The Daytona Supercross by Honda marks the halfway point of the 2012 series, and so far things have been playing out and proving to live up to the amazing 2011 season. Unfortunately TwoTwo Motosports/Honda’s Chad Reed is currently injured on the sidelines after crashing hard in Dallas, but the points race is still tight between defending Champion Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto and former Champion Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey.
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto has always been fast at Daytona, and his record of two Supercross class wins is proof positive that he will be up front tomorrow. Last year, RV was the only rider that was able to keep James Stewart in site, and in the end capitalized on a huge crash by Stewart to take his second win at the brutal event. If RV can win again this year, he will be the fourth rider in history to win three Daytona Supercross races in a row.
Since then, RV has been spending a lot of time at his home in Florida and goes into the Daytona race with a 13-point lead over Dungey. And with Dungey withdrawing from the race due to a broken collarbone—more on that below—it looks like the championship is now RV’s to lose.
When you look at Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey and his championship record, it would be easy to assume that he has won at Daytona, but he hasn’t—not even in the Lites class. With that said, it goes without saying that a win for Dungey and his team would be huge. Sadly, though, Dungey has withdrawn from the race due to a broken collarbone that he sustained prior to the St. Louis Supercross where he still managed to finish second. This week, Dungey decided to get surgery to plate his collarbone. There is no word yet on when he will return to action, but CLICK HERE for the official press release.
JGR/Toyota/Yamaha’s James Stewart has always been fast at Daytona and won the race in 2007. Last year, Stewart was amazingly fast on the challenging course, jumping up and over a 10-foot-tall wall in the main event that no one else even thought of attempting and thereby giving himself a four-second lead after only four laps. A few laps later, though, Stewart went down hard after miss-judging a seatbouce. The crash spit him violently over the bars and onto his head. In a valiant ride, Stewart then remounted and charged back up to ninth. Two years before that, James crashed in a massive first turn pile up, and in 2006, he again crashed violently over the top of a berm while leading, nearly taking out a camera operator. Needless to say, if Stewart can keep his bike on two wheels at Daytona, he will be a major threat for the win. And with Dungey out of the title chase, it looks new life may have been breathed back into Stewart’s season.