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Ivan Tedesco is still putting together a perfect season in 125 supercross – Mx2k

Ivan Tedesco is still putting together a perfect season in 125 supercross

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Yamaha’s Chad Reed was back on top of the podium after an exciting main event in San Diego that featured the longest and best battle for the lead in 2004 so far. Reed went back and forth with Kevin Windham for just about the whole main event. Windham, the winner of round 2 at Phoenix, has emerged as Reed’s closest rival so far and would be second in points of it weren’t for the controversial “10-pointer” at Phoenix. Reed’s teammate David Vuillemin was third.

Ivan Tedesco is still putting together a perfect season in 125 supercross, winning his 4th main in as many races. Tedesco had to pass only about 5 riders in the main event to take the lead at the halfway point, while his teammate Stephane Roncada was bumped off the podium for the first time by a hard-charging Travis Preston who had worked up from mid-pack.

250 Racing


Each 250 supercross has a second battle going on for THQ World Supercross GP points, which is worth $100,000 plus a Nissan Truck and Warrior travel trailer. Just the riders that started in Europe at Seville and Arnhem are scored for this title. Tyler Evans started the weekend as the leader for this points chase, but he finished outside the top ten and KTM’s Grant Langston took the points lead.  Damon Huffman is just one point behind him in second.  Also a favorite for this series is Honda’s Ernesto Fonseca, but he missed the night program after a practice crash that injured his knee.  His status for next weekend is not certain. 


Also sitting out this weekend was Suzuki’s Sean Hamblin, who is expected to return for Anaheim 3 next weekend. 


The San Diego track featured a unique raised start gate, which sent the riders down to track level just past the start.  Reed did well on this gate and started out the main event with a holeshot.  His night wasn’t easy though.  During his heat race his rear wheel locked up, forcing him to walk back to the pits, and Yamaha changed his engine for a semi.  Reed won his semi easily. Early in the main event, Windham made a pass on Reed for the lead and set up an extended battle. The two would trade the lead over and over, each making pretty much clean moves, keeping the crowd of 61,000 glued to the action out front.  Vuillemin was in 4th behind Damon Huffman, and took some valuable time to get around him.  Kawasaki’s Michael Byrne eventually finished 4th behind Vuillemin, and Mike LaRocco was 5th.


“I got a great start and was third behind Chad and Kevin,” said Vuillemin, “After the second whoop section we went inside and all three of us slowed down and we didn’t get through the rhythm section very good and that’s why Damon passed me back.” At one point the caution lights were out for a downed rider, which means rolling over the triple jumps.  Vuillemin made up some time when Windham and Reed had to obey a caution. “I was third and got lucky and those two guys that didn’t jump the triple I was right there and tried to catch them a little bit,” said Vuillemin, “but then we just stayed the same pace for a few laps. I made a really big mistake and almost went over the bars. After that I just rode for third because that was the only thing I could do.”


“When I first got out I saw Chad was in front and I wanted to attack early and get up there and I did,” said Windham, “I didn’t get a chance to see him or race with him earlier because he had that problem in the heat. I was surprised how easy I could run with him and wanted to continue to put the pressure on him. He took a few different lines and flipped the coin. When he got back by I definitely didn’t think the race was over and for whatever reason I lost my drive and decided to back out of that one triple and that was it. If you can’t do the triple every lap, your not gonna win. I was definately frustrated but it was better than casing it which probably would have taken me out for the night.” Windham has emerged as Reed’s closest rival in recent weeks, which is good news for supercross with Ricky Carmichael out with an injured knee. “Sitting here today I am confident and see that it’s gonna be a race for the rest of the season,” said Windham, “I don’t think about Chad in front of me or behind me or any of the guys. In reality he is going to be there. Hopefully reality set in him that I am going to be there too. With that said we just gotta focus on putting on a good show because that’s what we are doing.”


“It was okay because I got to do another good start,” said Reed of his DNF in his heat race.  “The new start this weekend, I kind of liked it,” he said, referring to the raised gate. “My starts have been sucking the last two weekends, and this weekend I was a lot better, so it was a good deal,” he said.  “I was just starting to get going in the heat race, and the problem happened, and I’ve never actually lost a heat race and come back and won the main event,” said Reed, “so tonight I was determined to kind of change that and try to put a win on the board when I haven’t won a heat race or gone to a semi. I’m glad to put that behind me.  I think it’s just waiting for the right time. I got a great start, which is what I wanted, and just kind of rode around. Kevin passed me, and we battled. I saw the halfway mark, and just kind of paced myself. The track tonight got really beat up and rough, and you had to be careful and pick and choose where you’re pushing, so tonight I just kind of had to wait and bide my time.” The series returns to Anaheim for one more show before going further north to San Francisco.  With Reed and Windham riding consistently as close as they are, another close race is very likely.


