“It was a brutal track; the conditions and the roots played a big part in your confidence. You really wanted to push, but you couldn’t. We had to be on our toes because the roots would come out of nowhere and bite you. It was tough seeing Clay go down like that, I hope he heals well. Overall, I feel I adapted pretty well throughout the day. The second-half [of the event], I started picking it up. But then the last three tests I made a few mistakes. And the last one, I really didn’t ride like myself out there. I don’t know what I was doing, just riding like a squid, but it was a good weekend. Another second place. I want to win really bad, but Taylor’s really good at this, so we’ll keep working.”
“The terrain was something different for sure. It seemed like it would hold [traction] pretty well, but when you were coming into corners, the [surface] would just sink and suck you in. I kept learning that through the first half of the tests, crashing too much. But coming into the second half of the day I came into those a lot better. It was such a bummer that my teammate got injured like he did, but after that I actually started running in the top-five and six through the rest of the day, which was pretty good. I’m really not taking a break coming up. Getting hurt [at Mesquite WORCS] and being off the bike the last couple weeks was a bummer so I just want to stay on the bike as much as I can, keep training and riding and come into the second half of the year swinging.”

The conditions were very tricky, and the tree roots unforgiving. As Clay began his seventh test, he clipped a root at high speed, which sent his back-end into the air. There was no chance of saving the crash and Clay hit the ground in vicious fashion. The result of the crash was a broken femur, but through the assistance of family, team members, the promoters and medical staff, Hengeveld was rushed to hospital within the hour. In an incredible display of modern medicine and the resiliency of the human body, Clay was walking with assistance the following day, just hours after operation. His recovery is well under way and his spirit is strong as ever.

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