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QUICK FILL

Quick Fill | January 21 2020

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PHOTOS | Honda, KTM & Husqvarna

Welcome to Quick Fill, a new weekly feature that will cover the ongoings in the off-road motorcycle racing world, presented by Moose Racing. Although motocross and Supercross is the center of the SML universe, our staff has massive respect for the varied disciplines of off-road, from SuperEnduro to Rally to GNCC to Big Six, and we always have an eye on what’s happening in the professional racing series. Every week we will bring updates from around the world, including race results, photos, video highlights, and new bike or product debuts.

Since this is our first installment of the feature, we want to hear your feedback. Drop a comment below and let us know what you think or what you want to see. 

2020 DAKAR RALLY

After weeks of racing across the desert of Saudi Arabia, the 2020 Dakar Rally wrapped up with the twelfth and final stage that took racers from Haradh to Qiddiya. Anticipation for the final check-in was high, especially for Ricky Brabec, and the Monster Energy Honda rider made history by becoming the first American in the history of the rally to win the overall in a class. It was a breakthrough result for Brabec, as the California native devoted his full attention to rally (we watched him spin laps on the now-closed Milestone MX Park moto track aboard his Honda CRF450 Rally bike last year) after his chance at the win in was

taken away by a mechanical failure. Brabec took control of the top spot in the results very early in the long event, won two stages, and stayed consistent through the thousands of kilometers spent in the saddle. The victory is equally important for Honda because it had been 31-years since the OEM had claimed the top spot in Dakar and this win snapped KTM’s 18-year streak at the event. 

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Pablo Quintanilla finished the event ranked second overall, a solid result considering the Chilean spent much of the past year recovering from injuries sustained at the 2019 running of Dakar. Quintanilla worked his way into the runner-up spot during Stage Six and ran a pace that kept the race exciting all the way to the final days. The result is a career-best for Quintanilla; he ran in second-place during the 2019 race but crashed out on the final day. 

Defending champion Toby Price claimed third overall, but the final ranking did not seem important to the Red Bull KTM rider. Price was among the first to be at Paulo Goncalves’s side after the Portuguese rider crashed during Stage Seven and later passed away from the injuries. That Price finished the race after this moment is a sign of his dedication to the sport; he seemed upset during the post-race interviews in the Stages that followed the incident.

While Brabec’s win commanded much of the attention, there were two more American riders in the top-10. Klymciw Racing’s Skyler Howes finished ninth overall and Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Andrew Short finished tenth overall. 

Dakar is by far the biggest rally of the 2020 calendar, but there are plenty of events to follow through the next 11 months. 

2020 X-TRIAL | BUDAPEST

Round three of the 2020 FIM X-Trial World Championship took riders to Budapest, Hungary, for a night of competition on a manmade course at the Laszlo Papp Arena. After rounds of qualifying and a head-to-head battle in the finals, trials icon Toni Bou claimed the 65th win of his career. Bou’s competition in the final was Adam Raga, and the title rivals were identical through the six-section final round, as both struggled in the same sections and tied on points. The tie-breaker was determined by officials, as Bou’s better score in the second round gave the Repsol Honda rider the win over the TRRS Factory-backed Raga, and this win helps Bou extend his lead in the championship standings.

2020 FIM SUPERENDURO | SPAIN

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Billy Bolt claimed the overall victory in round three of the 2020 FIM SuperEnduro Championship, which took place in Spain. The result is important for Bolt, as he struggled at the previous round in Poland, and he swept the night with the fastest lap in the SuperPole segment and three wins in the night’s races to take all 63 points that were up for grabs. With this win, Bolt has taken control of the championship from Taddy Blazusiak and holds a six-point advantage over the Red Bull KTM rider. It’s looking to be a two-rider fight for the title because Bolt and Blazusiak have a sizeable point lead over third-ranked rider Jonny Walker.

We’d love to show you the highlights, but the event promoters apparently had an issue at the race and were unable to stream it. The issue should be sorted out for the fourth round of the series, which takes place in Budapest on February 1st.

2020 AMA NATIONAL GRAND PRIX CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES | ADELANTO GRAND PRIX

While much of the off-road action took place around the world, there was plenty to follow in the US, as the 2020 Adelanto Grand Prix kicked off the ten-round 2020 AMA National Grand Prix Championship Series. The West Coast-based race series has always had talented riders in the running order but there’s been an influx of former motocross racers that have taken it up in recent years, including our former test riders Tallon LaFountaine and Ryan Surratt, plus past pros Zach Bell, Trevor Stewart, and Cole Martinez.

Bell piloted his Chaparral Motorsports Precision Concepts Kawasaki to the win in the Pro Class, besting Martinez and Gary Sutherlin to the finish line by one-minute. The Pro 2 class was much closer and LaFountaine beat runner-up Tyler Lynn to the checkered flag by just seven seconds.

The series will continue with round two in Taft, California, on February 8th.

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Michael Antonovich

Michael Antonovich has a wealth of experience with over 10 years of moto-journalism under his belt. A lifelong racing enthusiast and rider, Anton is the Editor of Swapmoto Live and lives to be at the race track.

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