SLR Honda sent team riders Tallon LaFountaine and Ricky Dietrich to the Round 5 Worcs Series event in Las Vegas, Nevada. Being the halfway mark of the season, both riders arrived prepared for an intense and unfamiliar course and maintained a top 10 points lead.
The race organization designed this short course to run both inside and outside of the Orleans Arena built with added enduro sections and an after dark start. For Ricky Dietrich, the night start seemed to be a breeze as he stated “racing at night was no problem. I’ve raced at night many times so I felt I was prepared for the unique conditions.”
With dry heat and summer-like weather already making its way to Las Vegas, racing after sundown was a great escape from the desert’s high temperatures. Still at a high of 78 degrees, the Pro 2 race started at 7:40 p.m.
With the motivation of qualifying 2 seconds from first place that morning, Lafountiane was ready for another competitive race. Averaging 1 minute and 15 second lap times, Lafoutaine finished in 2nd once again and maintained a 6th overall in Pro 2 points.
“I struggled a lot for about half of the race in the rocks and even went back to 7th after starting up front,” says Lafounaine. “I was able to figure out a couple sections and make my way back to 2nd place with only a few seconds off the leader again.”
Teammate, Ricky Dietrich had a solid practice on Friday and Saturday until a crash in the final lap left him with a sore shoulder going into the race that evening. Dietrich stated, “I was third in the first turn and completed the first few laps in 4th behind Tayler Roberts.” Struggling with recovery Dietrich expressed “I faded back to 10th and fell behind. I did my best to regroup and put in some good laps towards the end but it was too late and the pack was too far ahead.”
Dietrich is determined to stay strong this season, “The time in between now and Mesquite is pivotal for me to have a strong performance before summer break. I’ll take this weekend as motivation for the future and just keep plugging away.”
The indoor stadium seating and the tight race track at the Orleans Arena brought more spectators that most off-road racers don’t usually get to experience. “It’s definitely super tight and short for a Worcs race, it throws a little twist into the schedule which is cool.” Lafountaine declared.
The 32 day countdown for Round 6 at Mesquite has begun and the SLR Honda team is excited to get back to racing.