Seattle Supercross: Yoshimura Report

2011 AMA Supercross

Yoshimura-backed teams showed their strength and the performance advantage of their Yoshimura products Saturday night during the 15th round of the 2011 AMA/FIM Supercross Championship at Quest Field in Seattle.

It was another great night of racing in front of a packed crowd of nearly 53,000 fans to witness the Rockstar Makita Suzuki and Rockstar Energy Suzuki Supercross teams put their Yoshimura products to good use in a successful campaign on the highly technical Seattle track.

A week of rain made for a heavily rutted, highly technical track in Seattle Supercross, but Dungey and his RM-Z adapted well and were strong all day. After scoring the third fastest time in the shortened afternoon practice, Dungey pulled the holeshot in his heat but fell back a bit to finish third.

A decent start in the main put the Rockstar Makita Suzuki Supercross rider up to sixth, but a tip-over on the first lap put him near the back and he ended up finishing the first lap in 14th place. Dungey’s RM-Z450 powered him through the tough conditions as he steadily progressed up to fifth place by lap ten.

A bobble in the whoops on lap 11 put the reigning champion back to sixth, but Dungey was able to get the Supercross position back within two laps. Dungey pushed hard for the remaining six laps and ended up crossing the line in fifth.

Ryan Dungey (Rockstar Makita Suzuki Supercross) says: “All in all, it was a pretty good night. I got off to a good start in my heat and ended up finishing third. My Rockstar Makita Suzuki team did a good job all day adapting the bike to the conditions.

“We made a few changes to my Suzuki before the main; nothing too crazy – just a few suspension adjustments to adapt to the ruts. The track was really gnarly tonight. It kinda wanted to just come up and bite you, especially by the end of the 20 laps. I got off to a decent start, but I fell down in the first lap and I think I was near last.

“But at that point, I just put my head down and tried to pick off as many guys as I could and was able to move up and finish fifth. Everyone did a great job today. My RM-Z450 ran great and my team adapted it well to this Supercross track. Going forward, we have a two-week break and then we’ll get into Salt Lake and will be ready to give it a hard push for the last two rounds.”

Dungey now stands third in Supercross championship points, one point out of second and seven points out of first. 2011 will be a season for the record books, as there are four riders within nine points at the top of the standings with just two rounds to go.

Since the AMA Supercross series swung back west to Seattle this past weekend, Team Rockstar Energy Suzuki used the opportunity to grab a couple of top ten finishes in the seventh round of the 2011 AMA/FIM Supercross Lites West Championship.

Ryan Morais powered his Yoshimura-equipped Suzuki RM-Z250 to a seventh-place finish in the 15-lap lites main event as teammate Martin Davalos followed close behind in eighth on the tough and highly technical Seattle Supercross track.

Morais started the day with his best qualifying result of the season in the afternoon timed practices and carried that momentum into his heat race with a solid fourth place aboard his Suzuki.

In the Supercross main, a good start put him in eighth place after the first lap and he was able to work his RM-Z250 up to as high as sixth over the next few laps. Morais battled throughout the remainder of the 15 laps on the heavily rutted Supercross course to cross the line in seventh.

Ryan Morais (Rockstar Energy Suzuki Supercross) says: “Today went okay for me. I felt pretty good in practice – It was my best practice qualifying time of the year. The track was really technical and hard tonight and my team did a good job setting up my bike. I felt good in the main event and got a good start on my RM-Z.

“I was battling with a couple riders and the pace was good, but it kind of turned into a little cat and mouse. I wasn’t able to get past sixth over the rest of the race. It was a little frustrating, but I’ve come out of here healthy and we have two weeks ‘til Salt Lake City. I’m going to work hard and try to put my Suzuki on the box in these last two races. I like Salt Lake City and I feel like I’m where I need to be, so we’ll see what we can do.”

Davalos rode strong all day, starting with the third fastest time in the shortened afternoon Supercross practice and continuing into his heat race to bring his RM-Z across the line in fourth. A decent start in the main put Davalos just behind his teammate Morais for nearly the entire 15 laps. The Rockstar Energy Suzuki rider used the power and handling of his RM-Z250 to negotiate the tough and technical conditions to score an eighth-place finish.

Martin Davalos (Rockstar Energy Suzuki Supercross) says: “It was a tough weekend for me. I felt like I rode good but kind of got a bad start in the main and just really couldn’t get around anyone. The track was really challenging, really gnarly rutted, but my RM-Z worked great. I just couldn’t make anything happen.

“The positive thing is that I’m safe and healthy and I’m gonna go back home and work on some starts. I need to get the start. I’ve never been to Salt Lake City, so I’m really looking forward to racing there. I need to put my Rockstar Energy Suzuki team on the box. We work so hard and they are so good to me.”

After seven rounds in the books, Morais sits fifth and Davalos ninth in the west region point standings. After 15 straight rounds, the AMA Supercross series takes a week off and will pick back up at Rice Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, UT, on Saturday April 30.