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Supercross/Motocross | 7/1/2013
Monster Energy Kawasaki's Ryan Villopoto Fights Back for Second Overall at Southwick
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto Fights Back for Second Overall at Southwick
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto reached the mid-point of the 2013 AMA Pro Motocross season in the position he wanted, leading the championship standings. Villopoto maintained his points lead following the Chaplin Kawasaki Southwick National at Moto X 338. After falling in the first turn of Moto 1, Villopoto passed 33 riders to finish fourth. Then nearly nailed the holeshot in the second moto, leading wire to wire for the moto win and second overall. Kawasaki privateer Brett Metcalfe, who is leading the Monster Energy Canadian National Series with Leading Edge Kawasaki, had an impressive 5-6 showing for fourth overall while Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Tyla Rattray overcame first turn issues in both motos, finishing sixth overall with 10-8 moto scores. Jake Weimer finished ninth in the opening moto and fell in the first turn of Moto 2 and was only able to salvage a 17th-place finish for 14th overall. In the 250 class Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett finished second in Moto 1 and eighth in the second moto finishing fourth overall. Baggett’s rookie teammates Adam Cianciarulo and Justin Hill both had impressive performances finishing ninth and 11th respectively. Darryn Durham also rode well posting a 13th place overall finish.
Through the Pack
Villopoto was behind the eight ball after the start of the first moto as he was pinched to the inside of the first corner and wasn’t able to get back in the race until nearly the whole field had gone by. Villopoto was held up again later in the first lap when two riders went down in front of him. The Seattle native pushed hard for the next 30 minutes and made multiple passes each lap as he clawed his way to the front. Time ran out as he continued to gain on the leaders and finished fourth. In the second moto, Villopoto jumped out to the early lead and rode mistake free to win the moto.

“The second moto was sure a lot better than the first,” said Villopoto. “This track is very tough on the bikes and the riders, and it was tough to pass my way through the field. I worked hard to get the points lead and I’m happy to leave here with the red plate as we head into the rest of the season.”
Sandy Ride
Baggett put in an impressive performance after a top-10 start in first moto as he made calculated passes to work his way up to the runner-up spot. In the second moto a mid-pack start delayed his charge to the front as he spent most of the race in traffic making a last lap pass for eighth.

“I’m not really happy with my result today and I have to avoid motos like the second one,” said Baggett. “We still have a lot of the season left but I need to make a strong push to keep the No. 1 plate. Southwick is a very hard track and I’m glad we are past it as we hit the meat of the season.”
Both rookie riders handled the daunting challenge of Southwick with style as they did their best to race not only their competition but also the track. For Cianciarulo, Southwick marked his first career top-10 finish as he was able to get good starts and ride consistently for a 9-12 result. For Hill, the second moto was his time to shine as he overcame a slow start before turning up the heat and becoming one of the fastest riders on the track finishing 10th in the moto and 11th overall.
After the podium speeches following his second moto victory, Villopoto grabbed one of the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team radios and gave the mechanics for the 250 riders a quick tip before the start of their race. Villopoto asked them to let the riders know track was rough and they should stay in a higher gear and use the momentum to not tire themselves out. 
Metcalfe used the break in the Canadian motocross series to come ride at a track where he won in 2011. The Australian rider was impressive throughout the day battling in the top five with some of the best riders motocross has to offer. 
The Championship now heads to one of the most anticipated tracks on the schedule as the teams hit the road for Buchanan, Mich. for the Fourth of July classic at RedBud MX. The legendary track is a favorite among the riders and fans alike and the action should be incredible on Saturday.
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