If you’re looking for off-road news, you came to the right place! Welcome to Weekly Dirt, the definitive place on the Internet for off-road news from around the world. This week we’ve got some hard-hitting news from around the industry, including action from the High Point national MX, the Loose Moose national Enduro. And GP MX in France. Let’s dig in!
Ryan Villopoto and Marvin Musquin Top High Point MX
We’re now four races into the 2013 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross series and it’s clear that this year’s title is Ryan Villopoto’s to lose. The Monster Energy Kawasaki rider has been impressive while racking up seven moto wins out of eight tries. In fact, at this point in his career Villopoto may be riding better than he ever has. This past weekend, RV2 was masterful on a muddy/slippery High Point course that caused problems for many. The newly crowned Supercross champ lapped half the field during his amazing first moto run and beat runner-up Ryan Dungey by a whopping 16-second margin.
Dungey, Villopoto’s nearest rival in the title chase, finally got an overall win a week ago at Muddy Creek, but arguably that was with the help of a problematic moto for Villopoto. Once again, Dungey had one of his typical outings at High Point where he posted a consistent 2-2 tally for second overall. The Red Bull KTM rider seems to be stronger in the second motos, and for some reason gets better starts in moto two!
Tyla Rattray had almost been a forgotten man until he showed up unexpectedly on the podium at High Point after going 4-4 for third. The Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki rider from South Africa admitted to feeling more at home with the conditions at Mt. Morris.
James Stewart had more bad luck at High Point. The Yoshimura Suzuki rider led the first several laps of the second moto, however, some unfortunate events forced him to retire early from both races.
In the first moto, Stewart took a rock to the eye after loosing all his tear offs, and was unable to finish the moto.
In the final lap, he came over a jump and discovered his front rotor was broken. He was forced to once again retire from the race.
“In the second moto, I got a pretty good jump and passed a bunch of people,” said Stewart. “I went to the lead but then I came up on the finish line jump, and I don’t know if I clipped something, but I went in the air and my front tire started sticking. I looked down and the rotor was broken. This weekend it’s just been one thing after the other. In the first moto on the last lap, I got hit in the eye with a rock and it knocked me dizzy actually, and I didn’t finish. It was just a bummer. But I’ve got to give it up to the Yoshimura Suzuki team, I feel like this was the first time we actually raced all year. I was able to make my way around those guys, and even though I made a few mistakes, I felt like I had a lot more in me. Now we’ll use some of this momentum and come back strong for Budds Creek.”
The KTM duo of Ken Roczen and Marvin Musquin are riding an orange wave of momentum at the moment in the 250 class and they sandwich GEICO Honda’s Eli Tomac in the series standings. A couple of years ago, who would have thought a KTM could challenge the likes of Pro Circuit and Factory Connection in this division?
The series takes this weekend off before resuming action at Budds Creek in Maryland on June 22. Stay tuned!
Charlie Mullins Takes Loose Moose Enduro Win!
Just like in the national motocross series, there’s a patterned developing in the Rekluse AMA National Enduro series, one that sees Charlie Mullins moving to the forefront of that series. After six rounds, Mullins has won five and the FMF/KTM rider’s lone loss came in Texas where he suffered mechanical problems, otherwise, he very well could be undefeated at this point.
At the Loose Moose Enduro, round six of the series in Marquette, Michigan, Mullins won all but one of the six tests and took the win by two minutes over Radiant AirGroup Racing’s Nick Fahringer.
Obermeyer Yamaha/Raines Racing Academy/Offroadviking.com’s Brad Bakken had one of his best riders of the year to claim a solid third.
For sure, the competition has been depleted at this point, with KTM’s Russell Bobbitt and FAR Husqravan’s Andrew DeLong both missing the latest round in Marquette, Michigan, due to injuries. In addition, last year’s series champ, Stu Baylor, has been out for the entire year due to injuries suffered last year.
Bobbitt crashed this past Wednesday while riding at one of his practice tracks across from his dad’s cycle shop near Atlanta. Apparently, the bike bogged and it threw Bobbitt on the ground and then the bike landed on his back, breaking six ribs and collapsing a lung. The latest word is that Russ us doing fine and it will just be a matter of weeks before he returns.
