Ryan Villopoto captured his series-leading fourth win of the season in a red-flagged main event before a record crowd of 60,178 at St. Louis’ Edwards Jones Dome, as the 2013 AMA Supercross season reaches its midway point.
The race started with MotoConcepts Suzuki rider Mike Alessi taking the holeshot with Muscle Milk Honda‘s Justin Barcia and Yoshimura Suzuki‘s James Stewart on his tail. Last week’s winner Stewart later quickly moved into the lead but the race was soon halted on Lap 3 after JGRMX Yamaha‘s Kyle Chisholm and BTO Sports KTM‘s Matt Goerke collided on a jump.
The race was halted so a medical crew could attend to Chisholm. While the red flag was out however, Villopoto performed a double jump instead of rolling through it as required, forcing officials to penalize him on the restart. After Chisholm was carted off the track, the riders lined up in a staggered formation in the order they were in the previous lap, except for Villopoto who was penalized three positions, dropping him to sixth from third place.
The race restarted with Stewart taking a big lead followed by Barcia, Alessi and TwoTwo Motorsports Honda rider Chad Reed. Meanwhile, Villopoto quickly moved up a couple of positions to make up for his penalty and was back in the top three a couple of laps later.
Villopoto passed Barcia on Lap 9 to move into second place and began moving closer to Stewart, swapping positions briefly on the final corner of Lap 10. Villopoto attempted a similar pass on Lap 11 taking the lead once again. Once again, Stewart closed the gap but lost it once more slowing down to avoid a stopped rider. Villopoto took advantage to take the lead while Stewart had to contend with Barcia to stay in second.
Villopoto would hold on the rest of the race to win by 3.396 seconds. Stewart finished second for his second consecutive podium with Reed taking third.
The win gives Villopoto 177 points on the season through nine rounds. Rockstar Energy Suzuki’s Davi Millsaps finished sixth to maintain a 12-point lead in the standings.
The 2013 AMA Supercross Championship moves into its second half March 9 at Daytona International Speedway.
|2013 AMA Supercross: St. Louis Top Five Finishers|
|450cc Class Top Five Standings After Nine Rounds|
[Source: AMA Supercross]