As the green flag waved at the start of the long PM race in South Carolina, the skies opened up bringing rain for the racers to battle for their opening lap. After a dead last start Ben Kelley found himself fighting through the XC2 pack, making his way up to 2nd place after the first lap. Lap 2 would bring his pass for the lead and the fight was on to push away from the rest of his class and move his way up in the overall. An outstanding race proving Kelley’s fitness and mentally are spot on he would cross the finish line 1st XC2 with a six and a half minute lead, and 6th overall on the day.
XC2 teammate Johnny Girroir would be absent for the race, as posted earlier in the weekend, Girroir would not be lining up for this weekend’s GNCC as he was at home in Massachusetts dealing with his health situation. Trail Jesters KTM Racing would like to extend our continued thoughts and prayers for Girroir.
Jesse Ansley was able to put the pieces together to pull off a great start on the XC3 line. Battling that first lap rain, he unfortunately struggled with some goggle issues pushing him back a little. By lap three he started looking for ways to gain positions. Things started clicking for Ansley as he began hitting all his marks, allowing him to make the pass for the lead with two laps to go. By the checkered flag he would take the XC3 win with an impressive 3:27 minute lead and 14th overall. “I finally feel healed up and 100%” said Ansley “we are still making small improvements whether its with speed or fitness, so we will only continue to get better each race.”
Simon Johnson grabbed the holeshot at the 250A start, and went into the woods on a tear. After a couple close calls he settled himself down and fell into 4th place, once he got into a swing he would slowly move himself up and battled for 1st the last two laps. He would finish the day at the top of the box, 1st 250A, top amateur, and 25th overall. “The variety of terrains at Camp Coker kept it fun lap after lap. My bike handled awesome between clay ruts and sand whoops. Really digging my setup this year. Super excited to start heading into the more northern rounds.” Johnson said.
In the Youth race Bradyen Nolette got off to a decent start, about 6th into the first corner and jumped up to 3rd by the woods. He was able to latch onto the lead riders early on and stick with them never being more that 22 seconds behind the position in front of him. “I know that my fitness is really good right now, but also I can run lap times of the leaders which I haven’t been able to do all year, so that makes me feel excited for the next one!” Nolette stated. The fast and flowing course suited Brayden as he dodged some major mud holes and finished the day with a 2nd YXC1 and 2nd overall. “The Camp Coker race for me was awesome, it was a huge confidence booster!” said Nolette.
Thank you to our team sponsors: KTM, FMF Racing, Troy Lee Designs, Dunlop Tires, Motorex, Super B Batteries, Bullet Proof Designs, P3 Carbon, Motool, Squid Decals and Edelmann Sales for their continued support.
About Trail Jesters:
Trail Jesters Racing is a KTM support team established in January 2014. We race off-road motorcycles at the professional, amateur and youth level of national and regional series.