Monster Energy’s Ryan Villopoto Holeshots the Vegas Lites Shoot Out

May 9, 2006 6:32am

AMA Supercross rookie backs 3rd place overall finish in the Western Lites division with impressive come-from-behind charge in finals

CARLSBAD, Calif., (May 8, 2006) – Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/
Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto pulled a MONSTER holeshot in the Dave 
Coombs Sr. Lites Class Shoot Out at Vegas, only to get tangled with 
rival Mike Alessi and go down – dashing his hopes of being crowned 
the East/West Lites champion at Las Vegas’ Sam Boyd Stadium on Sunday.

Villopoto got the big day started by blasting the afternoon’s second-
fasted practice lap time, about a 10th of a second behind Davi 
Millsaps. The Washington native and shoe-in for AMA Rookie of the 
Year then opened the evening program by winning the West heat by 
nearly three seconds over Honda factory-backed Billy Laninovich.

“Yeah, I’m bummed I went down, but overall I look at the 
Supercross season and a pretty good showing,” said Villopoto, who 
raced back to sixth place from dead last against the world’s top 
Lites class racers. “I made three podiums and got my first career 
Supercross win at Dallas. So overall it was a good first year.”

Villopoto would wind up third overall in the Western Region Lites 
class. Teammate Grant Langston, who won the Western Region Lites class, was injured in practice and didn’t make the starting gate for the Vegas Lites Shoot Out. He is expected to make the opener of the Outdoor Nationals in two weeks.

The third racer representing Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki at 
Vegas was Chris Gosselaar. An overall podium finisher on the Eastern Region Lites circuit, Gosselaar was involved in a first-lap accident and was unable to finish the race, though he left the track under his own power.

Langston, Villopoto, Gosselaar and Troy Adams return to action in two weeks at the opener of the 2006 Toyota AMA Motocross Championship at northern California’s legendary Hangtown Classic (May 21st).

Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team sponsors include: Parts 
Unlimited, Thor, Scott, Maxima, Amp’d Mobile, KMC Wheels, Vans, 
Bridgestone, Hinson Clutch, Components, Showa, The Garage People, Troy Lee Designs, Excel, Renthal, N-Style, Works Racing Parts, Twin Air, VP Racing Fuels, Athena, Motion Pro, DP Brakes, RK Racing Chain, UFO, Mechanix Wear, CTI2, Vertex, Alpinestars, PPG, Trek Bicycles, Imagine It Graphics.