THQ World Supercross Series/THQ AMA Supercross Series Event Results, San Diego
1. Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha
2. Kevin Windham, Centerville, Miss., Honda
3. David Vuillemin, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha
4. Michael Byrne, Temecula, Calif., Kawasaki
5. Mike LaRocco, Corona, Calif., Honda
6. Grant Langston, Temecula, KTM
7. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., Suzuki
8. Damon Huffman, Valencia, Calif., Honda
9. Erick Vallejo, Dallas, Texas, Yamaha
10. Keith Johnson, Albuquerque, N.M., Yamaha


THQ AMA Supercross Series Season Standings
1. Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha, 97
2. David Vuillemin, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 76
3. Mike LaRocco, Corona, Calif., Honda, 72
4. Kevin Windham, Centerville, Miss., Honda, 71
5. Michael Byrne, Temecula, Calif., Kawasaki, 58
6. Damon Huffman, Valencia, Calif., Honda, 51
7. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., Suzuki, 50
8. Grant Langston, Lake Elsinore, Calif., KTM, 37
9. Tim Ferry, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha, 36
THQ World Supercross GP Season Standing
1. Grant Langston, Temecula, Calif., KTM, 116
2. Damon Huffman, Valencia, Calif., Honda, 115
3. Tyler Evans, Canyon Lake, Calif., Suzuki, 107
4. Heath Voss, Mico, Texas, Yamaha, 96
5. Ernesto Fonseca, Murrieta, Calif., Honda, 81
6. Keith Johnson, Albuquerque, N.M., Yamaha, 80
7. Ryan Clark, Albuquerque, N.M., Yamaha, 61
8. Daryl Hurley, Corona, Calif., Suzuki, 58
9. Mike Brown, Johnson City, Tenn., Yamaha, 53
10. Joe Oehloff, Hesperia, Calif., Honda, 43


125 Racing


So far all of the podium spots in the first 4 races have gone to 250 4-strokes. Although the racing was good in the 125 class, the news of the first death in supercross competition in the sport’s 31-year history left racers, team people, the AMA, and the promoter Clear Channel stunned.  Jason Ciarletta, 19, of Riverside, Ca. died from injuries when his bike landed on him after he went over a berm and hit the ground in the afternoon qualifiers.  Due to issues relating to notification of family and friends, the news was not announced during the night program.  Instead, the official doctor for the supercross series, Dr John Bodnar, read a brief statement confirming what happened during the post-race press conference. 


In the heat races, Roncada and Tedesco both won, as they have just about every time so far.  One heat was led for a couple of laps by privateer Daniel Blair, giving the California rider a few minutes of glory in front of the big names like Roncada, Preston and Brock Sellards. Nathan Ramsey chased Tedeso hard in their heat race, but Tedesco took the win, which turned out to be a preview for the main event.


In the main event, Greg Schnell got the holeshot but Roncada got away with the early lead, and Tedesco was in sixth behind Sellards, Chris Gosselaar, Schnell, Ramsey and his teammate.  Tedesco battled his way to the front, with plenty of close racing when he got to battle Ramsey for second, then Roncada for the win.  Ramsey then got past Roncada, and Preston made his move for third with two laps to go.


Missing from the race was Suzuki’s Brian Gray, who broke his wrist. Tedesco has a perfect 100 points so far, and may sweep the series if he keeps it up.  The last 125 rider to sweep a regional supercross series was Ricky Carmichael, who won every round in the east in 1998. THQ


AMA Supercross Series 125cc Western Regional Season Standings

1. Ivan Tedesco, Murrieta, Calif., Kawasaki, 100
2. Stephan Roncada, Lake Elsinore, Calif., Kawasaki, 80
3. Travis Preston, Hesperia, Calif., Honda, 75
4. Andrew Short, Colorado Springs, Colo., Suzuki, 72
5. Nathan Ramsey, Menifee, Calif., Honda, 60
6. Brock Sellards, Sherrodsville, Ohio, Yamaha, 56
7. Greg Schnell, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., Yamaha, 46
8. Troy Adams, Brooksville, Fla., Kawasaki, 32
9. Christopher Gosselaar, Victorville, Calif., Honda, 26
10. Joshua Summey, Stanley, N.C., Yamaha, 26


THQ World Supercross Series/THQ AMA Supercross Series Event Results, San Diego

1. Chad Reed, Dade City, Fla., Yamaha
2. Kevin Windham, Centerville, Miss., Honda
3. David Vuillemin, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha
4. Michael Byrne, Temecula, Calif., Kawasaki
5. Mike LaRocco, Corona, Calif., Honda
6. Grant Langston, Temecula, KTM
7. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., Suzuki
8. Damon Huffman, Valencia, Calif., Honda
9. Erick Vallejo, Dallas, Texas, Yamaha
10. Keith Johnson, Albuquerque, N.M., Yamaha


Texts and photos by Steve Bruhn

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