This is the view from the top of REM’s Mount Whitney. If you throw caution to the win, you can make a pass at the bottom. Photo Dan Alamangos
The regular Saturday motocross at Glen Helen is always full of twists and surprises. This Saturday Glen Helen was hosting three events at the same time; (1) REM was racing on the upper track. (2) The Old Timers Club was holding day one of their two-day National on the USGP track; And (3) there was a automobile rally race in the area where the Lucas Oil Offroad Championship course is built.
It may look like Brandon Brady is checking his six, but instead his exhaust pipe came apart in the first 450 Pro moto…he won anyway. Photo Dan Alamangos
Those are regular happenings at Glen Helen, but our focus is on the REM race:
Pete Murray: Exactly ten years ago, former Pro racer Pete Murray won the Over-40 Championship at the World Vet Championship (in the same year that Doug Dubach (30), Hideaki Suzuki (50) and John Berkezewski (60) won their titles). Now, 50 years old, Murray is gunning for a crown in the Over-50 chase (currently owned by Pete DeGraaf). If Saturday was any indicator, Murray is on the right track. He used Dirt Bike Magazine’s 2011 Honda CRF250 to take victories in both the Over-40 and Over-50 Expert classes. In the process he gunned down one of his prime competitors for the Over-50 title when he defeated three-time Loretta Lynn Over-50 Champion Matt Tedder.
Myles Tedder (133) won the 250 pro class. Photo Dan Alamangos
Willy Musgrave: MXA test rider Willy Musgrave has won virtually every Vet title up for grabs over his career?except for a victory at the World Vet Championship (Willy has finished second several times). He even won a round of the FIM World Supercross Championship back in the 1980s, but the World Vet title in the Over-40 class is the one that got away. And with Willy’s MTA distributing company sponsoring the World Vet, it was surprising to see Willy show up at Glen Helen on a Honda CR250 two-stroke. “I just want to have fun when I race and I never had any fun on my CRF450. It was always breaking or burning up clutches. I decided to go back to a two-stroke. Win or lose?I love the way it feels.” And Willy did win. Racing both the Old Timers’ National and the REM motocross at the same time, Willy took his CR250 back and forth between the two tracks to notch victories over his four-stroke-equipped opponents. As an MXA test rider, Musgrave could ride any bike he wants…what has he elected to race? A CR250. A ten-year-old 2001 CR250 that was formerly raced in the AMA Nationals by Akira Narita.
Pete Murray (28) won both the Over-40 Expert and Over-50 Expert classes…with the World Vet Championship only one month away Pete looks like a potential winner. Photo Dan Alamangos
Billy Musgrave: Teenager Billy Musgrave’s two-stroke fever must have rubbed off on his father Willy because Billy has consistently stuck with two-strokes through the Novices and into the Intermediate ranks. At REM, Billy won the 250 Intermediate class on a Yamaha YZ125…not a big-bore?just a YZ125 with a pipe. The MXA sponsored teen will be getting a new 2011 KTM 150SX to test in the next few weeks.
Matt Tedder (10), the three-time Loretta Lynn Over-50 Champion, couldn’t match the pace of Pete Murray in the Over-50 Expert class, but his 2-2 was good enough for second overall in front of former Saddleback Pro Andy Kirker. Photo Dan Alamangos
Troy Lee: Troy came out to race and had a great day…well, except that he showed up in the wrong race?got the holeshot and led (although the whole time he had some nagging doubts that perhaps these weren’t the guys in his class). Sure enough, the little voice in his head was right. When he pulled off the track after race five, his real race (number six) took off the line. Some days, it just doesn’t go as planned.
John Perry and Gary Harada go for strategic position in the Vet Novice class. Harada went 3-3, while Perry had a 7-9 score. Photo Dan Alamangos
MXA gang: With only Dennis Stapleton MIA (he was at the World Jet Ski Finals), most of the MXA gang raced at REM with Alan Olson winning the Over-60 Expert class in front of Alan Kent, T.V. Holmes, Jody Weisel, Feets Minert and Earl Shuler; The Musgraves won the Over-40 Pro and 250 Intermediate classes; Ray Pisarski got fourth in the Over-50 Intermediates; George Kohler (7th) and Mark Hall (13th) were in the Over-50 Experts; John Minert was second in the Open Intermediates; John Basher was second in the 450 Novices; Tom Hinz was fifth in the Vet Novice class (with John Perry ninth). MXA‘s Swedish army of Bengt Johansson and Lars Larsson were missing from the action, while Aussie Dan Alamangos high-sided and was chauffeured around town by the men in white (he was released from the hospital with no broken bones later in the day).
MXA’s John Minert raced one class on a 2011 KTM 250SX two-stroke, one on a 2011 Honda CRF450 and one on a 2011 Yamaha YZ250F. Photo Dan Alamangos
MX Heaven: Motocross vacation entrepreneur Stefan Elvin had a group of foreign riders at REM on Saturday. Italian Elia Zinetti just turned pro and finished second to Myles Tedder in the 250 Pro class. Zinetti came back to win the Open Expert class in front of Myles’ dad Matt. There were four Euros in the 250 Novice class and they had a great race among themselves for places fifth through eighth. Jonas Larsson had a 5-6, Richard Andersson scored a 3-8, Lorenzo Brago went 8-5 and Derek Bodnar had a 6-7.
John Basher spent the day testing 2011 250 four-strokes (with one moto on a CRF250 and one moto on a RM-Z250). He had a 1-3 day, but which moto was on which bike? Photo Dan Alamangos
REM will not race next weekend, October 16, because of the “24 Hours of Glen Helen” endurance race or on October 23 (because of the wedding of the daughter of promoters Frank and Myra Thomason). REM will return for a World Vet warm-up race on the USGP track on Saturday October 30. REM’s annual Octobercross will be the first chance for any riders get to see the layout for the November 6-7 MTA World Veteran Championship.
For more information go to www.remsatmx.com