San Manuel Yamaha’s James Stewart, of Haines City, Fla., won the opening night of the Rockstar Energy Drink U.S. Open inside the MGM Grand Garden Arena tonight and moved one step closer to cashing in on the $100,000 purse.
Stewart, who is the defending race champion, opened the main event with the holeshot and led all 20 laps en route to the win. GEICO Powersports Honda’s Dan Reardon, of Murrieta, Calif., started in second and was passed near the halfway mark by Honda Red Bull Racing’s Davi Millsaps, of Tallahassee, Fla.
"I am just happy to get out here and race tonight," said Stewart. "There is a lot of work that I have to do, but the bike worked great tonight. This is always a fun event and I am excited to be a part of it."
Monster Energy/Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto, of Poulsbo, Wash., suffered a mechanical failure and did not finish the race. Millsaps finished second and Reardon finished third.
"This is an important race for me," said Reardon. "I look forward to tomorrow night’s race. I put myself in a great position heading into tomorrow night, so we will see what happens."
"I didn’t get the start that I wanted tonight," said Millsaps. "I had a lot of tough guys to pass out there and I am glad to finish well and show the team that I am ready.
Kawasaki’s Adam Cianciarulo jumped out to an early lead in the Alpinestars 85cc Mini Invitational and was challenged early by fellow Kawasaki rider Chris Allredege. Cianciarulo began to pull away by lap two and went on to win the main event. Allredege finished second and Jesse Masterpool finished third.
"I have dreamed about racing here my whole life and to win tonight is huge for me," said Cianciarulo. "Every time I hit the finish line jump, the crowd went crazy. I want to thank my family for helping me make this happen."
Racing continues tomorrow night and the 2009 Rockstar Energy Drink U.S. Open champion will be crowned.
Friday Night Open Class Results
1. James Stewart, Yamaha
2. Davi Millsaps, Honda
3. Dan Reardon, Honda
4. Matt Georke, Yamaha
5. Christian Craig, Yamaha
6. Cole Siebler, Honda
7. Tyler Bowers, Yamaha
8. Nick Wey, Yamaha
9. Chris Blose, Honda
10. Michael Byrne, Suzuki
Friday Night Alpinestars 85cc Mini Invitational
1. Adam Cianciarulo, Kawasaki
2. Chris Allredege, Kawasaki
3. Jesse Masterpool, Suzuki
4. Keith Tucker, Yamaha
5. Thomas Covington, Kawasaki
6. Troy Graffunder, Yamaha
7. Colton Ford, KTM
8. Cole Heath, Yamaha
9. Andrew Pierce, Kawasaki
10. Brandan Leith, KTM
11. Nick Gaines, Kawasaki
12. Daniel Baker, KTM
Tickets for the 2009 Rockstar Energy Drink U.S. Open are available at Ticketmaster locations, Carter Powersports (located at 6275 South Decatur Blvd. Las Vegas, NV 89118) the MGM Grand Garden Arena box office, www.ussx.com or by phone at (800) 745-3000.