Canard Takes Lites Win And Title At St Louis SX

Shan Moore | April 19, 2008

ST LOUIS, MO, APRIL 19: Trey Canard won a wild 15-lap final, wrapping up the East Regional AMA Lites title, and Kevin Windham claimed his third Supercross-class win of the year at round 15 of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series in the Edward Jones Dome in St Louis, Missouri, tonight.

Canard and Ryan Villopoto came into the St Louis round with just three points separating them, and each with three wins, meaning that the title would go to the rider with the best finish in tonight’s race. And when the gate dropped for the start, it was Villopoto’s Monster Energy Kawasaki teammate Branden Jesseman taking the holeshot with Canard putting his Torco Racing Fuels Honda right behind in second. Canard’s teammate Josh Grant was running third with Villopoto in fourth.

Canard moved to the front on lap five, passing Jesseman in a rhythm section. However, on the same lap, Villopoto, who had passed Jesseman earlier, passed both Grant and Canard to take the lead.

For a moment, Villopoto pulled away, but then Canard got a second wind and closed back in, trying an aggressive pass for the lead in a right-hander before the finish line jump. During the pass attempt, Canard and Villopoto came together with Villopoto veering off the track and over a hay bale, stalling his engine. He finallyrejoined the race in fifth, but by then Canard was out front and long gone.

Villopoto managed to work his way back into fourth, behind Canard, Jessemen and Grant, but the win and the title went to Canard.

“I really didn’t mean to take him out,” said Canard, a four-time winner on the season. “I think that’s racing and I would expect him to do the same to me if it came down to this last race. I really wanted this championship since I was like three years old. I just trained hard all week long and I can’t thank my team enough for getting this championship.”

In the Supercross class final, Kevin Windham moved his Torco Racing Fuels Honda around the San Manuel Yamaha of Chad Reed on lap four and pulled away to an impressive win.

Reed, who fell last week in Detroit and suffered a separated shoulder, turned in a valiant ride to finish second, with Team Honda’s Andrew Short matching his best finish of the year in third.

With the win, Windham cut his deficit in the series standings to 13 points behind Reed with two races remaining.

“Tonight I just wanted to put myself into a good position,” said Windham. “(Chad) put himself in a good position to not lose too many points tonight. It’s all about me now and I feel good about the ride I put in tonight. I’m giving it all I can and that alone feels good.” “(My shoulder’s) definitely a lot better than last weekend,” added Reed. “I just couldn’t make it happen in the whoops. I didn’t want to lay (the bike) down, so I rode for second tonight. I want this title and I’m not about to let it go. I feel like I’ve let these guys into this points battle all season long by making mistakes.”

AMA Supercross Class Results

1. Kevin Windham (Hon)

2. Chad Reed (Yam)

3. Andrew Short (Hon)

4. Nathan Ramsey (Yam)

5. Thomas Hahn (Kaw)

6. Davi Millsaps (Hon)

7. Justin Brayton (KTM)

8. Paul Carpenter (Hon)

9. Travis Preston (Kaw)

10. Jason Thomas (Hon)

AMA Supercross Lites Class Results

1. Trey Canard (Hon)

2. Branden Jesseman (Kaw)

3. Josh Grant (Hon)

4. Ryan Villopoto (Kaw)

5. Ryan Morais (Yam)

6. Kyle Chisholm (Kaw)

7. Ryan Sipes (KTM)

8. Nico Izzi (Suz)

9. Matt Goerke (KTM)

10. Billy Payne (Hon)

Shan Moore | Contributing Editor

Moore covers all facets of off-road racing for Cycle News – from AMA Supercross and Motocross to GNCC and National Hare Scrambles events.