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(May 2, 2011) By Ashley Little, Kawasaki USA– Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto earned his sixth win of the season after an impressive ride aboard his Kawasaki KX™450F during the penultimate round of the Monster Energy Supercross, an FIM Championship at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah. The win extended his points lead to nine going into the final round in Las Vegas. Making his supercross class debut, Jake Weimer finished with a solid seventh-place result. Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Broc Tickle also maintained his points lead in the AMA Supercross Lites, Western Region with a podium finish heading into the final race. Teammate Tyla Rattray finished just outside the top-five in sixth, while Josh Hansen overcame an early-race crash to come back for 13th.

RV on the podium

Entering the night with a six-point lead in the championships standings, a win wasn’t necessary for Villopoto to maintain the points lead. Improving with each lap around the track, he qualified second during timed practice and went on to finish third in his heat. His start in the main put him in fourth after the first lap and he was quickly making up time on the riders in front of him. He passed for second on the seventh lap, and took over the lead on the eighth, never looking back as he went on to win a season-high sixth win.

“I knew that I didn’t have to win for the championship, but I really wanted to give myself a better cushion going into Las Vegas,” said Villopoto. “Considering the weather we saw over the two days in Salt Lake City, the track turned out great. It is nice to head into the last round with a little bit of a gap. If the opportunity presents itself, I want to go after the win, but I know what I have to do (for the championship).”

Jake Weimer

Making his first appearance in the supercross class, Weimer showed he was ready to make his presence known on the Kawasaki KX450F. The day started slow for the reigning AMA Supercross Lites, Western Region champion, but he started to shine once the gate dropped. He earned fourth in his heat race and went on to finish seventh in the main event.

“It was definitely good to be back,” said Weimer. “I was a little hesitant at the start of the day and not sure why I was holding back. I got more comfortable as the day went on. I know I’m only racing supercross for two races, but it was good to get some racing under my belt before we move on to outdoors.“

Broc Tickle

Tickle continued his consistent streak with his sixth podium finish of the year. His consistency has helped him retain his two-point lead over second place as the series winds down to the final round in Las Vegas. Still pushing to get back to 100 percent after a collarbone injury just over a month ago, Tickle rode through the pain of arm pump to finish third.

“I haven’t really felt like myself out there because I’ve been dealing with a little arm pump the past two races,” said Tickle. “I know it takes time to come back and I have really tried to not make it an excuse. I am looking to feel the way I felt when I won in Oakland. This week I’m going to try and have fun when I go out and ride. Hopefully that will bring me back to where I was at the beginning of the series.”

Josh Hansen

Hansen’s season has been filled with ups and downs. He holds a season-high three wins with an additional podium, while also riding through the pain of a broken hand. In Salt Lake City he grabbed a second-place start in the main event, but a crash on the second lap pushed him back to over a half-lap down on the field. Despite pain in his hand, he pushed to make it back to 13th.

“I can’t even describe how disappointed I am with myself,” said Hansen. “I made a mistake that ended up costing me the championship. It’s really hard to watch it slip away again, but I can say I learned a lot tonight. I try to learn from all my mistakes and I just hope I can redeem myself with one more win in Las Vegas.”

Tyla Rattray

As his first supercross season winds down, Rattray has continually shown he can make the difficult transition from motocross to supercross. He has only finished outside sixth position once and has stood on the podium twice. The former MX2 World Champion has his sights on the upcoming motocross series, but not before tacking up another good finish in Salt Lake as he finished sixth.

“I am really looking forward to the outdoors and I wanted to get through the final races safe and healthy,” said Rattray. “It’s been a fun season learning the supercross series and having to adapt to a completely different type of racing. While I’ve had fun, it’s definitely getting me excited to start a new series.”

RV

The weather for the main events in Salt Lake City was clear, but the day before and hours leading into practice saw snow falling to the ground. The cold weather didn’t deter Villopoto, who came from hot weather in Florida.

“I left Florida and it was nice and sunny, but it’s what we have to deal with,” said Villopoto. “When we race outdoors, it is usually the other way around where it’s nice and then we go into hot, humid weather. This is a little different seeing snow everywhere as we woke up this morning, but it all turned out great.”

The race at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas will be run a little different for the Lites riders. The night show will start with two 15-lap races for the respective lites final round. Tickle will be defending his two-point lead in the West, while Wilson will be hoping to cap off an up and down season with a win for the East. Villopoto will be looking to capture his first supercross class championship as he enters the round with a nine-point lead.

