Las Vegas, NV – Gary Sutherlin dominated the Pro Motorcycle race at The Orleans Casino and scored his second Rocky Mountain ATV MC WORCS Series presented by Maxxis and Dirt Bike victory of the season. Ty Tremaine finished second, ahead of Robby Bell, Justin Seeds and Eric Yorba.
The event was held at a unique course set up in the arena and the parking lots surrounding the casino. The outdoor sections featured a mix of hard-packed dirt and asphalt, as well as metal ramp jumps. In the arena, there was a log section, followed by a sand pit, several big tractor tire sections and a big air double jump. A huge turnout of fans and competitors attended and with temperatures in the mid-80s, weather was perfect, as was Sutherlin’s race.
Ty Tremaine snagged the holeshot on his KTM 250, but Sutherlin was a man on a mission on his Yamaha. After starting fourth, Sutherlin quickly made passes in the asphalt section and was in the lead on the first lap. From there, he put his endurocross experience to good use as he literally ran away from the field for the dominating victory.
“I know these guys sprint, and I’m usually a late charger,” explained Sutherlin. “I have been working a lot on my sprint speed and it paid off today. I got out there, made some quick passes in the pavement and kept my head down because everyone else was riding great. Once I got past Ty, I knew I had to hit my marks and put down some quick laps. The race just came to me today and it worked out really well.”
Gary Sutherlin padded his lead in the championship. While Seeds and Bell are still close in points, Sutherlin has been the picture of consistency this season, with two victories and three runner-up finishes. With the amount of talent behind him, though, Sutherlin knows he has to continue his hard work to regain that elusive #1 plate.
Tremaine hadn’t originally planned to compete in this race. He decided to enter when he was passing through Las Vegas. Also an endurocross veteran, Tremaine made easy work of the different racing surfaces. “I was doing the GNCC circuit and it wasn’t really working as well as I would have liked, so we were headed back west and Las Vegas was on the way home,” said Tremaine. “I figured I would stop and race. Being on a 250, I knew I was at a disadvantage, but I ended up doing pretty well. The course was a lot different than what I’m used to being that it was half dirt, half asphalt and half inside, half outside. You had to be good at riding logs, riding dirt and riding asphalt so it was interesting. Reading the terrain at night was also difficult. I knew Gary was going to be right there. I was looking forward to battling him, but he was riding so well.”
Robby Bell, on a Kawasaki, had a slow start. Quickly making his way through the field on the first lap, he battled with his teammate Justin Seeds for several laps before taking the last spot on the podium. He was pleased to snag his third consecutive podium and fourth overall this season. He now sits second in the title chase, just 24 points behind Sutherlin.
“I had a three or four-kick start, so I was pretty far back at the start,” said Bell. “I survived the chaos for the first lap or two, picked off some guys and picked up a podium. That was a blast; I love racing here in Vegas. This different arena-style course is cool for the series and cool for the fans. Justin and I had a pretty good battle there for a little bit. Once I got in front of him, he had an issue in the logs and that gave me a little bit of breathing room. I thought I might be able to catch Tremaine, but I just didn’t have enough speed.”
Justin Seeds had difficulties with visibility in the dimly lit parking lot sections. Once Bell passed him, he battled back and he ran a conservative pace from there to guard his third place in points. “The track was pretty dark and I wasn’t able to see what I was hitting,” said Seeds. “So I rode tight. Then Robby got past me and I made that little mistake in the endurocross section. I caught up, but I played it safe to take the fourth, not crash and move on to Sand Hollow.”
Eric Yorba, on a KTM, scored his third consecutive top five. After a difficult start, he made it up to fifth at the finish. “I just tried to make as many passes as I could,” said Yorba. “It was difficult, but I made it up to fifth. The conditions were decent and I’m happy with the top five.”
In Pro 2, Dante Oliveira padded his points lead with his second victory this season, riding a KTM. Kyle Mercer was second, also on a KTM, ahead of Dylan Wallsmith on a Kawasaki.
In Pro 2 Lights, Cooper Abbott scored his second victory of the season, on a Yamaha. Clayton Hengeveld was second on a Kawasaki, followed by Alex Morgan on a Honda.
The WORCS series heads next to Sand Hollow State Park in Hurricane, UT on April 21-23rd, which is arguably the most scenic race in the country.