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Saturday Night Live

March 2, 2014 8:50am

When the riders hit the halfway mark of tonight’s Indianapolis Supercross, it was the official halfway point of the 450SX series as well. The track here tonight was tricky, it seemed like the dirt melted as the day went on and it provided some unique elements to a series that had seen many nights of perfection by its stars.

It was the first win of the season for Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey who took the lead on lap five from SmartTop/MotoConcepts Racing’s Mike Alessi (more on him in a bit) and although we’re sure he had some sketchy moments, appeared to cruise to a win. Combined with some poor results from some championship contenders, Dungey jumped into second in the points.

A first turn/first straightaway collision left Dungey’s teammate Ken Roczen on the ground along with Monster Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto and Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart. So in case you’re counting, that’s the top three in points all sprawled out on the ground. That left a lot of work to be done by all three with Villopoto faring the best with a real down and gritty fourth. Roczen DNF’d after a crash while running around tenth and Stewart was seventh by the end.

Indianapolis saw the debut of a couple of fill-in 450SX riders in the form of Discount Tire/TwoTwo Motorsport’s Dean Wilson filling in for Chad Reed and Cole Seely filling in for Honda Muscle Milk’s Trey Canard. And what do you know? Seely rode a terrific race to get his first career 450SX podium. Seely’s formula was get a good start and stay upright and with Justin Barcia also missing this race it was a nice chance taken by the Honda guys.

Wilson was on the ground with the title contenders and he put in a good showing from way back to get tenth. It was Wilson’s first ever 450SX.

Mike Alessi had a trying week after his collision with RCH’s Broc Tickle, but in Indianapolis he pulled the holeshot in both the heat and the main event. Alessi went on to capture the win in the heat and then led the main before Dungey got him. From there he was an easy second place until cross-rutting like so many other riders and finishing way back.

In the 250 class it was Monster Energy/Pro Circuit’s Adam Cianciarulo taking advantage of a mistake by his teammate Martin Davalos to win his second race of the year and extend his points lead. Cianciarulo, who admitted after the race that he “didn’t have Davalos’ speed”, suffered a tip-over of his own while leading. It was an eventful night for the rookie supercrosser, but he pulled out a nice lead by the end of the race by being the only rider to quad a jump section after the first turn section.

Martin Davalos looked to have the race in hand but coming out of a left hand turn the track was down to the plywood and Davalos landed on it, spun, and it shot him right into the tuff blocks. He still rode great to pass back up to second by the end.

GEICO Honda’s Matt Bisceglia had DNF’d his first two 250SX mains and was forced to ride the unseeded B practice as a result. And his Indy didn’t start out so well as he was forced to the LCQ (which he won). In the main event the #96 had a great night as he ran third for a long time before being passed by teammate Justin Bogle and securing fourth. It was a nice ride for Matt and he needed it.

Ivan Tedesco failed to qualify for the main event when he got caught up in privateer Tevin Tapia’s motorcycle. Not a good night for #9 KTM rider.

Weston Pieck was running eighth in the 450SX main when he went over the bars and got caught up in his bike. He was fine, but his bike was too jacked up to continue.

The good news is Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha rider Jeremy Martin made the main event after missing the first two. The bad news is he crashed early in the main event and was forced to pull into the mechanic’s area for repairs. It’s not been a good start for a rider many thought could win the title.

JGR Yamaha rider Justin Brayton was struggling with food poisoning as he started well in the main event but then slowly faded back. So his eighth place in the 450SX main is pretty impressive.