Caliente, Nv / May 16th 2015: Heading the Nevada for Round 5 of the Kenda/SRT West Hare Scramble Championship, the first of two stops in the Silver State racers were treated to the hospitatlity of Caliente, NV. With the registration in the local Fire House, Spaghetti Dinner benefiting the local 6th grade classes trip to Washington DC, the local Sheriff’s department manning road crossings and the race course going back and forth along the wash paralleling the highway it was definitely a one of a kind event!
The single day of racing made for racing excitement for 10 hours straight started at 7am with the youngest racers; the Pee Wees. SRT Off-Roads Caleb Mills has been on fire lately and has just taken another win in the series extending his points lead considerably! he would lead the 10 racer field from the start to finish taking the checkered flag jut over 2 minutes ahead of 2nd overall 4-8 year old racer Austin Camden and Jax Krahenbuhl in 3rd.
The second race of the day would see the rest of the Youth Field lined up – Super Mini, Mini and Jr. Mini on the 1st Row, Girls and 65s on the 2nd row. Into the first corner Hayden Hintz and Eli Ruggiero were side by side and by the end of the first lap it was Hintz, Jon Modena, Lochlan Campbell and Collin Elliot all battling for position! Modena, Campbell and Elliot would break free of Hintz who would settle for 4th overall to continue their battle pulling to over 3 minutes ahead of the next competitors. All 3 riders would change positions but by the 3rd of seven laps in the hour and a half race Modena looked to be checking out leaving Campbell and Elliot to duke it out for 2nd. On the 6th lap Modena hit a square edge getting a flat rear tire and having to pull into the pits after receiving the white flag handing the lead over the Elliot who would push hard and take his Moose Racing YZ 85 all the way to the finish and his 1st win of the season! SixFive0 Racing’s Campbell would stay within 30 seconds of Elliot and nab his 3rd podium of the season and catching back up to within 20 seconds of Campbell, Modena would cross in 3rd.
T.O. Powersports backed Mason Matthies would take another win in the Mini 85cc class finishing 6th overall against the Super Mini’s and was again the only Mini to stay on the lead lap. Las Vegas NV’s David Wilson and Max Thurlow would round out the class podium. 707 Suspension’s Logan McChesney would get one step closer to locking up the Jr. Mini title and just in time as he will be turning 12 and jumping into the Mini class once he wraps up the #1. Pioche, NV’s Haygen Boyce would finish 2nd in Class in his first West Hare Scramble Race with 3 Bros Racing’s Eric Burdell getting 3rd Jr Mini after stalling in the first corner and having to kick it a few times to get it going.
The Micro Mini 65 Race was more exciting then it has been all year with Grant Pass, OR’s Zeke Degeyter taking every win so far. At this round he had some great competition with Hunter Ray taking the lead early on. The two would go back and forth the entire race until Hunter ran out of gas with two laps to go. Degeyter would take his 5th consecutive win aboard his Batterystuff.com KTM 65 on his way to the Micro Mini Championship. Local boy Otto Pearson would inherit 2nd Micro Mini giving him his best finish at a West Hare Scramble with Karson Boyce rounding out the podium in 3rd. Ava Silvestri would once again take the win in the girls class and would finish a full lap ahead of Kenda/Rock Oil backed Baily Rhodes. Terryn Ogden would enter in her first race ever and get through the tough national caliber course to take 3rd in the girls class.
In between bike races, youth and big bike, the ATV’s would line up for their won 1.5 hour race. Brand new to the series in 2015 the division is slowly gaining moment with a few more showing up every time. Jace Penney would take the win after a great battle with National Hare and Hound regular Aaron Cheeney. This would be Penney’s first desert race as he is mostly a moto racer but he loved doing the desert stuff! Nathan Adams would follow in 3rd overall. The 3 had a great battle going on for the first few laps and it was really exciting seeing these guys pass by at full speed! We hope to see more at the races!
