450 / PREMIER Graves Yamaha’s Mark Burkhart and KTM HMC riders Troy Herfoss and Chris Fillmore were going for that coveted number-one plate. Leading into the first of the two days of racing, Burkhart led Herfoss by a slim margin with Fillmore slightly behind the two. At the start of Saturday’s main event, it looked like the title was all but lost for Herfoss as he stalled his bike on the first lap in the dirt. Meanwhile, up front, Burkhart eventually took command of the race and what looked like a hammerlock on the championship. Meanwhile, Herfoss got his bike re-fired and put his head down and began to weed his way through the 20-some riders in a desperate attempt to salvage as many points as possible.
As the laps started to wind down, Fillmore started to reel the slowing Burkhart and made the pass down the front straight. The ball was already in motion as Burkhart started to nurse his bike but after losing the lead disaster hit the bricks and Burkhart’s bike just stopped. The worst-case scenario happened—his motor let go. Thankfully the pack lapped most of the field giving the Graves rider a little hope for the title.
Going into Sunday’s race, Herfoss only had to finish mid-pack to take the title. But in true fashion of the weekend, he too was bit by a potential championship-ending debacle. During the heat race, his stopped when a gear broke in the motor. If this had happened in the main, it would have all been over. The main event was not an easy task but in the end Herfoss made his way to third after Burkhart crashed while leading, giving the win to Troy Lee Design’s Cassidy Anderson. Fillmore finished a hard fought second. So for the season, Herfoss was triumphant with Fillmore and Anderson rounding out the podium.
250 / Lites
The 250 class title was clinched by Graves Yamaha’s Brandon Currie on Saturday and had him return on Sunday to claim six of six victories for the 2008 season and his second Lites title in a row. This will probably be his last championship on the 250 as he has hopes to ride a 450 in 2009.
The second crazy championship fight was between Rockstar / Hart &Huntington / Mach 1 Motorsports Steve Drew and Factory Aprilia / Rip It Energy’s Darryl Atkins. Atkins had the point lead going into the weekend but he too was bit by strange luck. On Saturday, while leading the main event, he landed off the ghetto-cross jump and popped his tire off the rim. He was able to get a tire change fast in the pits but now the advantage was to Drew as he was able to take the win and the point lead by seven going into Sunday’s race.
On Sunday, all Atkins could do was win and hope something happened to Drew and he finished fifth or worse. But his hopes were depleted, as Micky Dymond’s bike would not start on the line and after the start Josh Chisum had to pull into the pits for a stop-and-go penalty for jumping the start. At the start of the race, it was Atkins’s title as Drew was running fifth behind Benny Carlson. At one point, Drew’s only hope was HMC’s Kurt Nicoll taking the lead off Atkins. As always, a monkey wrench was tossed down from the gods and this time it was Xavier Bellerophon aboard the Husky. His bike started to take a crap and he was forced to slow and give up his solid third-place spot. This moved Drew up to fourth securing him the title. This was the first Supermoto title for Drew since he started racing Supermoto back in 2002.
XTRM would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone involved in this year’s Supermoto Championship. Thanks to the AMA, the riders, race teams, mechanics, promoters, sponsors, venues, family and friends, and press support, Supermoto continues to thrive.