From Beta – In Las Vegas, Cody Webb kicked off Round 1 of the Geico EnduroCross series by winning the Main Event over Colton Haaker and Taddy Blazusiak on a technical and challenging track. Webb comments, “This was exactly how I wanted to start off the season. My Beta USA prepped 300RR performed flawlessly all night. I had maximum confidence in the nasty rock turn that my bike would hook up perfect every lap.” Webb won the Main Event by roughly 20 seconds; a statement of his ability to win the 2014 championship. Webb goes on to say, “It’s an awesome feeling to head into round 2 of X Games in Austin with the red plate. This is a huge step in the right direction with myself and the Beta team for the rest of the 2014 season.”
Max Gerston laid down strong lap times throughout practice and the heats but unfortunately didn’t make the Main Event. Gerston reflects, “All the hype of the opening round of EnduroCross lived up to the excitement for me. My Beta 350RR was working great along with my fitness, but some bad line choices kept me from putting it into the main. Tough break but it’s only the beginning of what will be a great season.”
JCR Honda – Colton Haaker came out swinging at the opening round of the most highly anticipated season of EnduroCross ever. Colton raced his Honda CRF450R to a hard earned Heat win after winding his way thru the mass chaos of downed bikes and riders. Colton backed up his Heat win and proved he was the man to beat by posting the fastest qualifying time for gate pick. Not only did he earn 2 additional championship points for his Heat race and Hot lap wins, but followed it up with a solid second place overall for the night in the 12- lap main event.
“I am so proud of Colton. He is maturing into a Champion and Eric and I are committed to see him thru as he progresses to the top of the podium. Special thanks to Lucas oils, Rockstar Energy, Fly Racing, Motion Pro, Galfer brakes and a host of other great companies that believe in JCR-Colton and the EnduroCross series. Make sure you log on toEnduroCross.com, tune into MavTV and come out to watch a live race in 2014.” — Johnny Campbell
From Husky – The season opener for the AMA EnduroCross Championship started out on a positive note for factory Husqvarna’s Mike Brown, who topped qualifying at the Las Vegas venue aboard his FE 350. Unfortunately for the EnduroCross star, the rest of the night didn’t unfold as well after suffering a hand injury during his heat race. Brown still qualified and lined up for the main event, but didn’t make it more than a few laps before being forced to retire.
“Brownie” got out to an aggressive start in his heat race, but smashed his left pinky finger on a barrel in the first turn. The impact resulted in multiple lacerations to his finger, but Brown soldiered on through the heat race and qualified for the main. The team attempted to bandage his wounded finger for the main event, where Brown once again got out to a strong start. The Factory Husqvarna rider grabbed the holeshot and attempted to run away with the lead, but during the bar banging in the first lap, the bandage came dislodged
“For a guy like Brownie to pull off, you know it was pretty bad,” explained Husqvarna Race Team Manager Andy Jefferson. “It was an unfortunate way to start out the season, but we were proud to still have Jamie Lanza in the main event on a Husqvarna.”
PowerParts Manager by day, Jamie Lanza opted to contest the Las Vegas EnduroCross opener aboard a Husqvarna TE 300, and was thrilled to get into the main event, where he finished 11th overall.
From KTM – Red Bull KTM Factory rider Taddy Blazusiak finished on the podium at the opening round of the AMA EnduroCross Series held at Orleans Arena while his fellow KTM teammate Factory FMF/KTM rider Taylor Robert finished 5th.
Blazusiak and Robert were both placed in heat one where they rounded the first corner in the top two positions. Blazusiak went on to lead every lap of the heat and take the win. Robert rode a strong race to finish 3rd for a spot in the main event.
In the main event, Blazusiak launched off the line to a great start sitting inside the top three. He quickly moved into the lead and led the first lap. Meanwhile, Robert had a good jump off the line but went over the bars on the finish line jump of the first lap and restarted in last position. Out front Blazusiak was feeling comfortable until he made a mistake in the log section and got held up. The mistake dropped him to 4th place.
“The mistake on the first lap cost me a lot of time,” stated Blazusiak. “I got into a lot of lappers after that and wasn’t able to catch back up to the lead.”
Blazusiak was able to move back up to 2nd where he spent the majority of the race as he tried to close the gap on the lead ride. Unfortunately, on the final lap, he made a mistake in the rock corner and lost one position. He finished the race in 3rd position.
“I’m bummed to not finish first at the opening round, but I am still glad to get on the podium. It is a long series and I’m looking forward to battling for the win at the next round,” remarked Blazusiak.
Robert put in an impressive ride to finish 5th overall for the evening despite a nagging stomach injury that plagued him throughout the afternoon. “I’m really happy with my race considering I didn’t get to ride much this week and was feeling pretty terrible this morning because of my stomach problems from an off-season injury,” said Robert. “Overall, it’s good to walk away with a top five and I’m looking forward to the rest of the season.”
Factory FMF/KTM rider Kacy Martinez took a hard fought win in the Women’s Pro class. She earned the holeshot in the main event but dropped to 2nd on the first lap. She quickly caught the leader again and challenged for the win for the entire main event. On the final lap she was able to make a pass for the lead in the last corner to take the win.
“I had such a great time tonight,” remarked Martinez. “The track was really tough but I just rode calm and was able to make a pass when it counted, I’m really excited to leave here with the point lead.”