Silly Season 2.0 Innovation Offroad

11 Jun 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Silly Season 2.0 Innovation Offroad
Sherco 2.0

Silly Season 2.0


The following may be things you’ve already heard and some things may be new to your ears. Please remember, these are rumors, speculations, and news we’ve heard regarding 2014 rides. Also,  if you are a rider that wants to update what we have said, please contact us at media@innovationoffroad.com.

 We would love to hear from you.

Paul Whibley: Although it appeared 2013 would be Whibley’s last season in the states, his unlucky injury mid-season and continued drive has him down for another year at AmPro Yamaha.

Nick Fahringer: Nick confirmed that he will be back with AirGroup Radiant racing in 2014.  Earlier this week, Offroad Champions mentioned Airgroup would most likely be riding Husky in 2014.  We are receiving conflicting reports of it being a Sherco or Husky.

 Leaning towards Husky at this time.

Mike Lafferty: Mike has signed with FMF/KTM to finish out his 20 th season with KTM and will be pitting under the Factory rig at the National Enduros.  We wouldn’t be surprised to see Mike in some sort of testing/team manager role come 2015 in addition to the PR work he does with the adventure ride side of KTM.

Jordan Ashburn: Unknown but no word of him returning to AmPro Yamaha.

Jesse Groemm: Last we heard, Jesse had nothing set in stone, but from the sounds of it, it looked to be leaning towards a team with Shane Watts.  Shane Watts has been grinding hard to secure money and support from sponsors. He has been on the phone with a lot of companies already and is hungry to build a strong program.

 It seems they are working on securing a bike manufacturer as well.

Chris Douglas: We haven’t heard much on Chris other than that he was offered a spot on KR4 for 2014.  He finished out the last round on a KR4 KTM and rode very well.  He will be strong in 2014 in XC2.

 KR4 also sounds to be building a bigger and stronger program in 2014 along with another rig.

Russell Bobbitt:  Bobbitt is supposedly going to Husqvarna for 2014.  This isn’t much of a surprise but we are unsure of how he will adjust back to linkage again.

Chris Bach: Unfortunately, we haven’t heard any signings of Bach with any factory teams.  Ride PG and KR4 seem to have his back, so we may see something similar in 2014.

Steven Squire: We talked to Steven recently and he will be racing the MAXC series along with the full GNCC series if things go according to plan.  He said nothing was set in stone yet but I know he has signed with Mika Metals and DT-1 Filters for 2014 (two of our site sponsors).

Thad Duvall: Thad Duvall confirmed that he will have support from Factory Honda and Morgantown Honda with the addition of an XC2 rider, Layne Michael.  Layne and Thad get along very well; this isn’t a big surprise for a teammate choice.  It is often hard to find a strong rider in both classes for a team, but this should work well.

 The team name will also be changing.

Josh Strang: Strang flew to California last week to try out the Betas.  He still seems to be up in the air on manufacturers but will have Rocky Mountain ATV MC back for 2014 according to Digital Offroad.

Kailub Russell: Factory FMF KTM.  Although Kailub mentioned his contract had expired on Seat Time, I highly doubt we would see him go anywhere else (And he most likely re-signed since the show).

Charlie Mullins: Back with Factory FMF/ KTM

Mike Brown:   Mike Brown will be riding for the new Factory Husqvarna effort.  Which series?  This remains a big question but it sounds like Baja, and GNCC or EnduroX.  No official press release on this yet.

 He did mention on instagram about going white next year, most likely referencing the Husqvarna.

Taylor Robert: While Brown has gone to Husky, we have also heard from a reliable source that Taylor Robert has signed with KTM.  We have heard Endurocross and WORCS for 2014.  Although the WORCS buzz has fizzled, it most likely bothers KTM to not have an effort in WORCS along with the championship.

Adam Bonneur:  Adam has made the switch to orange with help from Doug Jackson and Sam Shafer of Woodstock KTM.  He plans to race GNCCs, and select OMA and MAXC.  He will also be with most of the same sponsors from 2013.

Steward Baylor Jr.: Baylor starts his 2 nd year of a potential three year contract with Factory FMF/KTM that stipulates he must finish so well this year to get a third year.  Due to his injuries, we are unsure of how strong he will come back in 2014.  

Jason Thomas: Jason Thomas has commented that this year was his last in the GNCC series due to not being able to make enough money racing XC1 in 2014.  Although this seems plausible, we really don’t think this will happen.  Most likely we see him on the line in 2014 piloting a 350/450 of some kind.

