Round 8 – AMA/FIM Supercross Series 2012 – Atlanta
The 2012 Atlanta Supercross served up another great round of racing. KTM’s Ryan Dungey came away with the big win in the Supercross class, edging out defending champion Ryan Villopoto. Villopoto maintains a ten point lead in the series points standings over Dungey as they get ready for round nine next week in St. Louis. James Stewart finished third tonight, and it was Kevin Windham’s 200th career SX race! In the 250 East Lites class, Justin Barcia took his second win in a row and has a perfect 50 points.
|250 Lites East Results|
|250 Lites East Pts
250 East Lites qualifying – Ken Roczen stepped up his riding in the final practice session, topping the timing charts (52.13). Justin Barcia was second overall (52.34), Justin Bogle third (52.54), Blake Wharton fourth (53.64), and Kyle Cunningham fifth (53.64).
450 Supercross Class qualifying – Ryan Villopoto managed to find some extra speed in the final practice, becoming the fastest qualifier of the day (50.73). James Stewart was second (51.17), Ryan Dungey third (51.355), Davi Millsaps fourth (51.78), and Kevin Windham fifth (52.585).
250 East Heat 1 – Justin Barcia took the holeshot and for the first lap, looked to be on his way to an easy win. However, he was soon being pressured by Blake Wharton and would eventually crash in the bowl turn just before the sand section. The lead was then handed off to Wharton, who led the next two laps. Unfortunately he hit the dirt as well just after the finish line on lap four. Malcom Stewart then inherited the lead, but that was also short lived, as he crashed very hard at the end of the long rhythm lane before the second triple. Blake Baggett became the final leader of the race, being challenged in the final corner by Barcia, who had recovered from his early race fall. Darryn Durham, Blake Wharton, and D. Herrlein in fifth.
250 East Heat 2 – Ken Roczen jumped out to the early lead, and he and Justin Bogle quickly began to gap the rest of the field. But on the second lap, Roczen made a mistake at the end of the long rhythm lane, low siding his bike. The fall allowed Bogle to make his way into the lead, which he never relinquished. Roczen recovered for second while Kyle Cunningham ran in third for the entirety of the race. Hunter Hewitt and Levi Kilbarger rounded out the top five. Bogle’s win was the first heat race victory of his young career.
450 Supercross Heat 1 – James Stewart got a great jump off the start and by the second turn had already begun to separate himself from the rest of the pack. Cole Seely, meanwhile, was looking confident in his guest appearance aboard Trey Canard’s vacated factory Honda. The West Lites rider held strong in second place for several laps before a charging Davi Millsaps managed to make a move. But Seely was able to counter, taking back the number two position. Millsaps eventually made the pass again in the same corner before the first triple, and then made the move stick by being the first rider of the evening to triple into the sand section. James Stewart went on to take a solid heat win ahead of Millsaps and Seely. Josh Hansen and Mike Alessi completed the top five.
450 Supercross Heat 2 – At the gate drop, Ryan Dungey had the clear holeshot, and within one lap had openned a three second gap back to his former teammate, Brett Metcalfe. Meanwhile, Ryan Villpoto was picking off one rider after another and soon had worked past Metcalfe. Almost at the same time, Dungey made a mistake in the corner before the first triple, allowing both Villpoto and Metcalfe to slip by. For the next several laps, Dungey did his best to recover and eventually did make his way back around Metcalfe, but Villopoto was too far out front for the KTM rider to make a challenge. Dungey would finish in second, Metcalfe in third, Kevin Windham in fourth, and Broc Tickle in fifth.
250 East 15 lap Main Event – Justin Barcia once again had the best jump off the gate and claimed the holeshot ahead of Blake Bagget and Blake Wharton. Last week’s third place finisher, Ken Roczen, seemed to get held up on the gate, and was forced to start the race towards the back of the pack. Justin Bogle was a rider on the move, beginning in fifth but then working his way up to challenge the number 956 machine of Wharton. After several pass attempts, Bogle was able to finally make the pass along the first rhythm lane.
As the laps wore on, Barcia was able to slowly inch further away from Baggett, creating a comfortable lead that would remain unchallenged to the end of the race. Baggett would finish in second, a large improvement over his round one disappointment. Bogle put in another strong ride to back up his first heat race win by rounding out the podium in third. Wharton and Darryn Durham completed the top five.
Justin Barcia: It was the most difficult track of the year. Almost scary … but I’m very happy to be up here on the podium!
Supercross 20 lap Main Event – Cole Seely showed that he may be a force to rekon with in the future, as he jumped out to a great start in his first 450 race since the 2011 Supercross season. With Ryan Dungey right on Seely’s rear wheel, the KTM rider nearly made a pass on the opening lap, but Seely defended and reclaimed the lead. Villopoto and Stewart both had mid pack starts and were forced to work their the field. While Villopoto was able to make his way up to third by lap five, Stewart did not have such an easy time of it. The JGR clawed his way towards the front, making some excellent passes along the way on Jake Weimer and Josh Hansen.
Up front, Dungey had waited patiently for eight laps to make a move on Seely. He finally forced the issue going through the mechanic’s area, pushing Seely to the outside and almost to a complete stop. Within a few laps, Stewart had worked his way past his teammate, Davi Millsaps, and then began to close on Seely, who had since succumbed to Villopoto. Stewart was eventually able to make an aggressive pass on Seely in the first turn that got the crowd on their feet. From there it became a waiting game of who could lay down the fastest laps versus who could make the least mistakes. With Dungey, Villopoto, and Stewart holding down the top three, the pressure was on to lay down perfect laps.
In the closing laps, Villopoto stepped up his speed and came near making a viable challenge on Dungey. However one very fast lap followed by a mistake in a corner left Villopoto unable to make a move. Dungey went onto win his second main event of the year, with Villopoto and Stewart in second and third. Millsaps and Justin Brayton completed the top five.
Ryan Dungey: I had a great week. I finally was able to get home to Florida, and spend some time by myself and resting. I also got in a lot of good riding, and I love it here in Atlanta. I hope we can keep building from here, I want to thank the Man above, the Lord Jesus Christ.
The attendance in Atlanta’s Georgia Dome tonight? Asold out crowd of 71,009!