Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1990's

Cycle News 1998 09 02

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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IN THE WIND T err y Thomp son (BSA ) topped the 540cc class at round eight of the AMA National Championship ' Hillclimb series , held in Laurelville, Ohio, on August 23. It was his fourth win of the season. Phil Libhart (Tri) was second and Ted Wilkin s (Rtx) was third. In the SOOcc clas s, James Large (H-D ) took his fourth win of the sea son with his victory o ve r Steve D resser (H -D) a nd Bobby Te mple to n (H- D). Arclight Suzu ki (Suz ) won round eight of the WERA National Endurance Series held at Putnam Park in Mount Merid ian , Indiana, on August 22. Arcligh t II 'w as second , w ith points lead er SBR/Semoff Brothers third at the end of the six-hour race. In sprint racing on August 23, Mike Himm e lsba ch (Hon) w rapped up the 125c c C h a m p io ns h ip a nd Ma rk M cDaniel (Suz) won the three classes he en tered : the 1100cc Superstock, Micheli n 750cc Su perstock and GMD Computrack Formula On e races. Lance S mail (H bg ) wo n both mot os during round eight of the AMA Western Four-Stroke National Motocross Series, held in Ra ym ond , Wash ington , on August 23. With the two wins, Smail wrapped up the series championship wi th one round left to run, winning 14 of 16 mo tos thus far in the series. Smail beat Brad Hagseth and Greg Schnell at the Wa rd Creek MX Park. Tony Meiring (Rtx ) grabbed th e lion's sha re of the $2000 Pro purse when he won th e Open A class at the Valley H arl ey - Da v id s on-sponsored Harley Nig h ts shor t t ra ck a t the Lodi Cycle Bowl in Lodi, California, on Augus t 22. Toby Jorgensen (CCM) was seco nd and Rob Damron (Hbg) finis hed third . Observed Trials Worl d Cha m pion Doug Lampkin w ill definitely be staying with the Italian factory Bet a team for '99 . " I have an exce lle nt per sonal rel ati onsh ip with the Beta fami ly and their engineers and mechanics," Lampkin said . "Donato Miglio does a fabulous job on deve lopment. We are w inni ng, which is what matters, Why wou ld I want to change?" Kevin Win dham to Honda? Looks like it. Reliable sou rces indicat e that Windh am a nd Tea m Ya ma ha h a v e ha d a fa lli ng-ou t and, as a result, Wi nd ha m has sig ned with Team H ond a fo r th e 1999 season. The official commen t from both Yamaha and Honda regarding the s it u a tion is "no co m ment. " Bu t our so u rces say it's a "done deal," though Yamaha is still trying to get him back. It now a p pears that the 1999 Honda MX team wi ll be made up of Ezra Lusk (w ho has another year on his multi-year contract), Sebastien Torte lli an d Wind ha m, t hough H ond a w ill n o t yet co nfirm t hese sig ni ngs. A t th e la st o u tdoor Nationa l MX in Minneso ta, there w ere ru mo rs circulating th at Mickael Pich on was talkin g wi th Tea m Ho nda, but wi th th e Wind ham deal a ppa re n tly done, Pich on 's Ho nda options are a pparently go ne . It now a ppears as though Pichon w il l lo o k into the p os it io n s o pen at Kawasaki or stay pu t at Suzuki. 2 Spea king of Yama ha 's factory MX team, ru mors have it that Doug Henry , w ho is lik elv to win his firs t 250cc outdoor tit le this year, is co ntem p la ting re tiremen t at the e n d of th e s eri es . It is known , however, th at Henry' s longtim e tuner, Pet e Steinbrecher, is calling it quits at the end of the year and will go into the house-bui lding bu siness . With W indh am 's likel y departure , Karger claims Intercontinental .5 eedwa Final . ome rider Brian Karger (cen- H ter ) celebra ted in style, as he ro ared to v icto ry i n th e Int ercont in ental Fin al at Vo je ns Speedway in .Vojens, Denmark, on Aug ust 21. Karger, alw ays a popular rid er a t th e Vojens tr ack in Denmark , ed ged o u t Swede Peter Karl sson (le ft) in a runoff for th e tit le, but both riders had cause to cele brate as they secured the tw o places up fo r g rab s in ne x t yea r' s Wo r ld Championship Grand Prix se ries . The next six riders had to settle for a place in the Grand Prix Challenge meeting, which represents the last chance for them to make it through next year. Ameri ca ' s "Su d d e n " Sam Ermolenko (righ t) headed th e list of qu alifier s, w ith Joe Screen and John Jorgensen also safely through. Bu t the next three places w er e decided by a dramatic runoff, which wa s won by Gary Havelock, with Nicki Pedersen second and Mikael Karlsson third. Pedersen 's brother Ronni suffered the heartache of last place. With ra in coming down, the meeting was delayed after heat eight, when all riders had completed two races each. Referee Yamaha might end up giving Henry a deal tha t he can't refu se and we ma y see him back again in 1999. With Kevi n Windham's a p parent sp lit with Team Yamaha, and wi th the pOSSibili ty of Dou g H enry ' s r e tirem e nt, Yamaha is certai nly on the market for at least one 250cc rider, and , from what we hear,the leading ca n d ida tes for th a t position are Robbie Reynard and current Team Kawasaki m ember Damon Huffman. Kawasaki has ye t to com m it to si g ning Hu ffm an, a nd h is co n tract runs out at the end of th e season. Ditto for Ryan H ughes' Kaw asaki co n tract. Je ff Emig , h o w e ver, is se t to sta y at Kawasaki. Nex t year's Yamaha of Troy MX team has reportedl y signed a fourth member to its