Team USA ISDE Greece Blog

Team USA has finished on the podium at this year's ISDE held in Serres, Greece. The Trophy Team of Destry Abbot, Nathan Woods, Nathan Kanney, Ricky Dietrich and Kurt Caselli finished in third place behind overall winners France and runners-up Italy.

When Finland's Juha Salminen crashed out of the final motocross test (after a required restart due to a crash in the same area Salminen went down) at the ISDE in Greece today, he all but handed the American team the 3rd place spot in the Trophy Team category.

All the Americans had to do was finish their races. And finish them they did.

The motocross start was treacherous. And it's not really a surprise the one of the most talented riders in the world went down there. After all, riders had to navigate an asphalt s-turn and cross a gravel patch before finally entering the motocross track. The start wasn't motocross at all. Racers were staggered as if they were starting a MotoGP or other street bike race. At the end of a 200-yard straight they had to go through the first "turn". Did I mention that this was a right-hand first turn? Yeah, let's make it harder to hit the rear brake. And there were two sections of asphalt, not just one. Overall, I'd say it was the sketchiest first turn I've ever seen.

In the E2 class, Kawasaki's Destry Abbott and Suzuki's duo of Jimmy Jarrett and Nathan Woods were mixed up in the starting grid. Woods, since he had to start towards the rear due to him being behind from his one bad test of the week, went down hard in the first turn with another rider. He re-mounted but was way behind with a tweaked knee. Luckily for him, there was a restart since the other rider down was unconscious and needed medical assistance.

Abbott had a pretty decent start the first time. I'm sure he wasn't happy about having to restart but Juha must have been really disappointed because he was out front cleanly on the first start.

In the second start, Juha went down, and wasn't to return. I haven't found out if Juha is injured or to what extent if he is.

American riders Jarrett, Abbott and Woods made it through the second start cleanly. They were back in the pack, though, and rode sort of like Americans to their final positions. That means they were flying, in case you didn't know. Woods got around Abbott around the halfway point and the two pushed each other around a slew of riders to finish 8th and 9th respectively.

Jarrett had a much better start and, like his consistent self, rode almost perfectly to finish 6th.

These finishes put American riders in the following positions in the E2 class:

Woods into 29th overall (from 32nd after yesterday)

Jarrett in 13th (from 14th yesterday)

Abbott in 8th (from 10th yesterday)

Destry Abbott told me yesterday he really wanted to get a top ten overall finish to meet his personal goal. His awesome ride today knocked him all the way into 8th. Big high-fives to Abbott.

I just heard that Juha Salminen is not injured. He completely destroyed his throttle during his wipe-out and, while he could be angry, said it was a stupid mistake. (Ed. Note: it's a stupid first turn, not a stupid mistake).

In the E3 class Nathan Kanney, your boy from the Right Coast, had solo duty for the Trophy Team. He put in a perfectly awesome ride finishing 6th overall. His ride kept him in 8th overall in the E3 class.

Ricky Dietrich had the best overall finish of the Americans today with a second in the E1 class. Spain's Ivan Cervantes rode like the E1 Class Champion (which he is after today) and kept Dietrich about 3 seconds behind him at the end of the test. Ricky had a chance to overtake Cervantes and take the overall win at the ISDE this year, but that would mean beating the all-around talent of Cervantes on a less-than-technical motocross track by more than 40 seconds. That was a tall order and Dietrich, as he's done all week, rode his heart out to an incredible 2nd overall in E1 and second overall at the ISDE (although the girls in the press room just said there wasn't an "overall" winner or "overall" competition in the ISDE. I'm pretty sure there is. And Dietrich is in second place there, too.).

The Women's Cup was finalized today as well. And while there was no way the American Women could catch France in the overall, they put in a solid effort on the Final Motocross test today to stay in second place.

Team newcomer Mariah Forsberg rocked off the asphalt into the early lead with a nice holeshot. She was passed by France's Ludivine Alonso Puy on the first lap and would end up second. Nicole Bradford finished 5th on the day and Amanda Mastin finished in 9th.

The Women's overall mirrors their Motocross Test finishes with Forsberg finished 2nd overall in her first ISDE, Bradford in 5th and Mastin in 9th.

The French Women's team came to Greece to race and tallied up a 20-minute gap on the defending champion American Women's club. If you consider a few non-perfect tests for the Americans and France's consistency throughout the week, 20 minutes isn't much out of over seven HOURS of timed tests.

In Club Team competition, the USA rider's results are as follows:

C1
Fred Hoess, aboard a Kawasaki, finished 5th overall for the week.

Sean Sullivan, aboard a KTM, finished 30th in the C1 class.

Jim Connor put his orange bike into 32nd place.

Sean White was out there roosting around on his Yamaha all week and dropped it into 38th place overall

Anell Allen put her KTM into 52nd place and did so by passing a lot of slower guys in her tests.

The C1 class had around 60 competitors finish the event with about 20 dropping out during the week.

C2
Nolan Irwin piloted his number 666 (seriously) KTM to 16th overall in the C2 class after finishing 10th in the Moto test today.

Jeff Fredette (heard of him?) finished his 28th ISDE competition in 23rd place. Racing one of these events would have me pretty much over the whole grueling-struggle-for-a-week-of-pain-and-trails thing. But Fredette is a bad dude and he calmly trucks through these like their weekend trail rides. His Kawasaki is happy to have helped.

Justin Lipana and Chilly White (coolest name of all ISDE competitors) rounded out the top 30 with their KTM's finishing 29th and 30th respectively.

Eric Jordan nabbed 50th place in the C2 class on a KTM.

William (call him Bill) Burns finished in 66th place overall on a Gas-Gas. He was on the gas-gas, too. But the bike he rode was actually a Gas-Gas.

The C2 class had 74 competitors finish the event with around 7 riders dropping out.

C3

Rory Sullivan rocked the world of Enduro with a second overall in the C3 class. Sullivan took a huge Husaberg 550 and went out and won his Motocross test today. This absolutely proves that we Americans need bigger things to make us happy. Bigger bikes, bigger houses, bigger Big Macs.

Dennis Sweeten finished in 14th place. He dropped his KTM in there like it was hot.

Mason Harrison edged out Dennis Decker for 17th place by less than a minute on his Yamaha. Decker and his KTM will have to settle for 18th overall in the C3 class unless they can steal a minute from someone between now and when the results are final.

Lars Valin rolled into 22nd place on his Gas-Gas. Technically, everyone rolled into their places, I suppose. But Lars did it on a Gas-Gas and that's a little cooler than just rolling in on a bike like everyone else's.

Kyle Kubitschek gained enough ground winning overall tests (like he did yesterday in the motocross test) to get back up to 26th place. After day one he was in 39th place in the C3 class. Maybe you don't understand what Kubitschek did yesterday. He beat EVERYONE on the motocross test. He even beat Nathan Woods. And he beat everyone that Nathan Woods has been beating for the last five days. Good job Kubitschek.

The C3 class had 43 finishers with about 7 competitors dropping out of the competition.

That's the last post from the ISDE press room. Especially since the girls said they're closing the door in a half-hour. Apparently, their sick of being in the press room. As am I.

-Jesse Ziegler

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