Cabot Bigham secures GRC Lites title in dramatic fashion

Photo: Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
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LOS ANGELES – Dreyer & Reinbold Racing rookie driver Cabot Bigham entered the final race of Red Bull Global Rallycross’ GRC Lites needing a minor miracle to win the championship down double digit points to two rivals, in a pair of Olsbergs MSE X Forces drivers Miki Weckstrom and 2015 GRC Lites champion Oliver Eriksson. He needed to hope he finished anywhere from four to five spots higher than them to overtake the points gap.

In a frenetic final that saw Weckstrom eliminated on the first lap of the race and Eriksson dropped down the order, Bigham emerged in second place – behind weekend dominant driver Alex Keyes, his DRR teammate – in the early stages of the final after starting 10th and last.

Then when Keyes fell off the road with a mechanical issue, Bigham suddenly had the lead and the title within his grasp. Eriksson recovered to fourth place, but it was not enough to retain his title, and the 20-year-old rookie out of Mill Valley, Calif. had won the GRC Lites title.

“Coming into this year, I really didn’t know what to expect!” Bigham said. “I knew I had the pavement experience, but was lacking in dirt. I was so fortunate to have such a supportive team in DRR. I also had my buddies Alex (Keyes) and Tanner (Whitten) to help me along the way. Everyone helped bring me up to speed so fast. I can’t thank them all enough!”

CORE autosport had a banner day behind Bigham, with rally rookies Scott Anderson and Colin Braun second and third to secure the Jon Bennett-owned, Morgan Brady-led CORE team its first double podium finish in GRC Lites competition.

You can see coverage of the GRC Lites finale from Los Angeles on Thursday, October 13, on NBCSN at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.