US Hard Enduro: Trystan Hart wraps-up 2022 AMA title at Locked and Loaded Shotgun Enduro
Hardest but best race of the season? US Hard Enduro Series signs off with a banger on Sugarloaf mountain and the Locked and Loaded Shotgun Enduro where Tyrstan Hart claims the 2022 AMA title.
Winning every race you entered in 2022 is the way to go if you want to win championships. That’s the record Trystan Hart has maintained this season with just round missed while competing in the Erzbergrodeo, The FMF KTM rider has clocked an otherwise 100% victory on his way to sealing the 2022 AMA IRC US Hard Enduro Series title.
The Locked and Loaded Shotgun Enduro at the Red Rock Lodge in Sugarloaf, Pennsylvania hosted the final USHE round, and was a first hard enduro event at the spectacular 4000 acre venue.
Father-son team of Mike and Mike Soudas are a part of the USHE series and have been planning and promoting this final round with the High Mountain Dirt Riders all year. The course consisted of dense forests, creeks, steep hills, and endless sharp rocks that were constantly moving.
The Sugarloaf event began on Saturday with two Prologue qualifiers each for two classes with Ryder LeBlond and Hart taking turn to narrowly beat each other in both the Pro class runs. Hart it was though who ended with the best cumulative time for the day. Trials Champion Pat Smage finished third for both races on the FactoryONE Sherco.
In the B, C, and Youth classes, AMA West & East Regional Extreme Off-Road B Class Champion Riley Bender won both races with a solid performance on the approximately five mile and largely fast course.
Rain adds spice for the main event
A rainstorm rolled through and soaked the venue after the Saturday races, changing the conditions on the course for Sunday’s races which began with a 90 minute LCQ, which gave many of the amateurs a second chance in qualifying for the main race.
The top 100 qualifiers progressed into the main race which had a five-hour time limit, two laps and a 12 mile course.
Trystan Hart pulled ahead early in the main race and as is so often the case in the USHE rounds, didn’t look back, gaining major time on everyone behind him.
The battles for the podium spot were way more interesting though as Ryder LeBlond, Logan Bolopue, Keith Curtis and Pat Smage all swapped positions.
In places, the rocks were relentless and after the rain the day before, the course wasn’t just harder than they bargained for but got progressively worse. Many amateur riders only made it as far as checkpoints one and two and just 14 riders finished one lap.
Fast forward a lap and just five riders completed the full two circuits within the five hours time limit with Trystan Hart keeping his cool in the tough sections and in a class of his own.
Even passing the lappers on his second lap, he found alternative lines and maintained his flow to extend the lead. He finished his two laps in 3:13.37, a full 46 minutes ahead of second placed LeBlond who got the measure of Bolopue on the podium. The pair were less than a minute apart and Bolupue claimed his first USHE podium finish in the process.
Locked and Loaded US Hard Enduro results (top 30):
Pro Women’s class win for Shelby Turner
In the Pro Women’s class, Shelby Turner made the top 30 overall and made it to checkpoint two in 1 hour and 45 minutes, winning the class and wrapping up her AMA East Regional Extreme Off-Road Championship season.
Louise Forsley and Morgan Tanke finished second and third, respectively. Trystan Hart also wrapped up his memorable season with an AMA East Regional Extreme Off-Road Championship, adding to his AMA West Regional and USHE Overall Championships.
More information: www.ushardenduro.com
Photo Credit: Matt Musgrove