Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1990's

Cycle News 1994 03 16

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 69

·FINALMOTO .. B Chris Jonnum:. .' . .'. y riders who were out practicing. On our un li censed two-s trokes, w e'd ride through the streets of small towns without being hassled, and stop for a bite to eat in rus tic moun tain- top lod ges. With training grounds like this, it's no wond er tha t It a li an s are among the best enduro rid ers in the world -the riding is so much fun, why do anything else? As a part o f my job, I also att ended several World a n d It ali a n Cha m pionship Enduro rounds, and the Swed ish International Six Days Enduro. I was there to work, not ride, but I was still struck by the carnival-like atm osphere tha t can onl y be gained by holding such events year after year. Pare ferme would typically be held in the local soccer sta d ium, and the pits were outsid e in the city streets. I re me m ber attending the It a lia n rou n d of th e World Enduro Series, which ended with a gra ss-track specia l test in a farm er's tiered-off field . During th e d ay, th e many fans laid in the grass an d ate picnic lun ches, aw aiting the riders' ap proach. When the compet it ors finally did arrive , they were cheered on b y th ro ngs o f fan s, who w oul d run back a nd forth to va rio us sections of th e t rack, armed with airhorns and flags. They did n't yell just for the Italians - Swede Peter Hansson got the loudest cheer of all when the former GP r id er turned two tiers in to a stair-step d ouble jump. Before the tes t, the scores of Hansson and Italian Giorgio Grasso were so close that the overall winner would be the one with the better time on that grass track. Grasso rode a few minutes after H ansson, and when his time - the da y's fastest - appeared on the d igital d ispla y in the middle of the field, the crowd lost it. When 's the last time you w itnessed that kind of specta tor participation at an American Nati onal Enduro? You'll be lucky to see it at a National MX. ver pray to the God of End ures? Maybe for rain (or a lack thereof) th e da y before an eve nt, or for an early m in u te in th e next drawing? Well if you do, be sure and speak clearly, because the Enduro God is ' no doubt European, an d his paradise is the World Championship Enduro Series. In the realm of motocross, the AMA Camel Supercros s and National Champ ionship MX Series are gener a ll y regarded as the pinnacles of the sport. Sure, the "World Championships" 'a re held primarily in Europe, but everyone knows where the real world champ is crowned. In endures, how ever, there is no s uch inaccuracy of titles. The best riders in the sport contest the World Endures, and the World End uro Champion is just tha t, an d nothing less. To gain a true ap preciation for the flavo r of Eur opean endures, nothing ca n substitute actually visiting the Continen t. A few years ago, I was fortunate enough to live in Ita ly for a yea r, working a t Acerbis' Italian head quarters. The com pany's factory is in Albino, a small town in the Berga mo region. Italians regard th is area m uch as Yanks once vi ewed south ern Californi a's "EI Cajon zone," only it is wo rld-caliber enduro and rally riders - not MXers - that are being bred in the foothills of the Italian alps . Franco Acerbis - the boss of the company that shares his nam e - let me use a KTM 350 (the same bik e Kev in Hines competed on in the Incas Rally) during m y stay, and I frequentl y to ok it on weekend trail rides in the mountains. These are the same trails that were used in the '86 Italian Six Days, and they offer the best ri ding. I've ever experienced . Costa Rica and Colora d o are the only places that have even come close. During my off-season rides, I'd frequently. happen across facto ry end uro Perhaps the best featu re of all when it comes to Eu ropean endures, is the venues in whi ch they take place. Think Boston has his to ry? Try France. The courses follo w cobbl estone city stree ts, and fans watch the action fro m gs and bridges that are olde r than our Decla ra tion of Indep enden ce. Special tests are held near town in lush pastures tha t have been used for generations, not hid d en fro m the pub lic in ha za rd ous waste du mps or used-up dirt fields. The Euro peans ha ve been do ing this for lo ng e no u gh that th e y kn ow the intricacies of th e sport. When I fir st ar rived at the Swedish Six Days, I was impressed by how orga nized the Ll.S, pits looked, and a little surprised by the apparent chaos of the Italian pit a rea. The Americans' rental cars were pa rked in the back of their pit , and th ey had three work stations se t u p directly in front of the specta to rs, each s upplied w ith 'a trick too l boa rd and a pa ir of br and-new tires. The Italian camp, on the other ha nd, was a confusion of haphazard ly parked box vans and scattered tools . It wasn't until the riders finished the first day and were pr epa ring thei r bikes for day two that I began to realize exactly w ho was organized a nd w ho w asn 't. The A m e r ica n r id ers were im p r essi ve with th e ir tire-ch ang ing speed, but the y weren't ne arly as efficient as the Italian mechanics. In European endures, only the rider is allowed to work on his bike, bu t amid the "confusion" of the Italian pit, a chase rider would go unnoticed as he ins talled new tires, sprockets and brake pad s on his rider's bike. As the saying goes, "It ain't cheatin' if you don 't get cau ght." At the risk of sounding like a traitor, I have to say that European enduros and enduro riders are the best. However, no t everyone gets the chance to see those riders and races firs t-ha nd . For