Robby Bell Wins WORCS Season Opener
Taft, California – Robby Bell picked up where he left off the 2014 WORCS season with the win at Honolulu Hills MX for the 2015 Rocky Mountain MC World Off-Road Championship Series presented by Maxxis and Dirt Bike. KTM’s Gary Sutherlin finished in the second spot followed by Hinson / Honda’s Justin Jones.
Unlike the dry and dusty track racers faced last year at the Honolulu Hills WORCS season opener, racers faced a new challenge this year with dense fog blanketing the track all weekend, which virtually eliminated any dust, but instead the fog limited the visibility. The biggest issues racers faced was dealing with the moisture getting inside their goggles and causing them to fog up, so many racers were forced to ditch their goggles during the Pro main event.
Precision Concept’s Robby Bell launched off the concrete starting gate and came into the first turn with the lead, but he was carrying too much speed, which carried him wide, and allowed by Gary Sutherlin and Justin Jones to take over the front spots. Bell was on a mission though and regained the lead before the end of the first lap.
“Well I think that was probably the best start of my life, and that’s probably why I blew the first turn because I was so excited. Gary and JJ got in front of me and then Justin got a little squirrely on the pro section, so I got him there and then coming down the downhill, I couldn’t really see, but I was just riding by brail, feeling my way down and was able to have a little more speed than Gary, from there the bike just worked fantastic, I knew Gary and JJ shine in the beginning of the race, so I wanted to really push it hard and get a bit of a gap and I was able to because the bike was so good,” said Bell on his charge to the front.
Once out front, Bell stayed on the gas and recorded the fastest lap-time of the race at the halfway point as he stretched his lead out to over a minute on Sutherlin in the second spot. Bell ran a flawless race and brought home WORCS season opener win, but he knows each win will get harder as the season moves forward to the next round.
After clinching the 2014 WORCS Championship as a privateer, Gary Sutherlin picked up a Factory KTM ride for 2015, which was well deserved, but he didn’t get the start to the season that he had hoped for at Honolulu Hills finishing in the second spot. Sutherlin grabbed the Holeshot, but he dropped back to second before the end of the lap, and he wasn’t able to challenge Bell for the lead as he dealt with goggle issues due to the fog, which forced him to toss his goggles early in the race, and his eyes took a beating from the sandy track, which slowed down his charge after Bell in the lead.
Hinson / Honda’s Justin Jones wasn’t planning on racing the 2015 WORCS season opener until he received a last minute deal from Honda on Thursday. Jones wasted no time proving that he was worthy of a factory ride as he claimed the final spot on the Pro podium after settling into the third spot in lap one.
John Burr Cycle’s Justin Seeds came on strong in the final laps of the race to charge his way from eighth place up to a fourth place finish. RPM / KTM’s Eric Yorba rounded out the top five after getting passed by Seeds in the final laps of the race.
In the Pro 2 class, Michael Del Fante took the win in his Pro 2 class, but the win didn’t come easy with Steve Gibson pulling within a second of Del Fante heading into the final lap, but Del Fante held on to claim the win followed by Gibson and Dalton Shirey.
In the Pro 2 Lites class, KTM mounted Logan Chambers claimed the win after leading the race from lap one. Jeremy Newton and Mitch Anderson rounded out the top three.
The 2015 Rocky Mountain MC World Off-Road Championship Series Presented by Maxxis and Dirt Bike heads to Buffalo Bill’s Casino and Resort for round two on February 6-9th in Primm, Nevada.