Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki Finishes 1-2 at Anaheim 3 As the racing began at Angels Stadium in Anaheim, Calif., the remnants of an on and off rain from the day were evidenced by the perfect rainbow that framed the Monster Energy/Pro ...
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki Finishes 1-2 at Anaheim 3
As the racing began at Angels Stadium in Anaheim, Calif., the remnants of an on and off rain from the day were evidenced by the perfect rainbow that framed the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki pit area. The team collected its pot of gold at the podium as Jake Weimer and Ryan Morais finished 1-2 in both their heat race and the main event. Weimer's third win of the season vaulted him to the season points lead and it didn't come without drama as Morais attempted a pass with just two corners remaining before the checkered flag. In the supercross class Monster Energy Kawasaki's Timmy Ferry finished tenth while Ryan Villopoto missed the main after going down in both his heat race and the last chance qualifier. New Leader
Weimer's domination of California continued as the tour made its third stop at Angels Stadium. In his heat race, the mud along the start straight didn't slow Weimer down as he jumped out to the holeshot and led wire-to-wire to earn his fifth heat-race win in as many starts. In the main event, Weimer came out of the first turn in third, but quickly made his way to the front despite the difficult conditions. His third win of the season gives him a three-point lead in the race for the AMA Supercross Lites Western Regional championship.
"It feels good to get the win and take over the points lead," said Weimer. "It's hard to explain it, the last two weekends have been tough. At San Francisco I wasn't the fastest guy and it's hard to win when you're not the fastest guy. Here at Anaheim, the track was tough, really tough, and I got two good starts and I won both the heat and the main again. I'm just so pumped for Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki."
After finishing second in his heat race, Morais knew he wanted to be in the lead and came out of the gate fast to grab the holeshot in the main event. After dropping back to third early in the race, Morais charged back to the front, challenging his teammate on the last lap for the win.
"The race was just amazing," said Morais. "I got the holeshot in the main event and I was leading. I'm not sure what I was thinking during the first three or four laps; I was just kind of jumping around. I regrouped and put a charge on. I was able to take a chance on the last lap and try for the win. I think I was next to Jake when the lapper put me high up on the berm. I was up near the tough blocks and I was just hanging it all out. It's awesome for this Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team to go 1-2. These guys work so hard for us and it is nice to be able to repay these guys like this."
Going for It
With just two turns to go before the checkered flag, Morais saw the opportunity to get his first career win. With lapped traffic giving him the chance to challenge for the win, Morais charged hard into the corner and then was pushed high keeping him from completing the pass.
"I didn't know where we were on laps," said Morais. "All of a sudden I saw the white flag and was surprised a little. I thought 'I better get going' and when the lapper kept Jake from jumping the double I knew I was going for it. I didn't care if I crashed, we had a big enough lead that if I went down I still had time to get up and finish second. It was so close."
After battling for all 15 laps of the main event a week ago, Weimer took control of the race in Anaheim and pulled out to a comfortable lead lapping every rider up to sixth place.
"My start wasn't as good in the main event as it was in the heat race," said Weimer. "I was still towards the front, but the bike was sliding through the corner. I got into second pretty quick and then rode behind (Justin) Brayton for a while. I saw a spot and took it to grab a lead. I put in some good laps, but then got caught up in some lappers and made some mistakes near the end of the race that gave Ryan a chance."
The veteran Ferry had to lean on his experience all night as the riders only had 10 minutes of practice because of the forecasted rain. With the track changing on every lap, Ferry rode strong to get a top-10 finish.
"I came out of the gate pretty good," said Ferry. "There was some mud about half way down the start straight that hindered me a little bit. I got caught on the outside and lost some spots. I think I was last. I just tried to ride consistent and keep the bike up and I was able to work up to 10th."
Even though the schedule was shortened and the riders were only given one short practice session, the mechanics in the Monster Energy Kawasaki pits were busy all afternoon getting the bikes ready for a muddy track.
Heading into the weekend, Ferry was excited by the design of this week's track, but with rain falling into the weekend, those hopes were dashed as all the riders knew they wouldn't be able to ride the track to its full potential.
"Design-wise, I think that was the best track of the season," said Ferry. "It was kind of depressing to see all the puddles during the track walk. It could have been a lot worse though. The rain held off until the last five laps. If it would have come earlier we wouldn't have been able to jump anything. It was tricky and really rutty."
Coming off of two consecutive podium finishes; Villopoto was looking to stand on the box again. During his heat race he looked to be in good position as he nailed the holeshot. He was riding a strong race before his front wheel found a hole in the muddy track, throwing him over the handlebars.
"I got a good start in the heat race," said Villopoto. "I got the holeshot, but made a small mistake and fell back to fourth. I was on the guys in front of me and came into the whoops. I caught my front wheel in a hole and went down. I crashed pretty hard. It's just bruises on the outside so I'll be okay. I'm looking forward to racing next week in San Diego."
Feeling at Home
After struggling at Angels Stadium early in his career, Morais has found success in Anaheim this season finishing second in all three events.
"Anaheim has treated me well," said Morais. " I had a bad past at Angels Stadium. Until this season I had never finished a main event without getting hurt and I'm so happy to have that streak over. It's been awesome to be up on the podium and I'm ready to try and get my first win in San Diego."