By the DR Staff
Welcome to Weekly Dirt, your place on the Internet for off-road news from around the world. This week we check in on the WORCS series where Robby Bell wrapped up the title a race early. We also have news about our upcoming ISDE coverage, a look at Joe McKimmy’s experience on a club ride in Mexico, and we preview this Weekend’s Endurocross in Ontario, California. There’s plenty to talk about, so let’s get to it.
Bell Gets WORCS Crown With One Round To Go
Though he didn’t win the race, Robby Bell settled for something more important: the series championship.
Going into round eight of the Rocky Mountain ATV/MC World Off-Road Championship Series (WORCS), the Precision Concepts/Alamo Alarms Racing Kawasaki rider had a streak going–except it was one he didn’t like. The series points leader demonstrated competitive, winning speed at the previous two rounds, but mistakes/crashes and mediocre starts prevented him from finishing on top of the box.
However, the former Baja champ has good history at the Honey Lake MX facility not far from Reno but actually outside of Milford, California, and his plan was to not force the issue but let the race come to him.
“I was also conscious of the fact that I could clinch the WORCS championship on the weekend, but my main focus as I headed to the start line was on my performance,” he explained in his race report. “If my performance was good, the championship would come.”
After a decent start, he began going to work, eventually catching and passing leader Gary Sutherlin, thanks to an on-the-fly change of pit strategy.
Unfortunately for newlywed Bell, he crashed and hurt his thumb not long after and settled in to second place, which would still be good enough to clinch the championship with one round remaining.
Even cruising to the finish would not be without incident. Two laps from the end, he suffered a bee sting–cause for concern since he’s allergic.
“Thankfully I didn’t react too badly to the sting–just a little mental clouding and some wooziness, and I was able to cross the finish line and get some Benadryl down to help with the effects,” he said.
While Sutherlin took the win–his first of the season, though he hasn’t competed in the entire series this year–Bell’s runner-up finish (with fellow Kawasaki racer Bobby Garrison third) was enough to give him the series title for the first time. (This was also his first season to win an individual WORCS race, which he’s done three times so far.)
“In all of the drama, it hadn’t really sunk in that second place was enough to clinch the WORCS championship, and even now I don’t think it’s really hit me,” Bell shared. “I’ve been chasing the WORCS series since 2006 and it’s always been my ultimate goal to win a WORCS race and the championship, and to get both of those accomplished in the same year feels pretty great.”
The weekend seemed jam-packed with races and other events, one of them being Broc Glover’s Breathe Easy Ride-In in Del Mar, California, which kicked off the Del Mar Celebration of the Motorcycle Concours d’ Elegance. Though it was more a street-bike affair, plenty of dirt riders showed up, including some of Glover’s competitors from back in the day like David Bailey, 11-time Baja 1000 winner Johnny Campbell, fellow San Diegans Rick Johnson and Marty Tripes, and others.
In order to raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation–a cause Glover immerses himself in since his son suffers from the life-threatening lung disease–an auction and raffle were held and well received. While auctioning an autographed Bob Hannah jersey, one wag bid $200 just for Glover to put the jersey on.
He did so and then offered a higher bid, prompting auctioneer Scott Cox to encourage the crowd to outbid the six-time AMA National MX Champion by pleading, “Don’t let Broc buy!” (You have to know motocross history to understand that play on words.)
While the total amount raised was unknown at story deadline, the event succeeded in both bringing awareness of CF and raising funds to combat it.
Dirt Rider.com ISDE Coverage
The 88th running of the International Six Days Enduro is just around the corner. In fact, it starts on Monday, September 30th and runs through Saturday, October 6th, and Dirt Rider will be on location in Olbia, Sardinia, Italy for all the action. Be sure to check in every evening for daily updates on the race, plus photos and even video. Nick Fahringer will once again be running the Dirt Rider GoPro camera and supplying us with a unique view of this legendary race.
Dowd Wins Vet’s MXoN
TooFastFilms has produced a recap video of this weekend’s Vet’s Motocross of Nations that took place at the legendary Farleigh Castle MX circuit in England. Nearly 500 nostalgic vintage bikes (and their riders) took to the track with legendary names such as, Jean-Michel Bayle, John Dowd, Guy Cooper, Fred Bolley, Doug Doubach, Yves demaria, Josh Coppins, Rob Herring and Jacky Vimond. This year’s event was an exceptional race, with John Dowd winning the whole ball of wax after going 4-1-1-1-1. Former World MX1 champ Josh Coppins was second overall with a 10-2-2-3-3- tally.
