SRT Racing’s Cory Buttrick came out on top of some of the closest racing of the season, taking an impressive win at the Rock Crusher Sprint Enduro, round eight of the Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro Series presented by PRI Powersports Insurance at the Rockcrusher Farm in Young Harris, Georgia. The racing was insanely close, with first and second place finishing on the same second in four of the twelve tests. After two days of racing Buttrick took the win by five seconds, while second and third place were separated by less than a tenth of a second.
The win was Buttrick’s first of the season and it came at the expense of runner-up Jordan Ashburn and series point leader Steward Baylor.
“It was unreal how close the racing was, we were all within just a few tenths of each other,” said Buttrick. “You definitely couldn’t make any mistakes but I was able to hit all my lines and keep it pretty consistent. The track was in great shape and a couple of places got pretty rough, which I think favored my style. My riding is coming around now that we’re at the end of the season and it feels great to get the win. I just need to keep it going and get off to a fast start at the beginning of next year.”
Ashburn kicked off Saturday’s event by posting the fasted time in the opening Cross test, beating Integrity Acquisitions-backed KTM rider Evan Smith to the line by three-tenths of a second. However, Buttrick came back to win tests two and three and took an overall lead he would never relinquish. Baylor countered with back-to-back wins of his own in tests four and five, while Ashburn put the finishing touches on the day by posting the fastest time in the sixth and final test.
After one day of racing, Buttrick topped the time charts with a total time of 35:47.173, followed by Ashburn with 35:53.029 and Baylor at 35:53.917. FMF KTM Factory rider Russell Bobbitt and Evan Smith rounded out the top five.
Ashburn got off to another great start on Sunday, winning test one ahead of Buttrick and Smith. However, Buttrick reeled off three-straight wins and appeared to be running away from the field, though Baylor gained a bit of ground with a win in test five. Test six was a pivotal one, as Ashburn turned the fastest time, as he had done in the final test on the previous day. Meanwhile, Baylor tripped the wire a second slower to post the second fastest time. Buttrick, on the other hand, bobbled midway through the test and dropped to fifth for the test, his only finish all weekend outside of the top three.
Baylor ended up winning Sunday’s event, edging out Ashburn and Buttrick, and by doing so the SRT Racing KTM rider extended his lead in the series standings to eight points over Ashburn with just one round remaining. Buttrick, however, claimed the overall for the weekend, posting a total time of 01:11:38.485. Ashburn’s 01:11:43.168 was good enough for second overall, while Baylor’s 01:11:43.292 left the South Carolina rider solidly in third.
Smith finished the weekend in fourth while Bobbitt was fifth.
After wrapping up the Women’s Pro championship at the previous round, Rocky Mountain ATV-MC/KR4 Arrive-n-Ride Racing’s Tayla Jones showed up at the Rock Crusher on a 125 and claimed her seventh win of the series. Jones won 10 of the 12 tests en route to a 58-second victory over KTM Factory Racing’s Becca Sheets.
“I have my race bike up for sale so I decided to race my 125 here today and it was a blast,” said Jones. “It’s so light I could just flick it around where I wanted to and I totally enjoyed it.”
Sheets won the remaining two tests and sits fourth overall in the Women’s Pro standings behind Mackenzie Tricker and Brooke Cosner.
Billy Schlag extended his lead in the Open A championship standings by taking his fifth overall victory of the season. The KTM rider won all 12 tests en route to the win. Pennsylvania’s Tanner Way (KTM) was second overall in the class, while Kentucky’s Adam Froman finished third.
Christy King won the Women’s Amateur class on a Honda, with Kerrie Knox (Kaw) and Nancy Sabater (KTM) in second and third.
The 2017 Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro Series presented by PRI Powersports Insurance wraps up on November 11-12 at the Big Buck Farm for the Big Buck Sprint Enduro, the ninth and final round of the series in Union, South Carolina. For more information on the series go to www.sprintenduro.com.
Cory Buttrick (KTM) 01:11:38.485
Jordan Ashburn (Bet) 01:11:43.168
Steward Baylor (KTM) 01:11:43.292
Evan Smith (KTM) 01:12:04.773
Russell Bobbitt (KTM) 01:12:25.070