Jamie’s Race Report: St. Louis

Jamie’s Race Report: St. Louis; Round 11 (U.S.), Round 13 (World SX)

Story by Jamie Little, Editor At Large

Despite the war in Iraq, 40,000+ supercross fans came to witness one great night of racing! Although the factory riders have been dropping like flies, RC and Reed continued their pursuit of the 2003 championship. It was here in St. Louis last year that Chad Reed secured his first 125 title, and it was this weekend that Chad put a stop to Ricky’s four-race winning streak. RC now leads the series by 22 points, and if it stays that way, we’ll have a battle all the way the finals in Las Vegas. Imagine that!

Pit and Heat Race Notes

Riders who didn’t attend St. Louis: Mike LaRocco (shoulder), Grant Langston (everything!), Ivan Tedesco (head), Michael Byrne (thumb), David Vuillemin (compressed vertebrae in Daytona), Damon Huffman (thumb), Andrew Short (groin) and Tim Ferry. Tim was diagnosed with Epstein-Barr shortly after Daytona. He is expected to be out at least two weeks.

Brock Sellards got the holeshot the first 125cc heat race, but Mike Brown quickly took over and pulled away at about a second a lap, riding with more confidence than we’ve seen. Brown took the win by about five seconds, Brock Sellards secured second and team Suzuki’s Matthieu Lalloz finished third.

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The second 125cc heat race saw Kelly Smith get the holeshot on his 250F. Brandon Jesseman got off the line in fifth, but on lap two he got around Shae Bentley and Tommy Hofmaster. By lap three, Jesseman had made the pass on Tyson Hadsell for second. On lap four, Bentley moved into third. Lap five saw Jesseman pass Hadsell over the triple and take the win by a second. Though Ryan Mills went down in the first turn and started dead last, he put in a nice ride and finished 11th.

Heat one was 5 seconds faster than heat two.

250cc heat one: Chad Reed took the holeshot with Travis Preston in second and Larry Ward in third. By lap four, Reed had a six-second lead. On lap five, Nick Wey went from fifth to fourth, while Ernesto Fonseca got around Larry Ward for second. Reed took the win, with Preston about seven seconds back, and Nick Wey in third.

250cc heat two: RC grabbed the holeshot and there was a pileup in the first turn that included Tyler Evans. Chad Reed stood on the podium watching RC. Ezra Lusk was in second followed by Sean Hamblin. Lap two, Danny Smith got around Sean Hamblin for third. RC was jumping two to three whoops at a time, which nobody else was doing. RC took the checkers by ten seconds over Lusk.

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Chad Reed had the fastest lap time of 52 seconds flat and had the fastest heat by three seconds.

125 LCQ: Jeff Gibson of ECC got the holeshot but went down in the second turn. Ryan Mills took over the lead and got the win. Barry Carsten, the oldest rider on the track at 37, took second and qualified for the 125cc main.

250 Semi one: Jason Thomas took the holeshot but Larry Ward quickly took over. On lap three, Clark Stiles and Ryan Clark got around Joe Oehlhof and Jason Thomas for second and third. Thomas pulled off the track on the last lap for an unknown reason. Ward took the win.

250 Semi two: Heath Voss took the holeshot then made a huge mistake over a double, almost endoing. On the next lap, Tyler Evans passed Heath in the same place. Voss took over the lead on lap four and went down immediately. He grabbed too much front brake and bumped into Evans. Evans then took the checkers and Heath managed to work his way from sixth up to fourth.

250 LCQ: Quite exciting. Privateer Brian Mason managed to fix a bent sub-frame; tweaked handlebars and a dented pipe just in time to race the LCQ. He got off the start in fifth and worked his way up. On the final turn before the checkered flag, he ran Tyson Hadsel off the tracand took the last transfer position. Jason Thomas took the win.

The Main Events

125 Main

Steve Boniface got a huge holeshot, his first of the year. Brock Sellards made a mistake in the back rhythm section and went down. Jesseman started in eighth and Brown third.

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Lap two, Kelly Smith made a hard charge for the lead while Jesseman moved up to fifth.

Lap five, Brown closed in, and he and Smith come together and their bikes got tangled. Jesseman moved his way up into second where he battled with Brett Metcalfe. Shae Bentley went down hard, and walked off the track holding his thumb. Jesseman began reeling Boniface in by about one second a lap.

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Lap eight, Jesseman was all over Boniface and took the lead. Mike Brown had already moved up to fifth after going down. Brock Sellards moved up to eighth after being about 18th.

Lap ten, Kelly Smith got around Metcalfe in the whoops. Brown charged past Metcalfe for fourth.

Lap 12, Brown overjumped Smith and took over third place, but he was eight seconds away from Jesseman.

Final lap, Smith was all over Brown. It was a three-way battle for third through the whoops. The checkered flag came out for Jesseman, Boniface took second, Brown was a close third and Smith was a very close fourth.

