With the recent announcements that the Grand National Cross Country Series (this weekend) Monster Energy AMA Supercross (May 31st) are getting back on track, KTM has announced that its factory racing squads are ready to race (of course) and adapt.
On the supercross front, Cooper Webb remains the lone man for the Red Bull KTM supercross squad, still no word on Marvin Musquin's return to racing. On the GNCC side, Josh Toth returns from a leg injury to join series' points leader and defending champ Kailub Russell.
Here are a pair of press releases the company produced today.
MURRIETA, Calif. – Following a recent announcement from Feld Entertainment, Inc., the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team is pleased to confirm that reigning 450SX Champion Cooper Webb is ‘READY TO RACE’ the final seven rounds of the 2020 AMA Supercross Championship at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Beginning on May 31 and running through June 21, the final seven made-for-tv races are scheduled to take place twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday) for four consecutive weeks and each race will be broadcast on NBC networks without fans in attendance. Webb, who has often expressed his desire to continue racing, currently sits third overall in the championship standings as he continues his quest to maintain the number one plate aboard his KTM 450 SX-F FACTORY EDITION.
Cooper Webb: “At KTM, we are always READY TO RACE! I know it was questionable as to whether or not we would get to finish the season but I feel as professional supercross racers it’s our job to be ready to race and we do our jobs whenever called upon. With that being said, it also gives us an opportunity to grow our sport, give people jobs back and give all the fans a chance to see us race on TV while we do everything possible to stay safe and continue practicing social distancing.”
Roger De Coster, Director of Motorsports, KTM GROUP: “We are so happy to finally have this plan in place. We started feeling pretty bored after being off for this long without racing and now there is a sensation of life and energy again. And, it is cool for Supercross to be one of the first professional sports back!”
MURRIETA, Calif. – After two months off from racing due to the COVID-19 situation, the FMF KTM Factory Racing Team is ‘READY TO RACE’ as team riders Kailub Russell and Josh Toth are set to line up this Sunday, May 17, at the Bull Dog GNCC for Round 4 of the 2020 AMA Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) Series in Washington, Georgia.
Defending Seven-Time GNCC Champion, Kailub Russell, heads into the weekend with a three-race winning streak behind him, where he left off with a big victory in Georgia exactly two months ago. Despite the time away from racing, Russell hasn’t skipped a beat with his training regimen and he is more focused than ever to continue fighting for an eighth consecutive title in the XC1 Open Pro class.
Russell will be joined by his teammate, Josh Toth, who missed the first three rounds due to a leg injury sustained just before the season started. Following six weeks of rehabilitation, Toth has been riding for a few weeks and he’s ready to race his first GNCC of the 2020 season this Sunday.
Team Manager, Antti Kallonen: “I’m so excited to return to racing with the team. We have been waiting for this day to come and I have to thank GNCC for the work they’ve done in order for us all to make a safe return to racing. We all know this virus that put a pause on our lives is still among us but with the steps GNCC and all the teams and riders are taking, I feel safe and confident we can have a quality race while still practicing physical distance and the guidelines recommended by health officials.”
FMF KTM Factory Racing’s Ben Kelley will not line up this Sunday as he continues to recover from a shoulder surgery. The two-time GNCC XC2 250 Pro Champion sustained a major dislocation and a superior labral (SLAP) tear in his right shoulder prior to the season and following a successful rehabilitation process Kelley looks to return to racing in June.
This weekend’s event will see many modifications including strict social distancing guidelines, no spectators, autograph sessions and no live streaming video coverage on RacerTV.com in an effort to decrease the number of staff on hand.
Tim Cotter, GNCC Racing: “Thanks to the Safe-to-Race Toolkit and the best practices developed by the Safe-to-Race Task Force, the GNCC Series has received the green light to return to the great outdoors and we couldn’t be more excited. The health and safety of our racers and their families is our priority and because of that we’ve implemented extensive race day protocols as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We look forward to getting back to racing!”