Delmont, PA. (September 3, 2011) The AMA MX National Series came to the penultimate round over the holiday weekend at Steel City MX Park in Delmont, Pennsylvania. DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing/Yamaha comprised of #25 Ryan Sipes, #35 Kyle Cunningham, #387 Gareth Swanepoel, #533 Gannon Audette, rookie newcomer #210 Kyle Peters fresh off his Loretta Lynn’s championship , and #1 Jessica Patterson. All came in with hopes of showing their faces at the front of the pack.
The first moto was a steady, long battle for the team leader at the moment. Swanepoel started 10th, and after a few good passes he was fortunate enough to claim 7th. Moto two was somewhat duplication as on lap one Gareth found himself starting in 12th. Early on Swanepoel paced himself just inside the top ten until the midway point when he made a sprint forward and took over 6th. Riding out the race there his consistency paid dividends, seeing him take a 5th overall on the day.
For Cunningham moto one started out in a subpar fashion, rounding lap one in 35th the Texan spent much of the race in a frantic charge ahead. Late in the moto, Cunningham was still much into the fight and he’d finish out in 12th. Moto two got underway with Cunningham acquiring a 5th place start, now with his potential coming to existence, Cunningham held his own but suffered a few mistakes. Striving to keep his form, his pace fell off momentarily and that shifted the #35 machine back to 13th. Reluctantly, Cunningham found some reserve energy and bounced back in the closing laps to nab 11th.
Audette had a pretty quiet day, but still a very solid showing. In moto one Audette took to the track with a 26th place start and cut his position in half during the duration taking 13th. From there, Audette‘s moto two got underway with him sitting in 27th, holding his own Gannon scrapped it out with the pack for much of the race. Making good on his outing, Audette pulled himself to a commendable finish of 17th.
Next in line on the day would be the rookie Peters after a strong start to the weekend. Peters moto one showed great promise, after a 20th place start, Peters put his head down and worked on building a base as new professional. Lap by lap, the FMF backed rider stayed consistent and maintained his position in the field. This allowed him to very convincingly take a well deserved 16th. An eventful moto two saw Peters start 16th, and really trying to establish himself in the top twenty spots. Keeping pace with the more experienced competitors well into the moto, unfortunately Kyle slightly slid back to a finish of 23rd. However, he really feels he’ll build upon this outing and is eager to compete this coming weekend.
Moto one crossed over the gate, and after lap one Sipes lead the team in 3rd, however on the fifth lap he fell back and settled into 4th. Unfortunately in the closing moments, Sipes was slated farther backwards after bobbles, throwing away his great ride in the end and netted 31st. When the all important second moto set out on the now very slick track, Sipes got out to a start of 8th, but in similar fashion he struggled and came away in 23rd.
Jessica Patterson raced like the champion that she is, in both moto’s she made it happen. In moto one, JP$ rallied convincingly leading every lap to a 1st place tally. Moto two had her complete a carbon copy of the earlier race. A few laps into the race, Jessica took a sizeable lead the entire moto. Once again a 1 – 1 gave her the overall win and helped keep a shot at winning the championship entering the final two moto’s at Pala.
Moto 1 Moto 2 = Overall Finish
Gareth Swanepoel 7th 6th = 5th
Kyle Cunningham 12th 11th = 11th
Gannon Audette 13th 17th = 14th
Kyle Peters 16th 24th = 20th
Ryan Sipes 31st 23rd = 33rd
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