REM GLEN HELEN: BIG DAY, HOT DAY & A DAY TO REMEMBER

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Photos by Dan Alamangos, Debbi Tamietti, Harry Leitner and Rich Stuelke

DANsunriseThere is nothing as peaceful as sunrise over a motocross starting line. The clouds hang in the valleys of the 8000 foot peaks in the background, while smatterings of water begin to soak in to the start straight. The peace will soon be broken. Photo: Dan Alamangos

After a weekend off (because of a Tough Mudder mud run at Glen Helen last Saturday and Sunday), the REM motocross racers were anxious to get back in the saddle. The heavy equipment that built and removed the mud run obstacles and a week of 90-degree weather weren’t kind to Glen Helen’s dirt as the track quickly broke into patches of old-school square-edge bumps. After a couple months of fairly choice dirt, thanks to lucky breaks in the SoCal weather, REM Motocross found itself in Summer conditions for the first time this calendar year.

DANeddiedavisEddie Davis (155) won the Over-50 Elite class, but he had to power his way through some tough customers to get the win. Photo: Dan Alamangos

There was a lot of action and more than a few crashes, but REM riders are used to rough motocross tracks (as the Glen Helen dirt is not kind to the weak willed). If you don’t like bumps, then Glen Helen isn’t your kind of track. The stars of the day were Bradley Taft (who quickly gapped the rest of the Pro class to turn in some fast laps), Willy Simons, Jr.(who went 1-1 in the 250 Intermediates), Eddie Davis (who came from behind to win the Over-50 Elite class), Bob Rutten (who broke-in his 2016 KTM 450SXF Factory Edition by sweeping both Over-60 Expert motos), Alan Jullien (who won the Open Vet and Over-40 Expert classes) and David Cincotta (who easily handled the Over-40 Intermediates).

DANbradleytaftBradley Taft (961) was the class of the day. He easily won the 450 Pro class on his Star Racing Yamaha. Photo: Dan Alamangos

The REM specialists don’t like it when a massive crowd of riders show up. They like to keep REM as their own private domain—where they race against their friends, the races are over by 1:30 p.m. and they can get home and prep their bikes to ride on Sunday. This weekend was not as “down home” as the locals like—the big turnout spread out the classes, and even with double waves and multiple classes behind the gates the races ran until 3:00 p.m. Yes, we know that is early by most motocross standards, but it’s late for REM motocrossers. And with REM moving to the USGP/AMA National track next Saturday, the turnout will be big again. Don’t worry, the regulars will grumble, but they’ll be there with bells on.

DANtycullinsTy Cullins’ Beta is obscured by the roost of the bikes in front of him. Cullins was second in the 450 Intermediate class. Photo: Dan Alamangos

This week’s breakdown by the brands that the riders raced with as follows: KTM 30%, Yamaha 26%, Honda 20%, Suzuki 5%, Husqvarna 5% and TM/Beta 2%. The age breakdown shows that 13% of the riders were in the Vet classes, 15% in the Over-40 classes, 32% in the Over-50 classes and 10% in the Over-60 classes. If you just look at the percentage above 30 years old, it amounted to 60% of all of REM’s racers this week. The total number of riders above 40-years-old (40, 50 and 60) was 53%. And, the percentage of this week’s REM racers over 50-years-old (50 and 60) was 38%. On a side note: 7% of the racers at REM this week raced two classes.

DANtonyparsonsThe low sun, decomposed granite dirt and Tony Parson’s color palette produce a glowing effect. Photo: Dan Alamangos

Here is the REM race schedule through the next month. As you can see REM doesn’t race on May 14 or May 28, but does races on the bold dates—
   1. April 30
   2. May 7
   3. May 14…No race (Lucas Oil Regional)
   4. May 21
5. May 28…No race (AMA  National)

RICHfirst50In the first Over-50 Expert start, Mark Hall and Jerry Black collided. Hall catapulted over Black and his bike (he can be seen behind the #31 bike). The race was red flagged—not because the crash blocked the racetrack, but because it blocked where the start enters the track—and they couldn’t start the second wave. Photo: Rich Stuelke

If you’ve never been to REM, you can get a taste of it from these photos shot by Dan Alamangos, Debbie Tamietti, Harry Leitner and Rich Stuelke.

