Silent Bicycle Ride In Memory Of Dale "Cookie" Cooke At The Rattlesnake

The NEPG is having a silent bicycle ride at 3pm on Sat. at the start of the Rattlesnake National Enduro in memory of Dale "Cookie" Cooke who was fatally injured in a bicycle accident. Most knew him as the factory KTM truck driver, but he was a avid adventure, Enduro and bicycle rider as well. One of his closest friends Chris Bach will lead a 2-mile silent bicycle ride down a gravel road to a large forest where a few words will be said to honor Cookie. You can then take the 2-mile ride back or continue on a longer ride back to camp with Chris and friends.

KENDA Tire For The Rattlesnake

The Kenda recommended tire for the NEPG Rattle Snake enduro in Cross Forks, Pennsylvania is the Triple rear and Washougal II front. An alternate would be the  Equilibrium hybrid of a trials tire and a knobby.  The Kenda rider support boxes will be at this round, they will be at the first and second gas truck. The boxes contain a supply of Kenda Tuff-Tubes, bike stand, tools, tire spoons and air compressor. The tubes are on the honor system, just stop by after the race and pay for what you use. The support boxes are for all riders regardless of the brand tires you run. Trackside Support LLC the trackside vendor for Kenda tires, will have a large selection of Kenda tires, Super Tuff Tubes and Tuff Tubes including the Southwick II, Washougal II, Triple, Ibex and Millville II tires. You can reserve your tires at or call Tim at (248) 431-7506 before 10 PM EST. Mounting is available on Saturday. A limited selection of Kenda youth tires and Tuff-Tubes will also be available.  Credit Cards are always a bit of a challenge at this event, we will do our best to be able to process them.  We also have Mousse inserts for those that do not want to run tubes.  Stop by the Kenda tent and say hello.

Rodney Smith Promoted to Beta Race Team Manager

Press Release

For Immediate Release

Paso Robles, California

Beta USA's Rodney Smith has been promoted to head up the Beta USA race department. The AMA Hall of Famer and five-time GNCC champion has been working for Beta for the last 12 months as a rider coach and now will take over as the race team manager. 

Beta USA's President Tim Pilg comments, "It has been a huge benefit to our team ever since Rodney came aboard full time last season. His approach to racing matches our goals for the team so it made perfect sense to have him take over the team manager position."


Rodney Smith will now manage Beta's off road race team. (photo by Adam Booth)

Smith is looking forward to developing the team and more, "I'm very excited to have this opportunity to run the Beta USA race team! I've been working & coaching the riders this year and now Beta has asked me to manage the team. I'm very excited to bring my experience I've learned over the years as a racer and champion as well as being inducted in the AMA hall of fame! I've had the chance to see & learn from my past managers including Mike Webb and now I'm looking forward to being able run my own team & to further give our racers the knowledge & experience to win some more championships for my riders, Beta, & myself."

Smith will help Beta ace Jordan Ashburn along with the other seven Beta Factory riders. (photo by Ken Hill)

Beta's GNCC pilot Joedan Ashburn had this to say, "Being able to work with Rodney Smith is a true privilege. He is a former GNCC champion with lots of knowledge. I'm really excited for him to take charge of the BETA race team and help us achieve our goals."

Smith will also work with EnduroX rider's Max Gerston, Ty Cullins, and Morgan Tanke as the EnduroX season begins in Las Vegas on August 19th along with the other team members. 

Rodney Smith will also play a role in the development of future Beta products. 



The Cherokee National Enduro took place this weekend in Greensboro, Georgia where conditions were warm with high humidity.  On and off showers throughout the day brought the temperatures down and made for dustless racing. The course consisted of six tests that ranged from 5.5 miles to 12 mile long.  

As previous victories have shown, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Thad Duvall thrived in the muddier conditions, and this race was no different. He would win the first three tests. As test four commenced Thad battled to finish with the fastest time, but a couple small mistakes caused him to lose the winning position by a mere three seconds. As test 5 approached, it started to rain, making the last two tests a bit more technical. Duvall kept his momentum and rode with skill through the Georgia terrain, eventually taking the win of the last two tests and overall win for the Cherokee National Enduro.

“Round 4 was one for the books! I rode hard and my FX 350 did not disappoint. Taking the win in five of the six tests made for a great day of racing!” said an excited Thad Duvall.

Josh Strang started the race off finishing the first test in 9th place. From there, he struggled to find his rhythm in the remainder of the tests, ultimately finishing his day in 14th for the pro class.   

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing's Thad Duvall and Josh Strang will make their way next to Alpine, NY for Round 7 of the GNCC.

Cherokee National Enduro Round 4 Pro Results:

1. Thad Duvall (HUS)

2.  Steward Baylor Jr. (KTM)
3. Josh Toth (YAM)

14. Josh Strang (HUS)

Thad DuVall Takes Cherokee National Enduro Win

Greensboro, GA (June 4, 2017) – Thad DuVall grabbed his second win in a row at this weekend’s Cherokee National Enduro in Greensboro, Georgia – round four of the 2017 Kenda AMA National Enduro Series presented by Moose Racing.

DuVall not only had to battle a formidable lineup of competitors, but the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing-backed rider also had to fight the elements, as a hot, humid and dry day turned turned wet and muddy when rain storms moved into the area about halfway into the event. Despite the extreme conditions, DuVall won five of the six tests and took the overall win by one-minute-and-thirteen-seconds over series point leader Steward Baylor Jr. at the end of 56 miles of racing.

