Atlanta Supercross Report

February 22, 2009 2:30am | by:
James Stewart says he doesn’t believe in momentum, but regardless, he brought six consecutive main-event victories into Atlanta’s Georgia Dome, and Chad Reed (along with the rest of the field) was faced with the task of trying to end the streak.

  • James Stewart (7) fought off Mike Alessi (800) for the holeshot to start the main event.
  • With Stewart out front, Chad Reed (1) started mired in the pack - again.
  • Broc Hepler (60) ran second early before giving way to Ryan Villopoto (2) and Chad Reed (1), along with Andrew Short.
  • Andrew Short (29) came through the pack for fourth, behind Stewart, Reed and Villopoto.
  • Stewart takes his seventh win in a row, along with the points lead.
  • The 450cc podium with Stewart (center) flanked by Reed (left) and Villopoto (right).
At the start of the 450cc main event, it was San Manuel Yamaha’s Stewart with the lead, followed closely, of course, by Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Mike Alessi. Alessi quickly lost a spot to Yamaha’s Broc Hepler, and then Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto and Honda Red Bull Racing’s Davi Millsaps. Reed rounded lap one sixth after passing a few riders on the opening circuit.

Stewart immediately began pulling away from Hepler, who quickly found Villopoto and Reed breathing down his neck. Finally, on lap nine of 20, Hepler was passed by both of them, and Reed set out after Villopoo while Hepler struggled with maintaining the top-rider pace for 20 laps in only his second race back.

Reed passed Villopoto for second only a couple of laps later, only to lose the spot back to Villopoto when he was balked by lapped rider Troy Adams, who got up trying to get out of the way, but moved directly into the way instead.

By the next lap, though, Reed found his way by Villopoto permanently. On lap 15, Andrew Short found his way by Hepler for fourth, and the top five were set, with Stewart, Reed, Villopoto, Short and Hepler rounding out the top five. Then came Kevin Windham, Ivan Tedesco, Timmy Ferry, Josh Hill, Davi Millsaps and Mike Alessi – the last rider on the lead lap.

Atlanta 450cc Main:
1. James Stewart (Yam)
2. Chad Reed (Suz)
3. Ryan Villopoto (Kaw)
4. Andrew Short (Hon)
5. Broc Hepler (Yam)
6. Kevin Windham (Hon)
7. Ivan Tedesco (Hon)
8. Timmy Ferry (Kaw)
9. Josh Hill (Yam)
10. Davi Millsaps (Hon)
11. Mike Alessi (Suz)
12. Matt Boni (Hon)
13. Josh Grant (Yam)
14. Kyle Chisholm (Yam)
15. Nick Wey (Yam)
16. Tommy Hahn (Kaw)
17. Troy Adams (Hon)
18. Tyler Bowers (Hon)
19. Ben Coisy (Hon)
20. Josh Summey (KTM)

450cc Supercross Points Standings (after 8 of 17 events):
1. James Stewart (177/7 wins)
2. Chad Reed (174)
3. Andrew Short (140)
4. Ryan Villopoto (126)
5. Josh Grant (120/1 win)
6. Ivan Tedesco (116)
7. Kevin Windham (111)
8. Davi Millsaps (102)
9. Mike Alessi (93)
10. Timmy Ferry (87)

  • Austin Stroupe led the Lites main early.
  • Christophe Pourcel (377) ran second until Stroupe stalled out of the lead. Pourcel led the rest.
  • Nico Izzi (20) finished second.
  • Blake Wharton (61) came from behind to pressure and pass Martin Davalos (577) for third. Davalos passed him back on the last lap for the spot.
  • Wharton was fourth.
  • The Lites podium, with Pourcel (center), Izzi (left) and Davalos (right).
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki teammates Austin Stroupe and Christophe Pourcel went 1-2 off the start of the Lites main event, and Stroupe began to pull away from Pourcel after a few laps, but at the beginning of the 10th circuit (of 15), Stroupe stalled his motorcycle and couldn’t get it restarted. He got going again in eighth, while Pourcel assumed the lead.

Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Nico Izzi caught up to second, followed by Division 7/Star Racing Yamaha’s Matt Lemoine, Muscle Milk/MDK KTM’s Martin Davalos, Canidae/Motosport Kawasaki’s Branden Jesseman, and GEICO Powersports Honda’s Blake Wharton.

With Pourcel out of reach for Izzi, Izzi settled for second, while eventually the battle for third became heated between Wharton (coming from the back) and Davalos. Wharton made the pass on Davalos, but then on the last lap, Davalos block-passed Wharton with only a couple of turns to go to take the final podium spot. Wharton was fourth, Jesseman was fifth, Wil Hahn was sixth, and Stroupe was seventh.

Atlanta Lites Main:
1. Christophe Pourcel (Kaw)
2. Nico Izzi (Suz)
3. Martin Davalos (KTM)
4. Blake Wharton (Hon)
5. Branden Jesseman (Kaw)
6. Wil Hahn (KTM)
7. Austin Stroupe (Kaw)
8. Matt Lemoine (Yam)
9. Matt Goerke (Suz)
10. Steven Clarke (Suz)
11. Tyler Wharton (Hon)
12. Levi Kilbarger (Hon)
13. Brad Ripple (Hon)
14. Jacob Saylor (Yam)
15. Vince Friese (Hon)
16. Fred Karrle (Suz)
17. Darryn Durham (Yam)
18. Sean Hackley (Suz)
19. Cody Gilmore (Hon)
20. Teddy Parks (Suz)

Lites East Points Standings (after 2 of 8 rounds):
1. Christophe Pourcel (50/2 wins)
2. Nico Izzi (42)
3. Martin Davalos (34)
4. Blake Wharton (34)
5. Austin Stroupe (32)
6. Wil Hahn (30)
7. Branden Jesseman (25)
8. Matt Goerke (23)
9. Brett Metcalfe (22)
10. Steven Clarke (19)