In addition to trophies awarded in each of the over 30 classes represented at the event, 2012 marks the second annual presentation of the Kermaxx Silver Sprocket Award to the rider with the highest aggregate points achieved in up to three of the following classes:
85cc (12 - 16 years) MX2 Junior A MX2 Intermediate
Super Mini MX1 Junior MX1 Intermediate
School Boy MX3 Junior A MX3 Intermediate
The outcome of the Kermaxx award came down to the afternoon of the final day of the event. With Brock Leitner, of Beaverlodge, Alberta, coming into the final Junior MX1 race with a perfect record of 8 wins in the Junior class and essentially needing to simply complete the race to take the top honor. Right behind Leitner in the standings was Edson, Alberta's Cole Varty who had won 7 of the 8 Intermediate races. With one remaining moto for each racer, a poor result from Leitner would open the door for Varty to try and take the championship.
In his final race of the weekend, despite coming around the first corner in third position, Leitner quickly moved up and secured the lead early in the first lap. On the second lap disaster struck when Leitner, who performance had been flawless all three days fell while ahead by five bike lengths. "I don't know what I was doing, next thing you know I am heading down,” relates Brock. "Fortunately I managed to grab the clutch before I hit and kept the bike running.” Leitner quickly remounted, resuming the race in second place, stormed back to immediately retake the lead before the end of the lap and went on to win the moto and the Kermaxx award in convincing style.
Local pros George de Graaf and Luke Firth entertained the crowd with hard fought battles throughout the Pro/Am events which consistently saw Firth grab the hole shot only cede the victory to de Graaf, with Firth's lone victory coming in the second Pro MX3 moto when a crash by de Graaf relegated him to the runner up position. As Firth explained, "This is only my second event of the year. I basically came out of retirement for the Raymond Nationals and I just don't have the stamina to keep pace for the whole moto.”
In the Ladies class, the presence of both the Denaye Giroux of Yorkton, Saskatchewan and Barons, Alberta's Shelby Turner set the bar high with the calibre of racing that these former Western Canadian Women’s Champions are known for. With Turner having grabbed the hole shot and the victory in the first moto, Giroux arrived at the gate for Friday's moto ready to race and quickly made her intentions known by taking the hole shot. Giroux held the lead until a hard crash took her out of the race with a shoulder injury which will keep the 2011 champion on the shelf for three to four weeks. The final moto in the Ladies’ class saw Amber Giroux narrowly best Turner for the hole shot, after which Turner quickly took over the lead and went on to complete her sweep of the Ladies’ event. Turner and Amber Giroux will tangle again in the Western Enduro Champion series starting next weekend in Vernon, BC.
Be sure to check out the August issue of Inside MotoX & OffRoad for pictures and a more in depth recap of the event!