Baggett & Villopoto Flawless In Florida | 2014 Daytona SX

2014 Daytona SX Race Report

Photos by Jeff Kardas

Winning at Daytona puts a rider in an elite order with some of the world’s most famous racing icons, and for good reason. The course, Ricky Carmichael’s mile long twisted nightmare built with soft soil and sand built on the infield of the Daytona Motor Speedway is as grueling as they come, despite efforts recents efforts to tame its viciousness. Beneath the top soil is an endless pit of ruts and bumps, making the Supercross style obstacles feel out of place on the the stunning green grass that serves as their base. With the 2014 Monster Energy Supercross Series entering its home stretch, the battles for both the 450 and 250 championships have intensified to a fevered pitch, making each win even more important.

250 Heat One

Despite suffering a wrist and hand injury in practice, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett negotiated the tight first turn and tore off with the early race lead, with Blake Wharton and AJ Catanzaro in pursuit. Catanzaro, of the Factory Metal Work/ClubMX squad, pressured GEICO Honda rider Wharton for second place in the early moments, but Wharton held on to the spot and pulled ahead of the privateer. Catanzaro was shuffled through the order over the remaining laps, but his sixth place finish qualified him directly to the main event.

Baggett, meanwhile, went unpressured throughout the seven-lap sprint and claimed the heat race by 3.211 seconds over runner-up Wharton, a gap aided by his 1:05.880 lap time.

Contact with rookie Paul Coates shot Justin Bogle off the course in the first turn, but the GEICO Honda rider quickly found a way back on the track and into the fight for a transfer position. After coming from deep in the field, he would finish in fourth. Mitchell Oldenburg started the heat race outside the top ten, but the privateer quickly went into action and worked his way up the order, ultimately finishing eighth.

250 Heat One Results

1. Blake Baggett
2. Blake Wharton
3. Gavin Faith
4. Justin Bogle
5. Alex Martin
6. AJ Catanzaro
7. Kyle Cunningham
8. Mitchell Oldenburg
9. Justin Starling
10. Jace Owen

250 Heat Two

Adam Cianciarulo pushed his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki teammate Martin Davalos wide through the first turn to take the holeshot, but behind them, Yamalube/Star Racing/Yamaha’s Jeremy Martin squared up the action and snuck back for the lead. Martin and Cianciarulo ran even through the opening moments before the Kawasaki rider reclaimed the lead.

Davalos, who coming into the night was three for three on heat race wins, quickly made a similar pass on Martin and set off after his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki partner. The veteran’s early lap times were just tenths of a second quicker than the rookie and was in the process of reeling him in on the final lap when Cianciarulo’s bike suddenly slowed, giving Davalos the lead and heat race win. The issue was eerily similar to the incident that kept Dean Wilson from taking the Oakland main event win weeks ago, but Cianciarulo limped through the remaining sections of track to finish fifth place.

250 Heat Two Results

1. Martin Davalos
2. Jeremy Martin
3. Cole Thompson
4. Jimmy Decotis
5. Adam Cianciarulo
6. Matt Bisceglia
7. Matt Lemoine
8. Vince Friese
9. Jackson Richardson
10. Brady Kiesel

250 LCQ

Kyle Peters entered the first turn at the front of the field, but dropped to third upon exit, while Auston Albers snaked by to take the lead. Peters reclaimed control of the race before the end of the first lap and proceeded to inch away from the field, taking the LCQ win.

Ryan Zimmer and Jacob Baumert spent the final lap in a vicious fight for the final transfer spot. Zimmer started the final lap with the position, but Baumert reeled him in over the final lap. When the two approached the checkered flag, they were nearly dead even, but Baumert managed to cross the finish line just inches ahead to steal the last spot in the main event away from Zimmer.

250 LCQ Results

1. Kyle Peters
2. Auston Albers
3. Jace Owen
4. Jacob Baumert
5. Ryan Zimmer

250 Main Event

An inside line put Martin Davalos in the lead of the 22-rider main event field as they exited the first turn, and his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki teammate Adam Cianciarulo showed him a wheel in the next corner. Blake Baggett, the third member of the powerful PC squad, was also in the mix on the first lap and slipped by Cianciarulo to take second place just three turns into the 15-lap feature.

Baggett capitalized on a mistake made by Davalos on lap two to take over the lead, and the savage course suited the former 250 National champion. Within a lap, his lead over Davalos was nearly three and a half seconds. The fast course favored Cianciarulo’s wide-open riding style and he passed Davalos for second place near the halfway point of the race. The massive gap built by Baggett in the early laps gave both he and Cianciarulo a “clear track” to compete on, and the middle portion of the moto became a challenge to see who could clock the quicker lap times. Baggett kept the pace, even when knifing through the pack of lapped riders, and claimed his second victory in Daytona by a dominating 16 seconds over Cianciarulo. Martin Davalos, meanwhile, would hold off GEICO Honda’s Blake Wharton for third place at the finish line to make a Pro Circuit sweep of the podium.

Main Event Results

1. Blake Baggett
2. Adam Cianciarulo
3. Martin Davalos
4. Blake Wharton
5. Justin Bogle
6. Jeremy Martin
7. Matt Bisceglia
8. Vince Friese
9. Kyle Cunningham
10. Matt Lemoine
11. Kyle Peter
12. Jimmy Decotis
13. Cole Thompson
14. Alex Martin
15. Mitchell Oldenburg
16. Gavin Faith
17. Jackson Richardson
18. Justin Starling
19. AJ Catanzaro
20. Jacob Baumert
21. Auston Albers
22. Jace Owen

Monster Energy Supercross 250 East Coast Championship Points Standings (After 4 of 9 rounds):
1. Adam Cianciarulo 94pts/2wins
2. Martin Davalos 87pts/1 win
3. Blake Baggett 79pts/1 win
4. Justin Bogle 72pts
5. Vince Friese 61pts
6. Blake Wharton 51pts
7. Cole Thompson 48pts
8. Kyle Cunningham 45pts
9. Jimmy Decotis 43pts
10. Matt Lemoine 37pts