoda.

It felt almost as good as a podium.

SX Rd 5 Detroit Jalek Swoll Evan Ferry Press Day pose.jpg
SX Rd 5 Detroit Jalek Swoll Evan Ferry Press Day pose.jpg

British Manufacturer Triumph Motorcycles to debut in the heart of American Motors

Triumph’s first goal in the Motor City is to qualify for the Main. After that, Jalek Swoll will set his eyes on a top-five finish.

  • Dan Beaver


  • Dan Beaver


SX 2024 Rd 15 Philadelphia Jalek Swoll wins heat.jpg
SX 2024 Rd 15 Philadelphia Jalek Swoll wins heat.jpg

Great Expectations

"Last week being P5 in the East / West - second for East Coast - we're definitely heading in the right direction, and I'm feeling more comfortable," Swoll said. "It was a good feeling to be up there with my group.

"Being P2, if that was an East Coast round, it would have been a podium, and that's how I take it. I feel like I let fourth slip away. [Jordon Smith] got me right there at the end, so that's kind of a bummer; wish I could change it, but P5's pretty stout for an East / West Shootout, so I'll take it."

Swoll finished in the top 10 in all but two rounds this year. One was an 11th in Indianapolis; the other was because of a crash in Arlington.

And while most observers are willing to say Swoll has surpassed expectations, the rider is not one of them.

In Detroit earlier this season, he told NBC Sports he expected top-fives to be liberally spread throughout the season.

His opinion has stayed the same.

"Maybe (I've surpassed expectations) in other people's eyes, but not my eyes," Swoll said. "I feel like I was due for a better season than I've had. Obviously, I got dealt with some shitty cards, some on my end, some the luck of the draw, but the bike is plenty capable, and I feel like I probably surpassed other people's expectations, but not mine."

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