Not many outside of his immediate circle knew it, but Beta’s Joe Wasson needed the summer break. The right wrist he injured severely a couple years ago in New Mexico required additional surgery, so he had it done after round five and hoped he’d be able to ride round six of the Kenda/SRT AMA Hare & Hound National Championship Series, Presented by FMF, in Panaca, Nevada, August 24.
Wasson Tops Muley Run Hare And Hound
“I was nervous,” he admitted. “I have about eight hours total on my bike since the last race [the AMA West Hare Scramble in Washington eight weeks ago].
“I took a gamble and I was right in the middle of my season and I signed another contract [extension with Beta]. I didn’t tell anybody. I hid [news of the surgery] from my whole team, I hid it from everybody. I was going to do anything I could to make it work, whether it was going to be better or not.”
With conditions for the 8th Annual Muley Run by the Silver State Trail Blazers extremely dry, dust promised to be a major factor, making a good start imperative and Wasson got a good one on his Kenda/FMF/Fly Racing 430 RR with only Purvines Racing Yamaha’s Axel Pearson ahead when they reached the end of the bomb run.
When Pearson checked up for a ditch a few miles later, Wasson went for it and successfully made the pass for the lead, which is where he stayed for the rest of the race.
“My fitness was a little off, but I told myself about an hour from the finish that all these other guys are probably struggling too—just dig deep and push hard,” Wasson shared after finishing the 70-mile, two-loop race in two hours, five minutes and 37 seconds.
Off-road Support/TBT Racing Kawasaki’s Jacob Argubright entered the Muley Run four points back of Wasson, 161-152, and though he’s been riding consistently fast, his hectic schedule of late may have caught up to him. Getting a bike ready to be shipped off for his first ISDE proved time-consuming, but what really did him in was a poor start aboard his Maxima/Golden Tyre/TCX Boots-backed KX450.
“I was in dust the whole time [after the bomb],” he said. “I passed [Purvines Racing Yamaha’s] Tyler [Lynn] a couple miles in and I tracked down [his teammate] Axel [Pearson] and I didn’t get him until, like, 15 miles before the end.
“I tried my hardest and tried to minimize the points damage.”
Getting second to Wasson in 2:07:04 meant he slipped five points further behind with three rounds left, though he’s optimistic: “I think the next rounds will play to my favor,” adding, “I felt really good here, the best I’ve felt [here]. I was able to charge the whole time. There [just] wasn’t anything technical so it was hard to be faster than someone. It was a complete sprint for two hours because it was [not very technical] so not a lot separating everyone.
“I’m going to work on my starts.”
As for Pearson, the defending race champ ended up third in 2:07:53 aboard his Precision Concepts/Berkley Yamaha/O’Neal Racing YZ450FX. “I’ve had a few injuries over the summer, too, from the last National so I’ve been recovering from that,” he admitted. “I’ve been riding a lot the last couple weeks and feeling better so I knew I’d do well with a [good] start. Obviously I got a good start—pulled the holeshot; me and Tyler Lynn were side by side. I was able to get him, but Joe and Jake—hats off to them—they rode like champs today. They were just better than me, honestly.”
Lynn finished fourth, 1:09 behind Pearson, with Beta’s Chance Fullerton fifth.
Beta support rider Zane Roberts and his Six Five O Racing/Sierra BMW & Beta/Klim 250 RR topped Pro 250 for the fourth consecutive round to extend his points lead over Economy Floors/Steadmans Yamaha’s Daemon Woolslayer, 170-130. “I think I holeshot for my class, but as far as the overall goes, it was just so dusty that the first 10, 15 miles I felt like we were all just cruising around out there waiting for it to spread out enough that we could really ride,” Roberts remarked.
Roberts claimed sixth overall ahead of Purvines Racing Yamaha’s Nick Burson with Woolslayer eighth overall. STI/3 Bros. Husqvarna’s Ryan Smith and Garrett Off-road Racing KTM’s Kadin Guard rounded out the top 10 overall. CN
Kenda/SRT AMA Hare & Hound National Championship Series, Presented by FMF
Results: August 24, 2019
- Joseph Wasson (Beta)
- Jacob Argubright (Kaw)
- Axel Pearson (Yam)
- Tyler Lynn (Yam)
- Chance Fullerton (Beta)
- Zane Roberts (Beta)
- Nick Burson (Yam)
- Daemon Woolslayer (Yam)
- Ryan Smith (Hus)
- Kadin Guard (KTM)