Hey, it’s Wednesday. This must be the Weekly Dirt! Welcome to your place on the Internet for the latest in off-road news. This week we have Andrew DeLong getting his first win at the Concho Enduro, RidePG open house, Jeff Ward goes truck racing, and Caselli gets back on the winning track at the Idaho H&H. So sit back and relax and enjoy the Dirt!
Caselli Hits The Comeback Trail Hard
We’re so used to seeing Kurt Caselli win by getting a good start that it’s difficult to recall the last time he didn’t get off the line near the front of the pack.
But that’s what happened to him at the Rabbit Creek 100 presented by Dirt Inc. and Dan Wiebold Ford at the Idaho Center Auto Mall, round three of the AMA Racing/FMF/GPR Hare & Hound National Championship Series. A rare poor jump off the line doomed him to spend a lot of time buried in the pack, fighting for vision just like the majority of riders in most desert races.
Caselli, of course, isn’t your average racer. He bided his time, picking off rider after rider as the dusty conditions and his own bravery permitted. And though it took a while, he worked his way into the lead before the finish of the two-loop, 105-mile race outside of Murphy, Idaho.
It marked the first win of the season for the FMF/KTM Factory Off-Road Racing Team standout, following 2010 champ Kendall Norman’s victories in the first two rounds. (Norman didn’t make the trip to Idaho.)
“I guess I was waiting for that [first win of the season]. I don’t really worry too much about that as much as being consistent,” Caselli insisted. “Obviously, there’s still a lot of racing to do [and we’ll] just keep plugging away. It’s going to be another long year.”
Eventual runner-up David Kamo got a little better start than Caselli on his Johnny Campbell Racing Honda-supplied CRF450X, though he also spent quite a bit of time working his way through the pack. His local knowledge of the area didn’t pay the dividends some might expect as he insisted, “I live here and I’m supposed to know where I’m at, but all the stuff that we raced, about 80 percent of it I’ve never ridden before!”
When Caselli passed him about a third of the way through the second loop, Kamo admitted it surprised him: “He came up behind me pretty quick and he revved it and he kind of scared me because I thought he was up front.
“It spooked me a little then I saw it was him so I was like, ‘Go for it. If you can pass, pass.’ But I was trying to pass [early leader] Skyler [Howes] at the time. He stayed behind me quite a while because I was in dust of someone else, too.
“Making good passes was what it was [about]. He got me on a two-track pretty good. I had to chop the throttle because I was scared again so I let off and he went by.”
Kamo did, however, move into the series points lead over the absent Norman, 68-60, unofficially.
Off-Road Support/Kawasaki of Simi Valley’s Jacob Argubright seemed to be one of the few who parlayed a good start into a good finish. After following Howes, Argubright slipped into the lead until he missed a turn to finish third. Still, it moved him up a slot in points to third with 57 while Caselli vaulted from seventh to fourth with 55, unofficially.
Open A winner Tuffy Pearson and Justin Morrow rounded out the top five overall.
Meanwhile, at Lake Havasu, Arizona’s always brutal round of the Rocky Mountain ATV/MC World Off-Road Championship Series saw Kawasaki’s Taylor Robert rebound from a disappointing round two DNF to chalk up his second win of the season. Round two winner Robby Bell was second, keeping him on top of the points chart, while motocrosser Brett Metcalfe tuned up for his upcoming foray into the Canadian MX scene with third. —Mark Kariya
DeLong Gets Historic Win
Andrew DeLong made history when he grabbed the win at the Concho Enduro in Blackwater, Texas, over the weekend. Not only was it his first-ever national enduro win, but it was the first national enduro win for Husky since Fred Hoess got a win back in 2003.
And while DeLong didn’t win any of the tests, he finished top-five in all six of them, which was just enough to edge four-time series champ Russell Bobbitt by six seconds for the win.
According to DeLong, it was all about momentum. “I just shifted up a lot and let my momentum carry me. I’ve been working a lot on my momentum. Plus, I ride the 310 in the enduro series and I like riding the 310 because it pulls my weight better than the 250 and I can keep my momentum going more,” he said.
Bobbitt ended the day in second on his factory Husaberg, while third went to AriGroup Racing Husaberg rider Nick Fahringer.
Jeff Ward Is Back… Again!
Jeff Ward, the first motocross rider in history to win every major AMA motocross national championship (125cc, 250cc, 500cc), and who later earned national acclaim on four wheels in both IndyCar and Off Road racing, has entered the Inaugural event of Robby Gordon OFF-ROAD’s Stadium SUPER Trucks™ April 6 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.
Ward will belt himself in one specially engineered 600-horsepower Stadium SUPER Trucks with full intent to challenge for a historic win in the series opener.
