Villopoto Brings Notable Points Lead into Indianapolis' Lucas Oil Stadium
AURORA, Ill, (March 8, 2011) -- Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, heads to the Midwest this weekend with its tenth race from Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind., on Saturday night. Another dominating performance by Monster Energy Kawasaki's Ryan Villopoto from Daytona combined with misfortune by San Manuel Yamaha's James Stewart has led to a 23-point lead for Villopoto.
From the start of the race, I knew I wanted to ride my own pace...|said Ryan Villopoto|left""
Media Day for this weekend's race takes place on Thursday, March 10 from Noon-2:00, featuring GEICO Honda. Riders will be available for interviews and will ride the track for the media.
Last weekend, Stewart looked to be on the way to his fourth win of the season, but suffered a frightening crash out of the lead. As the former two-time champion attempted to re-enter the race, Villopoto took advantage, moving into the lead and pulling away for his second straight win and his season-leading fourth victory of the season.
"From the start of the race, I knew I wanted to ride my own pace," said Villopoto. "No matter what happened, I wanted to be consistent and not make mistakes. James was riding fast right away, so I just had to wait to see if he would make a mistake."
"It's really good to gain a lot of points, but I'm not going to relax, added Villopoto. "I know that if I keep working at it, I will only be putting myself in a better position as the championship goes down to Las Vegas. I want to keep going after wins so I won't be slacking off at all because of the 23 points."
As for Stewart, after reentering the main event in last place, he soldiered on to work through the field and post a ninth-place finish, salvaging valuable points towards the championship and keeping himself within one race of his rival.
Villopoto was followed on the podium by TwoTwo Motorsports/Bel-Ray Racing's Chad Reed in second and Rockstar/Makita Suzuki's Ryan Dungey in third. Reed's third straight podium effort brings him to within one point of Stewart for second in the standings while Dungey's fourth consecutive finish of third or better has moved him into fourth, within 10 points of both Stewart and Reed.
In the Supercross Lites class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki's Blake Baggett became the third different winner in as many races in the Eastern Regional Supercross Lites class championship. The second-year rider grabbed the holeshot and led wire-to-wire for his first win for the Pro Circuit team.
"Winning my first heat race was really big for my confidence," said Baggett. "I have been working on my starts because I haven't really been known for being a good starter. I knew that it would be important because the start was short. We've been putting in the hard work and it feels great to finally see it pay off."
"I won't be happy until I have the points lead, so we just need to keep plugging away at it," exclaimed Baggett. "I know I am capable of being there every weekend. I think I have my starts figured out and it can only get better from here."
After wins by GEICO Honda's Justin Barcia and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki's Dean Wilson to open the championship, Baggett's triumph has led to a three-rider battle atop the standings. At Daytona, Barcia kept his podium streak intact, finishing second to Baggett despite a pair of broken bones in his wrist and moving into sole possession of the points lead. Meanwhile, Wilson suffered from his worst outing of the season, experiencing a bad start and several bouts of misfortune en route to an eighth-place finish. DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha's Ryan Sipes rounded out the podium.
Barcia's lead over Baggett, who assumed the runner-up position in the standings after his win, stands at four points while Wilson sits in third, and additional five points behind.
Last year in Indianapolis, Villopoto captured a hard-fought victory after a troublesome evening forced him into the LCQ to qualify for the main event. In the Supercross Lites action, eventual Eastern Regional champion Christophe Pourcel took the win.
Tickets are available at the Lucas Oil Stadium Box Office, SupercrossOnline.com, all Ticketmaster Outlets, charge by phone at (800) 745-3000, or online at www.ticketmaster.com. Practice and qualifying begins at 12:30 p.m., and the main event begins at 7:00 p.m. VIP tickets are available for $75 Adult/Child (VIP Experience includes one (1) ticket to the event and a private autograph session with the top riders from 3:00PM - 4:00PM the day of the show); Club Level $45 Adult/Child; Gold Circle $35 Adult/Child; Mid Level $25 Adult/Child; Treadhead $10 Adult/Child.