Monster Energy Kawasakis Ryan Villopoto was overpowering in the opening round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship at Hangtown. Villopoto ran away with an impressive 1-1  winning by large margins in both motos.  Kit Palmer photo

Photography by Kit Palmer

Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto was overpowering in the opening round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship at Hangtown today. Villopoto ran away with an impressive 1-1, winning by large margins in both motos, although there was plenty of suspense and action in the second moto before he broke away. The win was Villopoto’s first Lucas Oil Pro Motocross victory since 2011. He sat out last year recovering from knee surgery, making for a triumphant return for the rider who just a few weeks ago won the 2013 AMA Supercross crown.

Defending series champ Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey finished second overall with a 2-2, but on this day he was no match for Villopoto. Stewart went 3-3 on the Yoshimura Suzuki for third overall and claimed that given the current state of his health, that was an excellent result for him.

After a runaway win in the first moto, the first half of the second 450 Moto had the Hangtown faithful on their feet. Last year’s winner James Stewart took the early lead on his Yoshimura Suzuki over Ryan Dungey and first moto winner Ryan Villopoto. The leading trio, and for a few laps they were joined by Trey Canard, battled in what looked to be shaping up as an epic battle. It was good while it lasted, but by lap six - about 12 minutes into the moto - Villopoto made his move and went from third to first in the span of about four turns and with that the race was decided.

Villopoto wicked it up on his Monster Energy Kawasaki and again pulled away to a big win, this time by over 20 seconds ahead of Red Bull KTM’s Dungey. James Stewart faded in the second half, but was still strong enough to take third, about six seconds ahead of Canard.

Honda Muscle Milk riders Canard and Justin Barcia finished fourth and fifth, about five seconds apart, duplicating their first moto results.

Mike Alessi finished sixth in the second moto on his FMF Suzuki, a big improvement from his first moto finish. His 6-12 gave Alessi eighth overall.

Ryan Sipes, Weston Peick, Tyla Rattray and Andrew Short rounded out the top 10 in the second moto with the closest race in that group being Sipes and Peick separated by about four seconds.

The series moves to Lakewood, Colorado, on May 25. Dungey is the defending winner at Thunder Valley and Barcia won the 250 race.

450 Moto 2 Results
1. Ryan Villopoto
2. Ryan Dungey
3. James Stewart
4. Trey Canard
5. Justin Barcia
6. Mike Alessi
7. Ryan Sipes
8. Weston Peick
9. Tyla Rattray
10. Andrew Short
11. Phil Nicoletti
12. Broc Tickle
13. Justin Brayton
14. Dean Wilson
15. Malcolm Stewart
16. Michael Byrne
17. Fredrik Noren
18. Travis Preston
19. Nick Wey
20. Gareth Swanepoel

Overall Results
1. Ryan Villopoto (1-1)
2. Ryan Dungey (2-2)
3. James Stewart (3-3)
4. Trey Canard (4-4)
5. Justin Barcia (5-5)
6. Ryan Sipes (8-7)
7. Andrew Short (6-10)
8. Mike Alessi (12-6)
9. Tyla Rattray (9-9)
10. Weston Peick (13-8)
11. Phil Nicoletti (11-11)
12. Broc Tickle (14-12)
13. Jake Weimer (7-24)
14. Dean Wilson (17-14)
15. Chad Reed (10-38)
16. Fredrik Noren (16-17)
17. Travis Preston (15-18)
18. Justin Brayton (33-13)
19. Michael Byrne (19-16)
20. Malcolm Stewart (36-15)

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Larry Lawrence | Archives Editor

In addition to writing our Archives section on a weekly basis, Lawrence is another who is capable of covering any event we throw his way.

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