DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Ryan Villopoto, riding the No. 1 Monster Energy Kawasaki, captured his third career Daytona Supercross By Honda victory on Saturday night at Daytona International Speedway.
Villopoto passed KTM rider Ken Roczen on Lap 4 and drove to a convincing 5.287-second win in the 20-lap 450 Supercross Main Event.
“Daytona is a unique place to race,” Villopoto said. “To win it is pretty awesome. It’s not like any other racing. If you can get a win here, it shows you are definitely one of the best. Sometimes it doesn’t go as planned but I’ll take it. It feels really good.”
Villopoto’s fifth AMA Supercross win of the year puts him atop the championship standings with a two-point lead over Suzuki’s Davi Millsaps, who finished 10th.
“It’s not much but it’s at least leading,” Villopoto said. “There’s still a lot of racing left and we have to keep focused and keep pushing forward.”
Villopoto joins Bob Hannah, Mike Kiedrowski, Jeremy McGrath and Chad Reed as three-time Daytona Supercross By Honda champions. Ricky Carmichael owns a record five Daytona Supercross By Honda triumphs followed by Jeff Stanton with four wins.
Rounding out the 450 class podium was KTM’s Ryan Dungey and Honda’s Justin Barcia.
“I tried to close that gap as much as I could each lap but he was riding a good race,” Dungey said of Villopoto.
“In the 250 class it was always pretty hard but this was definitely tough,” said Barcia about his first 450 class race at Daytona. “It felt like an outdoor race. I rode the best I could and had a lot of fun.”
Frenchman Marvin Musquin aboard the No. 25 Red Bull KTM captured the 250 main event in dominating fashion. Musquin took the hole shot and led all 15 laps for a margin of victory of 8.072 seconds.
“I just stayed really calm and tried to have fun,” said Musquin, who captured his first 250 class win on his 15h career start. “I was pulling away from them every lap and I was having so much fun playing with the track. I don’t want to say it was easy but I had so much fun.”
Rounding out the podium was Will Hahn on the No. 19 GEICO Honda and Jeremy Martin riding the No. 77 Yamaha.
For the sixth straight year, Carmichael returned as the course designer and Bomber Built, owned by three-time AMA 125cc National Motocross Champion Mark Barnett, built the Supercross course.
Carmichael retired from Supercross in 2007 as the most decorated rider in history with 15 AMA championships and 150 wins.
The Ricky Carmichael Signature Design Course was designed nearly identical to last year’s layout and the placement of the starting gate remained on pit road providing fans with a great view of the first turn.
On Sunday and Monday in the Ricky Carmichael Amateur Supercross, the amateur Supercross racers will have an opportunity to test their skills on the same course used in the Daytona Supercross By Honda. For more information on the Ricky Carmichael Amateur Supercross, visit www.racedaytona.com.