Thor’s Ryan Villopoto bounced back from his opening round result to earn a hard-fought second-place finish on a tough track at Chase Field in Phoenix, Ariz. Thor’s Martin Davalos also earned his first podium finish of the season in the Western Regional 250SX Class after he overcame a heat-race crash and qualifying through the LCQ.
Villopoto learned right away how slick the track was during the 450SX main event, going down on the second lap and remounting in eighth. He used the remainder of the main event to pick off riders and post the fastest lap time of the race, on his way to finish runner-up. Villopoto has now climbed the points standings to sit in a three-way tie for seventh.
Thor’s Josh Grant continued to make improvements throughout the day in Phoenix, charging hard to a 10th-place finish in the main event.
The Western Regional 250SX class rider Davalos showed incredible heart and determination on Saturday. A crash in the heat race forced him to qualify through the LCQ, giving him 19th gate pick for the main. Despite the outside gate pick, Davalos nearly grabbed the holeshot and led for several laps of the main event before finishing on the podium in third. Teammate Tyla Rattray started outside the top-15 to race back to 12th for the night.
Thor’s Blake Baggett made a determined effort to race in Phoenix despite and injured wrist, but after practice made the decision not to race.
The Monster Energy Supercross riders will head to Angel Stadium in Anaheim, Calif. next weekend. on January 19 for Round 3 of the season.