While the Arizona Cardinals were winning their way into the Superbowl just a few miles away, Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ricky Dietrich was winning the opening round of the 2009 WORCS Series. Dietrich, who openly admits to having lost the 2008 WORCS Championship in last year’s opening round by showing up “unprepared” (he was 10th in the 2008 opener), was more than ready this year as he took the ’09 opener by more than a full minute over second place finisher Bobby Bonds and third place rider Nathan Woods.
When the gate dropped JCR Honda’s Tim Weigand picked up the Kal-Guard Holeshot check. Wiegand was followed across the line by Team FMF Suzuki’s Nathan Woods and Valli Motorsports rider Kyle Summers with Dietrich and Bonds close behind. Before the first lap was over Summers was in control and starting to gap the field. Dietrich had moved into second and Wiegand settled into third as Woods dropped back to fifth, battling with Bonds and KTM’s Justin Soule.
Summers looked unstoppable for the first hour as he continued to pull away. It looked as though it was going to be a “Summers’ day” as he led for the first hour and 30 minutes before his Honda began making unpleasant noises. Dietrich had been waiting and watching and quickly closed in on Summers. Sadly, Summers machine didn’t last another lap and it began spewing oil and died on the back part of the course after one hour and 45 minutes of the two hour race. After leading for most of the day, Summers would be credited with 32nd place.
Meanwhile, Dietrich made his move and opened an enormous lead which would go unchallenged for the rest of the race. “I lost the WORCS Championship in last year’s opener,” said Dietrich. “This year, I’m in perfect shape and my Kawasaki is perfect so there’s no excuse not to win. I’m really happy to take the opener.”
Bonds fought his way into second while Woods finally relaxed and charged into third. Weigand put in a great ride to hold onto fourth ahead of Brown and Soule with Abbott taking seventh, Brenden Ritzman eighth, Huffman ninth and Bobby Garrison 10th.