News 16 Aug 2018

Villopoto confirmed for complete S-X Open championship

American returns to supercross for Sydney and Auckland appearances.

Image: Supplied.

Four-time AMA Supercross champion Ryan Villopoto will contest the complete 2018 Monster Energy S-X Open International Supercross FIM Oceania Championship, including a return to Sydney’s AUS-X Open.

Villopoto returns to Australia for the first time since his 2016 appearance, adding Auckland’s second round of the series in New Zealand this time around.

“When I heard about the new Triple Crown format I was stoked,” Villopoto said. “For me, I think three rounds of 10 laps will work to my advantage, the fans get to see us three times on the track and they get three gate drops, which I think is a huge deal.

“My strategy is to get a good start, get myself out of the gate fast and up the front like I did on the second night in Sydney last time and I think I’ll be able to stay there and get on that top step of the box.

“It was my first time down under in 2016, but this time heading to Sydney I’m more prepared, it’s going to be fun to get back to Qudos Bank Arena. The fans and the atmosphere is like no other event in the world and I can’t wait to be a part of it this November 10.”

Villopoto is set to line-up behind the gates in both Sydney, as well as Auckland on 24 November, which will see the American as a contender for the inaugural S-X Open International Supercross FIM Oceania Championship, with hopes of taking down the likes of Australia’s Chad Reed and countryman Justin Brayton for the title.

“When the opportunity came up to race at both Auckland and Sydney, against all top guys on some sick racing tracks, I couldn’t wait to line up behind the gate again and compete for the all-new S-X Open International Supercross Championship,” Villopoto said. “I’m going to have to take some drastic measures to get up on the top step of the box, but I’d love to win the championship and make an awesome comeback!”

Event co-founder Adam Bailey is calling out all sports fans to come and be a part of motorsport history in November, with the biggest action sports event to ever hit Sydney in 2018.

“Securing [RV] into the rider line-up for Sydney means we’re in for an epic event as there’s no one else on the planet who knows how to battle in supercross racing as well as that man,” Bailey said. “We know how much Aussie’s love their motorsport and there’s no more extreme version of motorsport than supercross in a world-class stadium, with the world’s best riders laying it all on the line.

“We’re easily bringing out the most stacked international rider line-up ever to the AUS-X Open in the event’s four-year history and this will be the fans greatest opportunity to see the world’s best riders battling hard against the best Australian’s in what will be an incredible event to remember,” exclaimed event co-founder Ryan Sanderson.

Coinciding with today’s news is the announcement that Yamaha Motor Australia (YMA) have come on-board as a major sponsor of the Monster Energy AUS-X Open Sydney in 2018.

“Yamaha Motor Australia is pumped to be a major supporter of the biggest dirt bike event in Australia – the AUS-X Open,” Matthew Ferry, national sales and marketing manager of Yamaha Motor Australia said.

“Sydney’s celebration of supercross is the perfect stage to showcase the talent of our top riders, as well as our wide range of victorYZone products. World-class racers Justin Barcia and Ryan Villopoto will join Aussie stars including recently-crowned MX champions Dean Ferris and Wilson Todd to raise the adrenalin levels for bLU cRU fans.

“And to further capitalise on this year’s event, YMA is holding its annual dealer conference at the AUS-X Open. This will bring the people who sell Yamahas closer to the people who race them in order to share the passion for the tuning fork brand.”

Villopoto will go head-to-head with Australia’s greatest-ever export Reed, Brayton, Justin Barcia and current AMA 450SX champion Jason Anderson for the AUS-X Open crown. Reed and Brayton are both confirmed for the New Zealand event as well.