The Dirt Bike Staff is back in the office and prepping for our next issue. We’re looking forward to Anaheim, hope the weather stays clear for the racers but are begging for more rain for us. We’re shipping our latest issue and Husaberg’s newest factory racer Mike Lafferty is our cover boy once again. Here’s a quick hit on what we’re hearing from the trenches…


Lafferty playing in the powder for the DB cameras.



Paul Whibley is Am Pro’s newest racer.

According to (one of our favorites!) current GNCC and OMA Champion Paul Whibley will be racing Yamahas in 2010. Apparently his bonus driven contract with Kawasaki met its demise when they severely cut back on their contingency program. A New Zealand website ( reported that Whib’s won a hare scrambles event on a new YZF and said that he in fact would be racing blue for 2010. We called Randy Hawkins at the Am Pro Yamaha headquarters and learned that Mr. Whib’s is definitely racing for them in 2010.

Randy said that he’ll have Paul, Thad Duval and Barry Hawk on the team and they’ll be campaigning WR450s (not the new YZF). According to Randy they don’t have enough test time on the new bike and are very happy with the WR. Their modified machine weighs only 9.8 pounds more than an off-road setup (’09) YZ and it has an electric start! Hawkins explained that their WR shares many of the ’09 YZ parts that are lighter and that the WR engine is a better starting point both for tractable power and starting.

Thad Duvall at speed.

Lastly, the team will campaign in the GNCC and OMA series, plus selected National Enduros. Randy told us that this has been the hardest year he’s ever seen for racers, manufacturers and sponsors and his goal is give all of them a reason to smile. He also mentioned that his team didn’t win an event last year and that’s going to change.

Am Pro’s bikes will be based on the WR450.

One last bit here, Jason Raines will compete in assorted events under the Am Pro umbrella and Randy is trying to lock in a deal to get Charlie Mullins a ride under his tent also.


Charlie Mullins, one of the hottest riders on the GNCC circuit lost his Suzuki ride and Randy Hawkins is trying to work on a program to get him riding blue.




Team Suzuki’s off-road effort took a hit, though for all intents and purposes they’re just happy to be racing. Team Manager Mike Webb informed us that for 2010 they would have a one-rider effort and its GNCC based. Josh Strang is the rider of record and Shane Nalley continues on as the coordinator. His former teammate Charlie Mullins is looking for a ride (Yamaha is what we hear since they still have a healthy contingency program). Team Suzuki will have no riders out west in the WORCS series as Nate Woods has left the team and signed with Husaberg for ’10. Rodney Smith will campaign the new RMX450 in high profile events while Strang will stay mounted on the FMF backed RM-Z 450.


Josh Strang returns as Team Suzuki’s only factory sponsored off-roader. 

You won’t see Team Suzuki at the WORCS series for 2010.



Former WORCS number one racer Bobby Bonds had a tough year on the Valli Motorsports Team (Injuries being a constant nag) and has decided to go solo since there is no support to be found at this time. We talked with Bobby and hears his take on his racing plans:


“Right now I don’t have much happening. A good friend bought me a bike. We got together a couple of sponsors and I am paying for everything myself. I have no idea how its gonna work out, I’m hoping if I can go out there and kill it in the first few races, some sponsors might step in an try to help. I plan on focusing on the WORCS series as normal, but it looks like I might ride a few SX race to make some money and kinda see where I’m at in a few months. I’ve been training my butt off, dropped another 20 lbs. Just above 180 now.  Gonna go out there and kick their fannies as a super privateer!”




Team Husky update: The factory racers have been signed, including the return of the Zip-Ty Racing effort on the West Coast and Glenn Kearney back East. Scot Harden also takes over as the racing chief and will be overseeing all the programs. ‘The real news is that the program is growing and we plan to really step up the level of our competitiveness,’ Harden announces as Husqvarna is looking to take back leadership in woods racing. ‘Husqvarna will be reentering the AMA National Enduro Series after a 20-year hiatus.’

Aussie export Glenn Kearney will be back in 2010, competing in AMA GNCC and AMA National Enduro events. ‘We are glad to have Glenn back and look forward to him reuniting the Husqvarna name with Enduro dominance on his TXC250,’ says Harden. ‘We have contracted Zip-Ty Racing again to compete in the 2010 WORCS, AMA National Hare & Hound, Endurocross, District 37, Big 6 and other major West Coast events,’ Harden adds. The riders are:


Ty Davis, Team Manager (also competing in select races).

Bobby Garrison, Former WORCS Champion – Garrison will compete in the WORCS series and other select West Coast off-road events on his TC450. He will also compete in AMA District 37 Big 6 Grand Prix Events.

Cory Graffunder – AMA Endurocross, World Endurocross, Hell’s Gate and other extreme events aboard a TC250 or WR300 2-Stroke.

Nick Burson, Defending USDR #1 Plate Holder/Elsinore GP Champ – Burson will race AMA National Hare & Hound, U.S. Desert Racing, D-37 Desert and Big 6 series on his Desert Master TXC450.





We hear that David Knight has signed with Farioli KTM and will compete in the World Enduros as a B-member to the effort. According to sources he has been warned to keep his boisterous antics to a minimum, or else he gets his walking papers. Also, the rumor is that he commanded a pittance of a salary in comparison to his BMW income.


Valli Motorsports was rumored to drop their off-road effort for a motocross only, Yamaha backed team. We just heard that they signed Taylor Robert and Kyle Summers and they’ll be competing in the WORCS series and assorted events on the new YZ450F. We’ll keep you posted.

Taylor Roberts is the newest Team VMS racer. 

Kyle Summers returns to the VMS team.


Suzuki is introducing their new RM-X450 later this month. We have seen Rodney Smith lurking around on test models in preparation for the magazine tests. The machine is a green sticker legal bike and comes equipped with various setups that limit power so as to pass the sound restrictions. The Suzuki boys are testing new mapping for the Fuel injection, uncorking the restricted exhaust just a bit and a throttle restrictor on the Keihin body.



Comments are closed.