INDY SUPERCROSS KICKS OFF SECOND HALF OF THE SEASON PICKERINGTON, Ohio (February 28, 2006) -- Yamaha's Chad Reed finds himself in the lead in the Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Series as the second half of the 2006 season gets underway at the RCA...
INDY SUPERCROSS KICKS OFF SECOND HALF OF THE SEASON
PICKERINGTON, Ohio (February 28, 2006) -- Yamaha's Chad Reed finds himself in the lead in the Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Series as the second half of the 2006 season gets underway at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis on March 4.
After running third in the series just a week-and-a-half ago Reed is suddenly atop the standings after an unexpected series of events.
First, rivals Ricky Carmichael and James Stewart both had a miserable night in the St. Louis Supercross on Feb. 18. Carmichael crashed and broke his Suzuki and was forced to retire. Then Stewart crashed and had a tough time restarting his Kawasaki and finished back in 17th. Reed took maximum advantage, won St. Louis, and took over the points lead.
Then just before this past Saturday's race in Atlanta, Carmichael was penalized 25 points after tests revealed the fuel in his Suzuki to be out of compliance at the San Diego round. Carmichael won in Atlanta, but the 25 points he lost to the penalty dropped him to third in the standings. Stewart crashed again on the first lap in Atlanta. He picked up his Kawasaki and charged back to third, but lost valuable points to Reed in the process.
After the dust settled Reed, the Yamaha factory rider from Australia who won the 2004 AMA Supercross Series, finds himself holding a 19-point lead over Stewart.
Carmichael has a hill to climb if he is to come back and defend his title but his Atlanta victory shows that he won't back down from the challenge. The second all-time AMA Supercross wins leader is 31 points down to Reed. This sets up a second half of the season where Stewart and Carmichael will be scrambling to close the gap on Reed in the points chase, while Reed tries to preserve his newfound advantage.
It all begins Saturday night in the RCA Dome.
Reed and Stewart are looking for their first Indy Supercross victories. Reed was runner up last year and this will mark Stewart's first appearance in the RCA Dome. He was slated to race in the Supercross Lites class (formerly called 125 Supercross) in Indy two years ago, but sat out the program due to a concussion he suffered during practice.
While Reed holds the series lead, he realizes that he still has to try to win every weekend to build on his momentum.
"I was a little too pumped from being out front early," Reed said of Saturday's race in Atlanta. "I wasn't prepared to throw it down in Atlanta and be aggressive to battle Ricky, but I came out with second place and in the position I'm in right now I'm happy with that. I enjoy the remaining tracks on the schedule and am looking forward to the rest of the season."
Carmichael, Mike LaRocco and David Vuillemin are the three former Indy Supercross winners expected to take the green flag Saturday night.
While the season is far from over, Carmichael is philosophical about his status.
"I've never been in a position like this," Carmichael said of the penalty he was assessed. "I'm disappointed. The championship is a long shot for me now. I'll watch these two guys (Reed and Stewart) battle it out for the championship and maybe it will be a bittersweet victory for them if I keep on winning."
Hoosier fans will be rooting for home state hero LaRocco. This may be the final RCA Dome appearance for the 35-year-old South Bend native who took an emotional victory there in 2004.
Last year's Indy Supercross Lites winner Davi Millsaps has moved from Suzuki to Honda and is leading the series coming into round three. Millsaps will try to become the first rider to win back-to-back Supercross Lites races in Indianapolis since Mickael Pichon accomplished the feat in the mid-1990s. Boost Mobile Yamaha's Branden Jesseman is second in the standings to Millsaps followed by Christopher Gosselaar of Monster Energy Drink/Pro Circuit Kawasaki.
Tickets for the Indy Supercross are available at all Ticketmaster outlets, all participating Yamaha Dealers, at the Box Office, Karma Records or charge by phone at 317-239-5151. A special Family Section is also available in the RCA Dome for non-alcoholic family fun. When ordering tickets through Ticketmaster, request the Family Section for an alcohol-free atmosphere.
The Indianapolis round will receive next-day coverage on SPEED, Sunday, March 5 at 6:00 pm EST.
About AMA Pro Racing
AMA Pro Racing is the leading sanctioning body for motorcycle sport in the United States. Its properties include the Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Series, the AMA Toyota Motocross Championship presented by FMF, the AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited, the AMA Ford Quality Checked Flat Track Championship and the AMA Supermoto Championship. For more information about AMA Pro Racing, visit www.amaproracing.com.