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Supermoto Music City preview

WARD ON A HIGH NOTE AS AMA SUPERMOTO COMES TO MUSIC CITY PICKERINGTON, Ohio -- Defending AMA Supermoto Champion Jeff Ward leads the way as the series comes to Nashville's Music City Motorplex for rounds nine and 10 of the 12-race AMA Supermoto...

WARD ON A HIGH NOTE AS AMA SUPERMOTO COMES TO MUSIC CITY

PICKERINGTON, Ohio -- Defending AMA Supermoto Champion Jeff Ward leads the way as the series comes to Nashville's Music City Motorplex for rounds nine and 10 of the 12-race AMA Supermoto Championship on September 24. Ward won the Nashville round of the championship last year and is a strong favorite coming into this Saturday's race.

The Nashville event is greatly expanded from 2004. Not only will fans have the opportunity to view two full rounds of the AMA Supermoto Championship, they will also see rounds of Supermoto Unlimited, the new Supermoto Lites class and the Honda Red Riders Jr. Supermoto Challenge presented by HRCA.

Ward, a former multi-time AMA Motocross and Supercross champion from Newport Beach, Calif., carries a four-race winning streak and 27-point lead in the AMA Supermoto Championship coming into the Music City Motorplex round. German Jurgen Kunzel stands second in the series and is still seeking his first victory in the championship. Young Chris Fillmore, an 18-year-old up-and-comer from Michigan, is third in the standings.

Ward and Fillmore both ride for the powerful Troy Lee Designs Honda squad, leader of the team standings, while Kunzel is a member of Red Bull KTM.

Ward, who raced in the Indianapolis 500 in May, got off to a slow start to the season missing the podium in the first four rounds of the 2005 campaign, but he rallied with four straight wins in the Copper Mountain (Colo.) two-day event last month. Early series leader Doug Henry led coming into Copper Mountain, but crashed and was injured in that event and is expected to miss the rest of the season.

"Nashville is important," Ward said. "It's a night race so that brings some unique challenges to the race. With Henry suffering his misfortunes and Kunzel having a sub-par race weekend at Copper Mountain I find myself with a pretty good points lead, but in this series you can't let up or take anything for granted. It would be nice if I could add to my lead this weekend."

Graves Motorsports Yamaha rider Mark Burkhart comes to Nashville hoping to keep his undefeated Supermoto Lites season alive. Burkhart, from Pickerington, Ohio, is a perfect four for four in the Lites class. Burkhart holds a solid series lead over a pair of Kawasaki riders from California, Brandon Currie on the Team Currie Troy Lee Kawasaki and Joel Albrecht of Two Brothers Racing Kawasaki.

The closest championship race so far this season is found in the Supermoto Unlimited class. There Darryl Atkins, of Team HMC / Generations of Sonoma, former motocross star Micky Dymond, of All Access Racing and Aussie newcomer Troy Herfoss, who rides for Husqvarna are all within eight points in the championship points chase.

It will be a fun-filled night for the kids participating in the Honda Red Riders Jr. Supermoto Challenge. The junior riders (ages 12-15) will race on the same track as the pros on identically-prepared Honda CRF150F motorcycles.

"These kids put on a first class race," said Bill Savino, Assistant Manager, HRCA. "We are happy to be involved with AMA Supermoto. Going into our third year of the Red Rider Jr. Supermoto program we are hoping to continue to entice kids to get involved not only with racing, but excel in school."

Riders in the Honda Junior Supermoto race must carry a B average in school. Already some of the past junior riders are having success in the pro ranks.

The AMA Supermoto Championships races will nationally telecast on OLN. Visit www.olntv.com for more information.

Tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster or at the gate on the day of the event. For additional information on the Nashville round of the series call 615-726-1818.

About AMA Pro Racing
AMA Pro Racing is the leading sanctioning body for motorcycle sport in the United States. Its properties include the THQ AMA Supercross Series, the AMA Motocross Championship, the AMA Superbike Championship, the AMA Ford Quality Checked Flat Track Championship and the AMA Supermoto Championship. For more information about AMA Pro Racing, visit www.amaproracing.com.

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Series AMA
Drivers Jeff Ward , Jurgen Kunzel , Darryl Atkins , Micky Dymond , Doug Henry