You can check out the video here:
1. John Dowd
2. Josh Coppins
3. Brian Wheeler
4. Johan Boonen
5. Jean Michel Bayle
6. Phil Mercer
7. Tom Church
8. Gordan Crockard
9. Tom Vanloon
10. Andy Watkins
Renthal 2014 Rider Support Program Now Open
Renthal is now accepting rider support applicants for the 2014 racing season. For nearly 30 years, Renthal has run a successful amateur rider support program here in the United States which has seen so many of the sports elite stars come up through. Riders like James Stewart, Ricky Carmichael, Kevin Windham, Robbie Reynard, Tim Ferry, Mike Alessi, Davi Millsaps were all dominant at the big amateur nationals like Loretta Lynn’s and have all had support from Renthal at some point during their early racing years.
Support at the grassroots level is very important to us as it helps riders achieve their dream of turning pro and helps make the transition from amateur to pro more seamless. To apply for sponsorship from Renthal you must visit our dedicated sponsorship website at www.renthalsupport.com, which allows you to upload all your information and attach a resume in Word or PDF format.
Sponsorship is available for all disciplines of racing, whether you ride motocross, offroad, ATV, roadrace or something in between, we are looking for riders who can represent us in a professional manner on and off the track.
For more information check out www.renthal.com.
After a several-month summer break, the 2013 GEICO AMA EnduroCross series is returning to action this Saturday at the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario, California. Although the racers themselves have been busy with several International X Games Enduro X rounds, the seven round AMA series still has five more races to go. And so far, KTM’s Mike Brown has been dominating the competition, taking the victory in the Vegas and Sacramento rounds.
This past weekend, I was picking up some bicycle parts at Incycle Bicycles in Rancho Cucamonga and ran into Chad Sweitzer, Brownie’s mechanic at KTM. Chad mentioned that Mike is looking forward to carrying his momentum into Ontario, and that he’s excited to get this round under his belt in order to continue his streak. The duo has a lot on their plates this year between the remaining EnduroCross series and the upcoming Baja 1000, both of which Brownie will be vying for the win in. According to Chad, Mike has been training like a madman, and he’s extremely hungry to stay in front of Taddy Blazusiak in the EnduroCross points. The crew at Incycle—the shop where Brown keeps his bicycles when he’s not in California—told us that Brown has been putting in an ungodly amount of hours on his road and mountain bikes, and that Mike has had several top-level pro bicycle racers train with him and have a difficult time maintaining his intensity level. There’s no doubt that the man is motivated to stay on top.
To see if Brownie can keep the streak going, tune in this weekend to the live webcast of EnduroCross, which will be available at www.endurocross.com, and be sure to check out www.dirtrider.com for more info following the race. —Chris Denison
Dirt Rider Art Director On The Loose In Mexico
Dirt Rider is lucky in the sense of we get invited to some cool events and rides. I was the lucky one this time. I was invited by Bill Berroth of Motonation SIDI boots distributor to one of his club (Los Ancianos M.C.) rides in Mexico. The ride was their end of summer trail ride. Starting from the club grounds in Rancho Santana east of Tecate to Laguna Hansen and hitting a bunch of epic stops along the way.
The trails consisted of some typical Baja dirt roads, tight rocky trails, sand washes and one that led to an awesome lookout point Laguna Salada and the Mexicali valley below. Here is a little photo gallery provided by Mark Kariya of one of my more memorable rides in Mexico. Enjoy! —Joe McKimmy
Jolene Van Vugt On Tour With Nitro Circus
Jolene Van Vugt is not your average woman. She can flat out do things on a motorcycle that most other humans can’t! She has been traveling around the world on the Nitro Circus Tour and racing Enduro X at the X Games this year. It’s cool to see a woman take motorcycling to another level and we recently got to take a peak into the life of the beautiful Ms. Van Vugt on tour with the Nitro Circus guys. Props to “Jo” for doing what she loves and making a living doing it.
That’s all for this week, be sure to check in next week for more news from the off-road world.