Is the 2001 FMF National Enduro Series over before it began? With only two of nine rounds complete the answer would be a resounding no, but then again it’s Mike Lafferty who’s a perfect two for two, winning the opener at Wickenburg, AZ and round two this weekend at Coalinga, CA. The problem for the competition is that now the series heads east, where Lafferty feels more at home aboard his KTM 250EXC. ‘It’s the first time I’ve ever won the first two races in the series so I feel like I’m off to a great start. Now we get to head east where I live and ride everyday,’ said Mike.

When asked about the conditions and competition for the race in Northern California this weekend Lafferty had this to say. ‘It rained the morning of the race and there was a lot of snow at the higher elevations which made for some tricky conditions. They put together a course with two 40-mile loops-the first loop was an 18 MPH average and the second was 24 MPH. Fred Hoess, David Lykke, Randy Hawkins and myself were the only ones to zero all points in the first two loops. After the first two loops there was an A section and AA section which was about 12 miles long, and it was almost all single track with lots of rocks and patches of snow. I dropped five minutes in the section, which was good enough to get the win. The low scores however do not do justice to how tough the third section was, it was gnarly.’

All the riders had to deal with the cold and wet conditions, trying to find the right line and keeping the goggles free of fog. The conditions at Coalinga may have favored Lafferty, but that doesn’t explain his win at the opener in dry and dusty Wickenburg. And for the next seven races the competition is going to have to figure out a way to beat Lafferty on the other side of the Mississippi, where the conditions are even more to his liking. Looks to us like an uphill battle.


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