<span>New Orleans, La. – The AMA Supercross Championship returned to the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans for the first time in seven years, becoming the closest race on the schedule to GEICO Powersports Honda's <span style="">Kevin Windham's</span> house in nearby Mississippi, just a couple hours away. For his home race, Windham came out decked out in <span style="">New Orleans Saints-inspired gear, from head to toe.</span>
In the main event, Windham didn't get a great start, but he began moving up through the pack methodically. He had only moved from eighth to seventh by the halfway point, but quickly he began picking off riders one by one until he sat fourth only four laps later. Over the final six laps, he gained on third place, but he couldn't quite catch third. He finished a very strong fourth in the race.
"I was just really fired up about the weekend," Windham said. "I felt good going into it, and it was good to be at the home race. With a better start, I was in the running for a podium. I felt good. It was a good weekend all around, and I had all my friends and family in the crowd, so it felt really nice."
In the Lites class, supercross rookie Blake Wharton won his heat race – his first ever – and then moved on to the main event, got a decent start, in about sixth place, and started moving forward. Just before the halfway point, Wharton passed his teammate Daniel Blair for third, but he was too far behind the two leaders to make a move. He got his first podium finish of his career.
"The heat race was good, because I got a good start, and I felt good in that," Wharton said. "In the main, my jump was a little weak off the start, but I managed a good first turn and second turn. I knew I was fairly close to the top, so I kind of rode smart. Those first two guys checked out, so I just had to get up there and do my own thing. Next time, maybe I'll get a better start and run with them."
Blair started in second place in the main event – yet another great start for the former privateer – and he ran inside the top five for most of the race, only to lose a couple spots in the final few laps and finish a strong seventh.
"That was the first time in my career that I've ever been inside the top five in a main," Blair said. "I've had good heats, but nothing like that, and it was exciting, but also a little nerve-wracking. I got a little nervous. But I think now that I've been up there, I feel like I belong more, and I know I can get good starts. Every time I've been on this bike, I've had good starts, so going into next week, I know I'll be able to get a good start, and now that I've been up there before, I think that next week, I might stay a little longer and maybe finish a little higher up."
From here, the GEICO Powersports Honda team heads to St. Louis, Missouri, for round 12 of the AMA Supercross Series, and round six of the Lites Eastern Regional Supercross Championship, on March 21 inside the Edward Jones Dome.
New Orleans Lites Main:
1. Austin Stroupe Kaw
2. Branden Jesseman Kaw
3. Blake Wharton GEICO Powersports Honda
4. Christophe Pourcel Kaw
5. Wil Hahn KTM
6. Darryn Durham Yam
7. Daniel Blair GEICO Powersports Honda
8. Broc Tickle Yam
9. Matt Goerke Suz
10. Kyle Keylon Hon
New Orleans 450cc Main:
1. James Stewart Yam
2. Chad Reed Suz
3. Broc Hepler Yam
4. Kevin Windham GEICO Powersports Honda
5. Andrew Short Hon
6. Mike Alessi Suz
7. Josh Grant Yam
8. Justin Brayton KTM
9. Ryan Villopoto Kaw
10. Matt Boni Hon