Suzuki’s Travis Pastrana is the reigning AMA 125 Outdoor National Motocross Champion and 125 East Supercross Champion. Everywhere from his exploits in freestyle motocross to his racing at the track, Pastrana has risen to the top. Now, along comes reigning 125 World Motocross Champion Grant Langston and his monster horsepower KTM.
With two straight overall wins, and four straight moto wins, Langston has been perfect outdoors this year. Pastrana has suffered from poor starts and crashes, but, even discounting those, Langston has been posting faster lap times than Pastrana. Is Langston the new boy wonder of the 125cc class? If Langston and Pastrana get equal starts, who will win?
We predicted in our article dated May 7, 2001 that the 125 outdoor championship would come down to a battle between Langston and Pastrana. If Suzuki can squeeze a bit more horsepower out of Pastrana’s bike, we still believe we were right about this. Although we predicted Langston would ultimately be the victor, we didn’t anticipate he would start so strongly.
Above all else, Langston is putting KTM on the American motocross map. The small Austrian manufacturer has never been able to afford a star rider here in the US. KTM must be delighted with Langston’s performance thus far, and American fans have a new, personable star to cheer, and a new, orange bike on their 125cc shopping lists. Both of these things are good for the sport here in the US.