AURORA, Ill. (March 6, 2012) – Ryan Villopoto became the first rider in off-road motorcycle racing history to win $1 million in a single night of racing at last year’s inaugural Monster Energy Cup. The Poulsbo, Wash., native quickly pushed his chips to the center of the table to defend his championship at the 2012 Monster Energy Cup at Las Vegas’ Sam Boyd Stadium on October 20 when he announced his return to this epic hybrid race.
“I’m really excited to head back to Vegas in October for the Monster Energy Cup,” said defending Monster Energy Cup winner Ryan Villopoto. “There is so little time in between races, it’s tough to recover for all three Main Events. It also becomes demanding for the team to get to the gate ready for three races on a track that requires different set-ups; it’s a full team effort. The track had some cool features last year that made it exciting, so I hope that they have more surprises in store come October.”
“It’s pretty unreal,” said Villopoto on winning the $1 million. “I’m happy we were able to pull it off. To back it up in 2012 will be hard, so if we do, it would be great. Although the race is not until October 20, I want everyone to know I am ready to defend my title.”
At the inaugural Monster Energy Cup, Villopoto swept all three races. He earned the holeshot in the first two races, and in the third and final race, he passed holeshot winner Mike Alessi on the opening lap and rode to the $1 million victory.
“Heading into the final Main Event, I just needed to get another good start like I’ve been doing,” said Villopoto after the second main event.
The Monster Energy Cup Championship rounded out a perfect season for Villopoto having won the 450cc AMA Motocross and Supercross Class championships as well as the Motocross des Nations. Villopoto currently leads the Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship.
The unique Monster Energy Cup hybrid track will make this race unlike any other stadium race in the world. The Monster Energy Cup posts a $250,000 purse with the winner walking away with a $100,000 check, and for the second consecutive year, $1 million will be paid to a rider that wins all three Main Events.