Ryan Villopoto Talks About Monster Energy Cup
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto went into the Monster Energy Cup as a skeptic and came out a believer. Going in, he was pretty vocal about how tough it would be to win the million by winning all three 10-lap mains, especially on a track that was as easy (by design) as the Monster Energy Cup track. But by the end of the night last Saturday night, Villopoto was a million dollars richer. Here’s what he had to say.
Motocross.com: Coming into the race I know you thought it was kind of a long shot because the races are so short and there are not a lot of passing opportunities out there. Now that you’ve won the million, what do you think of it?
Ryan Villopoto: It was all in the starts, and I got three great starts. Obviously, laptimewise I was good, but even with the lap times I was running, with a bad start it would have been over. The bike was awesome off the gate; the tires hooked up great. Obviously we have one of the fastest bikes out there. So, it was just really up to me leaving the gate good, and we were able to do it.
It seemed like you had a cool rhythm through the sand whoops and it was causing a lot of other people trouble…
Yeah… I was just going into it kind of whatever, and jumping whatever I could and just making sure I could stop for the turn and not get any weird kicks.
Talk a little bit about passing. You didn’t have to pass a lot during the Main Events – you did have to pass Mike Alessi – but how was the track for passing?
I think being back in the back it would have been tougher to pass. My pass on Mike, I knew that I had to do it right away. I passed him there in the same spot the heat race, I think. I just made the move quick and got away.
You’re not really known as a guy who has a lot of smooth throttle-control, and it was slick out there, so how did you manage to be so fast on a track like this?
Well, our bike is obviously really good. It turned really wherever I wanted it to. Obviously, for me, I just couldn’t explode the throttle and get out of shape. I had to concentrate on that, but that’s it. The bike is great.
Was it worth postponing your honeymoon to get a million dollars?
It is now that we won! If we wouldn’t have won, no! But we won, so we got the better end of the stick on that one!
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