Aaron Plessinger won the first moto of the 250 Modified Pros during the first round of motos at the World Mini Grand Prix at Glen Helen. PHOTOGRAPHY BY KIT PALMER
SAN BERNARDINO, CA, APRIL 17 - The 43rd running of the NMA World Mini Grand Prix finished up its first full day of racing at Glen Helen Raceway, where 35 motos were run but not enough to complete the first round of motos. That’ll happen early tomorrow morning before the second round of motos get underway. The final class championship will wrap up Saturday.
This year’s World Minis are being held at Glen Helen for the first time, the last few years having been held in Mesquite, Nevada, and many years before that in Las Vegas. More than 700 entries where filled out at Glen Helen with 46 titles up for grabs.
One of the top riders of the day was Yamaha-mounted Aaron Plessinger who led from start to finish in the 250 Modified Pro class. The hot prospect from Ohio got out in front early and never looked back. Michigan’s Cory McCulloch, also on a Yamaha, kept him in sight but never go close enough to cause too much concern for Plessinger.
Georgia’s Kyler West wasn’t far off the pace, finishing third on a Honda.
Another Yamaha rider, Ryan Surratt, also had a successful start to his long weekend. The Californian finished ahead of KTM rider Luke Purther to win the 250 Stock Intermediate moto, and did the same ahead of Tanner Berry to win the 450 Stock Intermediate class’ first moto, and he capped of his day by staying ahead of Kawasaki rider Rookie White to win the 250 Modified Intermediate division moto one. He’ll get his day started Friday in the 450 Modified Intermediate first moto.
KTM rider Jeremy Ryan was a busy guy today. The rider from Morgan Hill, California, competed in four motos and won two of them, one in the 65 Jr. Cycle Modified (9-11) class and the other in the 85 Stock Thru-11 class, where he rode a Kawasaki. Ryan finished second in the 65 Jr. Cycle Stock (9-11) and 65 Jr. Cycle Open (6-11) classes.
It was a KTM versus Husqvarna duel in the 125 Two-Stroke Non-Pro class with KTM rider Luke Purther and Husky’s Ciaran Naran going at it heavily in the first moto. Purther came out on top, but Naran got a win in the Supermini Thru-13 division.
KTM rider Carson Brown was a double winner in the 85/150 class, taking the first-moto wins in the Stock (14-16) class and Open classes.
Haiden Deegan is well on his way to claiming three class titles. The KTM rider came out swinging in the Pee Wee Modified (7-8) and Super Open (6-9) classes, as well as the 65 Jr. Cycle Stock (6-8) class. The little Deegan won them all in commanding fashion.
Suzuki rider Gordon Keck topped the Supermini Thru-16 class, and the top Women’s-class rider so far is Honda rider Brook Whipple, who took the win over Lauren Woods.
Racing fires back up at 8 a.m. tomorrow.