ANAHEIM, CA (February 6, 2012) – The Rockstar Energy Racing teams returned to Angel Stadium in Anaheim, CA, on Saturday night for the fifth round of AMA /FIM Supercross. In front of a screaming, sold-out crowd, all the Rockstar Energy Racing teams stepped up their respective games and turned in a supreme effort, with standout Nico Izzi of Star Valli Yamaha carding a top-five result in Supercross Lites.
"This was a good race for us," said Izzi. "We had the fastest lap in practice and I felt really strong. I finished fourth in my heat race and then, in the main, I finished fifth. I wasn't pushing out there because the track was super-slick and I didn't want to do anything dumb and fall, I just wanted to try and come out with a top-five finish and I ended up doing that. San Diego should be a good one, I'll just keep on working on my weaknesses and come back fighting."
Star Valli Yamaha teammate Ryan Sipes also impressed at Anaheim, although his final results didn't do justice to his concentrated efforts. Sipes was lightning-fast in his heat race and came from behind to finish second. In the Supercross Lites main, he turned fast, smooth, consistent laps for most of the race before he made a few mistakes that saw him finish 11th.
"I feel like I rode really good all day," said Sipes. "In practice I was either first or a tenth off being first. In the heat race, I came from about 16th to second, and I felt like my speed was really good. In the main event, I rode 13 really good laps. I was as fast as the leaders or faster… Then, I had a mistake in the sand and went down. I got up and had another mistake and went down again. Now, all I can do is look forward to the next race and try to get better."
Rounding out the Star Valli Yamaha squad in Supercross Lites is Gareth Swanepoel, who finished second in the LCQ. In the main, Swanepoel was running in the top 10 when a get-off resulted in his finishing 15th.
"I was going good for the first five or six laps," said Swanepoel. "Then I made a stupid mistake and went down, and got up completely lost. But before that, I'd made some big improvements so I'm happy overall. My goal for San Diego is to get a solid top-10 result."
For Rockstar Energy Racing, Martin Davalos was one to watch at Anaheim. The Supercross Lites rider was in the hunt for his heat race and carded a third-place finish. In the main, Davalos went down at the start but rallied quickly and worked his way through the pack to finish up in 10th.
"I felt pretty good out there and got a good start," said Davalos. "But it felt like someone hit me from behind and I went down. Then, I was coming through the pack and Jason (Anderson) lost his front end or rear end, and I went down with him, so I had to come from last to 10th. I kind of rode my own pace and there was definitely an improvement there. Now, I'm going to try and work on some starts and come back strong for San Diego."
Rockstar Energy Racing teammate Jason Anderson had a tough weekend and struggled a bit as he was feeling remnants of his crash last weekend in Oakland. Although Anderson made it to the main event, he went down with Davalos early on and was unable to recover.
In the Supercross class, Rockstar Energy's Brett Metcalfe and Nick Wey both turned in noteworthy performances. Metcalfe finished eighth in his heat race and ninth in the main, while Wey finished ninth in his heat race and 13th in the main.
"Coming into Anaheim, I really wanted to get things back on track," said Metcalfe. "I had a rough weekend last week, I went down and didn't have a good result, so I was really determined to put in a good result at Anaheim. I was feeling good on the track, but I was a little bit off all day, so that was kind of a bummer. But going into the heat race, I was feeling good and things were looking up. But I got a bad start and ended up finishing eighth. In the main event, I got a bad start again and just didn't get it going. But I'm looking forward to getting back into it this week, and working hard and coming out for San Diego."
Also in the Supercross class, Star Valli Yamaha riders Austin Stroupe and Ryan Morais remain sidelined by injury. Replacement riders Bobby Kiniry and Kyle Summers both put in a valiant effort in their heat races but didn't make the main event.
The next event for the Rockstar Energy Racing teams is the sixth round of the 2012 AMA/FIM Supercross Championship on Saturday, February 11th, at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, CA.
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