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By: Ray Larez

ITP Quadcross Round 7
Glen Helen Raceway
Devore, California
Aug 6, 2007


Open Pro Class 3-way battle. Who will prevail?

It is a hot, blistering summer day for round seven of the ITP/Yamaha Quadcross. Once again the race is held at the home track of the Quadcross, Glen Helen Raceway. There have been some major changes to the track and the track seems to be in mid transition for the Dirt Bike nationals coming in the next month or so. The newest addition to the track was the quite large red bridge that spans the big down hill and the return line up Mt. St. Helen. This gives the spectators a literal bird's eye view of the track as the racers speed under you. This view also provided me with some very much needed shade between motos. Looks like the next time they return to Glen Helen it will be a treat, with an entirely new track layout for the final rounds of the season.

Speaking of new, the Leatt Neck Braces are now hitting the west coast racers. This pretty costly neck collar has been a hit on the supercross and dirt bike markets. Now ATV racers are starting to use them as well. A lower cost version is also offered and seems to be well worth the investment. After Motorsports Industry having tragic events like Ernesto Fonseca and Jeremiah Jones suffering neck or back injuries, it's always good to see advances in safety equipment. Also new at this round was Team Rockstar/Suzuki/Yoshimura Kory Ellis's new rides. Suzuki stepped up big time with a brand new white and also a new yellow LTR-450, the white one was entered to race Pro class and the yellow one was to race Open Pro. Another racer in the Open Pro class that received a new '08 machine was Team Duncan Racing's Doug Eichner. He willingly showed us his new Outlaw Predator 525 S. The main difference between this Predator and his WORCS Series machine the Predator 525 is that the S model is a straight axle and the other model is Independent Rear Suspension (I.R.S. and no not the one you are thinking about).

Kory and mechanic washing the new 08 Suzuki prepping for the next moto.
Kory and mechanic washing the new 08 Suzuki prepping for the next moto.

Pro Class Moto 1
Well it's on to the racing action!! As the pros gathered in staging for the first moto, some of the younger riders were getting a few pointers from Kory Ellis. After staging they all lined up at the gate except for a few racers. Dustin Nelson was injured a few weeks back at a WPSA race in London, KY. and was sidelined with a broken femur. With an injury like that this late in the season, he may not be able to hold on to his Quadcross Title. Also missing from the line up was Mike Cafro, and Levi Marana of Team Temecula Motorsports. Team Capitan Mike Cafro was spotted in the pits taking it easy. As for Levi he will be running the Open Pro Class and John Shafe will be their only Pro Class Rider. Shafe has been doing really well in the Pro class and would continue to run up front as he proved he could do at the drop of the gate. Shafe would grab the hole shot and pull ahead of the field. Although his lead didn't last long, he still held down second place for the first moto. As for who worked his way around Shafe, it was none other than the 53 of Kory Ellis. On the second lap Ellis made his pass and began to pull away from the pack. Kory looked really strong and rode his first place position all the way to the checkered flag. Team Epic, consisting of Josh Frederick and Jeremy Schell, would wrap up in the third and fifth positions. I am told these two will be sporting their new machines by the next round in AZ. They will be aboard their new Can Am DS450's. Dustin Terry, the Yamaha support rider, went down pretty hard on the start of the second lap. It looked as though Terry had some trouble with the whoop section right after the finish line jump and would sit out the next moto. The lead pack had to be yellow flagged as they came around for the third lap.

The Master of hole shots John Shafe pulls on the field in the first moto
The Master of hole shots John Shafe pulls on the field in the first moto.

Pro Class Moto 2
Again the Pros lined up for another moto and again Shafe nailed the hole shot!!! Maybe before this round his brother strapped a rocket to the back of John's TRX450R. He seems to just take off and rocket down the straight away into that infamous large sweeping turn at Glen Helen. Right behind Shafe was Jeremy Schell, and a close third was Kory Ellis. Shafe and Schell had a brief battle for the lead but by the end of the first lap Schell had made the pass as well as Kory. Now Schell had a new problem, the fast approaching Ellis. Kory looked like "a man on a mission" this weekend and had just raced the first moto of the Open Pro Class as well. So, one would figure in some fatigue at this point, but not Kory Ellis. He had just finished two hard motos in which he had to work his way to the front and won both motos. Ellis looked fresh as ever and was pressuring Schell the "So Cal Hick" for the lead. After making a couple of inside line attempts to pass Schell, Ellis would finally make one stick and take the lead. As for Shafe he had Frederick knocking on his back door. Shafe would hold his position and take home a second over all, followed by Schell, but Kory Ellis took home the 1-1 finish for the overall Pro Class win.

Kory Ellis given the underclass men (boys) so helpful tips.
Kory Ellis given the underclass men (boys) so helpful tips.

Open Pro Class Moto 1
The first moto was great! Darrell Patton took the hole shot on his Yamaha Raptor 700 followed by Doug Eichner aboard his new Polaris, and Kory Ellis. Patton would lead for a lap or two, but only until a three-way battle broke out. Kory was able to take an inside line and tried to make a pass on both Patton and Eichner, but was only able to get around Eichner. He had a little more work to do to get around Patton. Ellis had just finished running a Pro Class moto, but the other riders were fresh and full of energy. Later Kory and Eichner would make the pass on Patton taking the first and second spots respectively. As for Patton he would take a third for moto 1.

Moto two front runner Jeremy Schell till he was past later by Kory Ellis for the Win.
Moto two front runner Jeremy Schell till he was past later by Kory Ellis for the Win.

Open Pro Class Moto 2
The beginning of moto 2 was quite strange. As the gate dropped and the rider hammered their machines off the line, one lone racer sat there till they all had left the line. Most thought it was a mechanical problem, but he was actually waiting to be the last one off the line. This racer was none other than Kory Ellis. One might ask why Ellis would wait and not get off to a good start. The answer is that Ellis doesn't normally race this class, but was participating in it this weekend. Was he there to show up the new Polaris with a Suzuki? I figure he was doing some practicing, to work his way through the pack. Kory is one of the lucky few to be hand-picked for the Inaugural AMA Pro ATV Open at Steel City in the upcoming weeks. This is the first time ever that bikes and ATVs are going to race the same course on the same weekend together. Well, let's get back to the race at hand. Kory would work his way up thought the pack, while Darrell Patton and Doug Eichner were riding their own race. As the laps wound down, Kory was gaining on the lead riders. Kory would finally take the lead and just

Doug Eichner's new machine after the fist Open Pro Moto
Doug Eichner's new machine after the fist Open Pro Moto

when you thought he had the win, Eichner would make a pass to take the lead and the overall with a 2-1 finish for the weekend. It was great racing, and what a debut for the Duncan Racing/Polaris Team with a win on the new machine.

Since we are just past the half way point, the race is anyone's game. Kory Ellis has a commanding lead, but there are more than four races left in the series. Will Team Epic make up ground or will John Shafe make a mad dash to the finish? We will just have to wait and see. The next round will be in Arizona and will be held under the lights. This will make it interesting to say the least.


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