(Big Sky, Montana; August 25 2013) – Charlie Mullins claimed a relatively easy win in fairly rugged conditions this weekend at the 2013 AMA KENDA Big Sky Off Road National Championship presented by KLIM, held at the Big Sky Ski Resort in Big Sky, Montana.
After jumping out to the early lead partway into the first lap, the FMF/KTM rider blitzed his way to a comfortable lead while seemingly ignoring the pitfalls of mountainous terrain: high altitude, loose rocks and narrow trail on the side of steep cliffs. Mullins was barely sweating when he cross the finish line with nearly two-minutes to spare over runner-up Brad Bakken after three-hours of racing.
“The only problem I had all race was I came into the “rock garden” section and there were lappers in my usual line so I tried to go straight up the rocks and I got hung up about halfway,” said Mullins. “I lost about five seconds there but I was able to get going again without killing my engine or falling over.”
Bakken came from back in the pack to claim second, passing Am Pro Yamaha’s Jordan Ashburn on the final lap to do so. Meanwhile, Ashburn held second for the last half of the race, but suffered a flat on the final lap before succumbing to Bakken’s charge.
Fourth went to West coast off-roader Ricky Russell, who held down second for most of the first half of the race, however, the Am Pro Yamaha-backed rider said he “hit a wall” with two laps to go and gave way to Bakken and Ashburn.
GNCC racer Rory Sullivan came on strong in the end to nip former WORCS champ Taylor Robert for fifth. Robert said after the race that it felt like he was riding a hard tail, and that he came into the race with an incorrect suspension setting.
Big Sky XC Results
1. Charlie Mullins (KTM)
2. Brad Bakken (Yam)
3. Jordan Ashburn (Yam)
4. Ricky Russell (Yam)
5. Rory Sullivan (Kaw)
6. Taylor Robert (Kaw)
7. Grant Baylor (KTM)
8. Ryan Turner
9. Ryan Belue (Yam)
10. Michael Rosengren