Sign of the  Lap Times: SLC

Sign of the Lap Times: SLC

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Just days before Seattle SX, Red Bull KTM announced that Ryan Dungey would return to racing after missing the previous five rounds due to a shoulder injury. With little to gain and a lot to lose, many were speculative of the decision. Ryan Villopoto had already put the wraps on his second consecutive title, so nothing to gain there. He had a small shot at getting back to third or second in the final standings. But Dungey has said he doesn't really care about that--the only thing Dungey had to gain was race conditioning and confidence, a risk that Dungey and KTM felt needed to be taken.

Now, just days after Salt Lake City, any doubts have been put to bed. Ignited by a hard pass courtesy of Jake Weimer, a red-hot Dungey went on a tear down the stretch to hunt down Weimer and race leader Davi Millsaps and secure his third win of 2012. With his win, Dungey has cut Millsaps’ lead for second to 12 with just one race remaining.

After an old-fashion slugfest in Seattle, which left Dean Wilson with a battered shoulder and Eli Tomac back atop the points standings, a heated championship battle embarked on the picturesque peaks of Salt Lake City. Rockstar Energy Racing Suzukis Jason Anderson stole the show early, with another epic showdown between Wilson and Tomac looming in the distance. But that showdown would never come to fruition. Tomac would easily slice his way by a beaten and bruised Wilson and then Anderson. Things then came unraveled for Wilson. A mistake in the whoops before the finish left Wilson on the ground, clutching his already bruised shoulder, and out of the race. Suddenly a championship that had all the makings of a clash of the titans in Vegas had vanished.

Let’s get to the lap charts to see how it all broke down.

AMA Supercross

Lap Rank Finish Best Lap In Lap Avg Lap Time Rider
1 1 46.442 10 47.768 Ryan Dungey
2 3 47.137 6 48.153 Jake Weimer
3 2

47.215

6 47.943 Davi Millsaps
4 4 47.653 3 48.636 Justin Brayton
5 5 48.004 5 48.963 Mike Alessi
6
11 48.402 2 50.498 Matt Goerke
7 6 48.504 11 48.977 Broc Tickle
8
8 48.513 12 50.032 Josh Grant
9 7 48.820 11 49.766 Andrew Short
10 13 49.695 10 50.852 Nick Wey
11 20 48.909 4 49.698 Brett Metcalfe
12 10 48.911 6 50.176 Tyler Bowers
13 9 49.035 4 50.273 Robby Kiniry
14 12 49.226 4 50.253 Weston Peick
15 19 49.307 3 50.198 Kyle Regal
16 14 49.505 6 52.077 Gavin Faith
17 17 49.648 9 52.138 Kyle Chisholm
18 18 50.614 7 1:02.065 Jimmy Albertson
19 16 50.659 8 53.254 Chris Blose
20 15 50.898 5 52.131 Jason Thomas

Andrew Short’s surprise win in Seattle, coupled with a sub-par performance by Ryan Dungey in his return, had riders up and down the line gleaming with a new found confidence. But Dungey was quick to diminish those dreams in Salt Lake. After being taken high by Jake Weimer, Dungey retaliated with his quickest lap of the night (46.442) and slowly began to chip away at Millsaps’ lead. Then came the turning point in the race, where on lap 19 RD set a 47.082 to Millsaps’ 50.365. Aided by a Milsaps mistake, Dungey gained an astonishing three seconds in one lap, crushing the hopes of Millsaps in the process.

Robby Kiniry isn’t going to wow you with his lap times. He typically hovers around the 12-15 mark. But the New York native has been nothing short of spectacular in his fill-in role for Rockstar Star/Valli Yamaha. Only missing one main since his inception to the team, coinciding with three top-tens—his latest coming in Salt Lake City—Kiniry has provided a veteran presence and stability to a team that was left in shambles (due to injuries) early in the season.

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Dungey set the fastest lap of the night en route to a win in Salt Lake City.
Simon Cudby photo

AMA Supercross Lites

Lap Rank Finish Best Lap In Lap Avg Lap Time Rider
1 1 47.174 9 48.455 Eli Tomac
2 19 47.672 3 48.713 Dean Wilson
3 2 47.689 3 48.983 Jason Anderson
4 3 48.153 6 49.046 Martin Davalos
5
4 48.205 11 49.051 Wil Hahn
6 5 48.549 5 49.765 Marvin Musquin
7
16 48.873 8 51.631 Ryan Sipes
8 6 49.561 5 51.722 Matt Moss
9 7 50.013 8 51.483 Billy Laninovich
10 9 50.208 9 52.339 Vince Friese
11 10 50.627 4 52.837 Scott Champion
12 8 50.974 3 52.135 Topher Ingalls
13 11 51.211 6 52.932 Killy Rusk
14 12 51.639 6 53.459 Landen Powell
15 13 52.203 6 54.476 Preston Tilford
16 17 52.335 3 56.472 Myles Tedder
17 20 52.735 4 1:05.496 Colin Jurin
18 18 53.007 3 58.936 Travis Bright
19 14 53.123 10 55.270 Beau Hudson
20 15 53.333 6 56.133 Chris Plouffe

Jason Anderson and Martin Davalos put Rockstar Energy Racing back on the map in Salt Lake City. Blake Wharton sparked the team on the east, but now it was up to Anderson and Davalos to do the same on the west. Anderson, who is quietly making a case for comeback rider of the year, has been consistent all year but has yet to have that "ride" that shows he's ready to contend. On the other side of the spectrum, veteran Martin Davalos has shown the speed to contend--in practice and his heats--but has yet to put a complete race together.

Salt Lake City provided the perfect opportunity for redemption. Anderson, after a bizarre crash on the parade lap with Ryan Sipes, ripped a holeshot and moments later his neck brace (off) and held the lead until soon-to-be-crowned West Region Champion Eil Tomac made a late charge. Davalos, like many times before, was in contention early. But unlike his season up until this point, nothing bad happened. No crashes. No mechanicals. Just a quiet ride to his first podium of the year. With GEICO Honda and Pro Circuit grabbing the headlines throughout the year, Anderson and Davalos provided a much-needed performance to put their Suzuki team back on the radar.

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Both Davalos (far) and Anderson (near) reached the podium in Salt Lake City.
Simon Cudby photo

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