2008 AMA Outdoor Nationals Round One – Glen Helen

photos by Chris Kinman and Dave Kania
Finally! The Outdoor Nationals are here! With Supercross but a memory, it was time to take the battle to the motocross tracks, and where better to start than the world-famous Glen Helen Raceway. With the weather as an ally, and not an inevitable discomfort, the pro riders of the AMA took to the Southern California track for the start of a sure-to-be-incredible season of motocross. With a gaggle of riders back from injury, everyone was as excited as middle-aged women at a Neil Diamond concert. So let’s get to it…

MOTOCROSS LITES MOTO ONE
The West Coast Lites champion, Yamaha of Troy’s Jason Lawrence got the season started the best way possible: with a huge holeshot in the very first moto at Glen Helen. MDK/KTM’s Ryan Sipes and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Brett Metcalfe chased Lawrence up the first hill, while Rockstar/Makita/Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey and Pro Circuit’s young buck, Austin Stroupe followed suit. Dungey gained position on Stroupe, but the youngster would not let Dungey loose.
After one lap, J-Law settled into the lead while Sipes, Metcalfe, Dungey, and Stroupe battled for top positions. Dungey’s teammate, Nico Izzi and Geico Powersports Honda’s Jake Weimer, meanwhile made their push for the leaders early, just off the pace of Stroupe, Metcalfe and company. Weimer’s teammate and reigning East Coast Supercross Lites champion Trey Canard, however, was well off the pace, due to a first-turn crash with a number of other riders.
As the time ticked away, J-law opened up his lead on Sipes while likely favorite Ryan Villopoto chopped away at Jake Weimer. The riders blasted out lap after lap on the unusually smooth track conditions, but as the time clicked away, so did the conditions. After 15 minutes had passed the track was back to the Glen Helen we have all come to love (and loathe).
After a mistake by Sipes, Metcalfe, Dungey and Stroupe got by the KTM pilot and resumed their battle for podium spots. Meanwhile, Villopoto had overtaken Weimer and was inching closer to Izzi with every passing moment. He made his move in the sand, passing the young Suzuki rider and gaining yet another position.
Austin Stroupe, who has clearly taken notes from his teammate and mentor, RV, muscled his Pro Circuit-tuned Kawi past Dungey. By this time J-Law was holding a solid 4-second plus lead and he continued to put as much real estate as possible between himself and the Pro Circuit team. When the checkers flew, Jason Lawrence crossed the finish line with Austin Stroupe nipping at his heels. Stroupe managed to cut down Lawrence’s lead, but the Yamaha rider maintained and took the victory. After the moto J-Law commented, “That was the best way to start the season; with a holeshot. I couldn’t believe I got that big of a holeshot.”

LITES MOTO ONE RESULTS
1. Jason Lawrence
2. Austin Stroupe
3. Brett Metcalfe
4. Ryan Dungey
5. Ryan Villopoto
6. Matt Lemoine
7. Jake Weimer
8. Nico Izzi
9. Branden Jesseman
10. Kyle Cunningham
11. Dan Reardon
12. Andrew McFarlane
13. Kyle Chisholm
14. Trey Canard
15. Tommy Hahn
16. Bobby Kiniry
17. Justin Brayton
18. Tyler Bowers
19. Tye Hames
20. Phillip Nicoletti

MOTOCROSS MOTO ONE
When the big bikes jumped out of the gates for the first moto of the season it looked as though Rockstar/Makita/Suzuki’s Mike Alessi would get the holhot, but Monster Kawasaki’s James Stewart, fresh off knee surgery snuck in and instantly pulled away with the holeshot.
After just one lap, Stewart had well over a second lead on Alessi, while his teammate Tim Ferry ran in third. Just behind the seasoned vet, a sea of Hondas led by Ben Townley, also fresh off of an injury, made chase.
Stewart was clearly comfortable and appeared to be having fun out on the track, which spelled disaster for his competition. He quickly built on his lead, gaining three seconds on Alessi after two laps. The Red Bull Honda crew of Davi Millsaps, Ben Townley, Andrew Short, and Ivan Tedesco chased Ferry, while Sean Hamblin on the privateer tip reeled in the Hondas all while keeping Michael Byrne and his Rockstar Suzuki at bay.
After fifteen minutes, Stewart completely checked out. With over a 10-second lead on Alessi, Stewart could focus on maintaining. Townley, meanwhile, made his way around teammate Davi Millsaps and closed in on Timmy Ferry, Townley’s apparent push for position was short-lived, however, and his Honda cohorts regained his spot. With Townley in the back of the Honda parade, Davi Millsaps made a late charge on Ferry, and would claim a podium spot with his efforts. When the first moto of the season concluded, Stewart stood proudly on top of the podium with Alessi and Millsaps flanking.
Stewart said of the moto, “It feels good to be back. It feels good to get the win. I like the sand section and I feel really good.”

