Ryan Villopoto managed to close the gap on points leader Ryan Dungey as the Supercross series swung into Jacksonville, Florida. The two Ryans took the top spots in the premier class, with Kawasaki's Cristophe Pourcel maintaining his control over the East Coast Lites series with yet another victory.
Ryan Villopoto closed the points gap on Ryan Dungey with a win at Jacksonsville. The lone Kawasaki factory racer is now 21 points down.
Villopoto, who had missed part of the earlier practice sessions after a crash, jumped out to the front in the opening laps. The Washington native lapped ahead of the fastest man in practice, Honda's Kevin Windham, with Yamaha's Ivan Tedesco in third. Dungey hung back in fourth biding his time.
While Villopoto set the pace, Dungey began to piece through the ranks, getting around Tedesco on Lap 4 and then Windham by the halfway marker. But the Kawasaki pilot was too far ahead to close on, with Dungey unable to close the gap.
“I got a decent start, but it wasn’t the best," said Dungey. "I kind of got shoved a little bit and went back a few spots. That kind of bummed me out, but I just tried to make a hard charge to the front. I needed to pick off as many riders as I could.”
Rocksta Makita Suzuki's Ryan Dungey battled back from a mediocre start to finish second behind Villopoto.
The two title contenders holding the 1-2 positions, Windham battled with fellow Honda rider, Trey Canard, over the final rostrum position. Windham was unable to fend off the hard-charging youngster, however, and finished less than 0.2 off the steps in Jacksonville.
Tedseco held onto fifth-place, Hot Sauce followed on the results sheet by Red Bull Honda's Davi Milsaps and Yamaha's Josh Hill. Rounding out the top ten were Suzuki's Tommy Hahn and Yamaha riders Justin Brayton and Michael Byrne.
The win gets Villopoto three point closer to Dungey in the championship chase, though the Suzuki rider holds a formidable 21-point lead.
“It was rough all day really," said Villopoto of his earlier practice get-off. "I was able to turn around the heat race. So the night definitely turned around, and I’m happy.”
The Supercross series now takes an uncharacteristic week off, for Easter, picking the action back up on April 10th at Houston.
Supercross Jacksonville Results:
1.Ryan Villopoto (Kawasaki)
2.Ryan Dungey (Suzuki)
3.Trey Canard (Honda)
4.Kevin Windham (Honda)
5.Ivan Tedesco (Yamaha)
6.Davi Milsaps (Honda)
7.Josh Hill (Yamaha)
8.Tommy Hahn (Suzuki)
9.Justin Brayton (Yamaha)
10.Mike Byrne (Yamaha)
11.Kyle Chisolm (Yamaha)
12.Nick Wey (Kawasaki)
13.Mike Boni (Honda)
14.Chris Blose (Honda)
15.J. Keeney (Kawasaki)
Christophe Pourcel kept the title-winning momentum with a yet another East Coast victory at Jacksonville.
Christophe Pourcel kept his domination of the East Coast series intact with a victory over his biggest challenger, Suzuki's Austin Stroupe. Honda's Brett Metcalfe claimed the final podium position in the Lites class.
Metcalfe led early during the 15-lap Lites main, followed by Stroupe and Pourcel. The Frenchman was content to linger back before making his move at the midway mark, bolting into the lead with Stroupe in tow.
“It was a good start and the first time I led laps this year. It was a good feeling. I was just trying to ride as hard as I could, and I could feel those guys on me," commented Metcalfe after the race. "They made moves that were good. It was hard for me to match that pace and keep it going. I’m just happy to get away with a good weekend.”
GEICO Powersports Honda's Brett Metcalfe led Stroupe and Pourcel until a bobble let them get by.
The Pro Circuit Kawasaki pilot pulled away, with the RM-Z rider making Pourcel work for it at the end. The two crossed the line with Metcalfe in third, the Aussie followed by fellow Honda riders Justin Barcia and Jim DeCotis. Last week's surprise winner, Blake Baggett, was unable to repeat at Jacksonville, finishing a distant 12th.
“It was a pretty good race. We got of to a good run, and Metty was riding good. It was good having somebody up there. I didn’t let Pourcel get by me,” said Stroupe. “But with Metty, we bobbled, and he got by me. Then it was hard to pull that gap back in.”
Pourcel's victory extends his points lead over Stroupe to eight, at 134 to 126.
Supercross Lites Jacksonville Results:
1. Christophe Pourcel (Kawasaki)
Austin Stroupe was unable to close on Pourcel, finishing second to the French rider.
2. Austin Stroupe (Suzuki)
3. Brett Metcalfe (Honda)
4. Justin Barcia (Honda)
5. Jim DeCotis (Honda)
6. Troy Adams (Suzuki)
7. K Cunningham (Yamaha)
8. Matt Lemoine (Suzuki)
9. S Clarke (Suzuki)
10.J Sipes (Kawasaki)
11.T Futrell (KTM)
12.Blake Baggett (Suzuki)
13.T Tapia (KTM)
14.K Smith (Honda)
15.K Gills (Kawasaki)