There’s nothing quite the same as standing near a line of Pro riders as they wait for the gate to drop. Everyone is mostly silent – you can’t hear much over the revving of engines. A few riders exchange last words with family, pit crew, or each other. Bikes are firing, people are clearing out from behind the quads and riders are adjusting themselves and their gear as the 30 second girl makes her way out across the dirt. As the board goes up, the riders’ heads go down. They are focusing in on her. When she turns the board sideways you can see all their helmets drop to look at the gate, and you can feel the tension as everyone expectantly waits to see thirty quads head for a turn wide enough for four. It seems like an eternity to wait – the motors are screaming to be unleashed – the whole crowd seems to be holding their breath and every rider remains still, perfectly poised and ready to take the holeshot, focused and determined. Only one rider can get the holeshot, and each of those 30 guys wants it. Badly.
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