By Billy Rainford
Having not been at a Supercross the past couple weekends, I didn’t really have a lot of content for my past two Monday Morning Coffee columns. However, I don’t even know where to start this week! I think it’s pretty safe to say that the past 3 days contained more moto content than any I’ve had in the past…many, many years. Let me clarify.
Sure, I was only at the one racing event – the first round of the AMO Reloaded series at Gopher Dunes on Sunday – but the last time I actually rode 2 days in a row would be a throwback to a time when many of you reading this were…well, let’s just say a LOT younger.
If you check in on our stuff regularly here on DMX, you know that I just got reunited with my old “mechanic” friend from the 1980’s, Cary Hitchen. He hasn’t been on a motocross track in 38 years and finally decided to go out and buy himself a new bike – a KTM 250SX.
We tried to go out the week before but spring has been taking its sweet time getting here to southwestern Ontario. So, when the temperature finally went up and the sun came out we loaded up and headed over to Steve Luyk‘s place, Gore Road MX, just east of London.
When Steve met us out at the track, Cary remembered more about Steve than I did! He knew the family had been chicken farmers and remembered his race number and bikes. We mxers are kind of savants with this stuff, as you all know.
Anyway, there were a couple people there already riding when we got there. We were happy to see that because we were expecting the track to be pretty muddy and that’s definitely not what we needed to get back in the saddle for the first time since Cary’s bike was air-cooled and had 2 shocks. True story.
One of the riders ended up being the son of former Auburn Hills MX track owner, Tom Bitz. Wow, small world! In fact, the next AMO race will be a return to the track many riders here in Ontario will quickly cite as their all-time favourite in two week’s time.
I decided to try and document the day with video, so check Day 1 at the track:
I didn’t see it, but I guess he did manage to fall once in a corner. He didn’t make much of a big deal about it and we went out a few more times after. He sent over these photos of the results:
Cary’s hour meter says we rode for 1.1 hours that day!
So, then Greg Poisson came to our place for the weekend to ride and then go to Gopher Dunes for the races. I went on and on about how good I felt after that previous day on the bike, so we loaded up in Greg’s truck and headed over to The Pit in Thamesford this time.
I was surprised at how few people there were for how nice the weather ended up being. Renée Riendeau had just finished riding when we pulled in and got stuck in the mud. I thought it would have been fun to spin some laps with her until I actually got out on the track and found out just how much I was feeling the day before’s ride.
Greg had fun and looked good out there and I think he thought I must have crashed or something when he didn’t see me on the track. I was changed back into my street clothes when he finally made it back to the pits after his ride.
It turns out, I’m not ready to ride two days in a row. That’s a fact.
I didn’t get tired or sore the day before at Gore Road but as soon as I got out on the track on that day I knew I was in over my head. I’m riding Jeff McConkey‘s 2016 Yamaha YZ250 2-stroke and the thing tends to have some pull. And I found that it was going to pull me right into a tree or off a jump and into the field if I were to keep going, so I decided I’d live to fight another day and headed back to the truck after my second 10-minute ride.
No, I’m not proud of myself, but I am smart enough to realize the sport had beaten me, so I waved the white flag. I’ll give it another couple days before we take Mike Judge up on his invitation to ride his turn track and through-the-woods track just outside of the city some day this week.
I’m a little sore and quite sunburnt from a long day at the races yesterday. I’ve got a lot of things to talk about but I’d like to do it in a little more detail, so I’ll cut this MMC short so I can get to all the other things I’ve got on my hard drive.
Greg pointed out there there are a lot of tracks available to ride in the London area. I hadn’t really thought about it, but he’s right. We’re pretty lucky around here. My longterm plan is to ride all of them in the same day, but that will have to wait until I can stay on the bike a little longer.
Have a great week, everyone.