NEW VIDEO: RUSSELL BOBBITT BECOMES A FIVE-TIME AMA NATIONAL ENDURO CHAMPION

Heading into the final round, Bobbitt held a 17-point lead over KTM-supported rider Steward Baylor in the championship standings, which gave the Georgia native a comfortable position in the final head-to-head battle. Bobbitt maintained a conservative pace throughout the day aboard his KTM 250 XC-F; where he was able to secure 6th overall for the day to earn his fifth career championship – his first since 2011 – in the final round of racing.

Cory Buttrick Wins Zink Ranch National Enduro, Russell Bobbitt Clinches Title

Russell Bobbitt, Cody Mastin Photo

Russell Bobbitt, Cody Mastin Photo

Cory Buttrick won the battle but Russell Bobbitt won the war at the John Zink National Enduro on the John Zink Ranch in Sand Springs, Oklahoma, home of the U.S. ISDE in 1994. The event was organized and hosted by the Tulsa Trail Riders, who did a fantastic job and even kicked off the event with a grass track test in the same location as the grass track used at the Six Days in ’94. Buttrick’s win was his first in four years in the Kenda AMA National Enduro Series while Bobbitt left town with a fifth national enduro title in his back pocket after finishing the day in sixth overall.

The last time Buttrick won a national enduro was in 2012. After that, the Ohio native suffered several injuries, which have kept him on the comeback trail for the last few years. This year, however, Buttrick has remained relatively healthy and he has worked hard to build back his speed and his conditioning. It all paid off in Oklahoma where Buttrick won two of the seven tests and never finished lower than third fastest in any of the remaining tests, giving him the win by 21 seconds.

“This is incredible,” said Buttrick. “It’s kind of funny because I didn't really think I was riding all that great. I was getting frustrated at all the lines I was missing and I was just doing silly things and that kept me mad all day, which I think kept me motivated. Getting the win was a big relief. It’s been a long time coming and at times it’s been a frustrating struggle.”

Heading into the final test of the day, Buttrick held a 22-second lead over Specialized Performance KTM’s Jesse Groemm. Like Buttrick, Groemm is an interesting story in that he suffered a seizure just a few weeks before the race, which the doctors think was related to a concussion he suffered two years ago. The New Jersey rider was cleared to get back on a motorcycle just two weeks ago and this weekend he kicked things off by winning the opening two tests. He had a few problems in the fifth test, though, which allowed Buttrick to pull a small gap heading into test seven, which Buttrick held to the finish.

Third place went to Buttrick’s SRT KTM teammate Steward Baylor, who has been in contention for the title all year. Baylor competed on the US Junior Team at this year’s ISDE in Spain along with his brother Grant and both were still a bit jet-lagged in Oklahoma.

“We just finished over 1000 miles of racing in six days and I just didn’t feel I had any flow to my riding,” said Steward. “I was sixth or seventh after the first two tests, but I made some adjustments and started to move up a bit near the end of the race. The bike I rode this weekend was different from the one I rode in Spain and it just took a while to adjust.”

Fourth was Colorado KTM rider Ian Blythe, who was hot off a second consecutive off-road title in Brazil. Blythe won the final test of the day and was second in tests one and five.

Newly signed Beta USA rider Drew Higgins finished fifth, his best national finish yet. Higgins seemed to like the terrain and said it was similar to what he rides at home in Texas.

Bobbitt was sixth and knew he only needed a solid finish to wrap up the title and was hesitant about taking any risks on the notoriously rocky Sand Springs terrain. The FMF/KTM rider turned his best time with a fourth in the final test.

Andrew DeLong, who is coming off a long road to recovery from a wrist injury, finished in the seventh spot, just ahead of Am Pro Yamaha’s Grant Baylor. Meanwhile, RPM Racing’s Evan Smith and AirGroup Racing’s Nick Fahringer rounded out the top 10.

In the final series standings, Bobbitt claimed the title with 214 points, while the Baylor brothers, Steward and Grant, were second and third, respectively, with 203 and 184 points.

In the Rekluse Expert-AA class, the championship results are still to be determined by the AMA, however Nathan Ferderer (Yam) won the Rekluse Expert-AA award. On the day, Dillon MacRitchie (KTM) won the class with Ferderer in second and Tyler Vore (Hsq) in third.  

FMF/KTM’s Kacy Martinez won the Women’s A/B class ahead of KTM riders Kristina Zmuda and Kristi Grote. Martinez wrapped up the title at the previous round in Missouri.

