With defending Series Champion Ricky Carmichael watching from the press box, Team Monster Energy Kawasaki’s James Stewart ran unabated to his third-straight win at round three of the 2006-2007 Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross Series held at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California, tonight.
San Manuel Yamaha’s Chad Reed claimed second, while Nick Wey took his third career podium finish with a third-place finish.
At the start of the 20-lap feature, Wey grabbed the holeshot on his MDK-backed Honda, however Stewart was just behind and moved into the lead before the end of the lap, while Reed and Makita Suzuki’s Ivan Tedesco jockeyed for position, behind Wey.
Tedesco would eventually bobble and drop out of the top five, as Reed began to put pressure on Wey, taking over the runner up position on lap eight.
Wey kept pace with Reed for the remainder of the race to finish third, while Team Kawasaki’s Tim Ferry and WBR/Rockstar Suzuki’s Michael Byrne continued to turn in good rides by finishing fourth and fifth, respectively.
Stewart was clearly the fastest man on the track and didn’t appear to have backed off the pace any, even though Carmichael was not competing.
“It didn’t effect me that Ricky wasn’t out there, nothing has changed,” said Stewart. "I was having fun and I was able to get in a rhythm in the main event. It wasn't a cake walk, but I was able to get out in front early.”
Sobe/Samsung Mobile/Honda’s Kevin Windham finished sixth, ahead of Motorsport.com’s Paul Carpenter.
Missing from the top ten was Windham’s teammate Travis Preston, who crashed hard in practice and still hadn’t returned from the hospital when the main event started.
In the Lites division, Ryan Villopoto totally dominated the main event, putting his Monster Energy Kawasaki across the finish line some 21 seconds in front of Yamaha of Troy’s Jason Lawrence.
The anticipated match up between Villopoto and his French teammate, Christophe Pourcel, didn’t materialize as Pourcel finished the first lap way back in 14th position and then dropped out of the race completely at the halfway point after suffering an injury to his foot.
Villopoto quickly took control of the race after the start, passing Motorsport.com’s Steve Boniface on the opening lap and then rapidly pulled away to a massive cushion.
KTM’s Josh Hansen dropped out with problems on lap two, as Sobe/Samsung Mobile/Honda’s Josh Grant, Lawrence and Team Yamaha’s Josh Hill battled over the runner up position.
At the finish, Lawrence won out over Hill and Grant, finishing second to Villopoto, while Hill and Grant finished third and fourth, respectively.
"I did the best I could out there tonight," said Villopoto. "It was a great night for me. At the start of the race, I wanted to get out front and pull away as quick as possible so I could have a clear track in front of me. I look forward to racing next weekend in San Francisco."
With the win, Villopoto, of Poulsbo, Washington, takes a 17-point lead in overall standings, heading into the next round at San Francisco.
1. James Stewart (Kaw)
2. Chad Reed (Yam)
3. Nick Wey (Hon)
4. Tim Ferry (Kaw)
5. Michael Byrne (Suz)
6. Kevin Windham (Hon)
7. Paul Carpenter (Kaw)
8. Ivan Tedesco (Suz)
9. Josh Summey (Hon)
10. Nathan Ramsey (Yam)
1. Ryan Villopoto (Kaw)
2. Jason Lawrence (Yam)
3. Josh Hill (Yam)
4. Josh Grant (Hon)
5. Chris Gosselaar (Kaw)
6. Jake Weimer (Hon)
7. Steve Boniface (Kaw)
8. Troy Adams (Suz)
9. Kyle Partridge (Hon)
10. Martin Davalos (KTM)