Dungey Leads The Way In Salt Lake SX Qualifying

Kit Palmer | April 28, 2012
Eli Tomac rode to a conservative fourth in the West Lites qualifying. Photography By: Hoppenworld.com

Eli Tomac rode to a conservative fourth in the West Lites qualifying. Photography By: Hoppenworld.com

SALT LAKE CITY, UT, APRIL 28 – After getting off to a rough start, Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey has qualified in the top slot under sunny skies for tonight’s program at the 16th round of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Dungey never really got going in the first un-timed practice session. He fell on a tricky rhythm section and while he was down, Andrew Short had no where to go but to land right on Dungey’s KTM, causing significant damage. The bike was taken back to the KTM pits and worked on. A new engine was installed, but all he needed was just one solid time out in the second and final timed session to get the track dialed.

Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Jake Weimer, who is seeking the first win of his career, is second quickest, followed by Toyota/JGRMX Yamaha’s Davi Millsaps, and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Broc Tickle. The top four riders are all within the 47-second mark.

Eleven riders are bunched up in the 48-second bracket, including the rider at the top of that group, Kawasaki rider Nick Wey, who is closely followed by last week’s Seattle winner Andrew Short on his new Chaparral-backed L&Mc Honda.

Arenacross Champion Tyler Bowers is seventh quickest, followed by Gavin Faith, who his riding James Stewart’s bike for the injured rider on the JGRMX squad.

Rockstar Energy Yamaha’s Robert Kiniry is ninth quickest, followed by Star Valli Yamaha’s Nico Izzi.

Marvin Musquin is the top Lites Qualifier. Photography By: Hoppenworld.com

Marvin Musquin is the top Lites Qualifier. Photography By: Hoppenworld.com

In the Lites class, Red Bull KTM’s Marvin Musquin was, once again, quickest in qualifying, just like he was last week in Seattle. But it’s crowded at the top of the leader board, as the first five riders are all squeezed into the 47-second bracket. And one of those riders is Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Dean Wilson.

Wilson, who injured his shoulder last week in Seattle and was even questionable about riding today, laid down the second-quickest time before, unfortunately, falling and possibly re-injuring the shoulder. Wilson, second in points, walked off the track holding the shoulder before qualifying was finished.

GEICO Honda’s Eli Tomac, who leads Wilson in the West Lites standings, is fifth fasted behind Rockstar Energy Suzuki’s Martin Davalos in third and GEICO Honda’s Wil Hahn in fourth.

Last week’s winner, Ryan Sipes, on the Star Valli Yamaha, is currently sixth fastest, just ahead of Jason Anderson, Matt Moss, Vince Friese and Chris Plouffe.

Sunny but cold weather has left the Salt Lake track dry and slick. Many riders have crashed today. Photography By: Hoppenworld.com

Sunny but cold weather has left the Salt Lake track dry and slick. Many riders have crashed today. Photography By: Hoppenworld.com

Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil Honda’s Cole Seely, who sits in third in the West points standing, 11 points in back of Wilson and just eight points ahead of Musquin, crashed and was carried by backboard off the track earlier in practice.

As mentioned, the sun is shining in Salt Lake, but the temperature is downright cold, but not as cold as last year’s snowy race. The cold, sunny and dry conditions is leaving the Salt Lake track unusually slick and the riders seem to be having a hard time adjusting to the normally moist and tacky track. Quite a few riders have crashed, including Seely’s teammate Travis Baker, who is also out for the night.

Kit Palmer | Off-Road Editor

Kit Palmer started his career at Cycle News in 1984 and he’s been testing dirt and streetbikes every since – plus covering any event that uses some form of a knobby tire. He’s also our resident motorcycle mileage man with a commute of 120 miles a day.