WORCS TO CACHE VALLEY MX
Concluding the summer break, the Rocky Mountain ATV/MC WORCS series picked back up its racing for rounds 7 and 8. The series trekked north to Cache Valley MX, which buttons up on the border of Idaho and Utah, for a doubleheader on a different style of off-road racing. WORCS provided a 6-mile course that wrapped around working cornfields, across hay fields, and funneling into a nicely laid out MX track. The weekend racing saw a doubleheader format in which the Pro Race would be two 90-minute races instead of their traditional 1-day 120-minute race.
As the green flag dropped on Round 7, Dante Oliveira, aboard his FMF Factory KTM, grabbed the holeshot as the rest of the field followed in hot pursuit. SLR Honda’s Cole Martinez showed his strengths against the champion, swapping positions three times throughout the race while fighting for the lead. A last-lap fight saw Oliveira make the final pass needed to claim another victory in the Pro 450 Class, thus putting him 30 points ahead of Tyler Lynn in the championship. Austin Walton riding the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna, had a rough start that put him in the back of the pack early on. At the end of the first lap, he pushed his way back into 4th place behind 3rd place Beta Racings Dare Demartile.
In the 250 Pro, Kai Aiello running his 3 Bros Husqvarna ride, grabbed the holeshot into the first turn with Jack Simpson and Mateo Oliveira behind him, heading into the corn fields. On his SLR Honda, Simpson made the pass by as he nabbed the lead with RPM Racing-backed Oliveira pushing into second. Oliveria and Simpson continued their battle at the front until the RPM/KTM racer would eventually make the pass stick halfway through. A battle would ensue for the final podium spot; Cole Zeller, on his Gainslinger Kawasaki, battled with Kilmartin Husqvaran’s Aiello for most of the race; they would switch positions three times throughout, but it would be Aiello who would grab the final podium spot. The PRO-AM class saw another familiar face to the top of the podium; SLRs’ Honda Collier Martinez comes into the round with a perfect season in Pro-Am. He showed his speed again in Idaho as he got around his competition early and set sail, finishing over two minutes ahead of second place. Behind him, two new faces in the Pro-AM class: Jace Allred, who would finish second, and Noah Gordon in 3rd as neither one of them had raced a WORCS event before, and both were riding in their first Pro-Am race. Martinez didn’t waste time checking out from the field as he clicked off laps like clockwork.
On Sunday, the pros lined up again, but this time starting with a live engine start, and for some riders, it was all the difference. Aboard his Rockstar Energy/Husqvarna, Austin Walton took advantage by nailing the holeshot and wouldn’t look back. The Champion and winner of Saturday’s race saw Oliveira starting the race at the back of the pack and, not helping his poor start, saw the KTM rider lay it down on the opening lap leaving him with an uphill battle back to the podium. As the race progressed, he showed why he is the reigning champion and points leader. Oliveria mounted a late race charge seeing him slice through the pack. During the closing laps, the KTM rider took advantage of the high-speed corn fields by passing on the second-place rider Demartile; Walton made the best of his start and never looked back, taking home the checkered flag and grabbing his first Worcs win of the year. Oliveria followed closely with a hard-fought second place, and Factory Betas Dare Demartile rounded out the podium.
The Pro 250 class was exciting to watch as Oliveira grabbed a better start this time during Sunday’s program, but Thomas Dunn, on his Purvines Yamaha, nailed the start. His lead wouldn’t be long-lasting as the pack found their way around Dunn, with Oliveira and Simpson setting the pace up front. Zeller and Aiello continued battling like in the previous race, but this time, Zeller got to pop the champagne as he landed his first ever Pro podium. The Pro-Am race saw the same results as Saturday putting Martinez at the top step yet again on his SLR Honda.