JUSTIN HOEFT AND PURVINES RACING WINS 450 PRO AT HONULULU HILLS!
The Rocky Mountain ATV/MC WORCs Series wrapped up racing this past weekend at Honolulu Hills Raceway in Taft, California. Lap times hovered around the 10-minute range as riders followed the rolling hills with a pro section through a virgin piece of the race course. Justin Hoeft put an exclamation on his season by not only winning the race but also clinching the 450 Pro Championship; Jack Simpson also won in 250 Pro, with Hayden Florez taking home the win in Pro-AM.
On Saturday, Tristun Alvarez and Travis Damon had a close battle for the 125 Pro Championship, and it was quite the race to watch. Alvarez came out flying as he led the charge up the long start straight, pulling the holeshot and setting sail early in the race. Some Mechanical issues caused him to fall back throughout the race, as he needed to conserve the bike to bring it to the finish for the championship. Damon came across the line first, and as he celebrated his win, he noticed Alvarez pushing his bike towards the finish.
In a great act of sportsmanship, Damon ran back out and helped Alvarez move the bike up the finish, pushing him through the finish line and keeping him in second over Quentin Pahi. By his second-place finish, Alvarez clinched his first pro title at 16 by just one point over Damon in what I’m sure will be an excellent battle for years. Also, Brandy Richards won the Women’s Pro class aboard her KTM USA machine on Saturday.
Justin Hoeft came into the final round needing a ninth-place finish or better to lock up his first WORCS Championship and second of the year for the Purvines Racing Team. Zach Bell and Tyler Lynn’s PC Kawasaki Race team teammates led early as they separated from the back during the first hour of riding.
Lynn pulled off midway through the race as he had some pain in his hand and did not want to push it anymore as he was out of the championship hunt. Hoeft kept his calm as he settled into third, which was more than enough to clinch the title, but that was not enough as he put his head putting the fastest time on the track during his ninth lap at 9:02. One of the areas that he exceeded in was the pro section finding a different line allowed him to shave time off his lap every time through.
He closed a 40-second gap on Bell as he made a pass with two laps to go for the win to cap off an excellent season for the Purvines Racing Team. Dare Demartile had a rough start going down hard during the first lap, washing out the front end in a slick turn. That wasn’t the ending for Demartile as he pushed that Beta Racing bike to the limits, making passes as he moved up throughout the race, landing himself on the podium in the season finale.
In 250 Pro, Jack Simpson showcased the exact speed and presence that gave him the championship this year as he set sail early on in this one. He wanted to end the season with a bang as he will be bumping up to the premier class in 2024 for the Purvines Team. He capped the season with an over three-minute lead on Wyatt Matson, who came in second, a position better than his 3rd place debut last round at Mesquite. Thomas Dunn came from the back of the pack, passing a few different people, including his teammate Clayton Hengeveld, for the final spot on the podium as the checkered flag flew. Dunn had some of the best style over the big step-up on this track, with another rider from the Purvines tent, Trevor Stewart, the only one to throw it bigger over the iconic Honolulu Hills step-up.
Hayden Florez came into Taft only two points ahead of Mason Decunzo for the Pro-AM championship as the heated battle started early, with Decunzo coming out of the start on top and leading early on. The battle reached a tipping point in the third lap as they traded the lead a few separate times, with him keeping the lead in the outdoor section on the third lap. Once in the clear air of Decunzo, Florez took off, setting the fastest lap time in the Pro-AM class at 9:54 in just the next lap. Behind him, David Fry and Matt Canepa battled it until the last turn as they both got around Decunzo, where he finished in 4th. They fought hard with each other, spending less than 3 seconds apart as they finished with Fry in second and Canepa in third. Overall, it was a year to remember for the Purvines as they lock up two out of three championships and having consistent riders finish on the podium in three of the pro classes is an awesome way to finish this year.