With the win, DuVall cut into Baylor’s point lead, and now sits just eight points behind Baylor in the series standings with just five rounds remaining.

Although things went DuVall’s way for most of the day, there was some drama in the third test when he crashed hard and at one point wasn’t sure he could finish.

“I hit my head pretty hard and it was hurting pretty bad,” said DuVall. “I wasn’t sure I could continue, but I went into the fourth test and I just wasn’t all there. Steward ended up beating me in that test, but I regrouped and by that point I had a pretty good cushion. I really just needed to cruise, but I felt like the slower I went the more mistakes I made. I felt like the harder I charged the better I was, so I came back and won the last two tests. I honestly didn’t think I was going to be able to finish after the fourth test – I was sick and didn’t feel well, but I just cleared my head and ended up winning.”

Steward Baylor came into the event having spent the previous week in the hospital due to a virus. The SRT Racing KTM rider admittedly didn’t have the best week of practice prior to the Cherokee and came into the event hoping to salvage a top-five finish, however, the South Carolina rider was able to keep DuVall honest all day and even won the fourth test. In fact, Baylor didn’t finish worse than second all day.

“I came in a little bit behind the eight-ball, after spending last week in the hospital, but I rode well today,” said Baylor. “I wasn’t expecting to do this well, but we kept it tight and hopefully we can bounce back from this and get back on top of the podium. It’s good to come out here and come away with a good finish after all that happened last week.”

Josh Toth is still learning the ropes in the national enduro series, but the Connecticut rider picked up steam as the day progressed and came on strong in the last three tests. The Am Pro Yamaha rider claimed his best finish to date with a third.

“I rode pretty good in the beginning, but I couldn’t stay off the ground,” said Toth. “I like the mud, so when it started raining I think I got stronger. I’m getting better at this tight stuff and I definitely had a lot of fun.”

KR4 Arrive-n-Ride Husqvarna’s Grant Baylor turned in a steady day for fourth.

“I had pretty good rides in the second and third tests, but I was a little off the pace in the fourth test,” said Grant. “I was sitting about 30 seconds behind Toth in third heading into the final test and I went in there and pushed really hard and ended up crashing, so I had to settle for fourth.”

Grant still has a solid grip on third overall in the series standings, sitting nine points ahead of Russell Bobbitt, who was fifth overall at the Cherokee.

Bobbitt came into the event hot off of a podium finish at the previous round in Louisiana, but the FMF KTM Factory Racing-backed rider struggled with suspension settings at the Cherokee and was a bit off the pace.

“With the setup we had, I just wasn’t comfortable in some of the tests,” said Bobbitt. “I was riding within my comfort zone but I don’t think I rode up to my potential. We’ll just go back now and work on our setup for the next round and go from there.”

Finishing a tenth of a second behind Bobbitt in sixth was Cory Buttrick. The SRT Racing KTM rider was third fastest in test three, but tests four and fifth didn’t go well for him. Heading into the sixth and final test, Buttrick was 13 seconds behind Bobbitt for fifth, and he ended up beating Bobbitt in the test, but came up just a tenth of a second short, which left him with sixth.

Solid Performance KTM’s Jesse Groemm made the long drive from New Jersey to finish seventh, crossing the line a minute-and-twenty-seven seconds behind Buttrick.

Eighth overall and first in the Rekluse/Expert-AA class was Thorn Devlin, who has won all four rounds in the division so far.  The AirGroup/Enduro Engineering Husqvarna rider finished 27 seconds ahead of eighth place overall and five-minutes-and-seventeen-seconds ahead of Logan Lowrey, the second place finisher in the Expert-AA class. AirGroup/Enduro Engineering Husqvarna’s Tyler Vore was third in the class and 16th overall.

“I only went down once all day, but in the fourth test I broke off the end of my brake pedal at the start of the test so I had to ride most of the 12 miles without a rear brake,” said Devlin.

KTM riders Evan Smith and Zach Hayes rounded out the top 10 overall.

In the Women’s Elite class, Aussie off-road star Tayla Jones claimed her fourth win of the series, putting her KR4 Arrive-n-Ride Husqvarna on top of the podium ahead of Husqvarna rider Sarah Baldwin and KTM rider Ashley Copeland. Jones beat out Baldwin by almost nine minutes, while Copeland finished another five minutes back in third.

During the rider’s meeting, the NEPG held a moment of silence in remembrance of Dale “Cookie” Cooke, who passed away on June 1 from complications suffered during a bicycling accident. Cookie was a longtime member of the off-road community and most recently drove the off-road rig for Team KTM.

The 2017 Kenda AMA National Enduro Series presented by Moose Racing resumes action with round five of the series on July 23rd in Cross Fork, Pennsylvania for the Rattlesnake National Enduro. For more information on the series check out


1. Thad DuVall (Hsq)

2. Steward Baylor Jr. (KTM)

3. Josh Toth (Yam)

4. Grant Baylor (Hsq)

5. Russell Bobbitt (KTM)

6. Cory Buttrick (KTM)

7. Jesse Groemm (KTM)

8. Thorn Devlin (Hsq)

9. Evan Smith (KTM)

10. Zach Hayes (KTM)


Overall Championship Standings

1. Steward Baylor Jr. (105)

2. Thad DuVall (97)

3. Grant Baylor (75)

4. Russell Bobbitt (66)

5. Cory Buttrick (65)

6. Kailub Russell (58)

7. Jesse Groemm (56)

8. Josh Toth (46)

9. Evan Smith (35)

10. Thorn Devlin (34)



Media Contact

Shan Moore