Saint John, NB – September 16, 2011 - Husqvarna Canada’s Guy Giroux has dominated the E1 Pro Class at the Québec rounds of the 2011 Canadian Enduro Championship.
Giroux lead an impressive charge by the Husqvarna racers that were chasing victory in the beautiful hillsides surrounding Labelle, Québec. After two days of battle, Husky mounted riders fought their way to a total of 14 Podiums; including 7 Wins.
Guy Giroux nailed the E1 Pro Win on his TXC250 at both Québec Rounds
Giroux traded up his trusty TE 310 for a TXC 250 and jumped into the E1 battle at the Québec rounds in a tribute to injured Husqvarna Canada star, Philippe Chainé.
Prior to the serious injury that Phil suffered in late August, Chainé had maintained a solid lead in the E1 Class after the Western swing of the Canadian Enduro Championship with 3 Wins in the first 4 Rounds. After his dominant performance at the Eastern CEC Rounds in 2010, there was little doubt that Chainé was in a great position to nail the E1 CEC Title in 2011.
While Giroux was storming the E1 Pro Class, his Husky Canada team-mate Ryan Graffunder along with new addition, Samuel Rousseau, were also on the gas and causing havoc for their competitors.
Graffunder, the CEC’s Top Pro Junior in both 2009 & 2010, was having his best ride ever at the Eastern rounds and hammered his big bore Husky to 2nd Place in the E3 Pro Class at both rounds.
Ryan Graffunder went 2-2 in E3 Pro
Ryan has a firm grip on 2nd Overall in the E3 Championship as the series heads to Ontario for the final rounds this weekend. The young warrior from Vavenby, British Columbia, is also in a great position to claim the Top Pro Junior (for riders under 21) for the third year in a row.
Graffunder has continued to hone his skills in 2011 and in addition to his success in the CEC series, Ryan logged another impressive ride at this year’s Xtinction Extreme Enduro and also made his first foray into the GEICO AMA EnduroCross series.
After a great ride at the Everett, Washington round of the EnduroCross series in August, and undoubtedly motivated by the success of his cousin, Zip Ty Husqvarna’s Cory Graffunder, Ryan is chomping at the bit to have another crack at an AMA EnduroCross race as soon as possible.
“The Quebec rounds were great for sure.” said young Graffunder. “Other than a small problem with a damaged chain guide and ripping a rad hose open that we fixed quickly, the weekend went smooth and I felt good. The bike ran strong and I had my best results in the East that I’ve had in the last 3 years so I feel like I am improving and getting closer to my goal of taking wins. I’m definitely excited to racing the finals in Ontario this weekend”.
Ryan’s brother and Husqvarna team-mate, Nick Graffunder, was forced to miss the Eastern rounds of this year’s CEC series. Nick fractured a bone in his hand at the Xtinction Extreme Enduro in August and unfortunately it has not healed quickly enough to allow him to race the September rounds.
15 year old smoking gun, Samuel Rousseau, proved without a doubt that he is deserving of his new seat on the Husqvarna Canada team by nailing 1st Place in the A Class at both rounds 5 & 6 on his CR 150 two stroke.
Rousseau has being training under the watchful eye of Husky’s Guy Giroux all season and his work ethic and results have been impressive to say the least. Sam earned his stripes in a big way during his debut at the Canadian Enduro Championship and made it clear that he will certainly be a force to be reckoned with as his young racing career progresses. No doubt he will be standing on lots of podiums in 2012.
Samuel Rousseau posted 1-1 results in the A Class
In the B Class, Intermediate riders, Alexandre Gougeon and Christophe Mongrain hammered their Huskies to well earned podiums in the gnarly roots and rocks surrounding Labelle.
Alexandre Gougeon nailed the Overall Win in Intermediate
Gougeon pounded his JP Powersports TXC 250 to 2nd Place at Round 5 and then upped his game the following day to take the Round 6 Win and claim the Overall Class Win for the weekend.
Mongrain climbed the podium on Saturday after his 3rd Place finish aboard his FLM Sport Husky CR 150 but unfortunately was unable to compete at Round 6 on Sunday.
