Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1970's

Cycle News 1979 06 27

Cycle News is a weekly magazine that covers all aspects of motorcycling including Supercross, Motocross and MotoGP as well as new motorcycles

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Page 68 of 71

An .ay nominee for "Motu of the V.... laurels. the second 250cc National Championship MX S8ries race 8t Sura Point sew Weinert 171, Tripes 1141. Howerton 161 and Hannah 111 race this close - and closer - for moat of the motol AMA 250/500cc National Championship MX Series - Rounds seven/three - Tripes, Mosier clean-sweep Sears Point By Charles Morey SONOMA. CA,JUNE 17 "I'm ready to do it again!" an obviously-pumped Gaylon Mosier told announcer Bruce Flanders immediately following his second 40-minuteplus-two-Iap moto victory at the jointly-presented Yamaha Gold Cup/Mr. PiBB AMA 500cc National Championship MX Series race on the gnarly, all-new Sears Point Inter- 12 national Raceway motocross course. Mosier had ridden his Rocky Williams-prepared works Uni-Trak Kawasaki to a clean-sweep win, riding both motos exactly like he'd ridden to the Anaheim Supercross viclOry last year: Like no one in the world could touch him. Team Honda's MaTty Tripes, also a I-I winner, hadn't found the 250cc class easy pickings. Neither win had come easily, but the ,second race in particular was nominated for the "MOIO of the Year" award by many of the AMA National MX circuit regulars. The win could have gone to any of four riders: Hannah, Howerton, Weinert or Tripes. But it was Marty. riding the Jon Rosenstieltuned factory Honda, who held out longest in both motos. "I haven't pushed that hard in a long time'" Tripes exclaimed in a postrace recap with Bob Hannah. reigning Number One in the class and presem series point standings leader. Then, not to admit to the Hurricane that be'd been hard to beat, Tripes continued to tease Hannah about being second place. "It's bad enough lelling this guy win." Hannah laughed. turning to a bystander, "but then I've gOlla put up with him for a whole weekl" 250cc National Jimmy Weinert jammed his Roy Turner-prepared Kawasaki imo the lead going up the long Sears Point start chute. then blasted off across the c;Iusty. clay- based circuit with Kent Howerton, Jeff Jennings and Carlos Serrano in tow. As they completed the first lap, the order switched with Weinert and Howerton duelling for the lead. Serrano second and Honda's Steve Wise moving up past Jennings into fourth. Suzuki's SCOll Gillman held down fifth place ahead of Lar~ Wosick, David Wood. John SavilSki and Dean Wiggins. Bob Hanflah rounded out the lOp lO: Tripes was 14th. Asked later about his .poor start. Hannah responded: "A few guys tried 10 make a ham and cheese sandwich out of me - and' was the cheese'" The natural terrain course proved to be extremely difficult. The hard clay surface, cracked and dry. broke up imo fist-sized pieces that got under from wheels and knocked the front ends right out from under riders when they least expected it. Going down in the early laps were Jennings. Wise and Wosick. and by lap five things had changed drastically. Lap five saw Howerton overtake Weinert for the lead. and Hannah had worked his way forward. avoiding fallen riders, to take over third place. five seconds behind Weinert. Gillman held fourth. but Tripes was pushing hard. and he got past on the next lap. Once in the open. Howerton began to put some space between his rear tire and Weinert. Pushed by Tripes. Hannah closed the gap on second place. and by lap seven. only five seconds separated Weinert. in second. from Tripes in fourth. Hannah caught and passed Weinert - after the Jammer held him off in a neck-and-neck race for almost two laps - on the nimh lap. Tripes closed on Weinert, pushed bard. and overtook the Kawasaki ridrr on lap-\(); • going around tbe ouuide on a turn. All the while. Hannah had been closing on Howerton. Two laps later. as Howerton successfully held off frantic passing attempts by Hannah, Tripes closed to make it a three-way fight. On his unlucky. 3th lap, Howerton bailed off while leading, restarting in third after both Hannah and Tripes sbot past. ". don't even remember that one," Kent laughed about it later in the pits, "I don't remember ,how many times • fell - • was lying all over the placel Normally, you don't make that many mistakes, but on this track you were out of control half the time!" he added, referring to the invasion of the giant dirt clods. Tripes was showing Hannah no mercy out front. For three long laps, he pressured the Yamaha rider, trying everyway he could find to get past. Then, on lap 16, Hannah slid wide, hit a fence post, and stepped off. Tripes took the lead. Hannah remounted quickly and chased Tripes, but his five-second deficit stayed steady until the moto's {"nd on lap 20. Tripes sailed across the final jump to a fairly secure win followed by Hannah, Howerton, Weinen and Gillman. Completing the top 10 were John Savitski, Jeff Jennings, Larry Wosick, Mike Guerra and Dean Wiggins. Master of the Sears Point holeshot on the potent Kawasaki, Jimmy Weinert scored his second perfect stan of the day as the gate dropped for the second 250cc National class moto. Husky rider Mike Guerra was hot on his trail this time. David Wood rode in third ahead of fast-moving Many Tripes, Carlos Serrano, Kent Howenon. Bob Hannah and Jeff Jennings. Ron Sun and John SavilSki filled the top 10. By the end of lap one, Tripes had jumped up to third behind a close duel between Weinert and Guerra. On the third time around, Tripes stuffed the Honda inside Guerra and slipped into second place. By the end of that lap, the top four had lined up the race of the day: Tripes had taken the lead from Weinert - then turned and waved at him - and Howerton and Hannah were punching it out, right on the leaders' tails. Weinert wasn't going to put up with Tripes' taunting, and on lap four, he reclaimed the lead! Many held the Honda close to the Kawasaki's bouncing rear knobby, and kept pressuring the Jammer. Meanwhile, Hannah and Howerton were doing a little jamming on their own. Hannah found a clean line past Howerton as they started the fifth lap, but Kem stuck the Suzuki's from wheel inside on the next slow turn and bumped the Hurricane out of his wayl "He started pushing me, so I started pushing himl" Hannah said. "It's very hard to pass on this track. "00 you know how boring it is to follow somebody through a tum?!" Howerton responded, ". had more fun riding that way. You almost have to pass that way on this track." Several turns later on the same lap, Hannah returned the favor, sending Kent sliding toward the fence on a grassy hillside turn. Only one second separated the top four -one second total - on parts of the course. And as intense as the hattIe was, it lasted through lap after lap and had the spectators on their toes, yelling and waving to their favorites. On lap seven, Hannah got serious and began using every line on the course to get past Tripes. He was always on Marty's rear tire, always in another line. If Tripes had missed a shift, or even breathed out of sync, Hannah would have been past. On lap 'eight, Hannah found a chance and

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