Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Broc Tickle finished eighth for the night while Jake Weimer failed to qualify for the main event after finishing fourth in the last chance qualifier. In the supercross lites class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Darryn Durham finished on the podium again, taking the runner-up spot, while his teammate Blake Baggett finished fourth.
Villopoto claimed his third straight win in Indianapolis overcoming a slow start and cautiously making his way into the lead. By the end of the night, Villopoto led only five laps en route to his sixth win of the season.
“The track was really difficult tonight,” said Villopoto. “It was so slippery you had to go slow, to go fast. If you tried to be too aggressive you would cost yourself time. I knew I had the training and endurance to last so I settled on my pace and moved up for the win.”
The supercross lites race made history in Indianapolis. For the first time ever, a supercross lites main event was re-started single-file by running order. After the red flag was drawn following the completion of the fourth lap, a single-file restart, reminiscent of flat track racing occurred. On the re-start, Durham moved up to third and then following a crash by the leader, he slotted himself in the runner-up position to earn his third podium finish of the season.
“The track was really tough tonight,” said Durham. “I’ve raced GNCC so the single-file start was something I’ve done before, and I’m just glad it wasn’t a dead-engine start as well. I tried to ride smart and keep it on the podium tonight.”
After getting his heat race win, Baggett was ready to put his KX™250F on top of the box. After nearly claiming the holeshot off of the initial main event start, Baggett ran near the front of the pack all night. He stayed with the lead pack stalking a podium position, only to come up short finishing fourth.
“I got a good start and was running well when the red flag came out,” said Baggett. “On the restart, I thought about when I raced as an amateur and they used to flip the field at the halfway point for a single file restart. The track was slippery all the way around so it was difficult to move and make passes.”
For Tickle, the supercross main event was a test of wills as he rode mostly alone for the 20 laps. After the start, Tickle settled into his pace on the slick track and slowly moved up through the field from a mid-pack start to finish eighth.
“I didn’t get the best jump out of the gate,” said Tickle. “I knew the track was slick and I would have to be careful out there. A top-ten is always a good result, but I think I had a little more for everyone tonight. I’m going to keep working hard and get ready for Toronto next week.”
Weimer had a tough heat race in preparation for the main event. On the first lap another rider went down right in front of him and he had no place to go. After remounting, the Idaho native did his best to move up to a transfer position, but he was unable to move directly to the main event. In the last chance qualifier, a bad start put Weimer behind the eight ball and despite a valiant attempt to move up, he had to settle for a fourth-place finish.
“In my heat race, I was kind of back, and when Nick (Wey) went down I had no where to go,” said Weimer. “His bike cartwheeled right into my landing so I was stuck. I got up and tried to move up, but I was too far back. In the LCQ, I needed a better start on this slick track and I didn’t get it. I did my best to try and get to the main, but it wasn’t enough tonight.”
The dirt in Indianapolis was surprisingly slick inside the stadium, wreaking havoc throughout the night. Though it appeared to be tacky, the dirt was breaking down in many places making the surface seem more like ice.
For Villopoto, his move through the pack showed the patience of a champion. As the Washington native gauged the track he knew that trying to go too fast would lead to slower lap times.
“This was our toughest track of the year,” said Villopoto. “Every time I tried to push hard to make up time, I ended up going slower. When I settled into a smooth rhythm I was able to hit my marks and put in better lap times.”
Monster Energy AMA Supercross heads to Toronto, Ontario, Canada for the only round outside of the U.S. at the Rogers Centre on March 24, 2012. Look for Villopoto to extend his points lead, while Durham tries to make up more points in the standings.
Monster Energy AMA Supercross
Lucas Oil Stadium – Indianapolis, Ind.
March 17, 2012
Supercross Class Race Results
1. RYAN VILLOPOTO, POULSBO, WASH., MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI
2. Justin Brayton, Murrieta, Calif., Honda
3. Davi Millsaps, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha
4. Brett Metcalfe, Lake Elsinore, Calif., Suzuki
5. Cole Seeley, Murrieta, Calif., Honda
6. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Suzuki
7. Marvin Musquin, Murrieta, Calif., KTM
8. BROC TICKLE, HOLLY, MICH., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI
9. WESTON PEICK, WILDOMAR, CALIF., KAWASAKI
10. Nico Izzi, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha
Supercross Class Points Standings
1. RYAN VILLOPOTO, POULSBO, WASH., MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI, 246
2. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., KTM, 192
3. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Yamaha, 177
4. Davi Millsaps, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 151
5. Kevin Windham, Centreville, Miss., Honda, 146
6. Justin Brayton, Murrieta, Calif., Honda, 143
7. Brett Metcalfe, Lake Elsinore, Calif., Suzuki, 142
8. JAKE WEIMER, RUPERT, IDAHO, MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI, 134
9. Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Honda, 128
10. Mike Alessi, Hilliard, Calif., Suzuki, 128
11. BROC TICKLE, HOLLY, MICH., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI, 95
12. KYLE CHISHOLM, VALRICO, FLA., JWR KAWASAKI, 92
13. JOSH HANSEN, ELBERT, CO, DODGE/HART & HUNTINGTON KAWASAKI, 87
14. NICOLAS WEY, MURRIETA, CALIF, KAWASAKI, 76
15. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, Honda, 59
Supercross Lites East Race Results
1. Blake Wharton, Pilot Point, Texas, Suzuki
2. DARRYN DURHAM, BUTLER, PA., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI
3. Justin Barcia, Ochlocknee, GA., Honda
4. BLAKE BAGGETT, GRAND TERRACE, CALIF., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI
5. Jake Canada, Sun City, Calif., Honda
6. Justin Bogle, Cushing, Okla., Honda
7. MATTHEW LEMOINE, COLLINSVILLE, TEXAS, KAWASAKI
8. TYLER BOWERS, DANVILLE, KY, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI
9. Les Smith, York, SC., KTM
10. Shawn Rife, Mechanicsburg, Ohio., Honda
Supercross Lites East Points Standings
1. Justin Barcia, Ochlocknee, Ga., Honda, 120
2. DARRYN DURHAM, BUTLER, PA., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI, 98
3. Blake Wharton, Pilot Point, Texas, Suzuki, 97
4. BLAKE BAGGETT, GRAND TERRACE, CALIF., MONSTER ENERGY/PRO CIRCUIT/KAWASAKI, 80
5. Ken Roczen, Murrieta, Ga., KTM, 80
6. Jake Canada, Sun City, Calif., Suzuki, 72
7. Justin Bogle, Cushing, Okla., Honda, 61
8. Kyle Cunningham, Aledo, Texas, Yamaha, 43
9. Malcolm Stewart, Haines City, Fla., KTM, 42
10. PJ Larsen, Murrieta, Calif., KTM, 38
17. TYLER BOWERS, DANVILLE, KY, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI, 21