For the next 2 races the course would be much longer at 14.6 miles and much more technical. It would go several miles up a technical sandwash then back around over the mountain range, down a several hundred foot rocky descent, through a grass track, 4 river crossings, and back into the finish for a 30 minute lap in Race 4: Masters 60+, All C and Sportsmen. The Masters would start off the race in front and Bob Koch would get the early lead pulling away from the field. The second row would be all CC’s (86-200, 201-250, 251 and up) and when they all started it was Tyler Doyle and Kyle Rooney into the first corner! The two racers had traveled to the races together, this being Doyles first “real” desert race being from Northern California. After the first lap Koch still held onto the lead but it was the suprise Hayden Hintz right on his tail. Hintz had raced with the Super Mini’s and was the last person off the 2nd row to get started.
Hintz would make his move on Koch during the 2nd lap and pull away from the entire field finishing a minute and fifteen seconds ahead of Doyle. They wold also go 1st and 2nd in the C 86-200 class with Rooney coming through in 3rd overall taking 1st C 201-250. Koch would run out of gas on the last lap handing the win to Masters points leader Larry Kleinschmidt. Wes Anderson Jr. and George Yates, life long friends, would finish 2nd and 3rd Masters. Livermore, CA’s Brianna Goodno would take another win in the Women C class with Boise, ID’s Ashley Childers taking her best finish of her career in 2nd followed by Emily Summers in 3rd.
The final race of the day would see 121 racers lined up to do battle on the prime course – all burned it, all bermed up and ready to race! At the drop of the green flag 21 Pros – 14 Pro, 7 FMF Pro 250 – would barrel for the first corner with Morgan Hill, CA’s Alex Dorsey getting the holeshot and taking the lead onto the sand track. A few corners later SRT Off-Road’s Cory Graffunder and Purvines Racing’s Nick Burson would get around Dorsey and start on a battle of their own. RPM/KTM’s Travis Coy would latch onto the group in hopes of getting back on the podium after his 4th place finish at Round 4. “I was right on Graffunder” explained Burson “but every time I would get close he’d be able to pull away. I just needed a good clean spt to pass but I could never get one.” Until, that is, Graffunder would pull into the pits after lap 2. “I really didn’t know if I could go 3 laps and I would much rather stop for gas then run out of gas any day.” said Graffunder allowing Burson to get by as they were only 4 seconds apart when Graffunder stopped for gas.
“Once I got into the lead I knew I had to put down a heater.” Burson exclaimed. ” I was going to stop for gas and I didn’t want him to get back by.” Meanwhile Burson’s team mate, local boy Axel Pearson, had gotten around Coy and slid into 3rd. He would stay just seconds ahead of Coy until blowing a berm and giving back the position on the last lap within 2 miles of the finish.
After 2 hours and 47 minutes of racing Burson would cross the finish line becoming the first rider this season to win 2 races. “I’m really stoked on the win and basically I’m just going to have to win as many of the faster rounds because these guys are soo fast in the trees. I’m looking forward to the Elkton, OR round but I’m definitely going to have to practice the tight stuff more.” Graffunder would hold onto 2nd overall and the points lead with 122. With Coy coming across in 3rd overall Burson now takes over 2nd in the championship with 110 points to Coy’s 105 illustrating just how fast things can change in such a tight championship! Pearson would cross in 4th overall followed by Ely, NV’s Justin Wallis.
In the FMF Pro 250 class Lincoln, CA’s Joey Fiasconaro would come out and take another win even after breaking his nose a few weeks earlier in a big crash and not officially being cleared to race. He would also take 9th overall against the rest of the Pros while Paso Robles, CA’s Mitch Anderson would score his best finish of the season finishing 2nd less then a minute ahead of Glenwood Springs, CO’s Clayton Gerstner. Gerstner has been plagued with bad luck all season and it is great to see all the hard work pay off with a podium here at Round 5!
Another racer who made the long trek out from from up North coming from Lander, WY, Taylor Stevens would take his second Overall A victory finishing 10th overall in Race 5, by far one of his best overall finishes to date! He would take the A 251-Open win as well followed by JT Baker taking 2nd Overall A and the A 201-250 victory and 14 Overall in Race 5. 707 suspension’s Max Parker would match his best finish in class taking 2nd 201-250 and rounding out the Overall A podium in 3rd.
