Rounds 9 & 10 at Kyogle see Enduro format re-introduced
With the Yamaha Australian Off-Road Championship (AORC) now passed the halfway mark of the season, plenty of interest was fixated on the Senior classes to see who would perform in the first Enduro for the year.
2017 AORC – Round 9 – Kyogle
For Round 9, in the premier E1, E2, E3 and Transmoto EJ classes the victors would be Wil Ruprecht, Daniel Milner, Lachy Stanford and Fraser Higlett. There was plenty of excitement to see the return of the Enduro format to AORC after a two-year hiatus.
Enduro is an extended cross-country, with Sprints/Special tests inside of it. It is a time-card event whereby a number of stages are raced in a time trial against the clock.
The rider in each class with the least total elapsed time is declared winner for each of the classes. The senior riders adapted to the technical grass track extremely well. Despite the frosty morning, the temperatures soon increased to over 23 degrees celsius.
The Womens, Vets and Masters classes put on an epic display around the technical Kyogle tracks. These three classes joined the seniors on track for the Enduro format. The three standouts for these classes were Jemma Wilson, Kirk Hutton and Derek Grundy, who all recorded wins.
The talented Junior competitors competed in their first Enduro for the AORC in 2017. There was plenty of anticipation to see which riders would come out on top in front of the cheering crowd in a sea of team colours. The Juniors began their day out from the bLU cRU loop.
Despite the technical nature of the Kyogle track, the Juniors adapted phenomenally well. Juniors that excelled and won for their respective J4, J3 and J2 classes were Joshua Brierley, Korey McMahon and Kyron Bacon.
Wil Ruprecht of the Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Team, had a phenomenal start to his weekend, delivering the Round 9 victory in devastating fashion. Ruprecht managed to complete the seven tests in an elapsed time of 59:46.196.
Finishing approximately 65 seconds behind was Jack Simpson on his KTM, in a impressive return after missing Round 7 & 8 at Renmark. Simpson’s total time was a 1:00:51.240.
Completing the podium trifecta was Brad Hardaker on his Yamaha machine, finishing just under a minute behind Simpson. His total Enduro time was a 1:01:42.568.
Wil Ruprecht (Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Racing Team) – 59:46.196
Jack Simpson – 1:00:51.240
Brad Hardaker – 1:01:42.568
Geoff Braico – 1:03:16.087
Baylee Davies – 1:03:58.149
Andrew Janke – 1:05:33.194
Krisian Sprenger – 1:06:54.614
Mackenzie Bowser – 1:07:39.001
Dan Gordon – 1:08:25.484
Nathan Watson – 1:08:35.568
The talent stacked E2 class could not stop KTM Enduro Racing Team rider Daniel Milner from continuing his impeccable unbeaten run in the AORC, as he marched towards another victory. His accumulated Enduro time was a 57:48.113.
Milner managed to take a commanding victory, a further 89 seconds in front of his nearest challenger in Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Racing Team’s Josh Green. Green managed an accumulated overall lap time of 59:17.513.
Finishing the top three in class was Riley Graham with a time of 1:00:57.355. Graham finished a further 99 seconds behind Green.
E2 Provisional Results
Daniel Milner (KTM Enduro Team) – 57:48.113
Josh Green (Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Racing Team) – 59:17.513
Riley Graham – 1:00:57.355
Stefan Granquist – 1:01:42.625
Andrew Wilksch (DSR Motul Pirelli Sherco Off-Road Team) 1:02:49.563
Kane Hall – 1:03:04.333
Kaleb Treasure – 1:03:52.685
Matt Murry – 1:04:49.469
Cameron Binstead – 1:07:10.659
Brodie Crane – 1:07:40.341
With Husqvarna Enduro Team’s Lachlan Stanford and KTM Enduro Team’s Lyndon Snodgrass tied on points before the start of the Enduro race, there was plenty of interest to see who would come out on top.
Hometown hero Lachy Stanford was exceptional on track to take a commanding victory. Stanford has plenty of experience at Kyogle and the Husky rider used that knowledge to his advantage.
