Reed, Lawrence Rule Anaheim III

Jean Turner | February 3, 2008

A rather technical track at Anaheim III welcomed riders back to Angel Stadium for the third and final time. Chad Reed of the San Manuel/Fusion Energy/Yamaha team made it a clean sweep of all three Anaheim rounds, and he continues on his win streak in the premier class of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship. Red Bull Honda’s Davi Millsaps took second and Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Tim Ferry rounded out the podium in the fifth round of the championship.

Jason Lawrence of the Boost Mobile Yamaha of Troy team followed up his career-first win last week with another. Proving that San Francisco was no muddy fluke “J-Law” took his second-ever win at Anaheim ahead of Monster Energy Pro Circuit teammates Austin Stroupe and Brett Metcalfe, who took second and third, respectively.

Reed grabbed the holeshot in the main event followed by Kevin Windham, who had been looking spectacular all night. The Torco Racing Fuels/Honda rider was super-smooth and fluid through practice and his heat race, looking especially good through the technical rhythm sections. Early in the race, he stuck close to Reed, and pulled up next to him by tripling through a tricky section when Reed was doubling. But Windham couldn’t quite make it happen. He yielded the runner-up position to Millsaps several laps in, and appeared to be having bike problems when he eventually slipped back to fourth by the race’s end. Indeed, he was having a problem – a flat front tire. Remarkably, however, Windham was able to maintain a strong fourth-place finish despite the complication.

Red Bull Honda’s Andrew Short took fifth overall ahead of Makita Suzuki’s Mike Alessi. Reed’s San Manuel Yamaha teammate Nathan Ramsey had a good night, finishing seventh. MDK KTM’s Nick Wey finished eighth, and Troy Adams and Manuel Gomez of Spain rounded out the top ten.

Riders missing from the action included Factory Yamaha’s Grant Langston, who reported having problems with blurred vision, and Red Bull Honda’s Ivan Tedesco who broke his hand in practice earlier in the day. Travis Preston, who is filling the empty spot on the Factory Kawasaki team left by the absent James Stewart, had a modest, but satisfactory debut with a 15th place finish.

Jason Lawrence’s championship hopes got a big boost at Anaheim not only from his win, but also from Dungey’s disastrous night. The Makita Suzuki rider, who currently leads the championship, got caught up in a tangle off the start along with KTM’s Justin Brayton and Troy Lee Designs Honda rider Chris Gosselaar. Lawrence didn’t waste time getting out front, relieving holeshot winner Austin Stroupe of the early lead. From there, Lawrence set sail and never looked back.

Dan Reardon of the Torco Racing Fuels Honda team was buried in the pack along with Brayton and Dungey, and all three riders worked their way through the pack throughout the main. Dungey was making a dash for the top-ten when he landed on Wil Hahn in the whoops, sending his bike end-over-end across lanes of traffic. Hahn looked hurt, but Dungey went on to finish the race, salvaging only 13th place.

Stroupe and Metcalfe finished second and third ahead of KTM’s Billy Laninovich and DNA Energy/BTO Sports rider Kyle Cunningham who collected fifth. Tommy Hahn of the Motosport Kawasaki team finished sixth, followed by Brayton and Reardon. Solitaire/MB1 Honda’s Bobby Kiniry and Troy Lee Designs/Honda’s Gavin Gracyk rounded out the top-ten.

Jake Weimer crashed out of the main early in the race and took a DNF. Broc Hepler was also missing from the action after crashing and injuring his wrist in practice. He reportedly suffered two fractures and could be out for the remaining rounds.

Jean Turner | Contributor

A former staffer at Cycle News, Turner continues to contribute to the website and magazine as a columnist and someone we can count on to whip up a few thousand words on an off-road race when needed.