Prairie Dogs Motorcycle Club hosted the 2nd annual Last Dog Standing at Glen Helen Raceway in Devore, California this weekend to crown a new champion. Flashback to 2011 where Kyle Redmond took the win ahead of Cory Graffunder, Quinn Cody, Taichi Tanaka and Jacob Argubright. The course was thought to be long and tough in 2011, until the expert riders took to the course and completed it in less than an hour. Coming back to 2012, only Argubright and Redmond were in attendance and the course was reconfigured, designed to test even the best and clever new obstacles popped up all over the Glen Helen grounds. In what has become known as, "America's new toughest race," the roster was decorated with names like Taylor Robert, Jacob Argubright, Kyle Redmond (who ultimately decided to sit out to allow his ankle to fully heal), Max Gerston, Johnny Campbell, Cameron Steele, Jesse Vanhoy, Michael Allen and a long list of others looking to be the Last Dog Standing.
The course included more than a handful of obstacles including a 2x6 beam over a water crossing, endurocross, an up/down hill rock garden, cement tube maze, tight single track, a bridge full of hanging tires, and the list goes on. All racers were required to ride the qualifier to enter LDS1. Only those who finished within an hour of the leader would move onto LDS 2. And finally, the quick few that finished within 30 minutes of the leader in LDS 2 would go onto the final. Check out the gallery for images of the event and stay tuned for results.
In what was Robert's first extreme enduro of his career, he took on the strategic course with confidence and an open mind. Each round, he started along side Jacob Argubright who gave him a true run for his money, allowing no mistakes to be forgiven. Robert's well-rounded experience in the different disciplines of off-road gave him the advantage over the field and he shined all day long. Impressively, Robert was able to keep ahead of Argubright every round and reach the ultimate finish line, taking the Last Dog Standing crown.
Coming from a 5th place finish last year, Argubright stepped it up and utilized his technical riding skills to challenge Robert the entire day. After taking the holeshot in the qualifier, Argubright went on to start LDS1 on row one with Robert, and the two took off onto the motocross track and into the off-road. In LDS 1 Argubright came in just 20 seconds behind Robert on corrected time, a performance that would repeat all day. When it came to the final round in LDS3, Argubright had a not-so-hot start and a clutch that began to slip. He had to work his way up on lap 1 and nearly caught Gerston at the end of lap two. Taking 2nd overall, Argubright showed he not only has the speed and endurance, but the growth as a professional racer to run with the Factory guys.
The Arizona-local made it out to sunny Southern California to jump in with the big boys and did an exceptional job keeping consistent and smart throughout the 8+ mile course. In LDS1 and LDS2, Gerston finished 3rd and headed into the final with confidence. He quicky moved into second with a cushion ahead of Argubright and his smart line choices kept him safe to the finish, taking 3rd overall. He's becoming a well-known upcoming threat in Endurocross and showed this weekend that he has a lot more to offer than just technical riding skills.
Last year, Allen could only muster a 20th place. This year was a completely different showing and he was able to stay in the top 5 all day long. Not only did he finish the LDS3 final in 4th overall, but he was also the first and only expert to finish the entire race.
The one and only incredible Trials rider out on the course, Kevin Norton is a 56-year old who happily took on the competition. He made it all the way to LDS3 and was the 5th and final rider to go two laps on the extremely difficult course. Up the steep hill climbs, through the tight single trail, Norton did it all from start to finish without a seat! Coming through the pits, he looked better than more than half the competiton that was trying to beat him on a full size motorcycle. When he came through just after Michael Allen, Norton needed medical attention for his shoulder that he seemed to put out of mind to get to the checkers.
Top 5 Results