Sports & Recreation

Haaker fights it out at X-Games

San Benito County's Haaker competes in Enduro Cross at the X-Games

First place eludes Hollister's own Enduro Cross motorcycle racer Colton Haaker at the X-Games in Austin, Texas. Hailing from San Benito County, Colton Haaker raced Enduro Cross on June 5th. The Enduro Cross is held on a track but is rough going, jammed with obstacles like boulders, logs and any obstruction the course designer could think up.

Haaker finished the race in fourth place with his Husqvarna teammate Mike Brown taking the gold. Taylor Robert was second and Cody Webb (from Aromas) came in third.   Although Haaker had a good start, Cody Webb and Mike Brown, an Enduro cross veteran pulled ahead right away. A few laps later, Haaker went down in the rock pile making it difficult to get back into the game.

In an X-Games web article about Enduro Cross, Haaker explains one of his favorite challenges, the woodpiles that are usually part of the course. "The pieces are so loose, they can catch you at any time. Going into the section, one can flip out and hit your front wheel and go down. It happens every race. That's bad luck. I have two firewood sections in my backyard [test track], and it's just so random whether you get through it or not. It's not like anything you can control," Haaker says. "It's just like, 'I'm going into this and hoping it works out.'"

A biography about Haaker posted on the X-Games website states that, "Since the 2013 opener, Haaker hasn't finished outside the top 5 (an 18-race streak). In 2015, after two years with JCR Honda, he's signed with the Rockstar Energy/Husqvarna, his first factory ride."  Colton Haaker was considered an inconsistent and brilliant rider when he hit the national scene but has managed to consistently hold top national positions over the last few years.

This season and last, Haaker has competed head to head with Cody Webb, another top Enduro Cross racer who happens to be from just down the road in Aromas. This was the eighth time for Haaker at the X-Games and his best finish was a silver medal from X Games Barcelona in 2013. He's currently leading the 2015 AMA EnduroCross in points and won the 2015 King of the Motos. 

 You can see race on X-Games website.


Leslie David

Leslie David is a Bay Area independent reporter/producer and is a BenitoLink founding board member. She has produced for radio, television, newspaper and magazines in both California and Wyoming. She was with KRON-TV News in San Francisco as camera-woman, editor and field producer, where she won the Commonwealth Club's Thomas Storke Award with Linda Yee for their series on the Aids Epidemic. She started as a small market news reporter shooting her own 16mm film at KEYT-TV Santa Barbara. Leslie lives on a ranch with her family in San Benito County.