Dungey’s points moves him up to second in the overall standings behind Ryan Villopoto while Roczen’s performance was all the more impressive as he has only had two weeks back on the bike after a pre-season injury.
Dungey displayed enormous commitment throughout the night making a huge charge from the back of the pack after crashing in the first lap of his heat. He restarted in last position and worked the entire eight laps passing forward to move into qualifying position. With a lap to go he moved into ninth place to grab the final transfer spot.
Then in the main he also had to recover from a poor start. This time he had a great jump off the gate but got pushed back in the first corner and came into the first rhythm section in fourteenth place. He quickly moved into the top ten in the first lap and continued to pick up positions from there. With only five laps to go he started to reel in the third place ride of Jake Weimer and with two laps to go, he was on his rear wheel. He made the pass once after a rhythm section but Weimer was able to get him back leaving Dungey to make a repeat attack in the final dash.
Ryan Dungey: “I felt really good tonight. Our team made some great improvements to the bike over the last week and I felt very comfortable all day. I’m glad I was able to make the pass on the final lap. I am happy with my finish tonight and am grateful to the Red Bull/KTM Team for all their hard work.”
Great opener from Kenny Roczen
Roczen started his bid in the East Coast Lites off in fine style, especially considering he has had so little bike time since his pre-season injury. He impressed the fans in the morning session with second fastest lap time and them went on to secure his heat. In the main event Roczen started inside the top ten and quickly moved toward the top five. He was in sixth at the end of lap one and moved to fourth after lap two. He sat in fourth behind Justin Bogle through the tenth then he slipped by him to move into third and held on till the finish for his first podium of the season.
Ken Roczen: “I felt so comfortable on the track. My bike was working awesome and the track was so much fun to ride. It’s a great feeling to land on the podium at the first round. I took a little long to make my passes tonight but overall I am happy to be up here and earn some good points toward the championship.”
Four KTMs in top ten in Lites
Malcolm Stewart and PJ Larson of JDR J-Star KTM finished sixth and eighth and Lance Vincent at tenth to give KTM four top ten finishers in the Lites opener. The next round is in Atlanta on February 25, 2012.
Overall Results SX Round 7
1, Ryan Villopoto
2, Ryan Dungey – KTM
3, Jake Weimer
4, Mike Alessi
5, Josh Hansen
Overall Point Standings SX Round 7
1, Ryan Villopoto – 158
2, Ryan Dungey – 145
3, Chad Reed – 128
Overall Results SX Lites East Coast 1
1, Justin Barcia
2, Darryn Durham
3, Ken Roczen – KTM
4, Blake Wharton
5, Phil Nicoletti
6, Malcolm Stewart – KTM
8, PJ Larsen – KTM
10, Lance Vincent – KTM
16, Les Smith – KTM18, Sean Hackley – KTM