Steward Baylor used a strong performance in the final test
to take a narrow victory over eight-time national enduro champ Michael Lafferty
at round seven of the AMA/Rekluse National Enduro Series presented by Moose
Racing in Cross Fork, Pennsylvania.
After jumping out to a quick lead early in the race, Baylor
found himself 10 seconds down to Lafferty heading into the sixth and final test
of the day. However, the Fly Racing/ RidePG.com/Genuine Dirt Racer/WP Racing
USA-backed KTM rider turned in his best run of the day to surpass Lafferty by
just two points at the finish.
Lafferty was third fastest in the final test after
high-siding over a slippery log, but the factory Husaberg rider still finished
out the day with the runner-up position.
With the win, Baylor extended his lead in the series
standings to 23 points over Lafferty in the series standings with just three
Husaberg’s Nick Fahringer, who handily won this race last
year, rounded out the podium after turning in one of his best rides of the
year. The Ohio rider turning the fastest time in the fourth and fifth tests
after getting off to a slow start early in the day, but was pushing both Baylor
and Lafferty heading in the final test. A couple of crashes, however, thwarted
any chance of Fahringer moving into the top two.
New Jersey KTM rider Jesse Groemm continues to move up the
ranks and parlayed a steady and nearly error-free performance into a fourth
place finish. Meanwhile, Pennsylvania native Andrew DeLong was hoping for a
strong ride in his home state and the FAR Husqvarna rider was pleased with a
Shenandoah Honda-backed Thad DuVall was sixth after winning
the opening test of the day. DuVall was riding a 250 two-stroke for the first
time all year, and only had an hour on the bike before the race.
Defending series champ Russell Bobbitt had an off day and
finished a lowly seventh on his FMF/KTM, while Steward Baylor’s younger brother
Grant, finished eighth on a KTM.
Baylor now has five wins in the series, while Lafferty has
one. The only other rider to take a win this year was FMF/KTM rider Cory
Buttrick, who turned the feat at the Sand Lapper enduro in South Carolina early
in the year.
The series resumes on September 9th near Park
Hills, Missouri. For more information of the AMA/Rekluse National Enduro Series
presented by Moose Racing go to www.nationalenduro.com.