Racer X Notebook: DallasTuesday, February 21, 2012 | 2:15 PM
- Regardless of where the Dallas SX is held—the old Cotton bowl, the old Texas Stadium or now in the new Cowboys Stadium, the riders expect hard-packed dirt. During the track walk most of the riders thought the dirt seemed as hard as usual, but it actually tacked up and rutted up more than usual. Compared to most other tracks, it was still pretty hard, but compared to past races in this area, it offered better traction.
- The tough season for Austin Stroupe continues. He suffered a big crash in practice, where he was ejected in the whoops and launched all the way into the corner before landing on his side. Word is Stroupe has broken his collarbone and will be out at least two weeks.
- Perhaps the most impressive ride of the whole night was Phil Nicoletti’s solid fifth in the Lites Main. We haven’t seen much of the friendly New Yorker in U.S. SX since he did well in a few fill-in rides with KTM in 2010. Now he’s top-five on the team that loves to bring privateers to the front, Eleven10Mods Honda. Look for a privateer profile on Factory Phil soon!
- The day was about as bad as it could be for Dragon Racing Fuels/AG Racing KTM. Gannon Audette cased a triple and broke his wrist, ending his SX season in practice. And Tyler “Soft J” Sjoberg crashed in the same area and suffered an undisclosed injury, although we hear he may be back before the season is over.
Matt Lemoine suffered a tough start to the 2012 season with an early crash and 19th place finish.
Photo: Simon Cudby
- Bummer for Matt Lemoine, who looked super fast on his HRT Kawasaki but crashed in the first rhythm lane in the main event. That gave him a 19th place finish. And Kyle Cunningham crashed in the same area and ended up 20th. Amazingly, Cunningham’s last-place finish still made him the highest-placing Yamaha rider, because he was the only YZF mounted rider in the main!
- Cunningham’s teammate Kyle Peters missed what would have been his SX debut with a broken collarbone suffered a few days before the race.
- Rookies in the field: Canadian kid Cole Thompson was impressive all day and night, and took ninth in the main. Austin Politelli was 13th and Justin Bogle was 14th.. You probably already know what happened to Bogle!
- Here’s something we haven’t ever seen before: Weston Peick appeared to take the final transfer spot into the main in the LCQ, edging Gavin Faith by .002 seconds. But the AMA reversed that decision based on video proof of Faith leading Peick to the base of the finishline jump. Faith raced the main, Peick did not. We’ll try to get more info from the AMA or FIM on this ruling later in the week.
Kyle Cunningham also suffered an early crash and finished 20th in Dallas.
Photo: Simon Cudby
- Faith wasn’t the only Lites West rider making the main on a 450. Nico Izzi also rode well and made the cut. Faith finished 17th and Izzi 18th in the SX main event.
- Italian Angelo Pellegrini, complete with stock graphics and a gleaming cue-ball white helmet, looked fast all day in the Lites division. He finished 17th.
- We now hear Cole Seely will do three races on Trey Canard’s vacant Muscle Milk Honda 450, and then Wil Hahn will race the next four on that bike. Seely should be on it at Atlanta.
Nico Izzi finished 18th in his 450 debut in Dallas.
Photo: Simon Cudby
- The Stewart brothers of James and Malcolm both took sixth in their main events, so neither can brag about snagging the better finish in the Stewart house this week. You probably already heard that Malcolm was slapped with a $500 fine for his aggressive pass on Justin Bogle, and Bogle was fined $500 for slapping the back of Malcolm’s helmet after they crashed.
- Darryn Durham’s runner up ride in the Lites main was a career high finish.
- Josh Hansen has logged back-to-back fifths in the SX mains for the Dodge Motorsports Hart and Huntington team.
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