Defending Best in the Desert Silver State Series Champions Destry Abbott and Brian Brown took the early lead in the Nevada 2000, winning the first day's 91-mile sprint from North Las Vegas to Mesquite in 1:51:03 on their Team Green KX500.

"We pushed a little bit today to get the first starting position for the second day, and we accomplished that," Abbott said. "Now, it's basically just [trying to] keep the bike together."

Keeping the bike running seemed to be less of a concern for day one's runner-up, the Johnny Campbell/Tim Staab Honda XR650R-mounted team. Their time was 1:54:18, but Campbell didn't seem worried: "I didn't expect to win the first day; I just wanted to be right there in the hunt."

Their American Honda teammates Steve Hengeveld and Jonah Street finished close behind for third in 1:55:31 on another XR650R. Mike Baxter and Robbie Zimmerman completed the day in 1:55:52 for fourth overall, fourth Open Pro, on their YZ426F. Mike Healey and Scott Morris rounded out the top five on their Price Racing KX500, finishing in 1:57:16 to lead the Over-30 Pros.

Among the first day's casualties was Team Green's Shane Esposito and Dave Ondas, whose KX500 lost its gearbox shortly after receiving the green flag in the prologue, the results of which determined the race starting order. Team Green technicians replaced the faulty tranny so Esposito and Ondas were able to race, but they lost quite a bit of time.

Ty Davis and Russell Pearson fared a bit better on their Montclair Yamaha YZ426F but not for long as the engine broke at mile 30. They elected to rebuild the motor, but doing so incurs a severe penalty so they'll spend the rest of the week playing catch-up.

Dakar Rally News


Mark Kariya | Contributor

Kariya spends way too much time in the desert, but we’re glad he does as he’s the man who gets us our coverage of all things sandy.

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