Photos by Dan Alamangos and Ernie Becker
Andreas Ovgard—450 Pro winner.
After a very long motocross season, that started back on January 4, 2013, and ended this Saturday, December 28, 2013, the year-long points battle to claim the right to the number one plate at Glen Helen Raceway was finally over. REM counts points for every rider, in every class, for 36 races in the year. The points are paid out based on finishes—and the rider with the most points gets a big trophy and his name on the wall. The riders who make the top ten get prizes and jackets with their name and number on them. You'd be amazed at how much money a motocross racer will spend to race 36 weekends out of the year—just to earn a free jacket. But racing isn't about the reward, the reward is racing week-in and week-out against your friends and enemies.
250 Pro winner Lasse Christoffersen (4) sweeps around fellow Swede Anton Stahlberg (A) and Durango, Colorado's Johnny Dezendorf (red jersey).
Of course there are lots of riders at Glen Helen who can't commit the time, energy or money into racing virtually every weekend of the year—they come out occasionally to test themselves against the REM regulars. Among this group is the constant stream of foreign riders; Swedes in the winter; Aussies when the mood to travel strikes them; Kuwaittis in the summer; Brits all year long; and a passel of Norwegians, Danes and Estonians that often fill the gates. The part-timers aren't racing for points—they came to be part of the SoCal scene—and to improve their racing and go home faster than they came.
Lasse Chrisoffersen—250 Pro winner.
No where was this more evident than in the Pro classes, which were jam-packed with Swedes. Lots of them. In fact, there were some classes at REM that were made up totally of Swedish riders. Andreas Ovgard took the 450 Pro win with a 2-2—helped in no small part by Justin Jones' wheel bearing issues and the fact that first moto winner Anton Wallsten blew his bike up in the Open Expert race later in the program. Amazingly, Jones came into the pits and borrowed a bike to finish the first moto, while Wallsten borrowed the exact same bike for the second moto. Equally surprising was the Jones got a flat front tire on his borrowed steed in moto one—and Wallsten got a flat rear tire on same bike in moto two. In the end, the 450 Pro class fell to Andreas Ovgard's 2-2.
Justin Jones (65) and Anton Wallsten (65) on their borrowed bike.
Justin Jones blew a wheel bearing in the first 450 Pro moto, borrowed a bike and got a flat tire on it. For the second moto he borrowed a rear wheel and won—but winning one moto doesn't get you the top step of the podium. What's cool about this photo is that, in the background, you can see his dad, Gary Jones, going up a small rise.
THE WEEKEND'S WINNERS
R.J. Wageman went 1-1 in the 250 Intermediates.
250 Intermediates: R.J. Wageman (1-1), Kordel Caro (2-2), Johnny Dezendorf (3-3).
450 Intermediates: Jimmy O'Neal (1-1), Mads Gregersen (2-2), Anton Stahlberg (3-3).
Jon Ortner (10) not only won the Over-50 Expert class, but he clinched the number one plate for 2013.
Over-50 Experts: Jon Ortner (1-1), Wil Harper (4-2), Bam Simons (3-3)
Over-50 Intermediates: Randy Skinner (4-2), Fred Nichols (1-7), Steve Donovan (6-3).
Over-50 Novices: Mike Hillion (1-1), Bill Reimer (5-2), Syd Woods (4-4).
Todd Gravitt's 2-2 was good enough for, you guessed it, second overall behind Chris Noble's 1-1 in the Vet Intermediates.
Over-40 Pro: Larry Laye (1-1).
Over-40 Expert: Ian Fitz-Gibbon (1-1).
Over-40 Intermediate: Dan Alamangos (1-1).
Over-40 Novice: Luther French (1-1).
Dennis Stapleton won the Vet Pro class and pulled some impressive holeshots on the Pro pack on his KTM 450SXF.
Vet Pro: Dennis Stapleton (1-1).
Vet Intermediate: Chris Noble (1-1).
Over-60 Expert: Gary Jones (1-1)
Broc Armbruster was back for his first race since breaking his leg at the Elsinore 450 National. Broc went 3-3 for an almost impossible fourth. Believe it or not, there are mathematical combinations that can make a third place rider in both motos not finished third overall.
Vet Novice: Pasha Afshar (1-1).
450 Novice: John Schlickenmeyer (1-2).
250 Novice: Noah Hickerson (1-1).
125 Novice: Henry Roten (1-1).
Dan Alamangos (34) leads John Schlickenmeyer (48) and Ron Shuler (33) through the chicane as the pack lines up behind him. Alamangos won the Over-40 Intermediates with Shuler second,
Gary Jones showed up on a 2014 Husqvarna FE350 enduro bike. He won the Over-60 Expert class in front of George Kohler, Patrick Flynn, Mike Marion and Tom White.
The race behind the four-time 250 National Champion was intense as Tom White (80), Mike Marion (3) and George Kohler (31) traded places all day long in the Over-60 Experts.
In "pit board corner" the gang spend a good portion of the day writing joke pit boards for their favorite riders. Here, Mike Marion gets "Clutch It," "Let Frank Bye" and "Focas." Okay, there are comedians, not spellers. We are a little confused about what the Goldfish crackers signify.
Tom Hinz (76) is pursued by Santa Claus—no, that is actually his arch-rival Gary Taylor in the Santa hat. Hinz went 4-4 for fourth in the Vet Novices. Santa was disqualifed for being on the naughty list.
FINAL 2013 REM GLEN HELEN POINTS STANDINGS
(After 36 of 36 races)
1. John Ortner..............736
2. Jeff Fahy...................640
3. Joe Sutter.................588
4. Cory Clark................564
5. Paul Doebereiner......534
6. Dave Eropkin............500
7. George Kohler..........474
8. Kendall Stanley.........464
9. Jody Weisel..............443
10. Mark Taylor.............430
11. Steve Donovan.......422
12. Willie Amaradio......418
13. Mic Rodgers...........410
14. Ron Shuler..............403
15. Dan Alamangos......399
16. Jeff Mason..............380
17. Bryan Friday............374
18. Lyle Sweeter............364
19. Noah Hickerson......358
20. Gary Jones..............356
The 2014 REM Glen Helen season starts next Saturday, January 4. For more info about REM go to www.remsatmx.com
Kawasaki Motorcycle test