His accumulated Enduro time was a 59:15.472. Snodgrass finished in second position behind Stanford, a further 88 seconds behind with his total time of 1:00:43.621. Rounding out the podium places would be KTM mounted rider Tom Mason. Mason finished with a time of 1:02:40.324
In the EJ class (19 and under) that is designed as a development ground for senior riders, it would be Fraser Higlett on his Husqvarna to take class victory. Higlett was as an absolute force to be reckoned with!
Higlett posted an impressive 1:00:49.100. Up next in second was title rival Michael Driscoll on a Yamaha. Driscoll’s time of 1:01:18.769 putting him a further 30 seconds behind. Nic Tomlinson on a Yamaha was the final podium place getter.
Tomlinson managed a 1:03:09:870, a significant gap to the other podium placers.
Transmoto EJ Provisional Results
Fraser Higlett – 1:00:49.100
Michael Driscoll – 1:01:18.769
Nic Tomlinson – 1:03:09:870
Dalton Johnson – 1:03:49.059
Harry Teed – 1:04:00.424
Wes Keeley – 1:04:04.007
Lachlan Allan – 1:04:52.606
Hayden Keeley – 1:04:56.402
Jaiden Treasure – 1:05:06.692
Kade Dorrington – 1:05:10.773
Saturday’s racing provided mixed results for the Womens class, when Yamaha mounted rider Jemma Wilson managed to take a well deserving win. The victory greatly assists Wilson in solidifying her championship lead. Her total time was a 1:07:29.878. Sophie Coldicutt finished more than four minutes behind Wilson.
Coldicutt on a Yamaha recorded a time of 1:12:12.876. Tegan Hall rose to the challenge snagging a third place finish on her KTM, a further half a minute behind.
Provisional Results Womens
Jemma Wilson – 1:07:29.878
Sophie Coldicutt – 1:12:12.876
Tegan Hall – 1:12:41.463
Emelie Karlsson – 1:17:28.958
Courtney Rubie – 1:19:23.716
Kate Norman – 3:20:19.885
Tamara Gray – 2:40:08.698
The Veterans class is packed with Australian Enduro royalty and champions, as it exclusively exists of 35-45 year-olds. Veteran King Kirk Hutton on his Yamaha picked up where he left off by taking a win.
The AORC statesman Hutton had an accumulated time of 1:03:41.610. Damian Smith can be extremely proud of his time of 1:04:05.289, a further 24 seconds behind Hutton.
Brad Wilkinson has put himself in a solid position for the remainder of the weekend with a third place finish. Wilkinson’s total time was a 1:10:01.513, close to six minutes behind Smith.
Provisional Results Vets
Kirk Hutton – 1:03:41.610
Damian Smith – 1:04:05.289
Brad Wilkinson – 1:10:01.513
Jason Pearce – 1:10:41.809
Sean Smith – 1:13:22.866
Luke Vanderdrift – 1:14:21.054
Hugh Howarth – 1:14:59.280
Russell French – 1:15:03.096
Dave Jongebloed – 1:16:56.057
Kyronne Treasure – 1:17:06.288
In the Masters class (45 years and over), the competitors provided some of the most invigorating racing in AORC. Class leader Derek Grundy of the DSR Motul Pirelli Sherco Off-Road Team took the win. It only took Grundy a total time of 1:06:45.455 to traverse the Enduro course.
In second place was Michael Widdison on his KTM Machine. Widdison finished just over four minutes behind the race winner with his time of 1:11:00.885.
The final podium place getter was Craig Treasure on his Husqvarna machine. Treasure finished only 35 seconds behind his rival with his time of 1:11:36.233.
In J4 it would once again be the phenomenal Joshua Brierley on his Husqvarna bike to win an incredible Enduro race for his class. Brierley finished with a compiled time of 25:33.656. Brierley’s pace was undeniable as he finished 26 seconds ahead of his nearest challenger.
The first test from the bLU cRU loop gave Joshua the edge as he laid down an incredibly quick time, leaving the other competitors to play catch up. Up next was Joshua’s brother Mitchell Brierley, also Husqvarna mounted.
The two brothers have enjoyed several one-two finishes this year and this race continued that trend. Mitchell’s total Enduro time amounted to a 24:08.069. The final podium placer for J4 was Corey Hammond. The KTM rider managed to finish with a total accumulated time of 24:15.837.
