“I wanted to just jump out in front early and try to pull away as quick as I could – that was my goal,” said Honda’s Steve Hengeveld. The lead-off rider for the defending Best in the Desert Silver State Series Champions, he and partner Johnny Campbell did just that on their XR650R and sailed in clean air all day at the Terrible’s Town 250 in Pahrump, Nevada, April 30.
After 243 miles of fast, rough desert, which they finished in four hours, 13 minutes and 31 seconds, Campbell and Hengeveld were the runaway winners of the $5000 bonus from the Herbst family for taking the overall motorcycle victory. Runners-up Christopher Blais and Andy Grider were eight minutes behind on their KTM 525 MXC. Third bike finishers Mike Childress and Chuck Dempsey took the Four-Stroke Pro class on their XR650R. They were followed by Honda’s Kendall Norman, who soloed the event to fourth overall, third Open Pro. Taber Murphy and Brian Pinard rounded out the top five on their XR650R.
Team Green’s Shane Esposito and David Pearson went into Terrible’s Town tied in points with Campbell and Hengeveld, but their bid at notching win number two in the series sank when they experienced electrical problems on their KX500. After much downtime to reach a pit and perform repairs, the pair resumed the race and still finished seventh overall, fifth Open Pro.
But the day clearly belonged to Campbell and Hengeveld. For Campbell, it marked his third win at Terrible’s Town, while it was Terrible’s Town win number two for Hengeveld. And unlike last year when they were first to the finish but lost on corrected time, there was no doubt who won this event.
“Today was one of those days where everything clicked just right,” Hengeveld said. “It’s hard to beat that.”
Campbell added, “We had a new engine combination we’ve been testing with, and for sure it was the best for this course today. Bob [Bell of Precision Concepts] saved me; I hit a big rain rut ledge about halfway between pits three and four. Fortunately, we had the good [suspension] setting, because I was almost over the bars! We got some good breaks in the morning because some of the other teams had some trouble so we got a gap [on them].”