Zach Bell Takes Second Straight WORCS Win
This is a race report provided by WORCS/ Harlen Foley…
Primm, NV – Zach Bell finished out the 2019 Rocky Mountain ATV MC WORCS Series Presented by Polaris RZR and Dirt Bike Pro Motorcycle season with a thrilling victory during the season finale race at Buffalo Bill’s Resort and Casino. Taylor Robert, who clinched the championship at the previous round, survived a difficult run to finish second, while Dalton Shirey finished third, earning his first WORCS podium of the season.
The event was held on a combined motorcycle-ATV weekend. The track was setup on Primm’s legendary off-road desert course. It included a motocross section that was reworked from the season opener, as well as a special Pro section that proved to be both challenging and fruitful for the race winner.
Bell took the holeshot on his Kawasaki but lost the lead to Robert almost immediately. Going through a rocky section leading into the Pro section Bell slipped past Robert and took the lead for good. The win placed him third in final points.
“I made the pass going up into the rock,” said Bell. “I had one little fall, but other than that it was smooth sailing. It’s good to get some wins and get some more confidence. I’m getting more comfortable on the bike and I’m feeling really good.”
Robert, coming off a Team USA class victory in the ISDE last weekend, had an uncharacteristically difficult race. After losing the lead, he crashed and went over the bars of his KTM going uphill. Recovering, he crashed three more times before settling down and slowing his pace. The finish marked Robert’s fourth runner-up finish. He won every other race.
“I don’t what my deal was today,” explained Robert. “Zach was riding great and he was pulling away. I tried to stay with him. I don’t know if my head wasn’t in it or what. It got to the point where I just wanted to get to the finish line and enjoy the off season healthy.”
Shirey changed many facets of his racing team during the midseason. Riding a Husqvarna, he ran a smooth and consistent pace to finish third. “WORCS put on a good course and it was really fast,” said Shirey. “I switched up my program and I’ve been working hard. It’s better and more fun.”
Dante Oliveira finished second in pro points, but he finished the season with a DNS and not finishing outside the top four all season with seven podium finishes on his RPM KTM.
In Pro 2, Austin Walton scored his fifth consecutive victory and seventh of the season to clinch the championship in his first full season of WORCS competition. Austin Serpa finished second, followed by Mateo Oliveira.
“I had some pretty good cushion coming into this race, but that really doesn’t mean much when you can have a bike failure and that’s the race, so I’m happy to come away with a win,” said Walton. “I got the last lap done, kept the bike together, and clinched the championship. This is a team effort and my team was excellent this year. It’s been an awesome season.”
Serpa earned his sixth podium of the season on his KTM and finished second in points. Though he had a sizeable points lead at the halfway point of the season, several finishes off of the podium hampered Serpa’s championship hopes. The runner-up effort put him second in final points. Tallon Lafountaine, who ran out of fuel late in the race, fell to third in the final title tally. “I definitely blew it on the last couple of rounds,” said Serpa. “I had a big lead at Mesquite and after summer break I had a string of bad luck. I’m glad I got out of it here, though I wish I had have done it earlier, but that’s racing.”
After clinching the Pro 2 Lights title at the last race, Mateo Oliveira made his Pro 2 debut here on his Gas Gas. After a hard battle with Serpa throughout the middle stages of the event, he finished third.
“I was testing the waters in Pro 2 and I was realistically hoping for a top five this weekend, but I was feeling really good on the bike, so I was able to charge hard for the whole race,” said Mateo Oliveira. “I’m super stoked and excited for next year.”
In Pro 2 Lights, Thomas Jones took his first victory and finished third in points. Tyler Nicholson was second, followed by Tyler Jones. All were riding KTMs. Jones took the holeshot, crashed, fell to second, and then took the lead for good on the second lap.
“I’ve been on the podium before, but this is my first win and it feels good,” said Jones. “I was getting a little dehydrated at the end, but I had a good lead and I was able to push through it.”
In the Pro 2 Lights championship, Brandy Richards finished second on the merit of five podiums on the season. Richards, though, finished off a perfect season in Women Pro, winning her 11th consecutive race here.
“I don’t ever get tired of winning,” said Richards. “I’ve been up here a lot this year and I’m very thankful. In 2020 I will remain in the Women Pro class and my goal is to win the Pro 2 Lights championship.”
The 2019 WORCS Championship Awards Banquet is scheduled for December 7, 2019 at Primm Valley Resort and Casino in Primm, NV.
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