Provisional Results J4
Josuhua Brierley – 23:42.980
Mitchell Brierley – 24:08.069
Corey Hammond – 24:15.837
Nathan Howe – 24:44.766
Ryan Thompson – 24:47.351
Riley Nancarrow – 25:54.498
Connor Gee – 26:01.115
Brock Brady – 28:02.540
Emi Ruprecht – 28:49.620
Mitch Chapman – 30:29.698
One of the most fascinating wins was achieved by Korey McMahon in the J3 class. Mcmahon who also competes in Motocross, has had a excellent Saturday Enduro to finish with a total time of 24:27.827. Finishing a further 23 seconds behind was Ben Bertinazzi on his KTM, the result marking his best place finish for his class so far this year.
Bertinazzi fought hard to register a time of 24:50.868. Rounding up the podium positions was the very consistent Ned Chapman, on his Yamaha. Chapman adapted to the Kyogle track well to attain a podium position with his time of 25:21.476 to complete the Enduro.
Championship leader and KTM rider Jayden Rudd finished off the podium for the first time this season in seventh place.
Provisional Results J3
Korey McMahon – 24:27.827
Ben Bertinazzi – 24:50.868
Ned Chapman – 25:21.476
Matthew Pye – 25:37.671
Blake Hollis – 25:48.798
Raife Dooley – 25:54.841
Jayden Rudd – 26:03.480
Tom Teed – 27:06.638
Ben Teed – 27:25.632
Jared Watson – 28:06.998
Honda mounted Kyron Bacon was the standout rider for J2 and finished first for his class. Young Bacon is emerging as a young rising star in the Off-Road scene and the win will be very helpful in his tight championship battle with Wil Riordan.
Bacon had an accumulated Enduro time of 25:33.656. Second position belonged to Riordan who took 25:48.431 to finish the Enduro. KTM rider Riordan finished a further 15 seconds behind Bacon. To complete the podium would be brother Gus Riordan, who is also KTM mounted. His total time was a 26:38.095.
Provisional Results J2
Kyron Bacon – 25:33.656
Wil Riordan – 25:48.431
Gus Riordan – 26:38.095
Mackenzie Johnson – 27:10.367
Harrison Foster – 27:28.657
Jasper Franklin – 27:44.231
Zac Perry – 28:11.339
Cooper Holroyd – 29:27.278
Oscar Collins – 29:40.508
Levii Read – 30:20.154
2017 AORC – Round 10 – Kyogle
It was a brilliant start to Round 10 at Kyogle of the 2017 Yamaha Australian Off-Road Championship (AORC), with a daunting challenge ahead for competitors; tensions were high to see who would end up on top. Ruprecht, Milner, Stanford and Driscoll won the Enduro races for their respective classes.
The Womens, Vets and Masters classes put on a riveting display around Kyogle for Round 10 of the Yamaha Australian Off-Road Championship (AORC). Eight tests were conducted over the course of day to determine the placings.
The three standouts for these classes were Jemma Wilson, Kirk Hutton and Derek Grundy, to demonstrate top-notch skill and commitment around the tracks. The AORC also had its first champion in 2017 crowned, after Grundy scored enough points to claim the title!
The Junior competitors showed off their abilities at Round 10, with a technical and demanding Enduro format, respective Junior class standouts included Brierley, Bacon and McMahon for the J4, J3 and J2 classes. All Juniors managed to claim a clean sweep for Rounds 9 and 10 at Kyogle.
Bringing it home for E1 was Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Team’s Wil Ruprecht to solidify another fine weekend for himself and his team. Ruprecht has come under pressure from Snap Fitness Yamaha Team’s Scott Keegan in previous rounds, however Ruprecht has risen to the pressure and delivered a clean sweep at Kyogle.
Ruprecht managed to outpace Keegan in all of the tests towards an overall time of 53:46.953. In second position was Keegan on his Yamaha machine. After suffering a retirement on Saturday, Keegan managed to score solid points for his team.
