The Texas motocross faithful funneled into Cowboys Stadium on Saturday night to escape the rain and chilly temps outside while taking in an evening with the best Supercross racers on the planet. The cozy confines of a dome is commonplace as the AMA Supercross Series begins heading east, and there are none finer than Jerry Jones’ billion-dollar masterpiece in Arlington.
With over 53,000 fans at the edges of their seats, Ryan Dungey was eager to keep his Red Bull KTM upon the podium after a third-place effort last weekend in San Diego, and fought back from a poor main event start to capture an impressive second-place finish in Cowboys Stadium.
Behind Dungey, James Stewart landed just outside the top-five in Big D, finishing sixth after having to overcome adversity early on in the Supercross-class main event.
Dallas also played host to the first round of the Lites East Series, and Dungey’s Red Bull KTM teammate, Ken Roczen, got his Supercross campaign started in style with a solid third-place result. A favorite in the East Coast title chase, the likeable German played it safe at round one but will no doubt be battling for wins as the series progresses.
Read on for more details from round number seven in Dallas…
Supercross Qualifying Heats
- Before the night show got underway, Stewart had the pleasure of meeting Dallas Cowboys’ superstar linebacker and fellow Red Bull athlete, DeMarcus Ware. James later rolled out for opening ceremonies wearing an autographed number 94 Cowboys jersey.
- When the gate dropped for Supercross-class Heat #1, Dungey got out to a solid top-five start but unfortunately went down in the first rhythm lane after exiting turn one.
- Picking himself up at the back of the pack, Dungey was forced to weave his way through slower traffic en route to picking up the ninth, and final, qualifying position.
- Stewart’s chance to qualify came next as Heat #2 rolled into the gate, and when it dropped he rocketed down the short Dallas start-straight to grab the holeshot and early lead.
- Despite getting slowed by lapped riders on the final lap, Stewart led wire-to-wire to win the heat by a little more than a second over Chad Reed.
Supercross Main Event
- After a mediocre jump out of the gate, Stewart rounded lap one of the main event just outside the top-ten but made some quick passes to move into sixth by the end of lap two.
- Dungey got out to an equally disappointing start and found himself buried just outside the top-ten early on.
- On lap three, after getting caught up with JGRMX teammate Davi Millsaps who went down just in front of him, Stewart stalled his bike, dropping all the way back to 19th.
- By lap eight, Dungey had worked his way into fourth and was quickly catching up to Mike Alessi in third.
- With ten laps down and ten to go, Stewart had worked his way back up to ninth place, while Dungey put a move on Alessi to take over the third spot.
- Dungey moved to within striking distance of Jake Weimer in second with two laps to go and made a momentary pass that would only stick for a corner.
- On the last lap, Dungey was finally able to make a pass stick and crossed the line for a hard-fought second-place finish just in front of Weimer.
- In the closing laps, a determined Stewart made a couple more passes as he approached the top-five, but he eventually ended the night in the sixth spot.
1. Ryan Villopoto
2. Ryan Dungey
3. Jake Weimer
4. Mike Alessi
5. Josh Hansen
6. James Stewart
7. Kevin Windham
8. Brett Metcalfe
9. Justin Brayton
10. Kyle Chisholm
Supercross Lites Qualifying Heats
- Ken Roczen kicked off his Lites East debut with a second-place start in Heat #1, but quickly took over the top spot on lap number one from early leader Blake Baggett.
- Dropping lap times over a second quicker than his closest competitor, Roczen quickly built a comfortable lead.
- After cruising during the final lap, Roczen took the checkers just over five seconds ahead of Baggett, who held on for second.
Supercross Lites Main Event
- After a month-and-a-half of watching their West Coast counterparts tear up the first six rounds of the 2012 AMA Supercross Series, the Lites East class finally got their chance to duke it out, and Roczen jumped out to a top-ten start to get things cracking.
- By the end of lap two, Roczen had charged his way up to the fourth spot and set his sights on Darryn Durham, Justin Bogle, and Justin Barcia up front.
- After a long battle with Bogle for third, Roczen eventually made a pass stick on lap 11 and proceeded to push hard to reel in Durham in second.
- Side-by-side in the final corner, Roczen came up just short of making the pass on Durham and crossed the line in the third spot.
- “I’m happy to be up here on the podium tonight,” Roczen said after the race. “Of course I’d rather be in the top spot, but this is a good starting point, so I’ll take it. Hopefully I can get a better start next weekend in Atlanta so I can get up there and battle for the win.”
Supercross Lites Results
1. Justin Barcia
2. Darryn Durham
3. Ken Roczen
4. Blake Wharton
5. Phillip Nicoletti
6. Malcolm Stewart
7. Jake Canada
8. P. Larson
9. Cole Thompson
10. Lance Vincent
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