MOTOCROSS MOTO ONE RESULTS
1. James Stewart
2. Mike Alessi
3. Davi Millsaps
4. Timmy Ferry
5. Andrew Short
6. Ben Townley
7. Ivan Tedesco
8. Sean Hamblin
9. Michael Byrne
10. Nick Wey
11. Steve Boniface
12. Antonio Balbi
13. Jeff Alessi
14. Cody Cooper
15. Bobby Bonds
16. David Vuillemin
17. Juss Laansoo
18. Paul Carpenter
19. Michael Blose
20. Adam Chatfield

MOTOCROSS LITES MOTO TWO
With one moto in the books, the Lites riders came out for their second, and final, moto of the afternoon, and it was still anyone’s game. Ryan Dungey, though, did not want to leave it to chance, and so the Suzuki rider jumped out of the gates first and made his way around the famous Talladega bank turn out front. The Pro Circuit team did not let Dungey get far, as Stroupe, Villopoto, and Metcalfe closed in as they all pinned it up Mt. St. Helen’s hill. J-Law, not willing to be left out of the action chased down the Pro Circuit trio while teammates Jake Weimer and Trey Canard nipped at J-Law’s heels.
The Pro Circuit guys quickly managed to overpower Dungey and both Stroupe and Villopoto gained position. With that, Austin Stroupe took over lead, and he held onto the lead for quite a few laps, but a mistake forced the young Kawi rider down, which allowed Villopoto, Dungey, and Metcalfe to pass him. Metcalfe held onto third with Stroupe on his heels while Canard and J-Law battled just behind.
Stroupe, clearly unsatisfied with watching Metcalfe’s rear tire, made his way back around his teammate in the gnarly sand section and settled back into third, where he would remain for the rest of the moto. J-Law, meanwhile, continued to work on Canard and eventually it paid off. The Geicoo Powersports rider could no longer hold off Lawrence and the battle of the Supercross Lites champions was over. With Canard behind him, J-Law held onto fifth place and would guarantee himself a spot on the podium at the end of the day.
When all was said and done, Ryan Villopoto took the checkers for the moto, which landed him on the podium for second overall on the day. It was Austin Stroupe whose consistency paid off in the end, and the young Pro Circuit rider claimed his first overall motocross Lites win of his career. Stroupe said of his well-deserved win, “This was more than I expected. I wasn’t even sure I won the overall at the end.”

LITES MOTO TWO RESULTS
1. Ryan Villopoto
2. Ryan Dungey
3. Austin Stroupe
4. Brett Metcalfe
5. Jason Lawrence
6. Trey Canard
7. Jake Weimer
8. Broc Tickle
9. Matt Lemoine
10. Jake Moss
11. Kyle Cunningham
12. Tommy Hahn
13. Matt Goerke
14. Wil Hahn
15. Justin Brayton
16. Andrew McFarlane
17. Ryan Sipes
18. Tyler Bowers
19. Sean Borkenhagen
20. Tye Hames

MOTOCROSS LITES OVERALL FINISH
1. Austin Stroupe, Lincolnton, N.C., Kawasaki, 2-3
2. Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, Wash., Kawasaki, 5-1
3. Jason Lawrence, Carlsbad, Calif., Yamaha 1-5
4. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki 4-2
5. Brett Metcalfe, Murrieta, Calif., Kawasaki, 3-4
6. Jake Weimer, Rupert, Idaho, Honda, 7-7
7. Matt Lemoine, Pilot Point, Tex., Yamaha, 6-9
8. Trey Canard, Elk City, Okla., Honda, 14-6
9. Kyle Cunningham, Fort Worth, Tex., Honda, 10-11
10. Tommy Hahn, Alvord, Tex., Kawasaki, 15-12

MOTOCROSS LITES POINTS STANDINGS
1. Austin Stroupe, Lincolnton, N.C., Kawasaki, 42
2. Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, Wash., Kawasaki, 41
3. Jason Lawrence, Murrieta, Ga., Yamaha, 41
4. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki, 40
5. Brett Metcalfe, Murrieta, Calif., Kawasaki, 38
6. Jake Weimer, Rupert, Idaho, Honda, 28
7. Matt Lemoine, Pilot Point, Tex., Yamaha, 27
8. Trey Canard, Elk City, Okla., Honda, 22
9. Kyle Cunningham, Fort Worth, Tex., Honda, 21
10. Tommy Hahn, Alvord, Tex., Kawasaki, 15