Jake Weimer

Results

AMA Supercross Series
Rice-Eccles Stadium – Salt Lake City, Utah
April 30, 2011

AMA Supercross Class Results
1. RYAN VILLOPOTO, SEATTLE, WASH., MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI
2. Chad Reed, Tampa, Fla., Honda
3. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki
4. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, KTM
5. Davi Millsaps, Carlsbad, Calif., Yamaha
6. Kevin Windham, Centreville, Miss., Honda
7. JAKE WEIMER, RUPERT, IDAHO, MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI
8. Tommy Hahn, Alvord, Texas, Yamaha
9. Justin Brayton, Cornelius, N.C., Yamaha
10. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Yamaha
11. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., Yamaha
12. Kyle Regal, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha
13. Michael Byrne, Dade City, Fla., Suzuki
14. CHRIS BLOSE, PHOENIX., ARIZ., KAWASAKI
15. TYLER BOWERS, DANVILLE, KY., BABBITTS MONSTER ENERGY TILUBE KAWASAKI
16. Jason Thomas, Melrose, Fla., Suzuki
17. BOBBY KINIRY, HOLLAND PATENT, N.Y., KAWASAKI
18. COLE SIEBLER, EMMETT, IDAHO, KAWASAKI
19. Ben Lamay, Wasilla, AK, Yamaha
20. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., KTM

AMA Supercross Lites Results, Western Region
1. Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Honda
2. Ken Roczen, Germany, KTM
3. BROC TICKLE, HOLLY, MICH., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI
4. Cole Seely, Corona, Calif., Honda
5. Kyle Cunningham, Aledo, Texas, Yamaha
6. TYLA RATTRAY, WILDOMAR, CALIF., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI
7. Ryan Morais, Murrieta, Calif., Suzuki
8. Martin Davalos, Cairo, Ga., Suzuki
9. Travis Baker, Temecula, Calif., Honda
10. BEN EVANS, GARDEN CITY, IDAHO, KAWASAKI
11. Tommy Weeck, Menifee, Calif., Honda
12. JAKE CANADA, SUN CITY, CALIF., KAWASAKI
13. JOSH HANSEN, ELBERT, COLO., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI
14. Topher Ingalls, Tempelton, Calif., Honda
15. BRUCE RUTHERFORD, MURRIETA, CALIF., KAWASAKI
16. Casey Hinson, Clovis, Calif., KTM
17. DONALD VAWSER, KIMBERLY, IDAHO, KAWASAKI
18. Landen Powell, South Jordan, Utah, Honda
19. Tevin Tapia, Federal Way, Wash., KTM
20. Nick Paluzzi, Riverside, Calif., Yamaha

AMA Supercross Class Points
1. RYAN VILLOPOTO, POULSBO, WASH., MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI, 318
2. Chad Reed, Tampa, Fla., Honda, 309
3. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki, 306
4. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Yamaha, 295
5. Trey Canard, Shawnee, Okla., Honda, 255
6. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, KTM, 214
7. Kevin Windham, Centreville, Miss., Honda, 202
8. Davi Millsaps, Carlsbad, Calif., Yamaha, 172
9. Justin Brayton, Cornelius, N.C., Yamaha, 153
10. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., Yamaha, 139
11. IVAN TEDESCO, MURRIETA, CALIF., KAWASAKI, 134
12. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., KTM, 114
13. Brett Metcalfe, Lake Elsinore, Calif., Suzuki, 107
14. Kyle Regal, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 95
15. CHRIS BLOSE, PHOENIX., ARIZ., KAWASAKI, 94
16. Michael Byrne, Dade City, Fla., Suzuki, 67
17. Tommy Hahn, Alvord, Texas, Yamaha, 66
18. FABIEN IZOIRD, FRANCE, MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI, 63
19. Austin Stroupe, Lincolnton, N.C., Yamaha, 55
20. MATT BONI, GENEVA, FLA., KAWASAKI, 48

AMA Supercross Lites Points, Western Region
1. BROC TICKLE, HOLLY, MICH., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI, 165
2. Eli Tomac, Cortez, Colo., Honda, 163
3. JOSH HANSEN, ELBERT, COLO., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI, 151
4. Cole Seely, Corona, Calif., Honda, 131
5. Ryan Morais, Murrieta, Calif., Suzuki, 124
6. TYLA RATTRAY, WILDOMAR, CALIF., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI, 111
7. Ken Roczen, Germany, KTM, 105
8. Kyle Cunningham, Aledo, Texas, Yamaha, 105
9. Martin Davalos, Cairo, Ga., Suzuki, 95
10. BEN EVANS, GARDEN CITY, IDAHO, KAWASAKI, 68
11. James Decotis, Peabody, Mass., Honda, 67
12. Travis Baker, Temecula, Calif., Honda, 61
13. Nick Paluzzi, Riverside, Calif., Yamaha, 54
14. ANTONIO BALBI, PERRIS, CALIF., KAWASAKI, 50
15. Ryan Marmont, Australia, KTM, 48
16. BRUCE RUTHERFORD, MURRIETA, CALIF., KAWASAKI, 44
17. JAKE CANADA, SUN CITY, CALIF., KAWASAKI, 38
18. Casey Hinson, Clovis, Calif., KTM, 26
19. Tommy Weeck, Murrieta, Calif., Honda, 24
20. GARED STEINKE, WOODLAND, CALIF., KAWASAKI, 21

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