Keegan’s total elapsed time was a 54:59.367, to finish 72 seconds behind his title rival Ruprecht. The final podium position belonged to Jack ‘simmering’ Simpson on his KTM. Simpson has finished on the podium both days to mark a successful return, after missing the last two rounds at Renmark.
Simpson took 55:56:454 to complete the Enduro course, close to a minute behind behind Keegan.
“We started off very strong on both days and came out fighting out the blocks. There were a few mistakes here and there but I was very comfortable on the bike. The Enduro format is by far my favourite, simply due to the lengthy track time.”
E1 Provisional Results
Wil Ruprecht (Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Racing Team) – 53:46.953
Scott Keegan (Snap Fitness Yamaha Team) – 54:59.367
Jack Simpson – 55:56:454
Brad Hardaker – 56:29.806
Geoff Braico – 56:55.191
Baylee Davies – 57:44.637
Andrew Janke – 59:32.656
Kristian Sprenger – 59:55.871
Mackenzie Bowser – 1:02:02.068
Nathan Watson – 1:02:43.495
The Daniel Milner show continued today, as the KTM Enduro rider cleaned up within the E2 class. Milner laid down the gauntlet from the very beginning, as he was well in front after the first test. From then on it was a Milner master class with a total time of 52:46.953. Milner finished on top of the timesheets for every test.
Up next for E2 was the ‘Green Machine’ Josh Green of the Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Team. Green spent the entire duration of the day within second place. Green’s accumulated Enduro time was a 53:57.707, 71 seconds behind Milner.
Green stated that he was a huge fan of the Kyogle track and its technical nature, but Milner was simply too strong this weekend. Finishing in third place once again was Riley Graham on his Yamaha, with a combined total lap time of 54:48.036. Graham was particularly strong in the third test with a strong lap time that was only beaten by the winner Milner.
“It was a good weekend for us, the bike was unreal in these conditions. Yesterday we didn’t get times so I never knew how I was going so I just had to push all day. Yesterday was also a fairly long day and there was some fatigue, so today I backed it down a little bit to not take as many risks. It worked out well. I enjoyed the enduro format too. We haven’t done one all year and it was good just trail riding with the boys again. I haven’t got to do that for a long time. I had Greeny and Stanford on my minute today and it was really fun to ride with those guys – we always give each other a bit of crap so it makes it good fun. I think I’m more than 40 points up now so I’ve just got to finish well in the next round and I’ll have a championship. But it’s never over ‘til the fat lady sings so I’ll go home and keep doing my work and see what happens.”
Glenn Kearney – KTM Enduro Racing Team Manager
“A great weekend for KTM. It was our first two-day enduro, so the boys did a lot of riding; I believe 200 kilometres yesterday and probably similar today. They really enjoyed the track – it’s an awesome property here in Kyogle; really hilly, grass track style stuff and off-cambers. We’ve had the sand and the mud and now this, and Milner showed he’s good anywhere. Snodgrass had a bit of a tough one, he struggled in the off-camber stuff, but managed to make improvements each day and got better and better. Unfortunately he lost a big chunk of time this morning when he boiled the rear brake so that put him down the order, but he climbed back to sixth and second in class. Milner extended the championship lead, and it’s going to come down to the last two rounds for Lyndon, battling for that class win in E3.”
E2 Provisional Results
Daniel Milner (KTM Enduro Team) – 52:45.452
Josh Green (Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Racing Team) – 53:57.707
Riley Graham – 54:48.036
Stefan Granquist – 55:47.066
Andrew Wilksch (DSR Motul Pirelli Sherco Off-Road Team) – 56:35.178
Kane Hall – 57:23.167
Kaleb Treasure – 58:46.739
Matt Murry – 58:53.694
Brodie Crane – 1:00:10.504
Casey Treasure – 1:01:06.822
The E3 Enduro spoils went to Lachy Stanford of the Husqvarna Enduro Team. Stanford has raced on the Kyogle tracks on plenty of occasions as a local to the area. Stanford’s time in the first test was particularly strong and help to set him up for a commanding win. Stanford managed to snatch victory from KTM Enduro Team’s Lyndon Snodgrass. Stanford only took 53:41.862 to complete the course.