 Our best bet is he leads the Shane Watts team.

Grant Baylor:  Normally, it has always been that Grant follows Stu for teams, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see Grant on another manufacturer this year.  Even though he won the XC2 GNCC championship, he seems to be looking for stronger support.

Travis Coy:  We are unsure of this one.  RPM/KTM would be our best bet, but with Kacy Martinez (his 2013 teammate) possibly being under the factory rig, where does this leave him?

Andrew Delong:  From all reports we have received, Andrew will be riding for Factory Husqvarna.  Husqvarna is putting in a full effort this year that looks like it will compete directly with Factory FMF/KTM.  Andrew will be racing XC1 as well.

Lucas Statom:  We talked to Lucas and he will be riding the XC2 class in the GNCC series aboard an Atlas Cycles bike and will help Jason Raines with the Yamaha demo program.  Lucas will be sponsored by Fly Racing, Unabiker. Silkolene, DP Brakes, Veerubber USA, Fasst Cmpany, G2, Stickman Graphics.

Xbrand, Factory Connection, Dirt Tricks and Aser Clothing.

Nick Davis: Reports earlier this week had Nick Davis as a Suzuki rider for 2014.  Obermeyer Suzuki has announced a team coming up for 2014 and Nick has been aligned with this rumor.  Here is a FB post put out by Obermeyer:

“Just to let everyone know that Obermeyer SUZUKI will be racing in 2014 with the Factory Support of Suzuki Motors of America! Racers to be announced soon. We will be competing in the National Enduro Series in the Pro Class and the GNCC Series in the XC1 Class on the RM-Z450. There will be one Amateur rider in the Light A class aboard an RM-Z250.”

This mentions nothing of an XC2 rider which we assume is what class Nick will run.  It seems to be up in the air on this one.

Sherco 2.0

Rory Meade: Last we heard, Rory was receiving help from Shane Watts and will most likely ride on a team for Watts.

Ryan Sipes: Sipes will be teamed up with Rockstar Energy to do a team.  WMR was mentioned as being involved but to just build motors.  Do not expect an effort like previous years.

 Conflicting reports of it being a KTM (what we are leaning towards) or Suzuki remain.

Jed Haines: It sounds like Jed and Ricky Russell could be on a team together provided they get manufacturer support.

Justin Sode: Sode will be back with Factory Beta in 2014. Who will be his GNCC teammate?  We are unsure of this at this time but it could be Strang.  His NEPG teammate will be Cory Buttrick.

  From what we have heard, Beta expects to have 3 east coast riders.

Cory Buttrick:   Shocking news this week that Cory Buttrick signed with Beta. It seemed like a done deal with Sherco and he was riding a Sherco for quite a while.  None the less, it will be great to see him back.

Cody Webb: Factory Beta

Max Gerston: Factory Beta

Brad Bakken: We haven’t heard much about Brad other than being a possible AmPro Yamaha guy in the NEPG series.  It seems to be a battle between him and Groemm for the spot unless they are looking at other people.  We have also heard he may have an offer from AirGroup.

Tanner Thomas:  Tanner is still looking for a manufacturer to give him bike support.  He will be looking to race the full NEPG series and part of the GNCC series.  He will most likely be aboard [Motorbikes] KTM 125s with support from Factory Connection, Fly Racing, Kenda, and HRP Sports to name a few.

Ryder Lafferty: Ryder finished 15 th overall in the NEPG series and thus will race the Pro class (top 15 overall become Pro for the following year according to NEPG).  Rumor is he will be aboard a Husqvarna/KTM (possible Sherco depending on AirGroup) and could be supported by AirGroup.

Kyle McDonal:   Kyle has had a strong year with consistent results in the National Enduros and local events, winning the NEOC Hare Scramble Championship. Sherco offered him some bike support.  He will most likely stay with his shop support demo deal.

Zach Ingram: According to Zach, he will be on another privateer effort with some help from Marionville Powersports in Missouri, along with his other sponsors. He is racing the TORO winter series right now, but will most likely stay local in 2014 unless he gains further support.

Shane Hufford: No official word on Shane.  His Solid Performance ride worked well for him this year.  He is a XC2 championship contender for 2014 in the GNCC series.

Craig DeLong: Craig is one to watch in the future.  Normally, we see him follow in his brother’s footsteps.  We are unsure of where he goes in 2014.

  He was riding a borrowed KTM 250XC at last weekend’s hare scramble.

Stay tuned for updates to this list.  If you have heard anything different, please comment below using our Disqus platform!

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