Round 2: BITD Laughlin U.S. Hare Scrambles Championship
That, however, is not the case, and in an effort that can only help his effort to dispel that myth, he and friend Gary Sutherlin teamed up to win the GPR Stabilizers Laughlin U.S. Hare Scrambles Championship outside of Laughlin, Nevada, round two of Best in the Desert’s American Off-Road Racing Series.
Since they were late entries, they started at the back of the Open Pro class. Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Green/Purvines Racing Kawasaki’s Jacob Argubright was the first rider to get the green light and, with partner Matt Henderson taking the more technical portion, leading the way for about a lap of the 34-mile course. There were two separate loops of 15 and 19 miles, the pit area serving as the spot where most teams switched riders.
But another Purvines Racing Kawasaki duo--Nick Burson and Justin Morrow--was on the move and soon moved into second physically, flirting with the lead on adjusted time. And coming from his sixth-place starting position was THR Motorsports Kawasaki’s David Pearson, riding solo since Rider of Record Robby Bell was in SoCal racing the Big 6 GP at Glen Helen.
Pearson ended up leading the middle portion of the race despite an early brush with Laughlin’s infamous cholla cactus, but Burson and Morrow kept the pressure on and went to the front for good with about a lap left.
Almost unnoticed was Abbott and Sutherlin, who’d been working steadily through the pack, with three-time Laughlin winner Abbott falling twice in the early going but Sutherlin nailing his stints. “My last loop, I had Justin Morrow in front of me,” Abbott shared. “We started a minute and a half behind him, and I think I left the pits [on the last loop] about 30 seconds back and I caught up to him about five or eight miles out.
“I got close and thought about making a pass, then I had a scary moment because of the dusts so I was just, ‘Back it down,‘ and that’s all I did. Justin was riding really well, but I just pretty much kept him in sight--within 20 seconds.
“I knew if I just stayed [there] we were going to win so that really worked out.
“The competition was awesome so it was good racing,” he added. “We had a good pace the whole time and we didn’t win by much.” Unofficially, Abbott/Sutherlin won in three hours, 23 minutes and 38 seconds, with Burson/Morrow almost a minute and a half behind at 3:24:56. Argubright/Henderson rounded out the podium in 3:32:05 while Pearson settled for fourth in 3:35:44, which should be enough to keep him and Bell in the front of the points chase.
Despite a last-minute rider change, Purvines Racing Kawasaki topped Over 30 Pro and finished fifth overall, thanks to Matt Gosnell and fill-in Jason Trubey followed by THR Motorsports Kawasaki’s Ricky Brabec/Tyler Renshaw (fifth Open Pro) and Clint Braun/Carl Maassberg (first 250cc Pro).
1. Destry Abbott/Gary Sutherlin (Kawasaki KX450F)
2. Nick Burson/Justin Morrow (Kawasaki KX450F)
3. Jacob Argubright/Mathew Henderson (Kawasaki KX450F)
4. David Pearson (Kawasaki KX450F)
5. Matt Gosnell/Jason Trubey (Kawasaki KX450F)
6. Ricky Brabec/Tyler Renshaw (Kawasaki KX450F)
7. Clint Braun/Carl Maassberg (Kawasaki KX250F)
8. Luke Reynolds/Tallon Taylor (Kawasaki KX450F)
9. David Broderick/Steven Gibson (Kawasaki KX250F)
10. Jesse Canepa/Jerry Parsons (Yamaha YZ250)