This weeks report is coming from Myakka, Fl at the Carlton Ranch. The Old School Dirt Riders were offering a fine mix of tight woods, open pastures and several creek crossings(7.4 miles for Sat and 10.3 for Sunday) Right away it was obvious the club had their act together as sign-up went quickly and a map was provided to view the course from overhead and see all the nice Sunday only trail that was going to be available.
Sat soon arrived and so did Haley's afternoon race. After her one lap experience from the prior race, there was much motivation to improve on that and get some experience under her belt. She received loads of advice/support from club member's to make her goal a seemingly easy one...race until they tell you to stop. The need to put miles/laps on are obvious, yet the nerves and self doubt are never far away to wreck such well meant plans.We'll wait and see how she does.
Beeeeeeeeeeeeep ! She's off. Last place into the first creek crossing on purpose and off into the woods she goes. At this point her mother Lori starts the hand wringing. I'm not to worried about her, as I know great clubs like OSDR have people out there to help if trouble should arise, and besides the bike breaking (That then would be my issue then) she is on her own.
Soon she arrives from out of the creek and completes the first lap. At this point she looks okay and heads out for a 2nd one. We're not concerned how fast she's is, she's still trying ! Before you know it she appears from the water and looks great...then dumps the bike in the scoring chicane. In her defense, she wasn't the only one I saw do this , so I ran over, got her up righted and asked about a third lap. "I can do another one?...oh yeah !" was her reply as she headed out yet again. Lori and I were excited as her attitude was one of a finisher, and she proved us correct...3 laps! They all counted and a big step in building confidence was achieved. She later admitted the though of being teased by friends about only doing 1 lap again was a great motivator...ha!
Place # Name AMA # Brand City, State Points Adv Laps Elapsed
1 5G Zoe Steindl KTM Sanford, FL 50 0 4 1:13:45
2 169G Haley Schell Honda Odessa, FL 47 0 3 1:14:17
After last races 2nd place, I'm left wondering if it was a fluke. Was it the course, what I ate that day, or did I seemingly get it figured out overnight? I do know at this point I'm expecting more from myself. No being satisfied with anything but first (Okay, maybe top 3's would suffice) Prior to my race a bit of weather info was passed along. "Rain is coming...30 minutes away"...oh great.
Bike fired first kick and I was 5th going into the woods. Just trying to stay calm and wait for opportunities. A rider in front of me makes a bad line choice in some mud and I've got 4th. I'm thinking I really need to push at this point because once the rain starts, everything is going to slow down. Soon enough I'm through the scoring chicane...4th place. The next lap the wind starts to pick-up and the rain starts. I'm out in the open fields as it blows through but really seems to not be an issue as it was over quickly. 2nd lap ends with me in 3rd place. Just as I'm leaving the scoring chicane I see 26C(Tom Miller) pulling in to get new goggles. I'm think "oh yeah, that was easy" as I take over 2nd place...for all of about 30 yds. As I was crossing up the other side of the first creek crossing I dump the bike, and back by goes 26C...sigh. Tom is faster in the woods, but I manage to pass him back on a big sweeping turn in the open field. I'm feeling pretty good right now as I set off to put some distance between us. The plan is working except for what seemed to be a simple dumping of my bike in a corner. I go to pull the clutch in after getting up and the lever won't budge. It seems I had rotated my bark buster/hand guard up enough the the clutch lever could fully extend. The worn out lever was now missing the piston on the master cylinder completed...aaaaagggghhhh ! I frantically pulled up and down on the lever and all of a sudden I could pull it in. I take off and head through a small creek crossing. Go to pull in the lever and..no luck. I stall it, and began to pound on the clutch master cylinder while cursing my bad luck. Tom was nice enough to dump his bike right next to me as I frantically wiggled anything in sight to get the lever to work. Manage to find the sweet spot and stagger off. Still in 2nd. Now at this point I can't count on being able to pull the lever in or not. It's truly a 1 in 10 proposition of when it'll work. Another creek crossing, stalled it and by goes Tom. At this point I'm running out of energy. The worry of stalling it is overwhelming as I roll into the scoring chicane...can I do this? Shakingly I manage to not stall it as I head out for a 4th lap, realizing I'm not in the fight for 2nd anymore, I'm just trying to survive. I down shift into 1st when I'm not sure of the corner, which makes for slow going. I'm struggling, which saps my energy. Riders from other classes are now passing me back that I had passed earlier. I tell myself in my helmet aloud "Don't screw this up you moron" I kept waiting for 3rd to come by as I took the easy split (didn't realize until I went by that the hard split had loosened up to get over easily). I head through the chicane for the last time....3rd! I was pumped that I manage to hold on and score points....but I had had 2nd !!! First place(199C-Scott Bowman) had gaped Tom in 2nd by 3 minutes, so let's hope he doesn't show up any more
Hope you enjoyed the reports, now go out and ride !!!
PS. Thanks Ryan for the tip on taping my hands...no blisters !
Place # Name AMA # Brand City, State Points Adv Laps Elapsed
1 199C Scott Bowman Yamaha Palm City, FL 50 10 4 1:42:56
2 31C Tom Miller 696207 KTM North Port, FL 47 5 4 1:45:56
3 117C Troy Stainbrook KTM Odessa, FL 45 4 4 1:46:50
4 314C Chris Reid 617543 Yamaha Lakeland, FL 43 3 4 1:47:07
5 27C Brian Brannigan 941420 Yamaha Winter Garden, FL 41 2 4 1:47:35
6 325C Frank Gamperl Yamaha Deerfield Beach, FL 40 0 4 1:47:52
7 20C Charles Nix Suzuki Inverness, FL 39 0 4 1:48:39
8 520C Sam Jarczynski Suzuki Safety Harbor, FL 38 0 4 1:49:15
9 919C Randy Bolen 987702 Kawasaki San Mateo, FL 37 0 4 1:50:19
10 818C Irvin Kelly 942897 Honda Kissimmee, FL 36 0 4 1:50:32
11 15C Kevin Vaughan KTM North Port, FL 35 0 4 1:53:43
12 40C Chris Tolken 1064511 KTM New Port Richey, FL 34 0 3 1:31:07
13 42C Brenton Teixeira KTM Key West, FL 33 0 3 1:32:03
14 469C Patrick Morrison KTM Deltona, FL 32 0 3 1:32:18
15 251C Mike Warm 2068687 Kawasaki Sarasota, FL 31 0 3 1:37:40
16 522C Kevin Witkowski Honda Sarasota, FL 30 0 3 1:46:47
17 18C Vernon Hackett 223505 KTM Port St Lucie, FL 14 0 2 0:57:27
18 369C Dan Thaler Yamaha Deerfield Beach, FL 14 0 2 1:04:13
19 704C David Sommers Honda St Petersberg, FL 14 0 2 1:04:37
DNF 82C David Schneeberger 945656 Yamaha Bradenton, FL 0 0 0 0:00:00
Total Riders in Class: 20 Total Riders in Event: 242