ISDE Day 2, Italians Move to the Top - News - Dirt Rider Magazine

The Italians haven't given up. After several years of losing to Finland's finest enduro racers, Italy proved to be stronger than ever by moving to the top of the charts in both the World Trophy and Junior World Trophy standings on Day Two of the 80th annual Maxxis International Six Days Enduro in Povazska Bystrica, Slovakia.Italians have always been noted for their speed in dry, dusty conditions, and with Day Two's course and tests being the same as Day One's, it did get a bit dusty as well as rough all over.The Italian World Trophy team did, however, get a little bit of help in the form of a decision to exclude French World Trophy rider Raphael Andre for fighting after he went after a Junior World Trophy racer from Great Britain, apparently feeling that the young Brit purposely held him up in a test. With a World Trophy team able to count its best five scores out of its six members, that alone was not the sole reason for France to drop from first to second, but it did nothing to help French morale. Finland remained third. The U.S. World Trophy team finished the day still in 13th place despite a good day's performance by Kurt Caselli that saw him vault from 17th after Day One to eighth, unofficially.In the Junior World Trophy division, Italy retained its lead. In fact, the top four in both World and Junior World were the same at the end of the day with Sweden holding fourth in both categories. The only other change at the top came with the British swapping places with Australia for fifth in the World Trophy while the Brits lost fifth to the Aussies in the Junior ranks. The U.S. Junior team moved up to ninth.The New Jersey Ridge Riders (Brian Barnes, Wes McKnight and Luke McNeil) inched ahead in the Club standings to 23rd, while the Desert Motorcycle Club's Teddy Hahn, Brandon Johnson and John Yates took a big step forward by finishing the day 26th, unofficially, while the threesome dropped to 28th.Though Caselli and several others enjoyed good days, others did not. Caselli's performance was offset when both John Barber and Jimmy Jarrett suffered brain fade and clocked in two minutes late at the pre-finish check. Though no Americans DNFed the day, several others lost time on the trail, like J.D. Hammock who fell and hit his head. When he got going again, it was several miles before he felt back up to speed, and by then he'd lost just enough ground to reach the next check late by seven seconds.Then there was Fred Hoess, Caselli's teammate on the World Trophy squad. He didn't drop a minute at a check, but he did fall in a test—after being clobbered by a course worker who reportedly took a swing at the passing racer. "He took me off the motorcycle in the test—in the freaking test," Hoess vented. "I've never had that happen. I'm hoping he just dropped , but it seemed really strange." A few other Americans reported similar, isolated occurrences; a Swedish World Trophy rider reportedly alleged that such encounters are not uncommon in the country.Another World Trophy representative for Team USA, Jason Dahners, didn't get hit, but he did get an education. Finnish racer Marko Tarkkala, runner-up in the E3 class for the day behind David Knight of Great Britain, was on the row behind Dahners and would sometimes catch and pass him during the day."Those guys, they don't make any mistakes," Dahners observed. "They corner very well, I think. They brake, they're on the gas in the corner, and they're gone. Anywhere he can be on the gas, he's always on the gas." And Dahners must have picked up a little bit from watching, as he moved up to 26th in class, the best of the Americans in it.Days Three and Four will run on a mostly new loop, with the "A" schedule on tap again for Day Three. Total mileage will be 249 kilometers, or about 150 miles, compared to the 233 (roughly 140 miles), though initial scouting reports indicate it won't be quite as technical.Unofficial standings after Day 2World Trophy
1. Italy
2. France
3. Finland
4. Sweden
5. Great Britain
6. Australia
7. Czech Republic
8. Slovakia
9. Portugal
10. Netherlands
11. Poland
12. Belgium
13. USAJunior World Trophy
1. Italy
2. France
3. Finland
4. Sweden
5. Australia
6. Great Britain
7. Portugal
8. Slovakia
9. USAClub
1. Motoclub Lumezzane/Italy
2. Motoklub Jiretin—Pfanner/Czech Republic
3. Motoclub Azzuri/Italy
23. New Jersey Ridge Riders/USA (Brian Barnes, Wes McKnight, Luke McNeil)
26. Desert M.C./USA (Teddy Hahn, Brandon Johnson, John Yates)
28. (Scott Bright, Dylan Debel, Daniel Janus)Class E1
1. Simone Albergoni/Italy
2. Alessandro Belometti/Italy
3. Bartosz Oblucki/Poland
29. Fred Hoess/USA
31. Wally Palmer/USA
64. Luke McNeil/USAClass E2
1. Stefan Merriman/Australia
2. Petri Pohjamo/Finland
3. Alessandro Botturi/Italy
8. Kurt Caselli/USA
43. Russell Bobbitt/USA
61. Eric Ducray/USAClass E3
1. David Knight/Great Britain
2. Marko Tarkkala/Finland
3. Alessandro Zanni/Italy
26. Jason Dahners/USA
30. Aaron Kopp/USA
37. Quinn Cody/USA