Monday Kickstart – Daytona 2012

Photos by Jeff Kardas

This year’s stop at Daytona, Florida’s historic Daytona International Speedway was a muddy fiasco, and while it did not compare to the monsoon race conditions of 2008’s thriller, the week leading up to the race and the weekend itself shook up the title chase.

Sections of the track were water logged trenches and were two to three feet deep in some areas.
Daytona marked Kyle Regal's return to the Supercross series. Regal, backed by longtime sponsor Merge Racing, scored a third place finish in his heat race and a thirteenth place in the main event.
What was supposed to be a long rhythm section that ran parallel to pit lane became a series of singles that the riders bounced through, splashing in the deep puddles that laid between each mound. Keeping the front end of the bike in the air in this area was crucial to maintain speed as well as keep the bike alive.
To aid the racers and mechanics, a designated bike wash area, complete with power washers, was set up near Victory Lane.
Goggle reps, like 100%'s John Kuzo, were some of the busiest people of the weekend. Getting multiple sets of goggles prepped with tear offs, Roll Offs, Rain-X, and anti-fog treatments was a necessary chore. But many riders were still forced to ditch their goggles midway through each race once the conditions became too much for the protection.