2015 Mini O’s Photo Report – Friday
By Billy Rainford
Photos by E. Nicholson and Bigwave
It was another banger of a day here just west of Gainesville, Florida, at the 44th Annual Thor Winter Olympics. Most classes here have qualifiers and so today was all about getting yourself through to the second motos Saturday. Some classes (250C) had 4 qualifiers! There were over 130 riders trying to get in.
We had the usual freak rain storm that only lasted 5 minutes near the end of the day, but this track, with all the sand they’ve added over the years, can take a lot of water and it wasn’t a problem.
We officially unpacked our new tent and used it last night. Two people in an 8-man tent is pretty luxurious. Next time, we’ll have to bring our bedside tables and recliner chairs. But I ask you, is there such a thing as a blow-up mattress that doesn’t leak? I have yet to witness one of these mythical beasts. The 3am re-pump was a bit of a drag.
Anyway, let’s have a look at some of the racing.
Huge thanks to Forma Boots, FXR Racing, and Valley Motosport for their support. Give them a click and check ’em out.
Let’s get to the racing…
Dan Goheen with the bird’s eye view of things early in the day.
We bumped into Sheena, Saylor, and Gavin Gracyk at the MTF Thanksgiving dinner. If you ever see them, ask Saylor to ‘do the face.’ Thanks for the vittles, MTF.
Almost-Canadian, #35 Joey Crown, has a 1st, 2 2nds, and a 5th heading into Championship Saturday. #71 Challen Tennant is not going to be easy to beat. He has 4 1st and a 3rd.
It’s going to come down to starts tomorrow.
Nario Izzi has lots of racers he’s helping out at this event.
Stephan Watling has got to be one of the most meticulous mechanics I’ve seen. That and OCD are common characteristics of great mechanics. It’s science, people!
Nick Denniston came THIS CLOSE to making it to the second moto in one of his classes. Seriously, it was by a nobby that he missed 3rd place.
Yep. This little guy’s name is ‘Moto.’ What would Chopper say?!
I don’t know whether to go with a drinking comment or a quote from The Breakfast Club (Google it, Bowker!).
Mitch Goheen getting some last-minute advise from his mechanic, Nick Jones.
Mitch was all ears…and smiles.
#46 Marco Cannella getting some advice of his own from his manfriend for the week, Joey Crown.
I just took a look at #329 Matthew Leblanc’s results sheet. There are 16 #1’s there and nothing else!
#494 Thomas Rendall had a 16th and a 13th today. We should see him lining up tomorrow.
Thomas getting in a little warm up.
The Ottawa native has a 16th and a 13th heading into tomorrow.
Mitch! Go race!
#424 Austin Watling and #64 Mitch Goheen were lined up right beside each other earlier in the day. Austin pulled the holeshot with Mitch just behind in 3rd. Unfortunately, Goheen suffered some bike issues and dropped to the back while Watling went on to take the checkers.
Mitch got his 2-stroke re-fired and finished the qualifier but has made the switch over to the 4-stroke.
People are getting to know the name Austin Watling down here in Florida. He will be in tough tomorrow against some really fast C riders who will meet in the final moto.
This guy, #75 Locky Kennedy, had 3 firsts and a 2nd today.
#214 Austin Forkner had 3 firsts and a second in the top classes.
#486 Chase Sexton finally put together a good 450 Pro Sport moto and took the win.
How could you not cheer for this guy in one of the Vet classes?! By the way, that is a V1000. The back is open.
You can’t make a single mistake in the C classes here – they are stacked! #553 Nick Denniston had an early holeshot going but got taken to the woods by an anxious rider to his inside.
He needed 3rd place in his consi and came THIS close to getting it. I’m pretty sure it went to the other guy.
Riders come off the track and peel the rest of their tear-offs. They clean them up with a rake at the end of each day.
Timmy Ferry gives his son, Evan, a pat on the back after a moto.
#101 Matthew Cemovic from Brampton, ON was very busy today. He had 2 13ths, a 17th, and a 27th.
#161 Ben Mistelbacher has a 21, 14, and 11th heading into tomorrow. He came very close to snagging the holeshot in his final consolation race and made it to Saturday.
#21 Carter Stuart is putting all this experience in the bank for use at a later date.
#667 Ty Kirby has a 26th and a 30th in the 51cc classes this week on the MX track. And there’s no way his older brother Jonny Kirby is out there in the 65cc classes with the #668 on his bike! I’ve looked every time and have seen nothing. I’ll look again tomorrow.
#14X finished 22 and 23 in the 85 (9-11) classes.
The rain came just before the last couple consolation races. It had people running for cover.
OK, just one more day left down here. We’ve taken video too, but haven’t haven’t had time to do anything with the footage. See you at the races…