Team Suzuki Press Office – April 19. The AMA Supercross series swung back west at the weekend and Team Rockstar Energy Suzuki grabbed a couple of top-10 finishes in the seventh round of the 2011 AMA/ FIM Supercross Lites West Championship on Saturday night at Qwest Field in Seattle.
Ryan Morais powered his Yoshimura-equipped Suzuki RM-Z250 to a seventh-placed finish in the 15-lap Lites Main Event as team mate Martin Davalos followed close behind in eighth on the tough and highly-technical Seattle track.
Morais started the day with his best qualifying result of the season in the afternoon timed practices and carried that momentum into his heat race with a solid fourth place aboard his Suzuki. In the Main, a good start put him in eighth place after the first lap and he was able to work his RM-Z250 up to as high as sixth over the next few laps. Morais battled throughout the remainder of the 15 laps on the heavily-rutted course to cross the line in seventh.
“Today went okay for me,” said Morais. “I felt pretty good in practice; it was my best practice qualifying time of the year. The track was really technical and hard tonight and my team did a good job setting up my bike. I felt good in the Main Event and got a good start on my RM-Z. I was battling with a couple riders and the pace was good, but it kind of turned into a little cat and mouse. I wasn’t able to get past sixth over the rest of the race. It was a little frustrating, but I’ve come out of here healthy and we have two weeks until Salt Lake City. I’m going to work hard and try to put my Suzuki on the box in these last two races. I like Salt Lake City and I feel like I’m where I need to be, so we’ll see what we can do.”
Davalos rode strong all day, starting with the third fastest time in the shortened afternoon practice and continuing into his heat race to bring his RM-Z across the line in fourth. A decent start in the Main put Davalos just behind Morais for nearly the entire 15 laps and the Rockstar Energy Suzuki rider used the power and handling of his RM-Z250 to negotiate the tough and technical conditions to score an eighth-place finish.
“It was a tough weekend for me,” said Davalos. “I felt like I rode good but kind of got a bad start in the Main and just really couldn’t get around anyone. The track was really challenging, really gnarly and rutted, but my RM-Z worked great, but I just couldn’t make anything happen. The positive thing is that I’m safe and healthy and I’m ‘gonna go back home and work on some starts. I need to get the start. I’ve never been to Salt Lake City, so I’m really looking forward to racing there. I need to put my Rockstar Energy Suzuki team on the box. We work so hard and they are so good to me.”
After seven rounds, Morais sits fifth and Davalos ninth in the West Region points standings. The 2011 Rockstar Energy Suzuki team’s next event is Saturday, April 30th, at Rice Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Seattle Supercross Lites Class Results:
1. Cole Seely
2. Eli Tomac
3. Broc Tickle
4. Kyle Cunningham
5. Tyla Rattray
6. Joshua Hansen
7. Ryan Morais (Rockstar Energy Suzuki)
8. Martin Davalos (Rockstar Energy Suzuki)
9. Travis Baker
10. Gared Steinke
2011 Supercross Lites West Standings:
1. Broc Tickle – 145
2. Joshua Hansen – 143
3. Eli Tomac – 138
4. Cole Seely – 113
5. Ryan Morais (Rockstar Energy Suzuki) – 110
6. Tyla Rattray – 96
7. Kyle Cunningham – 89
8. Ken Roczen – 83
9. Martin Davalos (Rockstar Energy Suzuki) – 82
10. James Decotis – 67