Christophe has had a great season and recently clinched the Junior Championship in Quebéc’s new CMRC Competition Off-road Series.
In the Veteran 40+ Class, a great duel erupted between JP Powersports Husky racers Jean-Pierre Favreau and Luc Gingras that saw them finish 1-2 for the weekend. Gingras piloted his TE 250 Meo Replica to the Win on Saturday with JP close behind on his TC 250 in 2nd Place.
Favreau was on the throttle on Sunday, posting the fastest test times in all but one test, and stormed his way to 1st Place at Round 6 and snagged the Overall Class Win for the Québec rounds. A costly mistake in the second Enduro test on Sunday left Gingras sitting in 3rd Place for the day but still holding on to 2nd Overall in the Veteran 40+ Class for the event.
In the Super Vet 50+ Class, Husky racer Francois Geoffrion put his Husky on the podium at Round 5 with a 3rd Place finish but, like Mongrain, had to miss Round 6 on Sunday.
Luc Gingras (L) and JP Favreau (C)
“We decided that I should move to the E1 Class for a few reasons” remarked Giroux. “The biggest reason was to pay tribute to Phil for not being able to defend his lead in E1 after winning 3 out of 4 rounds out West. I also love the small bikes. I had a blast screaming the 250 and it was awesome to win both days and keep our team’s dominance of E1 going for Husky and especially for Phil.
Ryan and Sam both ran great and were able to work through any issues they had without any problems. Ryan had his best run ever out East and I was really proud to see Sam on top of that podium both days. He really earned it and I can see that he is going to do very well in this sport.”
Giroux entertains the crowd after the final MX test
“Even though we were missing Phil and Nick, it was absolutely one of our most successful race weekends.” said team founder and Husqvarna Canada’s National Marketing Manager, Marc Coffin. “We got some great news last Friday, just as everyone was in final preparation for the weekend, that Phil had crossed another major hurdle in his recovery and was doing great. It was a big relief and it had everyone feeling pumped as they got ready to race on Saturday morning.
To continue to have such great results with the team plus to see so many other local Husky riders taking wins and climbing the podium is very satisfying. It certainly proves the competiveness of the motorcycles and it is great payback for our riders who have worked like animals to make sure they are in the position to win. We have come a long way since we started last year and I’m sure our program will be even stronger in 2012.”
6 Podiums - 4 Wins: Reason to Smile!
Rousseau, Giroux & Graffunder
In only its second year of competition, the FP Husqvarna team has enjoyed an enormous amount of success. Since entering its first races the spring of 2010, the FP crew has fought their way to almost 70 Pro Class Podiums in Regional and National races across the country; including over 25 Wins.
In 2010, the new Husqvarna team finished its debut season in the Canadian Enduro Championship with 10 Pro Class Podiums and the Top Pro Junior Award.
With 2 Championships, 19 Wins and over 40 podiums already under its belt in 2011, including a clean sweep of both the Pro and the Ladies A Champioships in the CMRC Quebec Off-Road Series, the Husqvarna Canada squad is definitely on track for another outstanding racing season!
In a true testament that the Husqvarna Invasion of Canada is in full swing, in addition to the 40 podiums accumulated by the official Husky Canada team, local Husky racers, from Novices to seasoned Vet Pros, have already accumulated over 130 Podiums in the 2011 season in Motocross, Off-Road, Ice Racing and Supermotard races across the country; including almost 60 Wins and 2 National Ice Racing Championships!
We are very grateful to our many amazing sponsors that provide us with the outstanding support that has allowed us to help raise the bar in Canadian off-road racing. Without them, none of it would be possible.
Husqvarna Canada, Feeding Performance Inc., Motovan, Rekluse, Ogio, Oakley, Xtreme, TCX, Axis, Zox, Pro-Tech, Etnies, Throttle Entertainment, UNI Filter, DID, LeoVince, GPR Stabilizer, Motul, LimeNine, EC3D, Impact Canopies, GoPro, Enduro Engineering, Supersprox, SkyCap, Boyesen, E-line, IMS, Matrix Concepts, Tuff As Gutz, Super B Batteries, TM Designworks, Dunlop and Zip Ty Racing.