Mullins carries momentum in Virginia National Enduro
May 27, 2014
Story and Photos by Shan Moore
Eaton Rapids, MI (May 26, 2014) – Charlie Mullins is beginning to stamp his name on the 2014 Kenda AMA National Enduro Series. The FMF/KTM rider has won all four rounds held so far this year and this weekend he will be looking to extend an already healthy points lead at the Jester National Enduro, round five of the series on June 1st in Arrington, Virginia.
Charlie Mullins has won all four rounds of the series so far. Photo: Shan Moore
Despite suffering problems in two tests, Mullins came on strong in the end to beat out AirGroup Racing’s Nick Fahringer for the win at the previous round in Park Hills, Missouri. However, Fahringer is getting closer to his first win of the season with each race, and the Husqvarna rider will be gunning for Mullins this weekend in Virginia.
Fahringer’s not the only rider looking to knock Mullins off the top step of the podium. This will be a home race for Virginia residents Brad Bakken and Paddy Holloway. Bakken, an N-Fab/Am Pro Yamaha rider will be considered one of the favorites to win, in addition to Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Andrew DeLong (third in Missouri), and Maxxis/Klim/Dirtwise-backed Jesse Groemm. Of course, you can’t rule out eight-time national champ Mike Lafferty, who is making his “farewell tour” this year before going into retirement in 2015. These are just a few of the riders who are hoping to keep Mullins in check at the Virginia round.
In addition to the series regulars, Kevin Benavides, the current Argentina Overall Enduro Champion will be challenging Mullins at the Virginia race, as well, competing on a DirtWise "Ready to Race" KTM.
The AirGroup Bounty is back for the Virginia race, which means that if anyone can overall all six tests they can win $1000. If no one wins all six tests, then the bounty will roll over to the next eligible round and another $1000 will be added to the amount.
In the Rekluse Expert-AA Class, Husqvarna support rider Craig DeLong took the win in at the last round in Missouri over Drew Higgins and Thorn Devlin, however, Higgins holds the lead in the class point standings by one point over Tyler Trammel. DeLong is third in the standings, another two points back.
For all you AA riders, this is a great new class set up just for you. Each round pays $100 for first, $75 for second and $50 for third. Plus, at the end of the year the Expert-AA Class Champion will earn a big purse from Rekluse, if he runs Rekluse Clutch Components. So far, the end of year purse is up to $1800. The Rekluse Expert-AA Class Champion is determined by a rider’s best 8 of 10 rounds. Be sure to check out the Rekluse website for exact details.
The Expert-AA class was created to give these talented young riders a stepping-stone to achieve their goal of becoming pro riders. The NEPG is encouraging these riders to push their limits in a highly competitive class where the top five are separated by mere seconds, just like the pros. The NEPG will keep these riders grouped together for the rest of the year.
New to the series, the Jester National Enduro will be the first Enduro ever on the 5000-acre private parcel at Oakridge. Some trails are established but five of the tests will be fresh for the event. Rolling hills with a clay base and some rocks will make up the course.
On Saturday there will be a Pro rider Q & A from 4-6PM. You can e-mail questions to email@example.com. Also on Saturday KTM will sponsor a cook out at 4-6PM, complete with Burgers, Dogs, etc.. There will also be a band and a fireworks show on Saturday night, so the place should be rockin’. However, there is no test loop, so come prepared.
For those looking to get in a little sightseeing while in the area, Arrington is just over three hours from Virginia Beach. There is also a Civil War battleground close. Check out the link below for a map to the Appomattox Court House National Historical Park.
For more information on the Kenda AMA National Enduro Series please go to www.nationalenduro.com.