The TBT Racing Women’s Overall played out just as it has all season, the biggest difference is the Women were in the final race of the day this Round. Garrahan Off-Road Training’s Sophia Oliveira would take the wire to wire win earning herself ANOTHER $100 on top of more points in the championship hunt. She was followed once again by Corning, CA’s Brianna Vinsonhaler who would also take the Women B victory followed by Sportsmen Cycle’s Jena Elliott rounding out the top 3 Women.
OVERALL RACE 1 PEE WEE/65NOV: 1. Caleb Mills (KTM); 2. Austin Camden (); 3. Jax Krahenbuhl (); 4. Cole Sasso (); 5. Jake Vanderpool (); 6. Chase Dowden (KTM); 6. Chase Dowden (KTM); 7. Malcolm Pearson (YAM); 8. Liam Tullis (); 9. Micah Mills (KTM); 10. Racer Fry (KTM);
OVERALL RACE 2 SUPER/MINI/JR/GIRLS/MIC: 1. Collin Elliott (YAM); 2. Lochlan Campbell (HUS); 2. Lochlan Campbell (KTM); 3. Jon Modena (KTM); 3. Jon Modena (KTM); 4. Hayden Hintz (YAM); 4. Hayden Hintz (HON); 5. Mateo Oliveira (KTM); 6. Mason Matthies (YAM); 7. Logan Mcchesney (YAM); 8. Eli Ruggiero (KAW); 9. Hagen Boyce (KTM); 10. David Wilson (HON); 11. Max Thurlow (YAM); 12. Brett Aguilera (KAW); 13. Eric Burdell (HUS); 14. Mason Vigil (HON); 15. Trenton Moon (HON); 16. Destry Kruger (); 17. Mason Rupp (HON); 18. Jordan Hougland (); 19. Andrew Wilson (KAW); 20. Zeke Degeyter (KTM);
OVERALL RACE 3 PRO ATV/ATV: 1. Jace Penney (YAM); 2. Aaron Cheeney (HON); 3. Nathan Adams (HON); 4. Gilbert Davila (HON); 5. Mark May (HON);
OVERALL RACE 4 ALL C/MASTERS/SPORTSMEN: 1. Hayden Hintz (YAM); 1. Hayden Hintz (HON); 2. Tyler Doyle (KTM); 3. Kyle Rooney (KTM); 4. Thomas Patterson (YAM); 5. Larry Kleinschmidt (YAM); 6. Spencer Hubert (KTM); 7. Ajay James (); 8. Antonio Sadorra (YAM); 8. Antonio Sadorra (KTM); 9. Jason Carter (KTM); 10. Chance Alberta (HON); 11. Bradley Betsekas (KTM); 12. Wes Anderson Jr (YAM); 13. George Yates (HON); 14. Dylan Shuey (YAM); 15. Robert Koch (YAM); 16. Pierce Hollander (YAM); 17. Koleton Jones (KTM); 18. Rich Hall (YAM); 19. Tony Lorenzo (HON); 20. Michael Mcqueen (YAM);
OVERALL RACE 5 PRO/AA/A/B: 1. Nicholas Burson (BET); 2. Cory Graffunder (KTM); 3. Travis Coy (KTM); 4. Axel Pearson (BET); 5. Justin Wallis (KTM); 6. Steven Godman (KTM); 7. Ryan Smith (YAM); 8. Alex Dorsey (KTM); 9. Joey Fiasconaro (KTM); 10. Taylor Stevens (KTM); 11. Mitch Anderson (KTM); 12. Clayton Gerstner (HON); 13. Jared Schlapia (KTM); 14. Jt Baker (KTM); 15. Steve Kirk Iii (YAM); 16. Tallon Taylor (HON); 17. Ryan Kudla (KTM); 18. Max Parker (KTM); 19. Dante Oliveira (KTM); 20. Damon Bush (KTM);