Ricky Brabec took a giant, confident step towards wrapping up the 2016 Kenda/SRT AMA Hare & Hound National Championship Series by dominating its sixth round, the Jackrabbits Motorcycle Club/NHHA National at the Spangler Hills State Vehicular Recreation Area near Red Mountain, California, Sunday.
The Johnny Campbell Racing (JCR) Honda star had amassed an almost unbeatable record of 1-2-2-1 in the first four rounds this year as he tries to recapture the championship he earned in 2014. But missing round five due to it conflicting with his rally obligations for Team HRC Rally meant a lot of the points cushion he’d built up evaporated, and he went into the Jackrabbits race just 12 points up on Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Off-road Team’s Jacob Argubright in the National Hare & Hound points standings. The Husky racer chased Brabec furiously through all four loops of the race, but on this day Brabec was simply on another level, winning by almost 7 minutes despite being slowed by a disintegrated mousse in his rear tire on the third loop.
“Today was good,” Brabec said. “We almost had no mistakes. I’m happy to come away with the win and make the point gap  points now, so the last round should be not easy but easier.”
Argubright was a little perplexed with second place after he had come into the Jackrabbits event confident that he could slow Brabec’s charge and make the points race tighter.
“I’m scratching my head a little bit,” Argubright said. “Ricky’s riding amazing, and hat’s off to him. He killed it from start to finish.”
Reigning series champion Ivan Ramirez of the FMF KTM Factory Off-road Racing Team shook off the bad luck and injury that’s plagued him this year to record his first podium of the season with a strong third after running second early. He finished just 8 seconds ahead of a charging Ryan Smith, who had to be content with fourth place for the second time this year.
Bonanza Plumbing/FMF KTM support rider Gary Sutherlin was unable to match his runner-up finish at round five after a poor start and settled for fifth ahead of Purvines Racing Beta’s Axel Pearson, FMF Pro 250 winner Joe Wasson, Open A winner Sage Vincent, Rocky Mountain ATV-MC/Precision Concepts Yamaha’s Justin Morgan and FMF Pro 250 runner-up Jeff Trulove.
2016 Kenda/SRT AMA Hare & Hound National Championship Series
Jackrabbits Motorcycle Club National Hare & Hound
Spangler Hills State Vehicular Recreation Area
Red Mountain, California
Results: January 18, 2016 (Round 6 of 7)
1. Ricky Brabec-Hon (first Pro)
2. Jacob Argubright-Hus
3. Ivan Ramirez-KTM
4. Ryan Smith-Yam
5. Gary Sutherlin-KTM
6. Axel Pearson-Bet
7. Joseph Wasson-Yam (first Pro 250)
8. Sage Vincent-Suz (first A Open)
9. Justin Morgan-Yam
10. Jeff Trulove-KTM
11. Andrew Puckett-Yam
12. Nick Stover-KTM
13. Grant Stately-Yam
14. Tyler Linn-Yam
15. Tyler Renshaw-KTM (first A Vet)
16. Maverick Shuey-Yam
17. Kyle Erickson-KTM
18. Ryan Karell-KTM (first A 200)
19. James Sullivan-KTM (first A 250)
20. Damon Bush-Bet