AMA

Jacksonville: Series round 12 preview

Dungey Re-Assumes Control of Premier Class Title Fight as Monster Energy Supercross Returns to Jacksonville Stroupe Continues to Close in on Pourcel in Lites Eastern Regional Championship AURORA, Ill (March 22, 2010) -- After capturing his ...

Dungey Re-Assumes Control of Premier Class Title Fight as Monster Energy Supercross Returns to Jacksonville

Stroupe Continues to Close in on Pourcel in Lites Eastern Regional Championship

AURORA, Ill (March 22, 2010) -- After capturing his fourth win of the 2010 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, and FIM World Championship, season, Rockstar/Makita Suzuki's Ryan Dungey carries a 24-point lead in the AMA Supercross class as the series makes its second visit to Jacksonville, Fla., and Jacksonville Municipal Stadium this weekend. Defending AMA Supercross Lites Eastern Regional Champion Christophe Pourcel still holds a five-point lead in the standings despite a pair of rough outings over the past two races.

Last weekend at the series' debut from Cowboys Stadium in Dallas, Dungey brought Monster Energy Kawasaki rider Ryan Villopoto's two-race win streak to a halt and gained seven points over his rival with six races remaining.

"This was a big win for me tonight, but there are still a lot of races left to go," said Dungey. "The track got really rough tonight, so that kept me on my toes. I am looking forward to going to Jacksonville next weekend."

After a poor start, Villopoto battled back to bring home a fourth place finish.

After winning the first three races of the eight-race Eastern Regional season, Pourcel has had to overcome adversity over the last two rounds, but his ability to bounce back from misfortune has allowed him to maintain his edge over Rockstar/Makita Suzuki's Austin Stroupe.

For the second week in a row, a first-time winner stood atop the podium in the AMA Supercross Lites class as Rockstar Energy Suzuki rookie Blake Baggett made a late-race pass to capture his first-career professional victory.

"This is a dream come true," said Baggett. "I was following Ryan (Sipes) and he didn't make any mistakes, so I had to be patient. Time was starting to run out and I dove inside and made the pass for the win."

A first-turn crash left both Pourcel and Stroupe well behind after the first corner. Stroupe posted a fifth place finish while Pourcel could only race back to seventh.

Last season, at the Monster Energy Supercross debut from Jacksonville Municipal Stadium before 31,653 fans, San Manuel Yamaha's James Stewart captured a big win and narrowed his deficit to AMA Supercross class point leader Chad Reed to just five. Just one week after clinching the 2009 AMA Supercross Lites Eastern Regional championship, Pourcel won his fifth main event of the season.

Mike Alessi started the AMA Supercross class main event by winning the holeshot, followed closely by Reed, who moved past Alessi in turn two and secured the lead while Stewart snuck into second place.

Stewart tried to set Reed up in a few different sections but the Australian held his ground. Stewart stalked Reed for 13 long laps before he made a pass. Reed promptly answered back and took over the lead on the same lap. Just one lap later, Stewart re-passed Reed and rode to his 10th victory of the season. Reed finished second and GEICO Powersports Honda's Kevin Windham was third.

"I had fun out there tonight," said Reed. "I tried to be smooth and consistent out there. This was a great race, and we have three more left on the season. It's time for me to get up there and go to battle."

"It was a great race, and we actually collided over the triple jump, but that's racing," said Stewart. "I look forward to the next race."

Daytona was the first city in Florida in to host an AMA Supercross race back in 1974. In 1983 Orlando hosted its first race where Ron Lechein won his first-ever AMA Supercross main event. From 1991-1996, Orlando was the site of the championship's opening race.

In 1987, the city of Miami hosted its first-ever AMA Supercross race with Ricky Johnson winning the main event. Two years later in Miami, Johnson won the last AMA Supercross class main event of his career.

Tampa hosted its first AMA Supercross race in 1988 and Johnson won that race as well. The following year, Daytona, Miami and Tampa were all on the 1989 season schedule. In 1996, Jeremy McGrath swept all of the Florida races with wins in Daytona, Orlando, and Tampa. Jacksonville will continue the Florida tradition this Saturday for its second Monster Energy Supercross race.

CBS will broadcast the AMA Supercross class at 12:00 p.m. EST on Sunday, March 28. SPEED will broadcast the AMA Supercross Lites class on Sunday, March 28 at 6:00 p.m. EST.

-source: ama

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Series AMA
Drivers Kevin Windham , Jeremy McGrath , Chad Reed , Ricky Johnson , Mike Alessi , Ryan Dungey , Ryan Villopoto