Taylor Robert proved he’s recovered from his mid-season crash by dominating the tough Mesquite MX course at round seven of the Rocky Mountain ATV MC WORCS Series.
Marking his fourth consecutive victory and his fifth in the 2018 season, Robert finished ahead of Giacomo Redondi, who retains his lead in the championship, with Zach Bell in third.
Unseasonably cool temperatures in the low 80s made for perfect racing weather at a favourite track among competitors. A clay hard pack motocross track mixes it with a desert off road section in the deep, soft sand adjacent to the Virgin River. As the race went on, the track quickly whooped out making for a technical challenge for the riders.
Robert snagged the holeshot at the start of the Pro race on his KTM and dominated, leading every lap. He enjoyed the challenge of the deep sand and ruts and was happy to be in much better shape physically.
“I really enjoy that off road section,” said Robert. “It’s just so nasty and you have to be fit to go fast because it’s no joke. You have to be really smart with your lines and that’s fun. I felt a lot better this weekend and I was a lot healthier than the last race. I haven’t touched the ground since Glen Helen, so I’m going to try to keep it that way.”
Redondi started fourth on his KTM, but quickly moved to second. Though he had nothing for Robert, he was pleased with his fifth podium of the season and his continued run at the top of the points charts with just one race left in the season. “Taylor is the man to beat, so I was happy to be much closer to him and get some good points for the championship,” said Redondi.
Zach Bell nursed mechanical problems on his Husqvarna throughout the event. Though he couldn’t make full power on the bike, he made full use of his talent, landing on the podium and keeping his championship hopes alive.
Pro class championship points after round seven:
- Giacomo Redondi 147
- Zach Bell 129
- Taylor Robert 125
- Gary Sutherlin 122
- Eric Yorba 98
Pro 2 class
Tallon LaFountaine earned his first career WORCS Pro 2 victory ahead of Clay Hengeveld and Mitch Anderson. LaFountaine, in his rookie year in the WORCS Series on a Husqvarna, rode from the back to finish second in the 450A class earlier in the day and that helped him find the productive lines on the difficult track during the Pro event.
“I got the line late for the 450A race, so I had to come from the back and nearly won it,” said LaFountaine. “I think that helped me in the Pro 2 race because I was pushing so hard. I’m new to this, and it’s tougher than I thought it would be. The reason I’m out here is to learn everything I can. The sport is really going in the right direction so this is the right time for me to be doing this.”
Hengeveld scored his second podium of the season on his Kawasaki. After suffering cramps earlier in the day, Hengeveld did his own version of Zen breathing to bring him second. “I had to focus on my breathing,” said Hengeveld. “I wanted to do well here, so I took it easy, breathed, and I’m on the podium. There were some lines I figured out in the race and they suited me really well.”
Despite fighting illness during the race, Anderson battled Hengeveld and LaFountaine before finishing third on his CST KTM. Anderson’s seventh consecutive podium combined with a DNF by Austin Serpa gave him some breathing room in the title chase. “This track is ruthless, so I’m happy to be on the podium and put some points on second,” said Anderson. “It was a really clean race and it’s nice to be able to trust the people you’re racing with. I’m not really racing for points. I’m just taking it one race at a time.”
Pro 2 class championship points after round seven:
- Mitch Anderson 147
- Clay Hengeveld 130
- Austin Serpa 122
- Tallon LaFountaine 91
- Cooper Abbott 89
Pro 2 Lights
Tyler Lynn won his first WORCS Pro 2 Lights race after not competing in the series for more than a year. Mateo Oliveira finished second, followed by Collin Elliott. Lynn started third and battled Oliveira during the final two laps to net the victory. “I came out here to have fun,” said Lynn. “I won 250 this morning, so I knew I had a chance in the Pro 2 Lights. I pushed hard when it got rough on the last lap and got the win.”
Oliveira was running his second race on a KTM 250 after moving up from a 125. The move paid off as he earned his first career WORCS podium. “I finally got on a 250 and that helped out today, putting me on a box for the first time,” said Oliveira. “The track was a lot like I run back home with the whooped out and rocky stuff, so I liked it.”
Elliott also made a switch, in his case going from a two-stroke to a four stroke KTM. Elliott was battling for the lead late in the event but crashed. He recovered to grab the final spot on the box. “I had a great time on the new KTM,” said Elliott. “I loved the way it handled in this deep sand; it was brutal out there. I was used to the 250 two-stroke, and I adapted to the four stroke really well.”
Pro 2 Lite class championship points after round seven:
- Spenser Wilton 132
- Collin Elliott 109
- Mateo Oliveira 102
- Preston Campbell 102
- Tyler Nicholson 90
The WORCS motorcycles will hold its season finale at Buffalo Bill’s Casino in Primm, NV. The race is scheduled for October 26-28.
More information: worcsracing.com
Words and picture credit: WORCS Racing