Parts Unlimited Off-road Motorcycle and
ATV Nationals, Round 5: Maxxis Hang Man Cross-country National
Whibley leaves ‘em high and dry at
By Mark Kariya
Through five rounds of the
OMAs, Paul Whibley has been unbeatable as he demonstrated so ably at the Maxxis
Hang Man Cross-country National in Hanging Limb, Tennessee.
Yamaha’s Paul Whibley survived one challenge after another--at least in the
early going--to win the Maxxis Hang Man Cross-country National in Hanging Limb,
Tennessee, round five of the Parts Unlimited Off-road Motorcycle and ATV
Nationals. In doing so, he kept his record perfect at five out of five as he
goes for a record fifth-straight series championship.
Russell Bobbitt almost got
the $100 FMF Holeshot Award, but he couldn't get slowed enough for the first
turn, allowing eventual winner Paul Whibley to sneak past. The FMF/KTM racer
held second briefly and settled for third on the day.
But after snagging the $100 FMF
Holeshot Award and going on to win yet again, Whibley insisted, “I was not
riding real good today; I was riding a little bit careful--too careful--early
on and Jordan [Ashburn] caught me and passed me at one point. He was riding
really good; I guess he’s pretty comfortable in this stuff.”
Teammate Ashburn is definitely
comfortable “in this stuff,” since he lives in nearby Cookeville, and after
making a few changes to his WR450F, he was flying. Unfortunately for the local
favorite, the fuel tank didn’t hold quite as much as they thought it did and he
ran out of gas on the last lap. After a lengthy pause before he was able to get
more, he ended up fourth Pro and fifth overall.
Husaberg’s Nick Fahringer was one of
the beneficiaries of Ashburn’s unplanned stop. After a somewhat slow first few
laps of riding in fourth place, he found his rhythm and got into third. “The
whole day was fall-behind-in-the-dust, catch-back-up-in-the-woods,” he said.
“Every lap I’d make a little more headway doing that. Jordan was riding good so
that was unfortunate for him.”
Though he felt a bit flat
in the early laps, Nick Fahringer loosened up and rode a strong third until the
final lap when he passed an out-of-gas Jordan Ashburn. Second overall also gave
him solitary possession of second in series points, unofficially.
More significant for Fahringer,
though, was beating Russell Bobbitt of the FMF/KTM Factory Off-Road Racing
Team. Going into the Hang Man, the were tied for second in series points at 92
apiece. With Fahringer finishing second and Bobbitt third, the Husaberg racer
now has sole possession of second place, four points ahead of Bobbitt,
But a lot can happen in the last
half of the season, of course.
Hall’s Cycle Husqvarna rider Daniel
Janus put in a great ride after a somewhat slow start. He not only won Lite A,
he was the first A rider, finishing an impressive fourth overall. Ashburn was
next followed by 30-39 A winner Marty Michels, Lite A runner-up Brandon Farnum,
Pro Shane Klimek, Lite B winner Dalton Cross and Open A winner Spencer Burke.
Despite a somewhat slow
start, Daniel Janus moved steadily up through the pack to end up fourth overall
and first A rider. That gave him the Lite A win, unofficially moving him into
the class points lead.
The next stop in the series is the
always popular FMF Spring Creek Grand Prix in Millville, Minnesota, next month.
That’s the start of the final half of the season where history could be made if
Whibley continues his dominating ways.