2019 Tennessee Full Gas Sprint Enduro Race Report

Josh Toth claims maiden win at I-81 Motorsports Park

Josh Toth takes a turn in the Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro series.
FMF KTM Factory Racing's Josh Toth claimed his first-ever win in the Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro series with a fast and consistent performance at I-81 Motorsports Park in Greeneville, TennesseeShan Moore

FMF KTM Factory Racing's Josh Toth edged out his teammate Kailub Russell and Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing's Thad Duvall to claim his first-ever win in the Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro series with a fast and consistent performance at I-81 Motorsports Park in Greeneville, Tennessee. In all, Toth won four of the 12 tests and topped Russell by 23 seconds after two days of tight and exciting racing.

Each Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro event is made up of two rounds per weekend, and Toth won Saturday's round by 24 seconds. He also proved he was equally fast in both the Cross test and the Enduro test by winning one of each. On Sunday, he finished second to Russell. When the combined times for the two days were calculated, Toth took the overall victory by 23 seconds, with Russell second and Duvall third.

"I was pretty consistent on Saturday and I was able to get the win for the day," Toth said. "So on Sunday I knew I had a pretty good cushion over those guys, so I just tried to ride as well as I could, but also stay off the ground and just kind of play it safe."

Kailub Russell came back from a nasty crash on Saturday to win Sunday’s event and finish second overall.
FMF KTM Factory Racing's Kailub Russell came back from a nasty crash on Saturday to win Sunday's event and finish second overall. "I was pleased with how I rode because the competition is so tight at these that you just can't give up that kind of time and still get right back in it," Russell said. "In the end, I got second overall and won day two. Overall, it could have been worse. I'm just happy to walk away with max points on day two."Shan Moore

Russell had the speed to win all weekend. However, a mistake in the second test on Saturday cost him a chance at the overall win.

"I got off to an awesome start in the first test on Saturday [and won] the thing," Russell said. "I was riding really well in the second test, but right near the end, I hit a rock wrong and just shot off the track. There was a fence right next to the track and I just got all wrapped up in it and tangled up. Luckily, I didn't go over the fence. The bike was kind of tangled in between a couple of trees and the fence. I could either give up or keep trying, so I just kept trying and plugging away. I eventually made up a bunch of time and was able to win Sunday's event and finish second overall."

Thad Duvall won two tests en route to third overall.
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing's Thad Duvall won two tests en route to third overall.Shan Moore

Duvall won two tests en route to third overall.

"On Saturday I wasn't myself," Duvall said. "I kept crashing. I think I crashed in four out of the six tests. I was very frustrated yesterday. So we kind of made some changes on the bike last night, and then it was much better day today and we won a couple tests. I just tried to clear my head last night and start over again today. I need to learn how to ride better on Saturdays."

Layne Michael races at the Tennessee round to finish fourth.
Coastal Racing Husqvarna's Layne Michael returned to racing at the Tennessee round to finish fourth.Shan Moore

After sitting out two months due to a shoulder injury, Coastal Racing Husqvarna's Layne Michael returned to racing at the Tennessee round to finish fourth.

"Technically I'm not even supposed to be riding yet," Michael admitted. "I kind of started off a little timid, obviously, just considering everything. But I felt better progressing into the day, and today I felt like I was a lot steadier, especially the Enduro test. I've only ridden five times coming back, so just to still be competitive in the Cross test feels good. [I've] just got to get some bike time under us, keep working, and get that comfort back and we'll be fine."

Evan Smith races in the Pro2 division and wins by just over a minute.
Max Motorsports/FXR/Husqvarna's Evan Smith won eight of the 12 tests in the Pro2 division and beat out Beta USA's Mike Witkowski by just over a minute to claim the class win.Shan Moore

Max Motorsports/FXR/Husqvarna's Evan Smith was fifth overall and first in the Pro2 division. Meanwhile, Babbitt's/Monster Energy/Kawasaki's Josh Strang was sixth. Strang battled with his teammate Jordan Ashburn for most of the weekend. Ashburn wound up finishing seventh.

Beta USA's Mike Witkowski won one test in the Pro2 class and was eighth overall and second in the Pro2 class. Meanwhile, Trail Jesters KTM development rider Jesse Ansley won three Pro2 tests en route to ninth overall and third in the Pro2 class. GasGas North America's Thorn Devlin rounded out the top 10 overall and was fourth overall in the Pro2 class.

Josh Strang kicks up dirt as he races in Tennessee
Babbitt's/Monster Energy/Kawasaki's Josh Strang struggled with the conditions in Tennessee. "Tough weekend; that's all I can say, really," Strang offered. "I struggled with the conditions a little bit, so we'll just brush it under the rug and go to the next one."Shan Moore

In the Women's Pro division, Husqvarna-backed Tayla Jones took a solid win over Maxxis KTM's Becca Sheets. Jones finished two minutes up on Sheets, while MEP MX KTM's Mackenzie Tricker was third, three minutes and 20 seconds behind Sheets.

2019 Tennessee Sprint Enduro Overall Results

Position Rider Brand
1 Josh Toth KTM
2 Kailub Russell KTM
3 Thad Duvall Husqvarna
4 Layne Michael Husqvarna
5 Evan Smith Husqvarna
6 Josh Strang Kawasaki
7 Jordan Ashburn Kawasaki
8 Mike Witkowski Beta
9 Jesse Ansley KTM
10 Thorn Devlin GasGas

2019 Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro Championship Point Standings

Position Rider Brand Points
1 Kailub Russell KTM 166
2 Thad Duvall Husqvarna 130
3 Josh Toth KTM 125
   Josh Strang Kawasaki 125
5 Jordan Ashburn Kawasaki 92
6 Ben Kelley KTM 63
7 Craig DeLong Husqvarna 60
8 Cory Buttrick Yamaha 50
9 Layne Michael Husqvarna 36
10 Liam Draper KTM 30