TKO- The Tennessee Knockout featured three qualifying rounds and an eight lap main event. This race is a brutal battle to the finish as the terrain provides a very intense course for the riders. The conditions were extremely challenging this year, as rain made many hills almost impassable.
Cody Webb, who took second behind Mike Brown for the past two years, was determined to take first this year and overcome the foot injury he suffered a few months back. Webb dominated all rounds and won each and every qualifier, beating Fabien Planet, the multi-time French Enduro Champion and Enduro World Championship competitor. Six Stillwell Performance riders made it to the 15 rider final; Webb, Graffunder, Redmond, Gerston, Roper and Palmer.
At the start of the main, Fahringer took the lead but was too aggressive and lost control and hit a tree. This allowed Webb to take the lead and pull away from the pack with a minute and 25 second lead at the halfway point. Stillwell Performance rider Cory Graffunder battled with Monster Kawasaki Taylor Robert for the 2nd and 3rd positions. After Fahringer fell back to 8th and Brown took himself out of the race. Stillwell Performance rider Max Gerston overcame early qualifying difficulties to charge through the pack and hold 4th place to the finish.
Stillwell Performance supported Cody Webb dominated by taking 1st after being 2nd for two years. Webb had almost a three-minute lead at the finish. We believe it’s true; the third time is a charm. “I guess I like this Extreme stuff, even though you wonder why when you are out there struggling.” Webb stated. “I learned a lot from getting second the past two years so it was great to get the win.”
Stillwell Performance/Factory Husky rider Cory Graffunder had a great day and took 3rd overall. Max Gerston pushed hard to pass top riders and take home 4th. “This was one of the toughest races I have ever done, especially the first long test.”
Overall, three of the top four finishes were Stillwell Performance riders and four made the top ten. Stillwell Performance riders Bryan Roper took 11th and Wally Palmer 14th.
1. Cody Webb – Beta
2. Taylor Robert- Kawasaki
3. Cory Graffunder- Husqvarna
4. Max Gerston- Beta
5. Fabien Planet- Sherco
6. Kyle Redmond- KTM
7. Mike Brown- KTM
8. Nick Fahringer- Husaberg
9. Jordan Ashburn- Yamaha
10. Grant Baylor- KTM
The final X Games for the city of Los Angeles was held Thursday, August 1st through Sunday, August 4th. The heat was on as all of the top Endurocross riders gathered for the last summer X Games of 2013.
After the 2 heats and the LQC, three SP riders qualified for the main: Cody Webb, Cory Graffunder, and Kyle Redmond.
After the gates let down, Mike Brown and Taddy Blazusiak managed to take the hole shot, followed by Taylor Robert. Coming into the end of the first lap, Blazusiak held first place followed by Brown in second and Webb in third. On the 7th lap Brown took a fall in the rock section, allowing Haaker to make a pass and take 2nd while Brown moved into 3rd place. Haaker was a very aggressive rider as he tried catch up to Blazusiak for the pass but went down in the fire wood pit in the 9th lap allowing Brown and Webb to again take the 2nd and 3rd spot.
Mike Brown pushed to catch up with Taddy Blazusiak in the last two laps who was holding a steady lead. Cody Webb held the third place spot riding a consistent race after coming back from a foot injury 7 weeks prior.
GOLD- Taddy Blazusiak
SILVER- Mike Brown
BRONZE- Cody Webb
Check out the entire X Games Endurocross Men’s Main below!
Dirt Bike Magazine:
We recently went riding in the Scottsdale, Arizona area with Max Gerston. We left from Taylor Robert’s house and rode a number of trails that only Max and Taylor would call trails. Max also gave us an EnduroCross exhibition on Taylor’s private course. Sweet!
Check out Max’s awesome feature online at www.DirtBikeMagazine.com