“It was definitely a positive weekend for me. Two second outrights and two wins is by far my best weekend in the AORC. It’s what I’ve been wanting to do all year, just be battling for wins in the tests. Milner’s exceptionally fast, there’s no doubt about that, but in one test today I got 0.9, and that’s the closest I’ve been to him all year. It’s where we wanted to be for sure, so we’re pretty stoked. It’s great to reward Christian, Lewie, Kevvie and Dave because they put so much work into me. The tracks this year have been half-motocrossy and very fast, whereas this was an enduro track. We had rocky creek sections, really steep hill climbs, off-camber. The really technical tests and that definitely worked in my favour, and the FE 501 was such an awesome bike here. Even though the tracks were pretty tight, the bike still felt really good.”
Snodgrass posted a total time of 54:49.377, the difference between the two being over a minute. Up next was Jesse Lawton, for a very popular podium position with his time of 53:41.862. Lawton battled with Tom Mason for the duration of the Enduro and managed to come out on top on this occasion.
“I started off in the first test boiling my rear brake and losing it for the last quarter of that test, so that put me back off the bat. From then on I was trying to catch back up. It was tough, but I had made improvements towards the end and that was giving me time back. It was definitely more technical than what we’ve been racing on, but it was good riding up here. Nice fun trail and flowy tests. The bike ran awesome all weekend. Lachy’s got a few points on me in this one, so we can only charge as hard as we can in Victoria and try and get it back. I’ve never been up there but it’s meant to be pretty good, I can’t wait to get into it.”
The Transmoto EJ provided the closest battle for the lead within the Senior classes. Yamaha rider and former Motocross rider Michael Driscoll managed to turn the tables on Husqvarna rider Fraser Higlett for the win.
Driscoll managed to complete the Enduro with a time of 55:26.110. Despite leading in the early tests, Higlett fell behind in the mid stages of the race. Higlett finished a further 19 seconds behind Driscoll with his time of 55:45.937. Nic Tomlinson finished in the final podium position, his time was a 56:18.174.
It’s been wall-to-wall, action packed rounds for the Yamaha AORC in 2017. With so many stories and triumphs so far, its sure to be a thrilling finish for the Championship at Omeo, VIC. Can’t wait to see what lies in store.
Transmoto EJ Provisional Results
Michael Driscoll – 55:26.110
Fraser Higlett – 55:45.937
Nic Tomlinson – 56:18.174
Dalton Johnson – 57:50.623
Wes Keeley – 57:51.807
Kade Dorrington – 58:38.480
Lachlan Allan – 59:10.008
Harry Teed – 59:14.843
Hayden Keely – 59:30.245
Neil Collard – 1:00:01.556
With Yamaha rider Jemma Wilson once again claiming a victory for Round 9, there was a significant amount of expectation to see if she could claim yet another win. Wilson managed to take the victory with a total time of 1:02:58.653.
Finishing behind Wilson was Emelie Karlsson on a Yamaha with her time of 1:04:03.203. Just over a minute would separate the two. Despite missing out on the win, Yamaha rider Sophie Coldicutt managed to salvage a podium result with her third place. Her time of 1:04:36.107 was a further 33 seconds behind Karlsson.
Provisional Results Womens
Jemma Wilson – 1:02:58.653
Emelie Karlsson – 1:04:03.203
Sophie Coldicutt – 1:04:36.107
Tegan Hall – 1:07:57.322
Courney Rubie – 1:10:37.246
Kate Norman – 1:32:15.894
In the Veterans, the legendary ‘King’ Kirk Hutton would be the eventual victor, with a total elapsed time of 58:12.030 and his pace in the seventh test was spectacular. Hutton on his Yamaha was well ahead of his closest challenger in Damian Smith.
Smith in second placed a further 41 seconds behind with his total Enduro time of 58:53.560. Brad Wilkinson was the final podium placer in third place. Wilkinson registered a total time of 1:03:01.661, over four minutes behind Smith.
