Reigning WMA Champion Jessica Patterson of the Bad Boy Power Drink/Pro 30 Racing got her title defense off to a good start at Glen Helen Raceway, where round one of the 2007 AMA/WMA Women's National Motocross Championship presented by Kawasaki took place. "JP$" rode her Honda of Houston CRF250R to a strong 1-1 victory over Tarah Geiger and Sarah Whitmore, who finished second and third, respectively.
Alisa Nix grabbed the holeshot in the first moto, but it didn't take Patterson long to get out front. From there, Patterson controlled the race, leading it from start to finish. Geiger finished second, and Whitmore had her work cut out for her after being taken out by Mariana Balbi. But Whitmore got around Balbi a second time for a fifth-place finish.
The second moto, Tarah Geiger gave Patterson a stiff challenge. Geiger led the first half of the race, but on the rough, choppy, and increasingly slippery Glen Helen course, Patterson stayed patient.
"I knew if I put a little pressure on her and just stayed consistent then things would work out," Patterson said of the second moto. "The track was really rough and I love it like that. I think I ride a little bit better. I just kinda kept the pressure on and just waited for the right opportunity to pass and it came and I just went away with it."
Geiger remained in a strong second-place behind Patterson, while Whitmore, after a bad start, worked her way through nearly the entire pack to finish third to take third on the day.
"I've been working a lot harder than a third-place finish," Whitmore lamented, although she was admittedly happy to collect points with a podium finish.
WMA racers now head to Hangtown for round two of the Women's National Motocross Championship.