squad - Casey Lytle. Lytle joins Casey Johnson, Stephane Ran cada and Ernesto Fonseca on the Yama ha of Troy all-1 25cc team. H onda of Tro y riders Mike Bro w n and Mike Craig w ill be looking for new rides for '99. Although the 1999 AMA Supercros s schedule has not been officially released, we have caught wind that the opening ro und of the series will ta ke p lace at Ediso n Interna tiona l Field (formerl y known as A na heim Stadium) in A na hei m, California, on Janua ry 9. Since the reva mped stadi um now hold s onl y 45,000, a possible second date ma y be added to th e series. It ' s alrea dy kno wn t h a t team Spli tFire /Pro Circuit /Kawasaki' s Rick y Carmichael w ill m ake h is pro fessi onal d e b u t o n a 250 at th e U .S . Op en o f Supercross a t Las Vegas, October 10-11, bu t it now appears that he'll also compete in the first five ro unds of the 1999 AMA Sup ercross Ser ie s - beginn in g w ith the Anaheim round on January 9 in California . Word has it that the first five rounds of the series will be West Coast events, so , depending on how he d oes in the 250cc class, Carmichael will make a To ny Steel e ordered g rad ing work to be done on the track and ra cing w as allowed to co ntinu e. As expected , the atmosphere among the riders became very tense in the latter stages, as po ints were precious - bu t the glory belonged to Danish hero Karger. decision following the fifth race as to w he ther or not he'll move back to th e 125cc class to defen d h is Eastern Region al 12Sec Supercross title. The u pcomi ng Motocross des ations will see top lineups fro m Belgiu m and Fra nce. Stefan Everts (250 cc H ond a), Jo el Smets (600cc Husab erg ) and Marnicq Bervoet s 0 25cc Suzu ki) will be lin in g up for Te am Bel g ium , w h ile Se bas ti en Tortell i (250cc Ka w a saki) , David Vuillemin (125cc Yamaha ) a nd Fred eri c Bolle y (250cc H onda) will mak e up the French team. New Zealan d will ag ain be made up of the King brothers Darryll (630 cc H u sk y )' a n d Shay ne (250cc KTM) - wi th Josh Coppins rid ing the 125cc machine. The British team will not be decided u ntil a cou ple of weeks prior to the event, altho ug h the prob abl e line u p will be Ca rl Nu nn (12Sec Yamaha ), Rob Herri ng (500cc Honda ) a nd Ja mes Dobb (250cc H ond a ). Italy , of co u rse, is re eling fro m th e new s tha t Andrea Bartolin i will not com pete d ue to his injuries in Na mur, Belgium , two weeks ago, leaving the likely· team of Alessa ndro Puzar (125cc TM ), Alessio Chiodi (25Occ Hus q varna), and Claudio Federici (25Oc Yama ha ). c It seem s th e Novem ber 10-15 ISDE in Australia is back on track. Af ter many personnel ch a ng es in the p a st few m onths, thing s are reportedly co m ing together. The final-day mo tocross special test is being prepared and, fro m all acco u nts, is sha ping up to be one of th e bes t motocross fina ls for years. Wit h the lik es of Joel Sme ts a nd Darr yl! an d Shayne King , as well as Americans Rod ney Sm it h and Ty Da vis, and several other m otocross ride rs com pe ting in this yea r' s ' ISDE, do n' t expect enduro riders suc h as Giova nni Sala , Kari Tiainen or Anders Eriksson to w in da y six. Newly cr owne d Wo rld 500cc MX C ha m pi o n Sme ts says he is lo okin g for w ard to d oing the ISDE. " It will be a lot of fun ," Sme ts sa id. "I rod e the '93 ISDE in Ho lland and rode in Australia last yea r." John H ipkiss Kawasa ki 's Tea m Green 's Destry Abbott has sig ned a contract for at least a no the r year wit h th e gree n tea m . Abbott w ill conce ntra te on the Na tional H are & Hound and Best in the Desert Series, as well as o the r selec ted ev ents , in 1999. Abbott w ill also be competing later this year a t the International Six Days Enduro in Austra lia. He is a mem ber of this yea r's U n ited Sta tes ProGrip / Wo rld Tro phy Team. On Monday, Septem be r 7 (Labor Da y), the Co ombs family and friends will host a memorial se rvice to celebra te th e life of Dave Coombs . Th ose pl anning to attend are encouraged to brin g their best memories of "Big Da ve" and share them with everyon e, via a live mi crophone, at Hi gh Point Raceway, in Mount Morris, Pennsylvania . Th e "fa re well party" is sched ul ed to begin at 2 p. m . There w ill also be live music. Much specu la tion has surro u nded the res pective futu res of Spa niards Marc Colomer a nd David Cobos. Rumo rs had them d own for a straight switch of factories, wi th Cobos rep lacin g Co lomer at Montesa w hile Colome r wou ld be the a u to ma tic Gas Gas nu mber-one ma n. This was mostly d ue to Colomer starting his season so mewhat off form but, as h e has imp ro v ed , Montesa ha s become ha ppy with Colorner's perform ance a nd sees him as th e on ly rea l threat to Lam pki n available. W h ile Co lo m e r s hould be stayin g w here he is, Amos Bilbao seems to be on th e mo ve - from Gas Gas to Mon tesa - to tak e u p a dev elopment rol e si mi lar to Dona to Migli o's a t Beta. Kenichi Kuroyama look s set to rem ain with Beta fo r ano ther seas o n as he receives g o o d ba ckin g fr o m t h e Jap anese impo rter , whi le Taka h is a Fuj inam i ho p e s to s ecure Honda ba ck in g fo r ano ther season . G as Ga s is th e major factory with out a rea l cha m p io ns hip co n te nder and looks set to s tick w it h the still-improving David Cobos . One

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