RICH2nd50In the Over-50 class restart, Jon Ortner (92) leads Bob Weber (6) and Luther French (2). Steve Pfaff (12) who had a great start in the first attempt, can be see in last in the restart. Photo: Rich Stuelke

RICH50intAfter sitting on the starting line during the two Over-50 Expert starts, the Over-50 Intermediates were finally led by Mike Phillips (63) with Michelle Horton (357) and the two 383’s in tow (they were Randy Skinner and Rob Wexler). Photo: Rich Stuelke

MarkhelmetharryAfter his first turn collision, Mark Hall shows off the battle scars on his 6D helmet. Photo: Harry Leitner

DEBdennisAs always, MXA’s Dennis Stapleton (184) was only in town for a quick stop-over before flying somewhere to race. Dennis won the Vet Pro class, gave Jody Weisel his borrowed WP Cone Valve forks back and is headed to Denmark on Monday. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBnahasIt’s always nice to see a father and son sharing what they love. Here, Mark Nahas (103) pursues Nick Nahas (129) in the 250 Novice class. Mark’s 10-3 beat Nick’s 9-7. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBreisingnerweberIt’s always nice to see a business partners sharing what they love. Here, 6D’s Robert Reisinger (96) chases 6D’s Bob Weber. They could write this off as a business expense, but Mark Hall did all of the helmet testing on this day. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBgavinvaldezYou know that inside his helmet Gavin Valdez thinks it feels incredibly cool to float over this uphill jump. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBjohnroggero John Roggero not only gets the awesome feeling, but he’s got the style to match. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBsimonsWilly Simons, Jr, wore Bam Simon’s jersey as a tribute to his uncle who passed away from a stroke recently. Willy Sr. gives Junior a pat on the back after winning the 250 Intermediate class. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBmillswilsonRobert Wilson (239) would the win the 250 Pro class, while Daniel Mills (525) would go 3-2 for third. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBdentonBradley Denton (74) won the 450 Intermediate class with the urging of his brother Andrew. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBtoddgravittTodd Gravitt (4) went 2-2 in the Vet Intermediate class. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBjamiegrahamJamie Graham (76s) wanted to race. He didn’t have a motocross bike, but he didn’t let that stop him from going 6-3 in the Over-40 Novice class for 3rd overall. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DANScottwilliamsScott Williams desperately needs a yellow helmet. Photo: Dan Alamangos

DEBvalphilVal Tamietti (31) and Phil Dowell (56) engage in their own personal KTM versus Husqvarna 350 four-stroke shootout. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBlanceholmesLance Holmes  (C223) sails over a jump on his Honda CR125, but we have to wonder if number C222 was already taken.  Photo: Debbi Tamietti

DEBmcmillenKeith Mcmillen went 3-2 for second in the Over-40 Novice class behind Eric Warrington’s 1-1, but ahead of Jamie Graham’s 6-3. Photo: Debbi Tamietti

REMAINING REM RACES IN 2016
(25 races remaining—please note that the June 12 race is on a Sunday)
April 30…Glen Helen, CA (AMA National track)
May 7…Glen Helen, CA
May 14…No race (Lucas Oil Regional)
May 21…Glen Helen, CA
May 28…No race (AMA  250/450 National)
June 4…Glen Helen, CA
June 11…No race (King of Hammer offroad race)
June 12…Glen Helen, CA (Sunday)
June 19…No race (Last Dog Standing race)
June 25…Glen Helen, CA
July 2…Glen Helen, CA (AMA National track)
July 9…Glen Helen, CA
July 16…No race (Lucas Oil Off-Road Truck race)
July 23…Glen Helen, CA
July 30…Glen Helen, CA
Aug. 6…Glen Helen, CA
Aug.13…Glen Helen, CA
Aug. 20…Glen Helen, CA
Aug. 27…Glen Helen, CA
Sept. 3…Glen Helen, CA (AMA National track)
Sept. 10…No race (United States Grand Prix)
Sept. 17…No Race (WORCS)
Sept. 24…Glen Helen, CA
Oct. 1…Glen Helen, CA
Oct. 8…Glen Helen, CA
Oct. 15…No race (24 Hours of GH)
Oct. 22…Glen Helen, CA
Oct. 29…Glen Helen, CA (AMA National track)
Nov. 5.. No race (World Vet Championship)
Nov 12…Glen Helen, CA
Nov. 19…Glen Helen, CA
Nov. 26…No race (Day in the Dirt)
Dec. 3….Glen Helen, CA
Dec. 10…Glen Helen, CA
Dec. 17…Glen Helen, CA
Dec. 25…No race (Christmas Day)
Dec. 31…No race (New Year’s Eve)

REM will race on the AMA National track on May 30, July 2, Sept, 3 and Oct. 29. For more info on REM Motocross go to www.remsatmx.com

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