The Indianapolis Supercross, round 11 of the Monster Energy Supercross Series proved to be another melee of odd events, crashes, red flags, and restarts. However, what was status quo happened to be who won the Supercross/450 main event. Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto did it again and has pretty much wrapped up the title with 6 rounds to go barring a total disaster. If some of you noticed, RV is a half a lap ahead of the pack in points and the second and third place contenders were not even lined up on the starting for the main in Indy. Missing two rounds, Ryan Dungey is still second in points while James Stewart, who chose to sit out after knocking his head in the heat race in Indy, sits third in points. Davi Millsaps, 4th in points and 95 points behind Villopoto was the only top-five series contender, other than RV, to finish the main event. RV could take a two-week vacation from the series and still be in the points lead with 19 to spare. If Poto keeps his winning ways he could lock up the title by New Orleans.
What threw most of us for a loop watching the race on the Tube, and probably moreso in the stands, was the red-flagged Lites/250 main. On the fifth lap they were forced to toss out the red flag when Kyle Cunningham went down and needed assistance on the track. A red flag tossed that deep into a main was a first to my recollection. The AMA rulebook states something to the effect that if the race goes over 3 laps, this is what happens. This was a very fair approach to a race that had run that many laps, even if we don’t remember seeing this sort of start in SX before. Read more below about the AMA rule on such a restart.
From the official AMA rulebook:
b. The race is stopped (with more than three laps and less than 90% of the total distance completed by the race leader,Ã¢Â¨rounded down to the nearest whole number of laps / whether it be a Heat, Last Chance Qualifier or Main Event)
1. A red flag will be displayed to the riders.Ã¢Â¨2. The riders will return to the starting area and a re-start will take place as soon as possible.Ã¢Â¨a. A minimum of 10 Minutes from the time that the red flag is displayed will be given to make repairs or adjustments.Ã¢Â¨b. Repairs or adjustments may only be made in the starting area.Ã¢Â¨3. The starting order will be determined by each rider’s race position at the end of the lap preceding the stopping of theÃ¢Â¨race.Ã¢Â¨4. Riders will be restarted from a staggered standing start in the starting area.Ã¢Â¨a. Riders will be lined up in a staggered formation beginning on the starting straight at a start line located by the firstÃ¢Â¨turn, starting with the rider that was in the first position and continuing back towards the starting area.Ã¢Â¨b. Riders not ready to take their position in line will be placed last.Ã¢Â¨c. Once all riders are in position, the starter will display a green flag to signal the start.Ã¢Â¨d. Any movement of the motorcycle before the display of the green flag will be considered a jumped start. Any rider Ã¢Â¨deemed to have jumped the start will be penalized a minimum of two positions in the final results.Ã¢Â¨e. Eligible riders who are unable to participate in the re-start due to a stalled motorcycle or continued repairs may joinÃ¢Â¨ the race from the starting area at anytime during the race.
Blake Wharton was the rider that finally put a stop to Barcia’s 4-race win streak. The Rockstar Suzuki rider was on his game and earned his first win of the year. Kardy Photo
Back to the race, Ken Roczen led the first Lites/250 main start with a nice gap, then on the single-file restart, he once again took the helmÃ‚ÂÃ‚Â–for awhile. At first it looked as if KTM would take its first main event of the year in the Lites. A small mistake snatched the glory from the Zen master, which put him on the ground and handed the top tier position over Blake Wharton.
If Barcia were to falter, Pro Circuit’s Darryn Durham has chance to take the title, it will take some luck on his part and some bad luck for the Geico Honda/Barcia camp. Kardy Photo
This was a series changeup round with Justin Barcia finally getting upstaged after a four-race winning streak. In fact, Bam Bam didn’t even make it on the podium, yet he did put in a gallant effort to place fourth.
After five rounds in the East, Barcia has a comfortable lead, 22-points over Darryn Durham and a 23-point advantage over Wharton. It’s likely going to take a big mistake or mechanical mishap to dethrone Barcia from defending his title at this point. But this is Supercross and we have pretty much seen anything and everything happen at this point in 2012.
Next week the series heads to the great white north of Canada – Eh! This is the only race of the year that leaves the colonies governed by the United States.
Just because the fanfare might have fizzled a tad in the Supercross class does not always mean the racing is going to be boring, or will it? Stewart should be back in action either crashing or winning next week;Windham has said he is good to go for Toronto, and when the West series kicks back up we hear Roczen might ride in the big boy class aboard a 350 Katoom. Yes it has been a crazy year thus far but it is not over yet. Just remember it is not over until some lady sings or someone mathematically clinches a title.
James Stewart crashed early in the heat race and went down and knocked his head pretty hard while several riders used him as a parking block. JS did not ride the LCQ and decided to sit this race out, it was his call to call it a night..
Indy marked the end of Cole Seely’s part-time Factory Honda 450 ride. The Lucas Oil Troy Lee Designs rider will return to the West Lites series in Washington in a few weeks.
With Stewart sitting out the Indy main, Davi Millsaps flew the the JGR banner solo. Millsaps has been getting faster and faster each week and Indy marked his second podium finish in two weeks.
The Indy round marked the return of Jeff Ward Racing’s Josh Grant. Grant had been sideline with an early season injury. Grant finished 11th in the main.