REM GLEN HELEN RACE REPORT: THAT WAS THE YEAR THAT WAS
Photos by Debbi Tamietti, Dan Alamangos, Mark Chilson, Jon Ortner, Rich Stuelke & Ernie Becker
The 2018 REM Motocross season went out with a whimper instead a bang—as high winds forced REM to cancel the last motocross race of the year. MXA thought that they would take the time to highlight some of riders and events that made the 2018 season so memorable. If you’d like to join in on the fun, the 2019 REM motocross season starts on January 12, 2019 at Glen Helen Raceway.
REM racer’s are almost all friends. After Joe Sutter crashed, a crowd of worried friends gathered at Joe’s Sprinter to check on him. Joe was out for a couple months, but came back once he healed up. Photo: Jon Ortner
February was a big month for visiting Japanese riders. In fact, Gota Otsuka led a Japanese sweep of the top three spots in the 450 Pro class with Taiki Koga and Ukyo Michiwaki at the February 10th race. Photo: Jody Weisel
Randy Skinner rode injured all year long. In February he had a bad wrist (note the Mobius brace). In March he had a bad back and by Summer he stopped to have shoulder surgery. He returned in December. Photo: Debbi Tamietti
New England Champion Austin Squires raced the AMA Nationals from 1997 to 2004. Austin now works for Metzeler/Pirelli. He hadn’t raced in about five years, but decided to make his comeback on his old Suzuki at REM. Photo: Debbi Tamietti
The Over-60 class exploded in 2018 and these three guys were major players—former Pro Circuit Husky rider Mike Monaghan (100), former CMC Number One rider Val Tamietti (31) and former Michigan Pro Randel Fout (45). Photo: Mark Chilson
MXA test rider Dennis Stapleton (18) came to REM weekly to get in more time on MXA’s test bikes. Here, he tries out a Husqvarna TC125 before heading to Hangtown to race the 125 All-Star two-stroke class at the AMA 250/450 National. Photo: Dan Alamangos
53-year-old Kurt Nicoll is the current Over-50 World Vet Champion, but when he comes to REM he signs up as a Vet Pro so that he can race with the 450 Pros. In September, Kurt won a moto over the young guys. Photo: Jon Ortner
It may look like the Blue Angels choreographed this jump, but Chuck Cook (827), Steve Watson (75) and John Diana (100) managed to fly in formation with no previous aerobatic experience. Photo: Debbi Tamietti
The weekly wars between Luther French (2) and Jon Ortner (10) in the Over-50 Elite class were the highlights of 2018 season. Unfortunately, Luther crashed in December and has decided to take some time off from racing. Photo: Debbi Tamietti
Plastic surgeon Joaquim Sunol came from Barcelona to race the REM Octobercross and the World Vet. The REM Octobercross was a chance to get some laps in on the World Vet track before the big weekend. Photo: Debbi Tamietti
Mitchell Oldenburg wasn’t as lucky the next time he raced at REM. Here, Mitchell (far left) crashed coming over the Mt. Whitney hill. Tallon LaFountaine landed on Oldenburg’s Yamaha and careened over the bars. Note Tristian Higgins looking back to see if everyone else made it through. They didn’t. Photo: Jon Ortner
As Josh Mosiman picks his way through the fallen bikes, LaFountaine finally slams into the bank on the side of the track (lower left). The crash continued on as one more rider came over the top and hit Oldenburg’s Yamaha.
Former Grand Prix racer, ISDT Gold Medalist, co-founder of THOR gear, AMA Hall of Famer, three-time World Vet Champion and MXA test rider since 1973, Lars Larsson, raced MXA’s 2019 Husqvarna TE300i fuel-injected, two-stroke, off-road bike. Photo: Jon Ortner