AMA Supermoto Season to Date

Sean Alexander
by Sean Alexander
AMA Red Bull Supermoto Season to Date

Round 1: July 11-13, 2003 - Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Monterey, CA

The first ever AMA Red Bull Supermoto took place on a huge stage, sharing the spotlight with World and U.S. Superbike competition at Laguna Seca. Troy Lee Design Honda's Jeremy McGrath stole the holeshot and controlled much of the race, with teammate Jeff Ward and KTM's Kurt Nicoll stalking the supercross legend. On lap 17 of 24, McGrath made a mistake, losing the front end ever so slightly and allowing Ward and Nicoll to pounce. Ward went on to grab the series' first victory, with Nicoll second and McGrath rounding out the podium.

In support class action, Nicoll found himself on top of the Supermoto Unlimited podium after working past fellow KTM rider Joe Kopp on lap 14. Teenager Chris Fillmore gave KTM a 1-2-3 sweep. Youngster Mike Alessi took the first Honda Red Riders Jr. Supermoto checkered flag.

Round 2: September 1, 2003 -- South Boston Speedway, South Boston, VA

Round 2 at South Boston Speedway was twice pushed back. While originally scheduled to run Saturday night under the lights, it eventually took place on Monday afternoon due to uncooperative weather. As a result, a number of riders didn't stay for the entire competition. Doug Chandler stepped forward to dominate the race, taking a wire-to-wire victory. After getting his AMA Supermoto career off to a slow at Laguna Seca, the former multi-time Superbike champ was in his element at the high-speed South Boston circuit, showing off trademark smooth style while running away at the front. Chandler's KTM understudy, 18-year-old Ben Carlson, took second. Suzuki's Mark Avard grabbed third and the season's points lead when Mike Metzger crashed out of the position late in the event.

16-year-old Chris Fillmore diced past Carlson and Mickey Dymond early on to walk away with the Supermoto Unlimited race. Carlson held on for second, while Larry Pegram edged Chandler to take third.

Round 3: October 5, 2003 -- PromoWest Pavilion, Columbus, OH

Jeff Ward made his AMA Supermoto return in Round 3 and again was victorious after running most of the event chasing the leader. This time the early pacesetter was Ben Carlson, who held off series newcomer Doug Henry's supreme skill in the dirt section with equally strong pavement riding over the first half of the contest. Henry's bid for a win in his first supermoto race fell apart when the Yamaha rider crashed trying to find a way past the teenager. Ward picked up the challenge and forced Carlson into a mistake of his own. Jeremy McGrath grabbed second with Henry remounting to take third. Ward's win moved him into a tie with fifth place finisher Mark Avard in the season's points standings.

Carlson won the Supermoto Unlimited race, despite having to start from the back of the pack after coming together with KTM teammate Doug Chandler at the original start and bringing out a red flag. Vertemati rider Leonardo Bagnis claimed second with Chris Fillmore third. Carter Myers held off Aaron King to win the Jr. Supermoto Challenge.

Round 4: October 18, 2003 -- Reunion Arena, Dallas, TX

Jeff Ward continued his perfect AMA Supermoto form, winning his third race in three attempts at the wide-open Reunion Arena circuit in downtown Dallas. Ward took the early lead, fighting back a challenge from Grant Langston over the opening laps. The South African's debut AMA Supermoto soon took a turn for the worse as his bike stalled on lap 5 after clipping a hay bale in the tunnel section of the course. Ward then waited for charging World Supermoto star Boris Chambon to make a bid for the win after pushing his way up through the field. Chambon, the fastest man all day long, missed out on Superpole and a shot at a top grid position when he retired from his qualifying heat race while leading. The Frenchman skillfully worked his way up to second from his lowly semi-final-earned spot on the grid and by the halfway point was within several bike lengths of Ward. Chambon had no answer when the Troy Lee Designs Honda ace stepped up his pace over the final several laps, however. Yamaha rider Doug Henry out-dueled Jeremy McGrath to finish in third. Ward's third win of the year put him alone out front in the points race.

Earlier, Chambon was victorious in impressive fashion in the Supermoto Unlimited final. Ben Carlson finished second with Mickey Dymond completing the KTM podium sweep. 12-year-old Colter Dimick dominated the Jr. Supermoto Challenge.

Round 5 of the series is set for Nov. 1 at Irwindale Speedway. Visit for more info.
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