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Rounds 1&2 of the 2016 Quadcross Northwest season are in the books! We had record entries for the opening weekend which is awesome news for the future of the sport in the Northwest and made for some awesome battles across the board all weekend. I’ve never really rode well at Horn Rapids and I came into the weekend really just hoping for a top 3 and to keep the bike in one piece. Saturday morning I got up early and headed for sign ups. After I paid my entry and membership fees I looked at the cash I had left on me and was like “Oh, I better go win some money back.” I duct taped my boots on and was ready to go.
Practice started and I got into the groove of things quick. I normally don’t feel very good during the first practice, but I was on it this weekend. Second practice I really started to get into a groove, took some new lines and got warm for moto one. Even after all the work I put in during the off season and riding with the other guys I’m racing against, you still really never know where you are at until the first gate drop. We had 9 riders on the line for ProAm, each one of them with a chance of winning. Out of the gate for the first time in 2016 I had a poor start that put me in 6th or 7th. I made quick passes to move up into 4th and started to close the gap on the top 3. There was a 4 way battle up front all weekend with no more than a second between us. I stayed on it and made the most of my opportunities to pass. Late into the ProAm motos endurance really comes into play and I was able to ride faster and smoother the more laps we put in. I made a move on 3rd place and chased 2nd for another lap or two until I was able to get around. I didn’t let the 1st place rider get away from me and had the fastest lap time for moto 1, but finished with a 2nd. Moto 2 was a similar start, I believe I got to the first turn in 5th and worked my way up for a 2nd place finish. Going 2-2 for a 2nd overall wasn’t a bad way to start the year but I knew I had more left in the tank and was looking forward to Sunday.
Sunday morning came quick. I woke up sore, but once I got on the track it all went away and I felt even better than the day before. My boots were absolutely destroyed and I had to borrow a pair for day two. My starts went a little better on Sunday, I got to the first corner in 3rd or 4th and ate dirt nearly the entire moto. About a quarter way through the first lap I forgot to let off the gas at the top of a jump and flat landed about 30 feet past the landing and bent my axle. I thought I blew the bead on the tire and kept getting kicked sideways off the jumps and stalled the bike once but I was able to deal with it and made a last lap pass for 2nd place and closed the gap on the top spot but ran out of time. I rushed back to the trailer to confirm what the issue with the bike was and didn’t have the parts or the time to fix it so I was just going to have to deal with it for the last moto of the weekend. The gate dropped for moto 2 and I got a decent start and made the move for 2nd on the finish line jump and closed the gap for 1st. I did my best to stay patient and waited for the right opportunity to make the pass. I got around and was able to hold on for the rest of the moto earning a 2-1 and a first overall and my first ever Quadcross Northwest win.
I felt like I left a lot of time on the track and know I can improve my lap times. I’m excited to get back to the gym and on the track to put in more work to get to where I know I can be. A huge thank you to all of those who have helped me out this year, I seriously could not be doing this without my sponsors: Pit Traffic, BVC Racing, Walsh Race Craft, Rath Racing, Sunstar Chains & Sprockets, Quad-Tech, Campbell Fabrication Racing, ODI Grips, and Pivot Works. As always a big thank you for everything my dad and girlfriend Kaylee do to help me out on and off the track and a huge thank you to Brandon Brown for loaning me a pair of boots to get through the weekend. I’m excited to get back to work and make some improvements. Stay tuned for rounds 3&4 at Albany Motorsports Park!