MOTOCROSS MOTO TWO
See Moto one.
Just as the first moto of the season for the big bikes started, Mike Alessi jumped out and looked like he would take the BTO Sports Holeshot Award, but yet again, James Stewart maneuvered that Kawasaki of his past the Suzuki rider and staked his claim on the leading position. Alessi, however, kept the Kawai rider honest, and did not allow him to build a big lead…for a while.
And just like the first moto, Timmy Ferry found himself among a bunch of Hondas, including Davi Millsaps and Ben Townley. James Stewart continued to push it, while Mike Alessi rode brilliantly himself. The two Opened up quite a gap on the rest of the field, and left the competition to race amongst themselves. Davi Millsaps found himself in third with Ferry trying to reel him in. Lap after lap, it looked as though Ferry was inching closer to number 118, but the Kawi rider just couldn’t seem to show Millsaps his tire.
While Stewart and Alessi rode their own race, the rest of the field fought for points. Ivan Tedesco, fresh off of his wrist injury, settled into fifth, while Cody Cooper made New Zealand proud with a solid sixth place running. Michael Byrne and Sean Hamblillopoto took the checkers for the moto, which landed him on the podium for second overall on the day. It was Austin Stroupe whose consistency paid off in the end, and the young Pro Circuit rider claimed his first overall motocross Lites win of his career. Stroupe said of his well-deserved win, “This was more than I expected. I wasn’t even sure I won the overall at the end.”

LITES MOTO TWO RESULTS
1. Ryan Villopoto
2. Ryan Dungey
3. Austin Stroupe
4. Brett Metcalfe
5. Jason Lawrence
6. Trey Canard
7. Jake Weimer
8. Broc Tickle
9. Matt Lemoine
10. Jake Moss
11. Kyle Cunningham
12. Tommy Hahn
13. Matt Goerke
14. Wil Hahn
15. Justin Brayton
16. Andrew McFarlane
17. Ryan Sipes
18. Tyler Bowers
19. Sean Borkenhagen
20. Tye Hames

MOTOCROSS LITES OVERALL FINISH
1. Austin Stroupe, Lincolnton, N.C., Kawasaki, 2-3
2. Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, Wash., Kawasaki, 5-1
3. Jason Lawrence, Carlsbad, Calif., Yamaha 1-5
4. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki 4-2
5. Brett Metcalfe, Murrieta, Calif., Kawasaki, 3-4
6. Jake Weimer, Rupert, Idaho, Honda, 7-7
7. Matt Lemoine, Pilot Point, Tex., Yamaha, 6-9
8. Trey Canard, Elk City, Okla., Honda, 14-6
9. Kyle Cunningham, Fort Worth, Tex., Honda, 10-11
10. Tommy Hahn, Alvord, Tex., Kawasaki, 15-12

MOTOCROSS LITES POINTS STANDINGS
1. Austin Stroupe, Lincolnton, N.C., Kawasaki, 42
2. Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, Wash., Kawasaki, 41
3. Jason Lawrence, Murrieta, Ga., Yamaha, 41
4. Ryan Dungey, Belle Plaine, Minn., Suzuki, 40
5. Brett Metcalfe, Murrieta, Calif., Kawasaki, 38
6. Jake Weimer, Rupert, Idaho, Honda, 28
7. Matt Lemoine, Pilot Point, Tex., Yamaha, 27
8. Trey Canard, Elk City, Okla., Honda, 22
9. Kyle Cunningham, Fort Worth, Tex., Honda, 21
10. Tommy Hahn, Alvord, Tex., Kawasaki, 15

