By the DR Staff
Welcome to Weekly Dirt, your place on the Internet for off-road news from around the world. This week Mark Kariya brings us a report on the final round of the H&H series. we also take a look at KTM’s new contingency program. There’s plenty to talk about, so let’s get to it.
Argubright Takes H&H Finale Despite Swarm Of Betas
The government shutdown-delayed 10th and final round of the AMA Racing/FMF/GPR Hare & Hound National Championship Series may have provided a peek at next year’s season as remarkable parity and plenty of close racing from the front of the pack to the back seemed to be its hallmark.
In the end, Off Road Support/Kawasaki of Simi Valley’s Jacob Argubright emerged from a race-long fight with three Purvines Racing Beta riders–Nick Burson, Justin Morrow and Axel Pearson–to make the final successful pass late in the race for his second win of the season. That cemented his hold on second in final points behind Kurt Caselli who’d locked up the championship for the third straight time at the previous round in Nevada back in August. Burson followed in second (his best to date) to seal third in points with Morrow third on the podium and fourth in points.
“It was almost better just to follow because you could just key off people; there was no dust so you could just keep right on them,” Argubright noted.
“Me and Jacob had a lot of fun out there, actually, Morrow said. “We were going back and forth, and I was following him for a while. We got lost a couple times and I’m like, ‘It kind of sucks to follow you!’ because I wasn’t paying attention to the ribbon.”
Pearson also spent time at the front before a crash and a cactus forced him to settle for fourth. He said, “Justin and Jacob rode really good; they just outrode us. I rode in third most of the day and I had one big crash on the last loop–I just hit a rock I didn’t see.”
Blais Racing KTM’s Skyler Howes rounded out the top five, having chased the lead pack early before slipping back into a solitary spot between Pearson and eventual sixth-place finisher Ryan Smith.
Though Caselli was not scheduled to compete in the series next year due to his rally and SCORE commitments, he was still a favorite son in the off-road scene, especially in the SoCal desert where he got his start. With the family deciding to hold a private service soon as well as a ride day at Glen Helen Raceway Park on Friday, December 6, the National Hare and Hound Association organized a Caselli tribute parade lap the day before the H&H finale outside of Lucerne Valley, California. Utilizing the same course that the Super Minis competed on earlier, the ride attracted hundreds of friends and fans who felt compelled to honor him in his home environment and on a day he would’ve loved with its rain-soaked dirt. In fact, it probably drew twice as many participants as the next day’s National did.
While Johnny Campbell Racing Honda’s David Kamo stopped by the race on his way back from spectating at the previous night’s EnduroCross finale, it was simply to watch and do a little riding in the epic conditions before he goes in for shoulder surgery. In fact, it seems like most of the JCR Honda team is mending from one thing or another after the 1000. Colton Udall had his ACL replaced earlier this week so he’s going to be out of action for a while, with Kamo scheduled to get the green light with very little downtime. On his Facebook Athlete page, Udall mused that since he’ll be recuperating for a couple months, “It’s time to learn Spanish!”
Former H&H racer Quinn Cody was another top talent spotted at Lucerne just watching and getting in a little recreational riding. He’s going to Dakar, though, which he said came as something of a surprise. When SCORE Trophy truck driver B.J. Baldwin asked a few months ago if Cody was interested in being his navigator, Cody said yes but then heard nothing more until last week when he got an e-mail confirming his entry to the most famous rally raid in the world. He said they’ll be racing one of the special rally-specific buggies fitted with a truck body loosely based on Chevy lines.
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Destry Abbott says next year will be his final season of full-time racing, and he’ll again concentrate on the GEICO AMA EnduroCross Series as well as X Games Enduro X races plus a few select events. No word yet on what he’s doing or did with the KX500 he dug out of his garage, though he says on Monday he’ll release a full video of him riding it recently. -Mark Kariya
Dirt Rider Test Rider Gary Sutherlin nominated for AMA Athlete of The Year.
Gary Sutherlin has been nominated for AMA Athlete of The Year for winning the AMA West Coast Hare Scrambles series. Gary is a single father that puts his heart and soul into his daughter and his racing. You will not find a more down to earth, blue collar racer than Gary Sutherlin. He works on his own bikes and drives himself to all of the Hare Scrambles, WORCS, and AMA EnduroCross races by himself in his trusty van. If you want to vote for Gary do it now as they close the poll on December 1st. Here is the link to go vote: http://americanmotorcyclist.com/Racing/RacerVote.aspx! -Kris Keefer
KTM Announces Contingency Program
KTM Motorsports just launched its all-new 2014 contingency program at KTMCash.com. The program is open to amateurs and pros riding KTM motorcycles in motocross, off-road and road racing events. Riders can earn KTM Cash at nearly 1,000 races nationwide by signing up for a free account at www.KTMCash.com.
For 2014, KTM has completely revamped its entire contingency program solidifying its commitment to offer one of the largest and most efficient programs in the industry. Through a unique partnership with Hookit, a digitally connected platform of tools and services created to support athletes, brands and sports, the new KTMCash.com site uses the latest technology and features to help KTM expand its support and connection between their racers, dealers and promoters.
The new website and program offers an easy-to-use, seamless online and mobile experience that benefits everyone involved with the KTM contingency program:
- Offers Promoters tools to promote their events and upload results
- Riders sign-up to claim past KTM awards, find upcoming KTM Contingency events and get alerts when they earn new KTM Cash awards
- Amateurs earn KTM Cash credit to spend at their local KTM dealer
- Pros receive KTM Cash on a Visa debit card and can spend anywhere Visa is accepted
- NO fees charged to riders, promoters or dealers to participate in the program
For a complete list of KTM contingency events and payouts or to sign-up for the program, please visit www.ktmcash.com.
Las Vegas EnduroCross Finale Lives On!
If you missed the Final Round of the EnduroCross from Las Vegas Live it still lives on Dirtrider.com and you can watch it at anytime. It was an intense final!
That’s all for this week, be sure to check in next week for more news from the off-road world.