Pascarella, Butterman, and Bales win round one of AMA Supermoto.
After a five year hiatus the AMA National Championship Series kicked off their 2014 season in Lake Havasu City, AZ. The track was built in a park using city streets and parking lots with a beer garden in the center of the track on a baseball field. Elevation changes, metal ramps, and a technical dirt section made it exciting for riders and spectators. Robby Gordon was even on hand giving rides to several lucky fans in his side by side. Saturday's event featured three national points paying classes, Open Pro, Lites, and Amateur National, on Sunday was a full day of amateur racing.
First up was Lites, 250cc four stroke bikes. Sean Butterman qualifed on pole, but #1 Ron Reed answered with a holeshot in the main. Reed led early, but Butterman and Nicky Reimer kept within striking distance. Reed would eventually make a mistake that let Butterman and Reimer by. Butterman would stall his bike the following lap, he quickly hit the electric start on his Husqvarna but Reimer was there to take the lead. This set up a race that would have fans cheering as Butterman and Reimer would fight for the win. The race was clean, but the racers made contact several times, once while airborne. Butterman eventually got ahead of Reimer and won the Lites main event.
"I felt good going into the main. I knew I had to get a start because qualifying had been really close between Ron Reed, Nicky Reimer and myself. Reed got the holeshot and I was just trying to find a way to make a pass. I could make up time in the upper parking lot but not enough to try anything. I got a gift when Reed stalled and I got the lead. On the next lap I lost the front in the dirt and went down. After that it was all I could do to catch Reimer, who got the lead from me, and I made a pass stick with two laps to go and rode my own race to the end." -Sean Butterman
Pascarella was the man to beat going into the Open Pro main event, he set the fastest lap in practice, won the dash for cash, and his heat race, but the other 20 riders in the class lined up with plans of stopping him. It was Gage McAllister with the holeshot, followed '08 AMA champ Steve Drew, and then Pascarella. The top three riders all on Intents Racing Hondas, Pascarella made his way past Drew and McAllister by the half-way point. Mcallister and Drew battled for second with McAllister getting a flat tire with a couple laps to go. He held on to finish third followed by Brandon Ward 4th and Shane Narbone 5th.
"Lake Havasu was a blast. It was great to be out there racing AMA supermoto again. I had a pretty flawless day of riding and doing my thing. Gage and Steve have been on it and it's been awesome having some fast guys out doing the sport again. I can't thank the Intents Racing Team enough for getting me back out there and all the sponsors behind the team. I can't wait to get out there and do it again." - Joey Pascarella
Donnie Bales, Mike Surratt, and Steve Alkyer were on the podium in the National Amateur class.
" My race went really well, There was that big double in the dirt section that I never got to do in practice and only did it once in my timed qualifying because of traffic, I did it every lap in both my heat race and in my main and I think it was a big advantage and I don't think any of my competitors where doing it. Matt Stewart did a great job on the the track, the layout and grip were both good, I came away with the win and thats always a good day." - Donnie Bales