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125 Main, St. Louis, MO (Round five for the East series)

  1. Branden Jesseman (SUZ)
  2. Steve Boniface (KTM)
  3. Mike Brown (KAW)
  4. Kelly Smith (YAM)
  5. Brett Metcalfe (KTM)
  6. Matthieu Lalloz (SUZ)
  7. Brock Sellards (YAM)
  8. Erick Vallejo (YAM)
  9. Shane Bess (SUZ)
  10. Ryan Mills (HON)
  11. Josh Summey (YAM)
  12. Michael Blose (YAM)
  13. Kevin Johnson (YAM)
  14. Jeremy Chaussee (YAM)
  15. Barry Carsten (SUZ)
  16. Tommy Hofmaster (YAM)
  17. Scott Metz (KTM)
  18. Ryan Abrigo (SUZ)
  19. Tyson Hadsell (YAM)
  20. Ryan Morais (SUZ)
  21. Tommy Harrison (SUZ)
  22. Shae Bentley (SUZ)

250 Main

The 250 main began with Suzuki’s Danny Smith getting the holeshot. Chad Reed immediately took over the lead with Ricky Carmichael second, Danny Smith third, and Voss fourth.

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Lap 2: Travis Preston pulled off with broken spokes throughout his front wheel. Chad Reed missed the triple and RC took over the lead.

Lap 3: Reed was all over RC. Ezra Lusk was running toward the back, hitting his clutch lever after going down. Chad Reed retook the lead from RC! The crowd was on its feet cheering.

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Lap 4: Chad made a mistake and RC took the lead for the second time.

Lap 5: Reed pulled up next to RC over the finish line jump and took the lead for the third time! Danny Smith was in third and Ernesto Fonseca had worked his way into fourth. Reed was about ten bike-lengths ahead.

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Lap 6: Carmichael jumped too wide and landed on the tuff blox halfway through the lap. Reed hit the triple and looked back to see where RC was. Danny Smith moved to second but Fonseca was all over him. RC was back in 6th.

Lap 7: Reed has about a 15-second lead over Smith. RC already made the move on Larry Ward for fourth.

Lap 8: RC moved past Fonseca and into podium position. RC got around Smith over the triple. He’s now set on getting Reed. Reed is still nine seconds ahead.

Lap 11: RC was on the gas, picking up two seconds on Reed that lap.

Lap 13: Fonseca was all over Danny Smith, tried for awhile to get around and was finally able to when Smith made a mistake. Both of Smith’s feet came off the pegs, slowing him down.

Lap 15: RC taken another second off Reed’s lead. Oehlhof went down near the triple, and yellow flags come out and the leaders were forced to double.

Lap 16: RC shaved another three seconds off leader Reed. Fonseca is another six seconds behind RC. Larry Ward makes the charge on Smith and makes the pass for fourth. Nick Wey makes the pass on Smith too.

Lap 18: Reed has about a seven-second lead. He lapped Lusk! Lusk was running 11th.

Lap 19: Reed picks up the pace and increases his lead. Fonseca and Ward were engaged in a close battle for third.

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Checkered flag: Chad Reed won his third race in the states, his fourth on the season. RC was about six seconds back and Fonseca grabbed his first podium of the year. Ward finished fourth with Nick Wey right beside him.

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250 MAIN, ROUND 11

  1. Chad Reed (YAM)
  2. Ricky Carmichael (HON)
  3. Ernesto Fonseca (HON)
  4. Larry Ward (HON)
  5. Nick Wey (YAM)
  6. Danny Smith (SUZ)
  7. Sean Hamblin (SUZ)
  8. Ryan Clark (YAM)
  9. Heath Voss (YAM)
  10. Jason Thomas (HON)
  11. Ezra Lusk (KAW)
  12. Greg Schnell (YAM)
  13. Keith Johnson (YAM)
  14. Josh Woods (KTM)
  15. Tyler Evans (SUZ)
  16. Casey Lytle (YAM)
  17. Joe Oehlhof (HON)
  18. Brian Mason (YAM)
  19. Clark Stiles (HON)
  20. Travis Preston (HON)

See you in Houston!

flags come out and the leaders were forced to double.

Lap 16: RC shaved another three seconds off leader Reed. Fonseca is another six seconds behind RC. Larry Ward makes the charge on Smith and makes the pass for fourth. Nick Wey makes the pass on Smith too.

Lap 18: Reed has about a seven-second lead. He lapped Lusk! Lusk was running 11th.

Lap 19: Reed picks up the pace and increases his lead. Fonseca and Ward were engaged in a close battle for third.

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Checkered flag: Chad Reed won his third race in the states, his fourth on the season. RC was about six seconds back and Fonseca grabbed his first podium of the year. Ward finished fourth with Nick Wey right beside him.

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250 MAIN, ROUND 11

  1. Chad Reed (YAM)
  2. Ricky Carmichael (HON)
  3. Ernesto Fonseca (HON)
  4. Larry Ward (HON)
  5. Nick Wey (YAM)
  6. Danny Smith (SUZ)
  7. Sean Hamblin (SUZ)
  8. Ryan Clark (YAM)
  9. Heath Voss (YAM)
  10. Jason Thomas (HON)
  11. Ezra Lusk (KAW)
  12. Greg Schnell (YAM)
  13. Keith Johnson (YAM)
  14. Josh Woods (KTM)
  15. Tyler Evans (SUZ)
  16. Casey Lytle (YAM)
  17. Joe Oehlhof (HON)
  18. Brian Mason (YAM)
  19. Clark Stiles (HON)
  20. Travis Preston (HON)

See you in Houston!