Team Suzuki’s Matt Moss.
REM Glen Helen is a different kind of motocross race. Here are seven reasons why:
(1) It is held on the same hallowed ground as the 1970’s Arroyo Cycle Park (the place where Ray Lopez won the first unofficial 125 National Championship). It isn’t the same track as the Glen Helen National and Grand Prix track. It is situated in the hills above the GP track (although some of it used at the USGP).
(2) It is the place where the motorcycle industry, at least those in the motorcycle industry who race, come to race. It’s not unusual to see the owners of major motorcycle companies on the starting line at REM. That means that if you are looking for a sponsorship deal?you might have a better chance of impressing a talent scout in person than on a resume.
Steve Pfaff (612) makes an easy pass on italian rider Nicolo Zinetti (792).
(3) REM is the best place to get publicity for a local racer. How so? You’re reading this race report about a weekly race at a local track…how many of those will you find on the web.
MXA’s Willy Musgrave (422) and Sean Borkenhagen (foreground) engaged in a major duel in the second Pro moto. Borkenhagen’s KX250F would pass Musgrave’s CRF450 in the corners and Musgrave would blow by him on the hills. Borkenhagen finally got the 47-year-old Pro, and Musgrave said. “He rode clean and made a good pass. I know when I was a young National Pro I would get very angry when old guys would mess with me. I appreciate how Sean raced with me.”
(4) REM is not a jump-infested shark pit of a racetrack. It has a few jumps, but mostly it is a tricky combination of rough track, off-camber corners and dizzying ups and downs. It would be easy to call it “Old School” motocross?but its actually real motocross.
(5) Because REM is rough, bumpy and the motos are long, lots of AMA National riders come to REM to test themselves. It is where Mike Alessi raced before the 2010 Nationals and, this week, it is where Matt Moss and Sean Borkenhagen came to get in some race time before the big show starts up again.
(6) Promoters Frank and Myra Thomason are moto-people. The month before the AMA Nationals start they hold 30-minute plus one-lap motos for the Pros…and on a weekly basis they offer every Pro at the track a chance to ride a second “Open Expert” class for free?so the serious riders can get in four motos in the same day (Moss and Borkenhagen raced four motos this weekend).
(7) Because REM is held on Saturday, the program moves swiftly. Although practice doesn’t start until 9:00 am (to allow the rich and famous a chance to get their beauty sleep), the races are almost always finished by 2:00 pm (so that everyone can get home and prep their bikes for Sunday’s race). The typical day has five motos (times two)?and they achieve this accelerated program by having multiple starts (Pros on Gate one and Intermediates on gate two…and maybe the Over-50 Experts thrown in with them.
SO, WHO DID WHAT AT REM THIS WEEK?
MXA’s George Kohler can ride any bike in the MXA stable?his personal choice is the Husaberg FX450.
Last week, Matt Moss had a long struggle in the first moto to catch 450 Intermediate Justin Jones (son of four-time 250 National Champion Gary Jones). This week Moss was ready to put the teenager in his place. It was not to be as Justin Jones was hit by a rock in practice…and left the track to have his eye looked at.
Moss didn’t need an invitation to win…and rode with much more authority than he did the week before. Moss swept both 450 Pro motos in front of a top five of Sean Borkenhagen (on his KX250F), Jake Canada, Jake Capriotti and Dylan McKee. Moss also came back and won the Open Expert class also.
With Jones out with a injury after practice, Ryan Kudla took the 450 Intermediate victory in front of a top five of Ryan Cowell, Cody Young (Chris Young’s son), John Minert (Feets Minert’s grandson) and Cole Ralston. Young would come back to win the Open Intermediate class in front of Kudla, Minert and Nicolo Zinetti.
In the 250 Intermediate class the Zinetti brothers (Nicolo and Elia) sandwiched Billy Musgrave (son of Willy Musgrave) in a three-man deli spread.
Nathan Cernicky, Kordel Caro and Robbie McCarthy rounded out the top three in the 250 Novice class.
WHAT ABOUT THE OLD GUYS?
Dennis Boulware shows a unique approach to blasting out of a corner at REM.
Dirt Bike editor, Ron Lawson, freshly home from Italy, won the amazingly competitive Over-50 Expert class. Lawson’s 2-1 bested the 3-2 of Randel Fout, 1-4 of Dennis Boulware, 4-3 of Greg Nelson (last week’s winner), 6-5 of Husaberg-mounted George Kohler and 5-7 of Randy Skinner.
Greg Pierce took the Over-40 Expert win with Phil Dowell and Steve Pfaff making up the top three places.
Bob Marino won the Over-50 Intermediate class with a 1-1. Frank Mierau went 2-2 for second, while Marc Crosby (5-3), Gary Scott (4-4) and Dan Willenborg (3-6) packed the top five spots.
Pro Valve’s Nick Costello (188) flies by Dennis Smith (928) in the Over-50 Novice race.
in the Over-50 Novice class Brian Underdahl’s 2-1 was better than Chuck Freeman’s 1-3. Greg Whitfield was third. Tim Norton looked like a top three runner, but a second moto disaster gave him a 3-11 score.
Tom White, Jody Weisel, John Huegel, Feets Minert and Earl Shuler were the top five in the Over-60 Expert class.
Ray Pisarski was the MXA test rider assigned to the KTM 350SXF this weekend. He went 6-5 in the Over-50 Intermediate class.
While his dad was getting third in the Over-60 Expert class, Ron Huegel took the victory in the Over-40 Intermediates. Mike Gee, Dan Alamangos, Steve Herman and Scott Williams were the front runners.
In Over-40 Novice Todd Heagstedt used a 1-2 to win again. Second moto winner Dan Dalton had a fifth in moto one, but held on for second overall in front of John Turner, Dean Crow, Carlos Palomo, Ernie Becker, Steve Bender and Steve Zwinger.
Jake Canada (592) squeezes his way past James Weber (207) in the second moto. Canada was third overall in the Pro class.
Nigel Crosby (son of Marc Crosby) went 1-1 in the 250 Beginner class. Joseph Estrada (2-2), Brendan Crow (4-3), Ryan Nitzen (5-4) and Austin Mierau (3-6) all vied for the gold.
MXA’s Billy Musgrave raced a 2011 KTM 250SXF to second overall in the 250 Intermediate class.
Photos by Dan Alamangos
REM races again next Saturday, August 14. For more info go to www.remsatmx.com
MORE BORKENHAGEN/MUSGRAVE PHOTOS