Dodger Stadium Supercross
The 2011 SX motorcycle racing teams, backed by Yoshimura race equipment, all exhibited strong performances during the third round of the 2011 AMA Supercross Championship season Saturday night at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, Calif.
Rockstar Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey and his Yoshimura-equipped 2011 Suzuki RM-Z 450 powered to a third-place podium finish Saturday night in one of the most exciting main events in recent years.
Suzuki teammate Brett Metcalfe pulled the hole-shot just ahead of Dungey and led the first lap and a half until a small mistake put him on the ground. Metcalfe finished strong, piloting his Suzuki RM-Z to another eighth-place finish in the 20-lap main event.
Ryan Dungey (2011 Suzuki RM-Z 450) says: "I’m overall happy about the day. Winning the heat race was definitely a step in the right direction. In the main, I got a good start on my RM-Z450 and we had to battle pretty much all race long – it was kind of cat and mouse. Overall, happy on the day; we just came up a little short.
"My Rockstar Makita Suzuki team and I accomplished a lot, so we can’t complain about anything. I’m definitely looking forward to Oakland and going to another new stadium. We’ll do some work this week and show up to Oakland ready to go."
Brett Metcalfe (2011 Suzuki RM-Z 450) says: "It was a good day. My Rockstar Makita Suzuki team was able to make some changes to my Suzuki that made me much more comfortable on the bike this week, and that made me be able to get up to speed earlier in practice. I had a tough heat race but was able to climb back up to ninth so I didn’t have to go to the LCQ.
"In the main event, I just dropped the hammer and my RM-Z hooked up and I was able to get the hole-shot and led the first lap. I made a mistake on the second lap and went down and lost quite a few positions.
"Overall, I was happy with the ride; it was just that mistake that disappointed me. I’m really looking forward to Oakland – another new stadium. And the dirt should be a little looser and more tacky, which will suit my style a little better."
American Honda Racing’s Trey Canard brought the battle to the Supercross competition aboard his Honda. Canard raced his Yoshimura-equipped 2011 Honda CRF 450 R to a fourth-place finish in the main event. After crashing hard in his heat race, Canard transferred to the main event by way of the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) race.
Getting a mid-pack start in the main and rounding the opening lap in seventh position, Canard quickly set about working his way through the pack and moved into the number three spot by lap four. He fought his way into second position by the midway point in the race only to relinquish two places before the race’s end, finishing a solid fourth overall.
Trey Canard (2011 Honda CRF 450 R) says: "Boy was it a tough night of racing for me. I really hit the ground hard in my heat race and by the midway point in the main, I was starting to feel the effects of that crash. I had some good battles for second and third but in the end, fourth place was the best I could do tonight.
"It was amazing to watch the whole American Honda Racing team come together to repair my bike in time for the LCQ race. I’m just glad we were able to get back out there and I’m glad I was able to ride a strong race in the main event."
Team Rockstar Energy Suzuki scored a podium and an 11th-place finish in LA. Ryan Morais piloted his Yoshimura-equipped 2011 Suzuki RM-Z 250 to a third-place podium finish in the 15-lap lites main event. Martin Davalos qualified fastest for the day and dominated the second heat race on his RM-Z250 to end up with a convincing win. Davalos struggled a bit in the main and finished the evening 11th.
Ryan Morais (2011 Suzuki RM-Z 250) says: "Overall a pretty good night. I made good progress from last weekend to this weekend and I feel like I rode a lot better. Hopefully I’ll be able to carry it over to next weekend. The Rockstar Energy Suzuki team did a great job and I’m happy to put my Suzuki RM-Z on the podium.
"I’m going to go home and work on my starts. It seems like whoever gets the starts winds up winning this year. I’ll be ready to step it up for Oakland.
Martin Davalos (2011 Suzuki RM-Z 250) says: "My day started off really good. I felt great on my Suzuki RM-Z and got a really good practice time. I got a decent start in the heat and took my time in the first corner – put myself in a good place and ended up with my first heat race win with the Rockstar Energy Suzuki Team.
"In the main event, I got a decent fourth place start but was maybe a little too cautious and ended up going down. I think I need to work on my confidence and be more aggressive to improve my mains. I’m looking forward to a better result in Oakland."
The next stop of the 2011 AMA/FIM Supercross Championship for the Yoshimura-backed teams is Saturday, January 29th, at the Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, CA.