The Maxxis/AMA EnduroCross descended on Denver, Colorado last night for round four of the series. On one of the most challenging and treacherous courses yet, Monster Energy Kawasaki's Damon Huffman made the least mistakes en route to his second consecutive win in the 2008 series. Huffman also left Denver with the points lead, taking it from his teammate, Ricky Dietrich who came in to round four with a one point lead over Huffman.
Christini KTM's Geoff Aaron finished on the podium behind Huffman for second and Red Bull KTM Taddy Blazusiak made his return to the series after missing rounds two and three of the series due to an injury to his face. The Polish trials rider came up short on a double while racing in the WORCS-cross event in Oregon earlier this summer and shattered his face and jaw after taking a handlebar to the face. Blazusiak made a quick recovery, however, and with a new titanium eye socket, is back on the bike after being sidelined for six weeks.
Huffman won his heat race fairly easily, grabbing the holeshot and then opening up a big lead over Aaron, who transferred to the main with a second place finish. Blazusiak won his heat race after Dietrich handed him the win two turns before the finish. Dietrich led the charge for most of the race until stalling his KX250F in the rock pile, an obstacle which proved to be more challenging than usual in Denver. Blazusiak cruised by for the win while Dietrich finished a disappointed second.
Lucas Oil sponsored rider Colton Haaker won his heat race fairly easily with Zip Ty Racing's Nick Brozovich in tow most of the way. But like so many others, Brozovich lost the qualifying spot when he got stuck in the rock pile, letting Eric Rhoten slip by. Brozovich went through semis and the LCQ before earning the final transfer spot into the main event.
The main event saw Damon Huffman with the holeshot once again, which proved to be the most effective way to stay out of trouble for eight laps. The Monster Energy Kawasaki rider was able to stay remarkably smooth and consistent through the chaotic main event to take the win in Denver.
Behind Huffman, the battle raged on for second. Dietrich, Blazusiak, Haaker and Aaron followed in close proximity in the early laps. Blazusiak, showing that he is human, after all, struggled to stay smooth and despite a big flying "W" in the river rocks, kept charging until he was banging bars with Dietrich for second. But Dietrich got away when Blazusiak stalled his KTM 200.
Ten-time National Trials Champion Geoff Aaron sat in fifth, but remained patient which paid off. One by one, riders began to fall from the top ten. Blazusiak's first mistake led to more and more until the Polish rider went over the bars in the rhythm section. Dietrich got stuck in the rocks and fell from second back to fifth, and Haaker was unable to fend off Aaron, who battled his way past and soon found himself in second.
Blazisuak recovered well for third, which he was happy to collect after losing six weeks and ten percent of his body weight after his injury. Dietrich finished fourth followed by Haaker in fifth.
The Maxxis/AMA EnduroCross series will pick up in one week in Columbus, Ohio for round five of the series. Catch all the Denver action on the Versus Network. Check your local listings or www.versus.com for times