Provisional Results Vets
Kirk Hutton – 58:12.030
Damian Smith – 58:53.560
Brad Wilkinson – 1:03:01.661
Jason Pearce – 1:04:29.117
Sean Smith – 1:07:47.427
Hugh Howarth – 1:07:57.239
Russel French – 1:08:32.645
Luke Vanderdrift – 1:09:56.627
Kyronne Treasure – 1:12:54.606
Evan Cristensen – 1:13:15.769
DSR Motul Pirelli Sherco Off-Road Team’s Derek Grundy put in a sensational ride to win the Masters class championship, with two rounds remaining! Grundy was visibly excited to finally get that well deserved championship. As an assistant team manager to the Sherco team, it certainly meant a lot for Grundy to deliver the title to his crew. Grundy took a total time of 1:03:07.284 to complete the Enduro.
Up next in second position was Craig Treasure on his Husqvarna machine. Treasure finished more than two and a half minutes behind Grundy with his time of 1:05:48.274. The final Masters competitor on the podium was Brett Kenny, approximately 66 seconds behind, with his time of 1:06:54.631.
Derek Grundy – Masters Class Championship Winner
“I’m really happy to with this Championship, I’ve been second two times in the 4-Day and second in the AORC last year. I shed a tear on the last lap on Sunday because I’ve tried so many times and opportunities at my age are limited. I wanted to get it done so I can move on and give opportunities to others in the Sherco Team. I must say the Sherco 300 SEF-R is such a great bike for me. I’m just so comfortable riding it and when I have the support of the Team back in the pits it makes it so much fun to go racing. Our Team is fantastic, we have a good vibe going and Dave Suter always has the bikes beautifully prepared. I will race the final two rounds. I want to see the season through to the end and see if I can pick up another win because this will be my last. And I want to be there to support the Team because they’ve done so much to support me.”
Husqvarna rider Joshua Brierley further established himself as a extremely versatile rider by winning both of the Enduro races for the J4 class. Young Brierley finished with a final time of 33:47.718 and won every test on Sunday.
In second position was once again was fellow brother Mitchell Brierley, who finished with a time of 34:20.326. The difference between the two brohers was 32 seconds. The final podium placer for J4 was Nathan Howe, a placing higher than his result on Saturday.
The KTM rider managed to finish with a total accumulated time of 34:50.432, approximately 30 seconds behind Mitchell Brierley.
Provisional Results J4
Joshua Brierley – 33:47.718
Mitchell Brierley – 34:20.326
Nathan Howe – 34:50.432
Corey Hammond – 34:59.506
Connor Gee – 36:29.139
Ryan Thompson – 36:31.711
Riley Nancarrow – 37:26.711
Emi Ruprecht – 40:27.827
Brock Brady – 41:06.043
Trent Brandon – 42:15.348
Korey McMahon was the eventual winner of the J3 Enduro race once again. The victory gave McMahon an impressive a clean sweep. Korey McMahon finished with a total time of 34:42:190. KTM mounted Ben Bertinazzi was McMahon’s closest challenger, his time was a 36:04.519.
The difference between McMahon and Bertinazzi was 82 seconds. Championship leader Jayden Rudd on his KTM shot up the placing’s today to finish third with a time of 36:18.772, a further 14 seconds behind Bertinazzi. After a disappointing result on Saturday, Rudd will be well pleased to have made the podium today.
Provisional Results J3
Korey McMahon – 34:42:190
Ben Bertinazzi – 36:04.519
Jayden Rudd – 36:18.772
Matthew Pye – 36:21.028
Blake Hollis – 36:23.828
Ned Chapman – 37:13.202
Raife Dooley – 37:50.939
Ben Teed – 39:11.942
Tom Teed – 39:44.163
Kyron Bacon was once again the standout for J2, finishing first in class. Bacon will now close in on Championship leader Riordan after winning both races this weekend. Bacon’s total Enduro time was a 35:51.609. KTM mounted Will Riordan finished with a time of 36:41.632.
The difference between Bacon and Riordan was 50 seconds. Riordan’s brother Gus impressed onlookers to come third with his total time of 37:44.265, on a KTM. Gus finished a further minute behind his brother.
“It was a great weekend, I was really strong at the start of the tests which helped out! The tracks were tight and technical and very enjoyable. I did one round in AORC last year and now this is my first full season in the championship. I’ve made plenty of friends here and I’m enjoying my racing!”
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