2018 Adelanto Grand Prix

Picture by Mark Kariya

The 2018 season is already here!! The first race for myself and my Purvines Racing teammate Axel Pearson was the Adelanto Big 6 Grand Prix put on by SoCal M.C. This year our main focus will be on the National Hare & Hound series but we will also be competing in the Big 6 WCGP series. For me it brings me back to the series where I started Racing Offroad. When I first came to Offroad the Big 6 series was the first series I started chasing. Later on in my career I got away from doing the whole series but would do a few throughout the year when I could. I knew coming back to this series would be tough and it definitely was! We headed down on Friday to get signed up and ride the unclassified race to see where the course went and to break in our race bikes. I usually just cruise the first few laps of unclassified and get a feel for the track. After that it was time to head back home and prep the bikes for Saturday. Saturday morning at 10:00am I lined up for the Vet race to get some more track time and see how the course was shaping up. I got a great start and was battling with some of my longtime Racing friends for the lead when I hit a muddy corner and lost the front end. I was glad I didn’t get ran over but my bike did and took down Gordon ward in the process. Sorry Gordon! I picked myself back up and charged to the finish. I made it back up to 3rd overall and felt like I got some great lines for the pro race. When the pro race started I got a great jump and almost held the lead into the first turn. I checked up a little to much and came around in the top 5. It was dusty and the pace at the front was really fast. Something I know I need to work on and would be my weakness. I kept getting shuffled backwards and couldn’t find my groove at all. I really struggled the first lap and went back to 15th. After I loosened up I finally felt like I could ride and started my charge back through the pack. I came into the pit at the midway point of the race and got a splash of gas and some fresh Viral goggles! Thank you to my wife for always cheering me on and making me want to push harder! I knew my strong suit would be my endurance and that my lap times wouldn't change throughout the race. I kept charging and picking people off. I wish the race was one lap shorter but they went an extra lap which ended up costing me big time! Before I could take the white flag I did a double jump in the arena and suddenly almost went over the bars. Weird but I carried my momentum into the big banked turn and went to get on the gas and fell over! I didn’t know what happened. I thought I broke my transmission but thankfully before I could start trying to smash my shifter a course worker yelled at me and had my chain in his hand. I was immediately crushed as I worked hard the entire race to work up to 8th place and now it was over. I pushed my bike to the finish and waited for the leaders. I got a finish and ended up 14th in the pro class and got some points. In the end it was a good day. I know what I need to work on and it’s going to take some time to find my speed in this type of racing again. I had a lot of fun and my fitness felt really good!

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