DeLong broke his hand two weeks ago while helping mark trail for a local race. Last week, DeLong got the hand operated on, which involved six screws in his hand and three in one of his knuckles. According to his father, DeLong will try to ride the West Virginia GNCC coming up this weekend.
At this weekend’s Loose Moose Enduro in Marquette, Mike Lafferty showed up on a two-stroke Husaberg, which is what he started the year on. Lafferty rode the two-stroke at opening round before switching to a 350cc four-stroke at the Sand Lapper Enduro, saying he was “looking for more torque”. Now he’s back on the two-stroke. According to “Junior”, this is his last time to switch bikes, at least this month, anyway.
Cody Webb On The Mend
Endurocross star and former US National Trials Champion Cody Webb broke his foot last Thursday while preparing for this past weekend’s EnduroCross round in Sacramento, California. It was a huge disappointment for the factory Beta rider, who has been moving ever so close to capturing his first-ever EX win.
Webb had surgery yesterday to repair the damage and Dirt Rider spoke to the him this morning to see how things went. Here’s what he had to say:
“I met the doctor on Monday and went into surgery first thing Tuesday morning,” said Webb. “The surgery went well and things came out better than expected. Originally I was told that 10 days after surgery I would to get a hard cast, but now they’re saying I’ll be getting a boot, but will still be on crutches.
“Not sure still on when I’ll be back but it will be late July. I don’t have an exact date yet however, just a rough estimate.
“I’ve been feeling alright. The emotional pain of finding out I was going to miss a few events this year was worse than the actual feeling of getting hurt. I’m just really bummed at the time but things are only getting better from here. I’ve never been hurt or away from riding for more than two weeks ever. So I’m taking this as an unplanned vacation and will be that much more motivated to get back at it.
“I had just a small mistake on my practice track the Thursday before Sacramento Endurocross. I was just going to do a few short motos and went I down awkward off a tricky log double. I landed with my foot out knowing I was out of control and when the bike came down it basically it crushed my toes into the ground. Instantly knew it was bad and had my buddies started my bike for me so I can ride back home and ice it. Apparently it’s the small weird crashes that usually are the ones that take you out.”
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Antonio Cairoli And Jeffrey Herlings Best At French MX GP
Antonio Cairoli and Jeffrey Herlings claimed big victories this weekend at the FIM World MX GP series in Ernée, France.
Cairoli used a 2-1 moto performance in the MX1 class to claim the 59th Grand Prix victory of his career. In the first race the Italian KTM rider grabbed the to start the race, but half way through the race he made a mistake while trying to change his line and Gautier Paulin overtook him. Cairoli tried his best to catch Paulin and repass for the lead, but in the end he had to settle for second behind the Kawasaki rider. In the second race, however, the current red plate holder took another holeshot and this time nothing stopped him from leading every lap of the race.
Second overall went to Paulin, who was very pleased to win the first race in front of his home crowd. In the second race Paulin had a really good start but a crash in the first turn left him down in sixth. Paulin finally crossed the finish line fourth to claim the second step of the podium.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki World’s Clement Desalle finished the day in third overall position, despite struggling on Saturday during the qualifying race. The Belgian admitted that they made some small modifications on his bike, which helped him to feel more comfortable during Sunday’s finals.
In the MX2 division, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings woke up with a lot of pain the morning of the race due to the crash he suffered Saturday during the qualifying race. Riding with pain killers to ease the pain, the Dutch rider had two good starts and won both heats, but he admitted that he struggled to find the good lines because every time he had to put the foot on the ground he suffered a lot of pain.
Rockstar Bud Racing Kawasaki’s Dylan Ferrandis was second overall in his home Grand Prix. In the first race, Ferrandis started third behind Herlings and Butrón, but quickly passed the Spanish rider and he gave his best to follow Herlings. At some point in the race Ferrandis was really close to catching the Dutch rider, but in the end he had to settle for second. In the second race Ferrandis started second behind Nicholls and made the crowd go crazy when he took the lead after four laps. Ferrandis made a mistake, however, and he dropped down to third, but he was able to overtake Nicholls again by the end of the heat and he crossed the finish line second.
Third overall position went to another French rider, Monster Energy Yamaha’s Christophe Charlier. Charlier had a difficult first race after he started down the thirteenth position, but he managed to cross the finish line ninth. In the second race the he had a better start and after a tough exchange with Ferrandis and Tonkov, he was able to move up to third in the last stages of the race. Charlier was very satisfied with his result today, as it is his maiden podium of the season.