“After my motocross career I headed right for cars, and ended up driving six or seven races for Dodge and Walker Evans in the Mickey Thompson Series,” Ward said. “It will be great to be back inside a stadium setting. It’s been way too long, and I have to thank Robby (Gordon) for bringing it back. It’s like motocross with a cage and I really enjoy competing in Off-Road. “
“With the SST Series, it’s going to get us all back together with guys like Robby, Ricky Johnson and some of the guys I’ve banged bars with in the past. We’ll get out there and do it again, and we’ll get those rivalries going. It doesn’t happen too often where different athletes from different sports get together to compete and show the respect we have for one another as we do. This is going to be a lot of fun. It’ll be a great show for the fans.”
Gordon’s Stadium SUPER Trucks is modeled after the late Mickey Thompson Off-Road Championship and will take off-road racing to 12 state of the art stadiums across the country and abroad offering the champion a year-end prize of $500,000.
An elated Gordon commented on Ward committing to compete at Phoenix, and possibly other races.
“I have a lot of respect for and I’m really excited to have a star like Jeff Ward in the series,” Gordon said. “This is the perfect place for Jeff and the rest of us to go out, and put on a show that fans will be talking about for years to come – just like they’re still talking about some of the great battles in the Mickey Thompson series so long ago. And Jeff was a part of that incredible history.”
Jeff Ward’s racing accomplishments:
•7-time AMA Motocross National Champion
•56 national race wins
•2-time Summer X-Games Supermoto Gold Medal (2004, 2008)
•Runner up in Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series Championship (2009)
•Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series Rookie of the Year (2009)
•Motorcycle Hall of Fame of America Induction (2006)
•2-time AMA Supermoto Champion (2004, 2006)
•Winner of the Boomtown 500 Texas Motor Speedway (2002)
•Finished 4th in Indianapolis 500 (2000)
•Finished Runner-Up in Indianapolis 500 (1999)
•Earned first IRL Pole at Phoenix (1998)
•Finished 3rd in first Indianapolis 500 (1997)
•Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction (1999)
RidePG, WPRacing USA, Genuine Dirt Racer Products Open House
RidePG, WPRacing USA, Genuine Dirt Racer Products is having a big wingding (open house) at their new facility in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina, from Wednesday April 3rd, through Friday April 5th. Wednesday will be a “test and tune” day from 2-5 PM for WP USA customers on facility’s test track. Thursday will feature a Husaberg/KTM demo ride from 12 to 5 followed by live music and BBQ from 6-8. There will also be a Pro riding school with Kailub Russell, Chris Bach and Nick Fahringer. Friday will be more demo rides and more test and tune. For more info or to sign up for the school, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The address is 1137 River Grove Church Road, in North Wilkesboro.
Stimilon Hates Your Face!
Stimilon Hates your face – ok, settle down, let us explain… Troy Lee Designs has been a long time supporter of both the Motocross Industry and Stimilon Events. So this year TLD came to us and offered up one of their top of the line helmets to be given away at the Stimilon Motocross Challenge, the legendary event at MX 338 (The Southwick National track) in MA. But they said “We want you to do something really creative, something that will get us noticed.” We said, “Noticed huh? ok…” (evil grin)
So we came up with the “hate your face promotion.” Simply put, this is a facial hair contest and the winner will get a new Troy Lee Designs lid to cover that ugly mug. Magic? We think so. Here is how it works:
The contest is FREE to enter and any rider signed up for the Stimilon Motocross Challenge (May 24-26) is eligible. The contest starts March 25th (yesterday) and that gives everyone a solid 2 month “growing season” before the event.
The Judges are basically looking for three things:
• Outrageous – Do you invoke that WTF?!? moment. Are girls afraid to be seen with you? Do little children scream at the sight of you.
• Commitment – Did you really commit to this project or just phone it in a week before. Remember you have time – use it wisely.
• Style – we really dont care about style, we just needed a third category to sound cool
So if you want to Win a brand new Troy Lee Designs signature lid – Smash out that stache, beef up those mutten chops, show that you are thinkin by rocking the Abe Lincoln, Metro up like the Back Street Boys, stretch out that goatee, or just simply bring back the Martin Van Buren. It is FREE to enter and think how much you will save on razors and shaving cream – it is win/win.
Our apologies to your lady friend…
If you really want to have an edge on your friend who has been growing out the Grizzly Adams all winter (and therefor has a jump start on you) post a picture of yourself on the Stimilon facebook page now (claiming your involvement in this contest) and we will also take into consideration the most drastic change (before and after, if you will).
A big Thank you to John Berry and the entire team at Troy Lee Designs for believing in us and knowing that Stimilon Events are more about fun and a genuine love of riding dirt bikes! Feeling daring – post updates of your progress on Instagram with the #stimilon and @stimilon
Stimilon Disclaimer: Our HR Department would like it to be known that Stimilon does not hate any individual’s, nor groups, face and/or faces. This was just a cheap joke to get you to read our press release. We apologize to anyone who became offended by the thought of their face being hated. Face Hate is a serious matter and should not be taken lightly. Stimilon is all about love, soft music and puppies.—Shan Moore
That’s all for this week, be sure to check in next week for more news from the off-road world.