Ryan Dungey and Ryan Villopoto sit atop the AMA Supercross class points lead, knotted at 145 points apiece as Monster Energy Supercross, an FIM World Championship, heads south this weekend to Atlanta’s Georgia Dome. Christophe Pourcel leads the Eastern regional AMA Supercross Lites class points race after winning the opening race of the season last weekend at Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium before 60,019 fans.
Heading into last weekend’s feature in Indianapolis, it was San Manuel Yamaha’s Josh Hill that was tied with Dungey for the AMA Supercross class points lead. In a season that has seen four different winners in seven races, anticipation runs high for this weekend’s race at the Georgia Dome. Hill finished ninth and dropped back to third place in season standings.
In last weekend’s AMA Supercross class main event, Honda Red Bull Racing’s Davi Millsaps, of Murrieta, Calif., won the Spike Holeshot Award with GEICO Powersports Honda’s Kevin Windham, of Centreville, Miss., and Villopoto following in second and third, respectively. As Millsaps and Windham battled for the lead, it was Windham’s resilience that prevailed as he moved into the number-one position. On lap 11, Villopoto moved past Windham for the lead and Dungey moved into second place on lap 12. The trio would finish in that order – Villopoto, Dungey and Windham.
“Going out of the last chance I had the outside gate,” said Villopoto, who failed to finish his heat race after a crash and had to qualify for the main event through the last chance qualifier. “I was second to last to line up (for the main event) and I really just can’t thank the guys at Monster Energy Kawasaki enough. It was the fastest bike out there and I was able to get a good holeshot.
“Starting on the outside there killed me,” he continued. “I was able to make something of it, which was awesome.”
In the opening race of the 2010 Eastern regional AMA Supercross Lites class race, GEICO Powersports Honda’s Justin Barcia, of Ochlocknee, Ga., won the Spike Holeshot Award with Pourcel and Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Austin Stroupe, of Lincolnton, N.C., in tow.
Pourcel didn’t waste any time in passing Barcia for the lead before he went on to lead all 15 laps of the main event. Stroupe finished second and Barcia, in the first professional AMA Supercross Lites class of his career, finished third.
“I just felt pretty good on my Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki,” said Pourcel. “Everything was ok today for me so I am just really happy to win the race tonight. The track was pretty tight tonight and I needed to win the race so coming into the main event I just gave my best (effort).”
Last year in Atlanta, San Manuel Yamaha’s James Stewart, of Dade City, Fla., earned his seventh win in a row and seventh victory of the season en route to stealing the points lead from Reed, of Tampa, Fla. In the AMA Supercross Lites class, Pourcel grabbed his second win in a row in the Eastern Regional Championship to extend his points lead.
“The start was great,” said Stewart after the race last year. “The San Manuel Yamaha pulled another holeshot. It was a good race for me. The track was tough but we came out on top. I’ve always liked the ‘ATL’ and I’m glad we could do well here. I want to thank all the fans and all the motivation they give me. It feels good to have the points lead but there is a long way to go.”
The first AMA Supercross race ever held in Atlanta was March 5, 1977, and Bob Hannah won on a Yamaha. On February 22, 1986 Honda rider Keith Turpin won the first-ever AMA Supercross Lites main event. Ricky Carmichael is first on the AMA Supercross class’ all-time win list with five. Carmichael and Brian Swink share the AMA Supercross Lites class’ all-time win record with two.
Photo Credit: Hoppenworld.com