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250 Words: Las Vegas

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Before the grand finale of the 2009 Supercross Lites season—the Dave Coombs Sr. Memorial East-West Shootout in Las Vegas—Mitch Payton reminded me that it had been ten years since a rider on his team had won the race. That’s right: Nick Wey, Derrick Shae Bentley, Mike Brown, Matt Walker, Grant Langston, Ivan Tedesco, Ben Townley, Ryan Villopoto—none of those guys managed to win in Las Vegas while riding for Mitch!

  • Pourcel just doesn't look like he's going as fast as he really is.
  • Could Dungey have caught up with more more lap?
  • Canard came on strong at the end of the season.
On Saturday night, the losing streak ended as Christophe Pourcel passed Trey Canard when Trey got hung up by a lapper (“He got Chisholmed!” yelled someone near me in the press box) and then held off Ryan Dungey to take the win for Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki. The win was good for the keys to a new Toyota Tundra, and it also earned Pourcel bragging rights as the best Lites SX rider of 2009.

Now Pourcel heads outdoors, where he’s said to be even more formidable. Payton told me Christophe has been practicing outdoors all through the SX season, no doubt knowing just how fast the incoming Tyla Rattray and Tommy Searle are from his Grand Prix days, as well as how fast Team USA’s MX2 guy, Ryan Villopoto, has been at the last three MXoNs. Pourcel also now knows how fast West Region competitors Dungey and Canard are, having battled both for fifteen laps.

Who’s your favorite for the outdoor title? On the way to California last Wednesday, I would have said Dungey. After stopping at Glen Helen on Thursday, I would have said Rattray. After Saturday night’s race, I would say Pourcel. But he doesn’t know the tracks, nor does Tyla, so maybe I’m back to Dungey. Or Canard. And what about Austin Stroupe, if he can stay up? Or Jake Weimer? Justin Brayton? Justin Barcia?

Regardless, I can’t wait to find out!

Who do you think will win the first outdoor moto of 2009? Cast your vote in today’s new poll.

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