The race conditions were perfect. The promoter was able to water the track just enough to keep the dust down throughout the duration of the event. Although a technical course, the riders survived to enjoy round nine of the series in a typical California setting.
Red Bull KTM Factory rider Justin Soulè pulled the holeshot with his newest teammate, Mike Brown, right behind. Brown was able to pull into lead after the first few turns but lost it when he suffered a big crash near the end of the first lap. At that point, Soulè recovered the lead. Meanwhile, Caselli, who most recently returned from competition at the ISDE event two weeks back, had managed a mid-pack start and found his way into 15th by the end of the first lap.
At the start of lap two, Brown had moved up from his crash and into 6th place. Caselli was struggling to find his rhythm and finally broke into the top ten at the halfway point. It was here, that Caselli really turned on the gas and rocketed his way into fourth in the last twenty minutes of the race.
Soulè rode a strong race, managing to hold the lead until the third lap where he suffered a mechanical issue. As he was running up front a rock smashed his rear brake system causing his brakes to go out. He was able to make it to the checkered flag without a pit but the time lost cost him a podium position.
Brown encountered a couple more crashes in the event which kept him from running up front where his speed shows he should be. “This is only Mike’s second WORCS race. He knows now that he needs to work on his pace in order to avoid mistakes that keep him from the podium – where we know he could be,” commented Red Bull KTM Team Manager Antti Kallonen.
Next Event: Round 10 – Taft, CA – October 17-19, 2008