those who are able, I strongly sugges t checking out events like the Nevada Rally and this yea r's Tulsa Six Days. They may no t offer the European flavo r of the Continent , bu t they do showcase the top off-road ride rs in the world. We at Cycle News want to do our part as well. Wh ile we m ay no t be able to send every hardcore Am erican enduro fan to check out these events, we can do o ur best to bring the races to you. For over 15 years , we' ve pro vided in-depth coverage of the ISDE - the Olympics of enduros. With this yea r's Six Days being held in the States , we have bigge r plans than ever. We'll have two staff reporters on the scene, and will publish the story the day after the event ends - no t a week later. In add iti on, we've decided to pro vide cove rage of th is yea r ' s Worl d Champion shi p End uro ci rc uit. Aus tralian journ alis t Geoff Meyer, who is cu rrently living in Europ e, will supply us with words and photographs fro m the six-round series, as well as several other events. His first story ap pears in this issue, on page .30. Meyers attended and covered the Gilles Lalay Classic, an extremely techn ical enduro that makes ou r toughest eve n ts loo k easy. This even t stan ds alone - it is not a pa rt of the Worl d Championship End u ro Ser ies , w hic h will s ta rt in April. The riders' nam es may be a little un fam iliar at first, but you'll get used to them as the year goes on. And when the Six Days rolls around, and you go to see what all the h ub-bub is about, pe rhaps you'll think of Cian-Ma rco Rossi, Pau l Edm ondson, Giorgio Grasso, Svenerik Jonsson, Giova n ni Sal a and Fabio Farioli - no t as hard-to-pronounce names, but as what they are - the best enduro riders in the world. ex .' " : ',' announcing all events at Costa Mesa Speedway in 1994. Fla nders replace s Larry Huffman, who ha s b een the announcer at the so u the rn Ca lifornia facility for th e majority of th e las t 20 years. AUTOGRAPH SIGNING: A t Action . Ka w asa ki in Lafa yette, Indiana, on March 17 fr om 4:00 p .m. to 5:30 p .m . Team Kawa sa ki' s Mike La Rocco is scheduled to ap pear. For more information call 317/742-4021. BORN: Rebecca Lynn Bowman, to Jim Bowman and his wife Carol on February 26, in Fremont, California. Bowman is the president of th e California Enduro Riders Association (CERA). BORN: Du stin Dakota Walters to Lisa Walters on February 22 in Hattiesburg, Missouri. Dustin is Cycle News distributor Leo Potvin's first grandchild. Congrats, Leo. ney Gould...John Penton won the Alligator Enduro in Daytona Beach, Florida, beatin g John Buffaloe. In short track he Daytona 200 was action from Dayt on a, Bart Markel and postpon ed d u e to I~ 0;; '::" 1 Dick Mann spli t wins in the two-night R."':l.:-lo.I;"~ i rain, promp tin g the , . ' . ",:-;'7 event... follow ing comm ents ~ 1' from so me of the riders. i..£ .J.... .~ " - 1 15 YEARS AGO Gene Romero : "T ri - iT -l March 21,1979... ump hs w ould have an i ! f adva ntage in the bad -J, he Daytona 200 ra in . I' ve ne ve r. road was won b y raced in rain befo re. I do n' t wan t to Dale Sin gl eto n get h urt th is early in the seas on." Bart as he becam e on ly Markel: "I'm all for them running, rain th e second privaor shine. I like racin g." Gary Nixon: "I'd tee r to w in th e like to see it called off."...The rain- sho rtp restigious race . Singleton ened 10D-mile 250cc National was wo n beat Ro n Pie rce by 15 seconds with b y Yvon D uHa mel on a Yamaha . Frenchman Patri ck Pons finishing third. DuHamel beat Ron Pierce an d Brit RodThe Superbike 100 race at Daytona was I T , ti _ I .,.{/" T -- CORR ECTION : In a r ec en t N e w Products section we gave the incorrect phone n u mber for the d istrib utors of the Carb Doctor Miku ni TMX tuning kit. The correct n umbers are: C.C Racing Supplies, 412 /444- 6886 and W ide Open Raci ng , 805/2573361. NAMED: Suzuki as the official motorcycle of the National Hot Rod Associa tion (NHRA). Suzuki vehicles will be used won by Pierce, with the Californian beating Yoshimura Suzuki teammates We s Co o ley and David Emde. Skip Akslan d beat Fr edd ie Spencer and Ra n d y Mamo la to w in the 100-mile Lig htweig ht final a t the Speedway. Jim my Weinert bea t Bob Han nah to win th e Daytona Supercross. Marty Tripes finished third... 5YEARS AGO M 15,19 9... arch 8 upercross Series points lead er Rick Johnson und erw en t surgery on his righ t w rist after a practice crash p rior to the opening round of the AMA S . INJHE.WIND3..' : Continued from page exclusively at NHRA even ts by NHRA staff and officials. AUTOGRAPH SIGNING: At Drever Suzu k i in Indianapolis, Ind iana , on March 18 fro m 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Team Suzuki riders Ezra Lusk, Jimmy Button, Brian Swink and Phil Lawrence a re sched u le d to appear a lo ng wi th Tea m Yam aha's Jeff Emig and Micha el Cra ig . Fo r m o re information call i 317/243-2203 . a 250cc National MX Series in Gainesville, Florida . The Ga in es v ille Nation al saw Jean-Michel Ba yle and Mike Kiedrowski sco re victories in the 250 and 125cc cla sses, re spectively. Bayle topped Jeff Stanton and Jeff Ward to w in th e 250cc class while Kied ro wski beat Damon Brad shaw and Guy Coop' er to w in the 125cc class...Du tchman Racing won the AMA /CCS End urance race at Daytona International Speedway with riders Kev in Rentze ll an d Dale Q uarterley...Sco tt Plessinger won the seco nd round of the AMA Nation al Ha re Scrambles Championsh ip, beating Terry Cunningham and Ed Lojak...The second round of the Mickey Thompson Off-Road Champ ionship Gran Prix Series was won by Tallon Vohland over Brian Manley and Jim Holley... a

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