Chad Reed took his third victory of the 2009 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, season at St. Louis' Edward Jones Dome - extending his points lead to 11 over rival James Stewart.
Both reigning champion Reed and former champion Stewart found themselves inside the top ten in the early stages of lap one, and were inside the top three by the end of the lap.
Reed overtook Josh Grant for the lead on lap two, but Stewart was in hot pursuit and overtook the Rockstar Suzuki rider two laps later. Stewart - who fell earlier in the evening - then began pulling away, until a big mistake on lap 14 gave Reed the lead.
Stewart held on for second while Grant clinched third.
"I just hit neutral," explained Stewart. "I made a mistake in the whoops. Sometimes that's the way it goes you know. I had a rough night with the heat race and stuff. I'm trying my hardest and that's the best I can do. I just keep training so I can give it my best each week. I'll never stop and I'll fight until the end."
"Like I say every week, you got to be in it to win it and that's what we're doing," declared Reed. "I'm having a ball out here. The track was just awesome tonight. Travis [Pastrana] designed a great track. I just love this St. Louis dirt. James started hitting his lines early on and pulled away, but I just kept my head down."
In the Eastern Regional AMA Supercross Lites class, GEICO Powersports Honda's Blake Wharton took his first-career victory, ending the stranglehold by Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki.
Wharton blasted out of the gates in the 15-lap main event to nip Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki's Austin Stroupe for the holeshot as Rockstar/Makita Suzuki's Nico Izzi followed in third.
The trio would remain at the front of the pack throughout the remainder of the main. Wharton fended off the advances of Izzi, who slipped past Stroupe on lap one, throughout the first half of the race and slowly began to pull away. A determined Stroupe reeled in Izzi on the final lap to take second.
"I'm excited," said Wharton, who turned pro last August. "I got the holeshot and just rode my own race. The track was great. My bike was great. It was just a great night. Getting the podium last week gave me the confidence I needed to ride up front. I just want to thank everyone that's supported me this season and in my career."
Points leader, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki's Christophe Pourcel suffered from a bad start that placed him in second to last place on lap 1. He would work his way through the field to bring home an impressive fifth place finish and maintain his advantage over team-mate Stroupe.
AMA Supercross Class Results, St. Louis
1. Chad Reed, Tampa, Fla., Suzuki
2. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Yamaha
3. Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Yamaha
4. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, Honda
5. Jason Lawrence, Carlsbad, Calif., Yamaha
6. Ivan Tedesco, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda
7. Mike Alessi, Victorville, Calif., Suzuki
8. Davi Millsaps, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda
9. Kevin Windham, Centreville, Miss., Honda
10. Paul Carpenter, Ithaca, N.Y., Kawasaki
AMA Supercross Class Season Standings
1. Chad Reed, Tampa, Fla., Suzuki, 271
2. James Stewart, Haines City, Fla., Yamaha, 260
3. Andrew Short, Smithville, Texas, Honda, 197
4. Josh Grant, Riverside, Calif., Yamaha, 172
5. Ryan Villopoto, Poulsbo, Wash., Kawasaki, 165
6. Ivan Tedesco, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 163
7. Mike Alessi, Apple Valley, Calif., Suzuki, 160
8. Kevin Windham, Centerville, Miss., Honda, 158
9. Davi Millsaps, Tallahassee, Fla., Honda, 152
10. Josh Hill, Murrieta, Calif., Yamaha, 108
Eastern Regional AMA Supercross Lites Class Results, St. Louis
1. Blake Wharton, Pilot Point, Texas, Honda
2. Austin Stroupe, Lincolnton, N.C., Kawasaki
3. Nico Izzi, Murrieta, Calif., Suzuki
4. Matthew Goerke, Lake Helen, Fla., Suzuki
5. Christophe Pourcel, Corona, Calif., Kawasaki
6. Matt Lemoine, Collinsville, Texas, Yamaha
7. Steven Clarke, Cairo, Ga., Suzuki
8. Daniel Blair, Modesto, Calif., Honda
9. Darryn Durham, Wildomar, Calif., Yamaha
10. Shane Sewell, Westville, Ind., Yamaha
Eastern Regional AMA Supercross Lites Class Season Standings
1. Christophe Pourcel, Corona, Calif., Kawasaki, 131
2. Austin Stroupe, Lincolnton, N.C., Kawasaki, 106
3. Nico Izzi, Murrieta, Calif., Suzuki, 102
4. Blake Wharton, Pilot Point, Texas, Honda, 91
5. Branden Jesseman, New Brighton, Pa., Kawasaki, 73
6. Matthew Goerke, Lake Helen, Fla., Suzuki, 68
7. Wil Hahn, Decatur, Texas, KTM, 68
8. Matt Lemoine, Collinsville, Texas, 66
9. Steven Clarke, Cairo, Ga., Suzuki, 65
10. Daniel Blair, Modesto, Calif., Honda, 63