Roswell, NM – Pat Smage went P1 – P1 in the final two rounds of the NATC season. With these results, he was able to wrap up his 12th championship, extending his own record setting mark. For Saturday’s round 7, he would only tally four dabs which bettered second place by 18. On Sunday’s final round, he would go even lower with a just one single dab. Over the course of the 2021 NATC season, Pat would win six of the eight rounds.
This 12th championship breaks his own record setting mark of 11, which he completed in 2019. Smage won his first championship in 2007 as a 17-year-old. From there, he would go on to win two more in 2008 and 2009. Current teammate Cody Webb would take the top step in 2010. Smage would come right back and take 2011, ’12, ’13, ’14 and then had a clean sweep of the 2015 season by not losing a single round. In 2016, he would finish second to Marc Freixa of Spain. In 2017, Pat would regain the title by flipping the previous year final result finishing ahead of Freixa. Like in 2015, Smage would be perfect in all of 2018 as well as 2019. This broke Geoff Aaron’s record of 10 championships. The 2020 season was shut down due to covid concerns.
FactoryONE Sherco team president Ron Sallman had this to say. “I don’t think there will ever be another like Pat. He is on another level. It is that simple. Every time you watch him ride; your jaw hits the floor.”
Pat Samge on the weekend results: “This weekend went really well for me. The sections were mostly pretty easy which makes for a very stressful day knowing any mistake could be impossible to come back from. Saturday was slightly more difficult and I took a few dabs trying some “safe” lines to avoid risking a 5 and used the wrong technique on another section that caused another point ending with 4.
I only made one mistake on Sunday with a dab on section 7. I took off a little too easy on a loose hill before an angled ledge and didn’t quite have enough momentum to make it without a dab. My competitors were riding great and the scores were very close so the pressure was on all day to stay clean. I am very happy to have minimized my mistakes enough to win both days. My bike ran awesome all weekend and had plenty of power for the big hits while having great traction on the loose terrain.”
Pat on the National Championship: “After such a big break from national competition, it was nice to be back at it this year and even better to be able to win another championship over the best riders in the country. I had so much self doubt going into the first round, but I just kept trying my best and things came around as the year went on. With everyone stepping it up so much, it took everything I had to get it done. The support from the team was second to none, I can’t thank them enough for providing me an incredible motorcycle and such an awesome opportunity to focus on trying to win this national championship. “