The start to my 2014 season officially kicked off at the Best in the Desert Parker 250 in Parker, AZ. The race is made up an eighty-plus mile loop that competitors are required to complete three times. I’ve always enjoyed the terrain there; the Parker desert offers an entertaining mix of high-speed, flat-tracking roads, intimidating rock gardens, fast sand washes, rolling whoop sections and this year came with the added bonus that the temperature first thing in the morning would be above freezing meaning there was an above average chance that I’d be able to feel my fingers ten miles into the my ride.
Irvine, Calif. – The excitement of the 2014 Monster Energy Supercross season carried into Round 2 at Chase Field in Phoenix, Ariz., on Saturday as Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto fought to his first win of the season. With the main event win, his first in Phoenix, the reigning champion took over the championship points lead and will return to running his familiar red number plates. Jake Weimer bounced back from a rough opening round to win his heat race but an early collision with another rider in the main event saw him finish 18th.
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Dean Wilson once again established himself as one of the fastest riders in qualifying and captured his first heat race win of 2014. In the main event Wilson started within the top-10 and worked his way forward to battle for the podium, ultimately finishing fourth. Justin Hill had a strong heat race for the second consecutive week finishing third and despite a crash in the main, he finished a respectable eighth. Darryn Durham was forced to qualify from the Last Chance Qualifier and finished 14th.
IRVINE, Calif. - Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A. (KMC) has announced a continuation of its relationship with the Professional Bull Riders (PBR) Built Ford Tough Series (BFTS) as it enters the 2014 season. KMC will be in its third year as the Official Side x Side and ATV sponsor of the fast-growing sport that has captured the interests of both live and television audiences.
KMC has developed promotional tie-ins with top bull riders, including J.B. Mauney, the reigning world champion, and Shane Proctor. The company, well-known as a marketer of motorcycles and Jet Ski® personal watercraft, focuses on its four-wheel product in conjunction with PBR activities. The Teryx4™ LE side x side is highlighted at all of the stops on the tour which visits 18 cities in 15 states during the opening half of the season. The Kawasaki unit, which will attract attention from many of the 1.5 million seasonal event attendees, features a powerful V-twin engine, high performance Fox Podium shocks, best-in-class comfort and bright LED headlights. The Teryx4 LE is perfectly suited to the strength and endurance exhibited by PBR tour riders and fans alike.
The first half of the series, which gets underway January 3-5 at New York’s Madison Square Garden, will see Mauney, Proctor and scores of other bull riders trying to outmatch the toughest 1,500-pounds-plus bulls ever corralled in an urban setting. Like the riders, bulls are ranked throughout the season and the top ones have names like Bushwacker, Asteroid, and Smackdown.
There’s little in this world that can simulate the feeling of being in top gear, tucked in behind the front number plate, throttle adjusted to the maximum, asking the motor to deliver just a little bit more, but that description makes up over half of the Best In The Desert Henderson 250 experience. The forty-five mile racecourse is comprised of fast sand washes, a few faster power line roads, one mile-long whoop straight and a couple rocks just to make sure the racers are paying attention. Talladega Nights sums it up best: Henderson “…is all about speed. Hot, nasty, bad*** speed.”
Just to make the race a little more exciting, the weather was going to be sub thirties with thirty-plus mph winds. It was time to break out the wool long johns, the Fox jacket and Antifreeze gloves, layer up in an effort to not lose all feeling in the extremities, and head to the start line first thing in the morning for a borderline darkness start.
SAN DIEGO — Finalists have been determined and online voting among the top three in each category will continue until11:59 p.m. next Wednesday, Dec. 11 for the 2013 SCORE Off-Roadsman Awards. Four decades of the World’s Foremost Desert Racing Organization-SCORE International-will be celebrated Saturday, Dec. 14 at San Diego’s Town & Country Resort during the 2013 SCORE Awards Night gala.
At the Town & Country, located in the hotel circle area of central San Diego, nearly 400 SCORE racers, family, friends, crews, sponsors and media will bask in the Southern California sunshine as the SCORE Awards Night will honor the 40-year history and fame of the name which is the standard for desert racing worldwide. The event is open to fans as well and the evening will include enhanced technical theatrics and pageantry never before part of the SCORE Awards Night.
