Industry Press Releases Racing

Joe Wasson Charges to First NHH Victory of the Season

Information from an AMA National Hare and Hound press release

Photo courtesy of Mark Kariya

MURPHY, ID — Round two of the AMA National Hare and Hound Championship presented by FMF ventured to the northwest this weekend in scenic Murphy, Idaho. Hosted by Dirt Inc., this event has been part of the series for over a decade, and is consistently a racer favorite.

A much-appreciated Saturday rain provided for prime conditions going into Sunday’s race day.  With minimal dust and moisture in the canyons, everyone was buzzing by the time they lined up at the bomb run, ready to give their best attempt on the 100-mile race.

With the sun low in the sky, the two-minute warning dropped and the hare took off, knowing he’d soon be caught by one of the pros on that first line. As the banner went down and bikes rev’d, a fast and long bomb run commenced at speeds most of us cannot even relate to experiencing. What happened next is what documentaries are made of; Pro class racer Clayton Roberts, aboard his 450 Gas Gas, was ahead of the pack in the main fast line with only JCR Honda Racing’s Preston Campbell in front of him. Mid-bomb Roberts found himself hovering the front wheel after a compressed shock rebounded,­ riding the front wheel a long way before cartwheeling several feet. NHH Champion Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Dalton Shirey was directly behind him. Witnessing the event Dalton immediately threw on his brakes and tossed his bike down, to flag racers away from the grounded Roberts. This, is our defending National Champion. The gesture of sportsmanship is one of the most admirable we have ever seen in off-road racing.

Dalton mounted dead last and chased all day for a 5th overall finish. Tensions were high, and it was evident he was shaken from the experience and stress of worry for Roberts, but still he soldiered on. Although he did not finish on the podium, the NHH feels his actions deserve the space in this press release. We’d like to also extend a huge thank you to the medics and staff who assisted, and a heartfelt speedy recovery to Clayton and his family.

As the race continued, Factory Beta Racing and Idaho-local Joe Wasson found himself front of the pack, battling with Shirey’s teammate Austin Walton, who was hot on his fender. Walton came into the pits after the first 60-mile loop, a single second behind Wasson. Knowing he’d have to give it all he had to take the win, Joe rode a flawless 40 miles on loop two, with no mistakes and determination in his eye. The two were not alone in this chase, with Factory Beta Racing’s Zane Roberts within seconds of the pair. The trio pressed on through the technical terrain, with Roberts and Walton swapping positions a handful of times. Nearing the finish line the race was so close that not a single one of them was willing to let off the gas, resulting in a pass by Walton on the very last turn which brought him into a second-place checker, only one second behind a very excited Wasson. “I got the monkey off my back!” Wasson exclaimed, as he celebrated his hard-earned win with his team, family, and fans.

Returning two-time Pro Women’s champion Rachel Stout came prepared to defend her number one plate aboard her KTM 350 XC-F sponsored by Innteck. Coming off a win from round one, Rachel was feeling good going into the race, but knew she would not be given any breaks with long-time competitor Factory Beta-supported racer Britney Gallegos twisting two-stroke throttle against her. The women lined up against the usual suspects, with one unknown face amongst the female crowd. First-time Hare & Hound racer Meg Griffith showed up eager to try her hand in the national. Although Stout got out in front early on and held her lead for the 100 miles, Gallegos, Ashlee Gage, Ty Woolslayer and Griffith would swap positions nearly every mile. These women dug deep for more than three hours, pulling every ounce of fight they had up to the surface, pushing forward, willing their bikes to the finish. Checkered flags showed Stout claiming the victory, with newcomer Griffith 14 seconds behind her. Rounding out the podium was Gallegos.

The Pro 250 class has had an exciting and unexpected start to the season, with Australian native Sam Pretscherer coming from down under (literally), going two for two for the first two rounds. The Aussie has proven to be a natural in the desert terrain, despite the fact he had never trained nor ridden in such conditions before coming to the United States. Following him into the finish was Arizona-native racer DJ Weber, who in stark contrast grew up riding the deep desert canyons and hitting high speed sandy berms. Weber was all smiles on the podium, having worked his way up through the classes and finding himself consistently finishing on the podium in the Pro 250 class. Securing the third-place podium position was Matthew Combs, aboard his 250 Yamaha.

Round three of the NHH is April 6th, in Jericho Utah. Visit for more info, race registration, results, and live scoring.  Follow us on FB IG and YouTube

Thank you to our sponsors FMF, Beta, KTM, Husqvarna Motorcycles, GASGAS, Cricket Speaker, Zingg, PCI Radios, Sign Art, IWC Tire Pros, STACYC, Mojo Motosports, Klim, Unsworth Racing, Racer Decal, RAD Custom Graphics.