MARTINEZ TOPS ROUND 4 OF AMA NATIONAL HARE & HOUND CHAMPIONSHIP, ROBERT RETURNS TO RACING
Round 4 – AMA National Hare & Hound – April 30, 2017
LUCERNE VALLEY, Calif. – FMF KTM Factory Racing Team’s Kacy Martinez extended her points lead on Sunday with her third victory of the season at Round 4 of the AMA National Hare & Hound Series in Lucerne, California. Taylor Robert returned to racing after 12 weeks off from injury and he finished 7th overall after receiving a two-position penalty for getting off-course.
The Lucerne Valley course presented three loops, the first consisting of 40-miles of mildly-technical terrain, followed by 40-miles of slightly more technical sections on loop two and the third and final loop consisted of 20-miles of very technical terrain, making it the most challenging for the riders. With dry and dusty conditions, it was tough to see passing opportunities at times.
Martinez didn’t get the best jump off the line and she got sucked into the dust of the group off the bomb. Martinez was able to climb her way into 2nd place on the first loop, where she even passed for the lead before swapping back to the 2nd place position once again.
On loop two, Martinez vaulted herself back into the lead and from there she never looked back. By the end of loop two Martinez had a two-minute lead on the 2nd place rider in the Women’s class and from there she really made her push to finish 17 minutes ahead after three hours and 20 minutes of racing.
Martinez:“Today started off a bit slow with a bad start and dusty conditions but I picked it up on the second loop where I felt more comfortable on the track with a slower pace and technical sections. I also really enjoyed the third loop with where it was very hard and technical and I excelled at it. My second and third loop definitely made up for the first loop and couldn’t be happier with my day with the finish with a big lead and the overall.
In his first race back in 12 weeks, Robert jumped off the line aboard his KTM 450 XC-F to capture the holeshot on the bomb. Robert dropped back to 5th briefly before pushing his way back up to 3rd by the end of the first loop.
Robert maintained his 3rd place position throughout the entire second loop but he ran into some issues on the third loop that dropped him back a few positions. Robert fell four times on the final loop, which caused him to drop back to 5th and then he later received a penalty for being too far off the course at the beginning of the race and he was docked two positions to ultimately finish 7th overall for the day.
Robert:“I got the holeshot on the bomb today, which felt pretty awesome since the last Hare & Hound I did I was dead last off the start. I found out pretty quickly that my speed wasn’t where it needed to be though. I dropped back to 4th and then worked my way back up to 2nd. After that I started making too many mistakes and hit the ground a few times and dropped back again.”
FMF KTM Factory Racing Team’s Ivan Ramirez was not able to compete in Round 4 due to ongoing health issues.
Ramirez: “It’s been about seven months since I’ve felt healthy and like myself. I was aiming to race Dakar but was unable to compete due to my health issues and haven’t raced since. I’m finally happy to have some answers after months of medical tests! I’m diagnosed with Lyme disease, Epstein Bar and a few other bacteria related diseases. I’m working on getting treated right now and I can’t wait to get back to the races!”