MOTOCROSS MOTO TWO
See Moto one.
Just as the first moto of the season for the big bikes started, Mike Alessi jumped out and looked like he would take the BTO Sports Holeshot Award, but yet again, James Stewart maneuvered that Kawasaki of his past the Suzuki rider and staked his claim on the leading position. Alessi, however, kept the Kawai rider honest, and did not allow him to build a big lead…for a while.
And just like the first moto, Timmy Ferry found himself among a bunch of Hondas, including Davi Millsaps and Ben Townley. James Stewart continued to push it, while Mike Alessi rode brilliantly himself. The two Opened up quite a gap on the rest of the field, and left the competition to race amongst themselves. Davi Millsaps found himself in third with Ferry trying to reel him in. Lap after lap, it looked as though Ferry was inching closer to number 118, but the Kawi rider just couldn’t seem to show Millsaps his tire.
While Stewart and Alessi rode their own race, the rest of the field fought for points. Ivan Tedesco, fresh off of his wrist injury, settled into fifth, while Cody Cooper made New Zealand proud with a solid sixth place running. Michael Byrne and Sean Hamblin again found themselves vieing for top-10 positions, and both would hold on to do so. Byrne managed to keep the Hamblin at bay, but the former model had to be pleased with his results.
And just as the first 450 moto finished, so did the second. James Stewart flew around the track like it was his backyard and took the moto win and the overall victory with Alessi and Millsaps finishing second and third respectively.

MOTOCROSS MOTO TWO RESULTS
1. James Stewart
2. Mike Alessi
3. Davi Millsaps
4. Timmy Ferry
5. Ivan Tedesco
6. Cody Cooper
7. Michael Byrne
8. Sean Hamblin
9. Jeff Alessi
10. Nick Wey
11. Antonio Balbi
12. Steve Boniface
13. Jarrod Jet Browne
14. Charles Summey
15. Josh Hill
16. Kyle Summers
17. Bobby Bonds
18. David Vuillemin
19. Adam Chatfield
20. Kyle Lewis

MOTOCROSS OVERALL FINISH
1. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Kawasaki, 1-1
2. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Suzuki, 2-2
3. Davi Millsaps, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 3-3
4. Timmy Ferry, Largo, Fla., Kawasaki, 4-4
5. Ivan Tedesco, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 7-5
6. Michael Byrne, Newman, Geo., Suzuki, 9-7
7. Sean Hamblin, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 8-8
8. Cody Cooper, Tallahassee, Fla., Suzuki, 14-6
9. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., KTM, 10-10
10. Jeff Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Honda, 13-9

MOTOCROSS POINTS STANDINGS
1. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Kawasaki, 50
2. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Suzuki, 44
3. Davi Millsaps, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 40
4. Timmy Ferry, Largo, Fla., Kawasaki, 36
5. Ivan Tedesco, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 30
6. Michael Byrne, Newman, Geo., Suzuki, 26
7. Sean Hamblin, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 26
8. Cody Cooper, Tallahassee, Fla., Suzuki, 22
9. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., KTM, 22
10. Jeff Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Honda, 20

mblin again found themselves vieing for top-10 positions, and both would hold on to do so. Byrne managed to keep the Hamblin at bay, but the former model had to be pleased with his results.
And just as the first 450 moto finished, so did the second. James Stewart flew around the track like it was his backyard and took the moto win and the overall victory with Alessi and Millsaps finishing second and third respectively.

MOTOCROSS MOTO TWO RESULTS
1. James Stewart
2. Mike Alessi
3. Davi Millsaps
4. Timmy Ferry
5. Ivan Tedesco
6. Cody Cooper
7. Michael Byrne
8. Sean Hamblin
9. Jeff Alessi
10. Nick Wey
11. Antonio Balbi
12. Steve Boniface
13. Jarrod Jet Browne
14. Charles Summey
15. Josh Hill
16. Kyle Summers
17. Bobby Bonds
18. David Vuillemin
19. Adam Chatfield
20. Kyle Lewis

MOTOCROSS OVERALL FINISH
1. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Kawasaki, 1-1
2. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Suzuki, 2-2
3. Davi Millsaps, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 3-3
4. Timmy Ferry, Largo, Fla., Kawasaki, 4-4
5. Ivan Tedesco, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 7-5
6. Michael Byrne, Newman, Geo., Suzuki, 9-7
7. Sean Hamblin, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 8-8
8. Cody Cooper, Tallahassee, Fla., Suzuki, 14-6
9. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., KTM, 10-10
10. Jeff Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Honda, 13-9

MOTOCROSS POINTS STANDINGS
1. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Kawasaki, 50
2. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Suzuki, 44
3. Davi Millsaps, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 40
4. Timmy Ferry, Largo, Fla., Kawasaki, 36
5. Ivan Tedesco, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 30
6. Michael Byrne, Newman, Geo., Suzuki, 26
7. Sean Hamblin, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 26
8. Cody Cooper, Tallahassee, Fla., Suzuki, 22
9. Nick Wey, Dewitt, Mich., KTM, 22
10. Jeff Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Honda, 20