MX1 Race 1 top ten: 1. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 39:21.019; 2. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:01.453; 3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), +0:23.523; 4. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:43.389; 5. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:49.635; 6. David Philippaerts (ITA, Honda), +0:50.808; 7. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:53.198; 8. Maximilian Nagl (GER, Honda), +0:55.094; 9. Davide Guarneri (ITA, KTM), +1:10.101; 10. Rui Goncalves (POR, KTM), +1:12.061;
MX1 Race 2 top ten: 1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 39:28.802; 2. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), +0:10.539; 3. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:11.974; 4. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:21.491; 5. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:26.433; 6. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:32.766; 7. Xavier Boog (FRA, KTM), +0:44.837; 8. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Suzuki), +0:53.614; 9. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +1:03.414; 10. Davide Guarneri (ITA, KTM), +1:21.781;
MX1 Overall top ten: 1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 47 points; 2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 43 p.; 3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), 42 p.; 4. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 34 p.; 5. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, Kawasaki), 33 p.; 6. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), 32 p.; 7. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Suzuki), 23 p.; 8. Davide Guarneri (ITA, KTM), 23 p.; 9. Xavier Boog (FRA, KTM), 21 p.; 10. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), 21 p.;
MX1 Championship top ten: 1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 377 points; 2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 321 p.; 3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), 309 p.; 4. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), 277 p.; 5. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Suzuki), 243 p.; 6. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 239 p.; 7. Maximilian Nagl (GER, Honda), 190 p.; 8. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, Kawasaki), 171 p.; 9. Rui Goncalves (POR, KTM), 168 p.; 10. David Philippaerts (ITA, Honda), 145 p.;
MX1 Manufacturers: 1. KTM, 382 points; 2. Kawasaki, 323 p.; 3. Suzuki, 321 p.; 4. Honda, 252 p.; 5. Yamaha, 133 p.; 6. TM, 120 p.;
MX2 Race 1 top ten: 1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 39:45.493; 2. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:02.937; 3. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), +0:07.723; 4. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), +0:15.739; 5. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +0:22.737; 6. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +0:26.455; 7. Max Anstie (GBR, Suzuki), +0:38.353; 8. Alexander Tonkov (RUS, Honda), +0:43.173; 9. Christophe Charlier (FRA, Yamaha), +0:48.472; 10. Petar Petrov (BUL, Yamaha), +0:50.642;
MX2 Race 2 top ten: 1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 39:59.717; 2. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:05.696; 3. Christophe Charlier (FRA, Yamaha), +0:07.504; 4. Alexander Tonkov (RUS, Honda), +0:11.672; 5. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +0:17.524; 6. Dean Ferris (AUS, Yamaha), +0:20.958; 7. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Kawasaki), +0:21.805; 8. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +0:31.110; 9. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), +0:35.715; 10. Jason Clermont (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:39.720;
MX2 Overall top ten: 1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 50 points; 2. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), 44 p.; 3. Christophe Charlier (FRA, Yamaha), 32 p.; 4. Alexander Tonkov (RUS, Honda), 31 p.; 5. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), 31 p.; 6. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), 30 p.; 7. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), 29 p.; 8. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), 23 p.; 9. Petar Petrov (BUL, Yamaha), 21 p.; 10. Max Anstie (GBR, Suzuki), 21 p.;
MX2 Championship top ten: 1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 397 points; 2. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), 287 p.; 3. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), 247 p.; 4. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), 237 p.; 5. Christophe Charlier (FRA, Yamaha), 230 p.; 6. Dean Ferris (AUS, Yamaha), 197 p.; 7. Max Anstie (GBR, Suzuki), 193 p.; 8. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), 181 p.; 9. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Kawasaki), 162 p.; 10. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), 149 p.;
MX2 Manufacturers: 1. KTM, 400 points; 2. Yamaha, 279 p.; 3. Kawasaki, 231 p.; 4. Suzuki, 215 p.; 5. Honda, 163 p.; 6. TM, 37 p.; 7. Husqvarna, 1 p.; –Shan Moore
That’s all for this week, be sure to check in next week for more news from the off-road world.