Heading into Round 8 of the 2013 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, Poulsbo native Ryan Villopoto carried a winless record in his home state of Washington. On Saturday, Villopoto went head-to-head with this season’s biggest rival, Ryan Dungey, where he captured his first ever overall victory at Washougal for the 33rd Annual Peterson CAT Washougal National.
Perhaps Villopoto’s 450 Class victory was a personal milestone for the 2011 450 Class Champion, but it also served as an end to Dungey’s five-year win streak at Washougal. Villopoto and Dungey split moto wins for the day, providing an exciting afternoon of racing at the championship’s only stop in the Pacific Northwest.
In Moto 1 of the 450 Class, Dungey put himself in a favorable position right away by securing his second Motorcycle Superstore Holeshot of the season. The trio of BTO Sports/KTM’s Andrew Short, Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Justin Barcia and Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart trailed close behind Dungey in the opening laps, while Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto started the first moto just outside the top five. Villopoto quickly set his sights to the front of the pack where he began making passes on the field.
Barcia upheld the second place position early on but the 450 Class rookie had a small tip over in a corner that allowed Stewart and Villopoto to get by. After a few laps of back-and-forth racing, Villopoto made the pass on Stewart for second, where he continued to chase Dungey for the lead position.
Dungey maintained his poise in the final laps of Moto 1 to secure the win by less than two seconds over a hard charging Villopoto. Stewart held on for the third place finish, while Barcia took fourth.
In Moto 2 of the 450 Class, it was Toyota/JGR/Yamaha’s Josh Grant who grabbed the Motorcycle Superstore Holeshot but Dungey’s momentum from Moto 1 carried him to the front on the opening lap. Villopoto and Stewart quickly moved past Grant in an intense second place battle, ultimately setting their sights on Dungey for the lead. Villopoto separated himself from Stewart and quickly latched onto Dungey in the opening laps. Villopoto patiently followed the leader before seizing the opportunity to move into the lead, and he never looked back.
Villopoto ended the day with a statement as he captured the Moto 2 win and the 450 Class overall with a (2-1) moto score, giving the Monster Energy Kawasaki rider his first ever win at Washougal.
Dungey put forth a solid performance in Moto 2 to claim second overall with (1-2) moto finishes. Through eight rounds, Dungey maintains the runner up position in the championship standings. Stewart landed a podium finish for the second consecutive round with a consistent (3-3) finish for the day. Stewart now sits in fourth place behind Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Justin Barcia in the championship standings.
GEICO Honda’s Eli Tomac dominated the 250 Class competition as he swept both motos of the day en route to his third overall victory of the season. In Moto 1, GEICO Honda’s Justin Bogle grabbed the Motorcycle Superstore Holeshot and led the field on the opening lap but it didn’t take long for Tomac to put himself out front.
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Blake Baggett caught up to Bogle and the two went to battle for second place early in the race. Baggett eventually moved past Bogle for second where he maintained a comfortable position until a mechanical issue ultimately took the defending 250 Class champion out of competition in Moto 1.
The Red Bull KTM duo of Ken Roczen and Marvin Musquin caught the front-runners from behind in the first moto, each capitalizing on Baggett’s misfortune. Roczen inherited the second place position, while Musquin remained close behind in third. Bogle dropped back to fourth, where he ultimately finished in Moto 1, just ahead of rookie Justin Hill who rode his Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki machine to a career best finish of fifth place in Moto 1.
In Moto 2 of the 250 Class, GEICO Honda’s Wil Hahn took the early lead after grabbing the Motorcycle Superstore Holeshot but a small mistake on the opening lap allowed his GEICO Honda teammates of Bogle and then Tomac to take over the lead. Similar to Moto 1, Tomac generated a comfortable lead on the rest of the field from the early stages of the race.
Roczen settled into the second place position in Moto 2 and despite a hard fought attempt to catch the leader, Roczen wasn’t able to contend for the lead position. Tomac secured the overall victory with a (1-1) sweep for the day, while Roczen’s consistent (2-2) moto score awarded him second overall.
The battle in Moto 2 ensued for the third place position as Bogle attempted to hold off GEICO Honda teammate Zach Osborne and Musquin late in the race. Bogle eventually dropped back a few spots, while Osborne pushed his way to a third place finish, followed by Musquin in fourth. Musquin earned third place overall with a (3-4) moto score for the day, returning to the podium for the first time since Round 5.
Only one point separates Tomac and Roczen in the ultra-competitive 250 Class Championship after eight rounds of racing.
Round 9 of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship heads to Millville, Minn. for the Red Bull Spring Creek National on Saturday, July 27.
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