Keith Wineland, riding an ERE, Axo Racing, Alpinestars sponsored Gas Gas Pro Racing 300, won the 40th Annual El Trial de España in a dramatic ride-off against Gas Gas USA teammate Cody Webb. Webb is a three-time El Trial champion, and the win marked Wineland's first victory at the prestigious event.
Held at the Keyesville Special Management Area in California's Sierra Nevada Mountains, Webb and Wineland each dropped only one point in their seven exhibition section rides. For the match-deciding ride-off, a previous sections was reworked for increased difficulty, and the two riders battled it out for the win.
After a coin toss by Southern California Trials Association's Pete Croft, Wineland took the first crack at the overtime section. After successfully negotiating a highly technical opening right-hand turn and a tricky passage over larger boulders, he took a tab topping a head-high vertical slab with virtually no attack. Once on top, the jumped out of the section with a one-point score, throwing the gauntlet down to Lewisport USA-sponsored Webb.
Webb responded with by cleaning the first technical obstacle, but faltered in the boulders, taking a dab. This required a do-or-die attempt at the vertical slab. He wound up the Gas Gas two-stroke up and attacked the obstacle aggressively. However, without the ability to dab, Webb was not able to clear the ledge, and bounced back, giving him a "five" and Wineland the win. It was the first ride-off in El Trial de España history.
Local teenaged Pros Andrew Oldar, Ian Delaney, and Eric Storz battled Northern California's Harry Oswald and Oregon's Max Nelson for the final podium spot. Oldar, with the only clean outside of those by Wineland and Webb, bested Delaney by three points for third place. Delaney, in turn, beat Storz by a single dab, and Storz finished one point in front of Nelson. Oswald finished a distant seventh, nine points back of Nelson.
40th Annual El Trial de España Results
1. Keith Wineland, Gas Gas, 1 point (won ride-off)
2. Cody Webb, Gas Gas, 1 pt.
3. Andrew Oldar, Sherco, 15 pts.
4. Ian Delany, Sherco, 18 pts.
5. Eric Storz, Gas Gas, 19 pts.
6. Max Nelson, Gas Gas, 20 pts.
7. Harry Oswald, Sherco, 29 pts.