Emcees for the evening will be desert racing stars Cameron Steele and Johnny Campbell.
Irvine, Calif. – Friday marked the beginning of the end of the 2013 Winter Olympics in Gainesville, Fla., as the first motos concluded and motocross champions were crowned through Saturday. Team Green’s Garrett Marchbanks grabbed the holeshot on his new KX™85 and took the 85 (9-11) Limited championship uncontested on Friday, while Nick Gaines, Jett Reynolds, Mitchell Harrison, and Austin Forkner all took wins in their divisions.
On Saturday Forkner took home both Supermini championships and Thomas Covington won the 450 A championship. Kawasaki riders also dominated the Vet classes with John Grewe winning the Vet 35+ and Senior 40+ classes, while Matt Johnson won the Vet 30+ title.
For the 17th year in a row, a Honda crossed the finish line first in the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000. The Johnny Campbell Racing Honda team of Tim Weigand, Colton Udall, David Kamo and team newcomer Mark Samuels came into the event with a lot of question marks but finished the race with an exclamation point. The team won the overall motorcycle race, covering the 883.1-mile distance in a time of 18 hours, 29 minutes, 14.240 seconds, at an average speed of 47.768 mph.
UPDATE: As of 8:15 a.m. PST on Friday, November 15, SCORE Ops showed the 2X FMF/Bonanza Plumbing KTM and the 1X JCR Honda together at Race Mile 454. The 349X Honda was at Race Mile 411, and the 4X THR Motorsports/Monster Energy Kawasaki was at Race Mile 402.
FMF/Bonanza Plumbing KTM’s Kurt Caselli made a little history right off the starting line at the 2013 Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, the 30-year-old becoming the first rider to start the race at night, leaving Ensenada promptly at 11 p.m. to start KTM’s quest for a Baja 1000 victory.
For SCORE CEO Roger Norman, most of the hard work done for the 2013 Tecate SCORE Baja 1000. The 883.1-mile race, which promises to be a thrilling event, kicks off this evening when the motorcycle and ATV classes leave the starting line at 11 p.m. Talk has centered around the sheer brutality of this year’s course, we took the opportunity to chat with Norman about the race and the state of SCORE as its first season under his guidance enters the final countdown.
A lot of racers have chimed in on how difficult this year’s Baja 1000 course is going to be.
Well, as you know for the first two races of the year, we made the San Felipe 250 a true 250-mile race, and we made the Baja 500 over 500 miles. All the races that we’ve done were different, and we’ve had some new course, which keeps it exciting. It’s just a lot of things that I’ve wanted to do. It’s a lot of work, and it is more than what anyone could imagine. And it’s not just me. It is a lot of other people. There is no way that I could do it without the help of a lot of great people that love this sport as much as I do.
The top pro motorcycle teams joined the Trophy Truck and car teams in Ensenada today for the traditional press conference prior to the start of every Tecate Score Baja 1000. The only difference is that, this time, after finishing their various speeches and interviews, the motorcycle guys had to switch into full race mode for tonight’s scheduled 11 p.m. motorcycle and ATV class start. In light of the race schedule, attendance by the riders was sparse. Here is what they had to say.
FMF/Bonanza Plumbing KTM
Antti Kalonen, Team Manager: “I have Kurt Caselli with me today. Unfortunately the rest of the riders are on the course, getting ready for tonight’s start. We have Kurt starting today for the first part of the night section, and then Kendall Norman will get on in San Felipe for the rest of the night section. Then Mike Brown is going to get on the bike, and we’re going to have a couple more riders along the way, taking the shorter sections toward the end. It is a long race, and we have been working very hard for this one. Preparation has been going well. We learn, every race, something new. I’m excited, and I want to thank Roger (Norman) for making some necessary changes to the rules and the course and making the sport better and the racing better. I am looking forward to this one, and we hopefully we can cross the finish line on the top spot.”