Russell Bobbitt claimed his fourth win of the year at round six of the AMA/Rekluse National Enduro Series, finishing 32 seconds ahead of Shock Doctor KTM teammate Michael Lafferty at the Inyan Kara Riders Enduro in Upton, Wyoming.
The 94-mile Wyoming event, which was held at an elevation of 4200 feet, was the first of a two-round western swing of the schedule (next week’s round is in Montana), where the riders are typically greeted with much different terrain than what they find at the eastern rounds. However, the change in scenery suited Bobbitt just fine, the defending series champion admitting that he looks forward to the fast western courses.
“This was a fast and flowing event and I like that kind of stuff,” said Bobbitt. “This was a course that suited my style and I knew I might have an advantage coming in here. But Mike was riding strong, he was back on his 400 and he rides that bike really well. We’re both really fast and it’s about whoever makes the least amount of mistakes.”
Lafferty has two wins so far in the series and he came into Wyoming hoping to regain the momentum he lost at the last round in Tennessee. The eight-time national champion was fastest in two checks, but admitted he couldn’t keep Bobbitt’s pace for the entire distance.
“I just wasn’t up to pace in some places, but I tried my best and that’s all I can do,” said Lafferty. “I slid out here and there, but I think everybody had issues, so that wasn’t the problem. It just wasn’t my day, plain and simple.”
Lafferty was particularly fast in the fifth section, one of the “special tests” where he beat Bobbitt, but it only amounted to a three seconds, which did little to change the final outcome.
With the win, Bobbitt gained an additional five points on Lafferty, extending his lead in the series standings to 15 points (166 to 151).
Finishing third on the day was Ian Blythe. The Colorado KTM rider finished 221 seconds down from Lafferty, giving him his best-ever national finish.
Fourth went to Texan Cole Kirkpatrick, who missed the podium by 12 seconds, while Nick Fahringer rode a 570 Husaberg to fifth, another 32 seconds back.
Overall: 1. Russell Bobbitt (KTM); 2. Michael Lafferty (KTM); 3. Ian Blythe (KTM); 4. Cole Kirkpatrick (KTM); 5. Nick Fahringer (Hus); 6. Bernie Fredrick (Yam); 7. Brad Bakken (KTM); 8. Carsten Cagle (KTM); 9. Fred Hoess (Kaw); 10. Rory Sullivan (KTM).