The Tulsa round marked the end of the 2016 Kenda AMA National Enduro Series, however, for more information and next year’s schedule check out www.nationalenduro.com.

RESULTS

1. Cory Buttrick (KTM)

2. Jesse Groemm (KTM)

3. Steward Baylor (KTM)

4. Ian Blythe (KTM)

5. Drew Higgins (KTM)

6. Russell Bobbitt (KTM)

7. Andrew DeLong (Hsq)

8. Grant Baylor (Yam)

9. Evan Smith (KTM)

10. Nick Fahringer (Hsq)

KTM Press: Bobbitt Becomes a Five-Time Champion at AMA National Enduro Finale; Buttrick Captures First-Career Victory

SAND SPRINGS, Okla. – Round 9 of the AMA National Enduro Series took place on Sunday in Sand Springs, Oklahoma where FMF KTM Factory Racing Team’s Russell Bobbitt wrapped up his fifth-career National Enduro Championship at the season finale. Additionally, SRT/KTM’s Cory Buttrick put forth an impressive ride to earn his first-career victory in the series as he led a KTM-podium sweep with Jesse Groemm in 2nd and KTM-supported rider Steward Baylor Jr. in 3rd.

The Zink Ranch National Enduro showcased ideal racing conditions for the final round as the rich Oklahoma soil lent a hand in maintaining low levels of dust on the course. With a total of seven tests, the race day started and ended with a 3-mile grass track section, with plenty of technical obstacles in between.

Heading into the final round, Bobbitt held a 17-point lead over Steward Baylor in the championship standings, which gave the Georgia native a comfortable position in the final head-to-head battle. Bobbitt maintained a conservative pace throughout the day aboard his KTM 250 XC-F; where he kicked things off with a top-five finish in test one. Bobbitt experienced two big crashes during tests three and four, which set him back as he was forced to stop and straighten out the front-end of his bike.

From there, Bobbitt kept his head down and charged ahead to ultimately finish 6th overall for the day, which was good enough to capture his fifth career championship – his first since 2011 – in the final round of racing.

Bobbitt: “I’m really pumped to get five National Enduro Championships and to get this one 10 years after my first! The track was technical and difficult but we did what we needed to do to make it happen.”

Team Manager, Antti Kallonen: “It wasn’t the best result for Russell today but he got it done under big pressure and that’s what matters in the end. The team is pleased that he was able to win his fifth championship and we were also happy to see a KTM sweep on the overall podium and in the Women’s A/B Class with Factory Team member Kacy Martinez on top. Congratulations to all KTM riders on a great 2016 season.”

SRT/KTM riders Cory Buttrick and Steward Baylor Jr. stood atop the podium together for the first time as Buttrick earned his first career-victory in Oklahoma. Buttrick came away with two test-wins and solid top three finishes throughout the day as he bested the 2nd place rider of Jesse Groemm by 23 seconds. Baylor also had an impressive performance, where he claimed two test-wins and 3rd overall for the day.

FMF KTM Factory Racing’s Kacy Martinez, the recently crowned Women’s Class Champion, captured her sixth victory of the season on Sunday. Martinez dominated the class in each test, where she finished almost 10-minutes ahead of the 2nd place rider Kristina Zmuda (KTM). Kristi Grote (KTM) rounded out the podium to create another orange-sweep for the class.

Overall Results

  1. Cory Buttrick – KTM
  2. Jesse Groemm – KTM
  3. Steward Baylor Jr. – KTM
  4. Ian Blythe – KTM
  5. Drew Higgins – KTM
  6. Russell Bobbitt – KTM
  7. Andrew DeLong
  8. Grant Baylor
  9. Evan Smith – KTM
  10. Nick Fahringer

Women’s A/B Results

  1. Kacy Martinez – KTM
  2. Kristina Zmuda – KTM
  3. Kristi Grote – KTM
  4. Megan McGowan – KTM
  5. Kerrie Swartz – KTM

 

Overall Championship Standings

  1. Russell Bobbitt – 214
  2. Steward Baylor Jr. – 203
  3. Grant Baylor – 184
  4. Josh Strang – 139
  5. Jesse Groemm – 134
  6. Cory Buttrick – 117
  7. Drew Higgins – 114
  8. Nick Fahringer – 105
  9. Ryder Lafferty – 88
  10. Dylan Macritchie – 56

Women’s A/B Championship Standings

  1. Kacy Martinez – 205
  2. Shawn Davidson – 156
  3. Ashlee Applewhite – 124