Bykerk Takes The Women’s Win Ontario EnduroCross
KTM’s Chantelle Bykerk, already leading the Women’s class of the AMA Geico Powersports EnduroCross series, hit the top step of the podium Saturday night after a bruising race around the challenging obstacles at the Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, Calif.
Over half the field went down in the rock garden following the first turn, and this section continued to play havoc with the riders all race. Multiple X Games Women’s EnduroCross winner Tara Geiger and last year’s Women’s EnduroCross runner up Louise Forsley got caught up in the initial pile up.
Geiger managed to rebound to fifth place by the end of the first lap, but was unable to improve her position by the end of the race. Both KTM riders had a disappointing night, with Forsley finishing ninth in the 12-bike field. Motocross ace Sarah Whitmore finished well off the podium in sixth.
Bykerk, riding out of Salmon Arm, British Columbia, led from the first turn, though briefly lost the lead to Gas Gas’s Melissa Harten (a fellow Canadian) early after a mishap in the tunnel. When Harten’s chain came off, Bykerk regained the front position and held it until the checkers.
Coming into the Ontario round second in points, Rachel Gutish also went down with her Yamaha in the opening pile-up, leaving her playing catch up for most of the race. Morgan Tanke of nearby Riverside spent much of the race behind Bykerk, threatening for the lead at one point. However, a mistake on the last lap, allowed Gutish to pass Tanke for second position, though Tanke remounted her KTM to take the final podium spot. Gutish will be representing the United States in the 2013 International Six Days Enduro.
Results, 2013 Ontario EnduroCross, Women’s Class
1. Chantelle Bykerk – KTM – #3
2. Rachel Gutish – Yamaha – #217
3. Morgan Tanke – KTM – #31
4. Kendall Reed – KTM – #27z
5. Tara Geiger – KTM – #68
6. Sarah Whitmore – KTM – #89
7. Jolene Van Zugt – Suzuki – #63
8. Tatum Sik – Honda – #972
9. Louise Forsley – KTM – #2
10. Melissa Harten- Gas Gas – #11
11. Rily Ellinger – KTM – #621
12. Megan Blackburn – Kawasaki – #426
Photos by Don Williams