The 2011 WORCS motorcycle racing series began with a fitting tribute to fallen hero Nathan Woods as the event organizers canceled Saturday’s race and awarded the two-time WORCS champ and winningest racer in series history a full 50 points for being the top rider both days.
Husqvarna and the entire Zip-Ty Racing Team extend their condolences to their friend Nathan, his wife Amanda and sons Nathan Junior and Braxton. God’s speed, Champ.
When racing began under gloomy conditions on Sunday, Team Husqvarna teammates Cory Graffunder, Jamie Lanza and Bobby Bonds put the tragedy behind them and focused on matters at hand – competing in the 2011 WORCS series.
"The bikes were brand new at the Hare And Hound in Lucerne and we had a couple of fluke problems like a stick through the radiator and a rock cracking the cases during the shakedown race," says team boss Ty Davis.
Graffunder used the extra horsepower of his 2011 Husqvarna TC449 to grab the PRO2 holeshot. Despite the slick, muddy course, Graffunder’s Husky found plenty of traction and carried him to a podium finish.
"Cory rode amazingly well today… must be the conditions were like what he is accustomed to in Canada," says Husqvarna National Marketing Manager Corey Eastman.
Jamie Lanza rode his street-legal Husqvarna TE310 to a top 20 finish on the tough Honolulu Hills course, just outside of Taft, California. "Pretty amazing feat considering just how gooey the mud was… his bike was literally caked in mud!" adds Eastman.
Finally back from a lingering broken collarbone suffered in a Supercross crash, the 2008 WORCS champion (and only privateer to ever win the series championship) Bobby Bonds was happy just to be back in the saddle again.
"I just received clearance from my doctors to race on Thursday," says the former pro motocrosser turned off-roader. Just being able to finish the 1 hour/plus 1 lap race in such sloppy conditions was a victory in itself, a fact "Bondo" attributes to training with motocross legend Goat Breker out in Randsburg. "Goat bet me his hat that I couldn’t finish," laughs Bondo.
Not only did Bonds finish, he came in 7th his first time out on the 2011 Husqvarna TC449.