Ryan Dungey took another victory and his 26th consecutive podium finish at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta on Saturday night after a last-lap pass on his Red Bull KTM teammate Marvin Musquin.
Though he hadn’t taken the Holeshot, Musquin had led the entire race since, and was hoping to get his first ever 450SX Main win. However, on the final lap Musquin bobbled as the pair lapped James Stewart and then ran off course, handing Dungey the win. Chad Reed rounded out the podium in third.
At the start of the night, Dungey almost didn’t make it out of his heat race but, coincidentally, it was a mistake by James Stewart in his return that took “Bubba” and Trey Canard down, promoting Dungey into a transfer spot while Stewart had to go on to the semis.
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The winner of that heat race had been Justin Brayton, who also took the holeshot in the 450SX Main. However, he had lost the lead by the end of the first lap and was not a podium contender for most of the night. The fans were then treated to an incredible show with Musquin holding off Dungey by never much more than a second for the first 19 laps, until the final lap when the race-deciding moment occurred.
Meanwhile, in the 250SX East class, Martin Davalos will be sporting the red plate next weekend in Daytona after he took the Main Event win in the opening round of the 250 East season.
Davalos had won the first 250SX Heat race of the night, while Malcolm Stewart had won the other. However, when it came time to the Main it was Shane McElrath who took the Holeshot, but he fell before the end of the first lap. McElrath fell again later on in the race then, as the leaders passed the yellow flags, Stewart collected McElrath’s downed bike and lost a lot of time to Davalos. However, Stewart was able to get back up and salvage a second place finish behind Davalos and ahead of Aaron Plessinger in third.
But perhaps one of the greatest highlights of the night came during the NASCAR Holeshot Challenge, where four NASCAR drivers competed in a short one-off race to see who would make it to the holeshot line first. Clint Bowyer won… and then plowed into the barriers at the end of the track. Fortunately Bowyer was OK.