Sign of the (Lap) TimesTuesday, March 3, 2009 | 5:40 PM
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It’s no surprise who the fastest guy was in Indianapolis. After falling early in the main event, James Stewart had to be the fastest guy on the track if he was going to catch Chad Reed. Actually, he wasn’t the fastest guy for a few laps after he fell, as Reed was still putting in faster laps. Reed’s fastest of the race – a 49.586-second lap – came on lap five. But Stewart actually had three laps faster than that, the fastest of which was a 49.273 on lap 13 – which was the lap in which Stewart took the lead from Reed.Kevin Windham, who didn’t finish the race due to mechanical problems. He put in a 50.421. Next was Andrew Short, who finished 11th after having a rock jam his rear-brake pedal, with a 50.774. The fifth-fastest in the main event was the only other guy in the 50s, and that was fourth-placed Josh Grant, who put in a 50.957.
Mike Alessi, who finished third, didn’t have any one blazing lap time, but laps six through 17 featured a low lap time of 51.347 and a high of 51.840. That’s some serious consistency.
Just as in the 450cc class, the Lites winner actually had the second-fastest time overall. Austin Stroupe had a 51.240 on lap six, whereas his teammate and winner of the first two rounds, Christophe Pourcel, put in a blazing 50.375 on the final lap in an attempt to chase him down. The two finished only about a second apart.
Third fastest was third-placed Nico Izzi with a 51.686, and fourth-fastest was Matt Lemoine, with a 51.799. Late in the race, though, Lemoine was consistently faster than Izzi, and he nearly passed the Suzuki rider on the last lap, but fell and couldn’t restart his bike. He finished eighth by virtue of not finishing.
The fifth-fastest rider on the track was fourth-placed Branden Jesseman, with a 52.335.
The big surprise was Brit Steven Clarke, who put in a 52.656 on his way to fifth in the main event.
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