Posts Tagged ‘Freestone’

I had a race in Texas so we left on Thursday and headed to Los Angeles to race the Loretta Lynn qualifier on our way.  We had practice on Friday and raced Saturday.  The race was at 333MX and the track was very different from what I am used to racing.  I was able to finish out the day with two 1st place trophies.

As soon as the race was over my family got into the van and drove 24 hours to Texas.  My parents took turns driving and I slept most of the way.  We were all very happy when we got to Texas and arrived at the Freestone track.

We had a day to get settled, sign in and walk the track.  I also did a photo shoot and video for Leatt.  (I will have a separate post about Leatt later and how wearing a neck and back brace saved me again)

We got a really good nights sleep and I was ready for practice on Tuesday.  My bike was looking awesome with the new graphics, Fly hooked me up with new gear, and I was ready to go.

My first practice was great.  I was getting used to the track and put down some great laps.  In my second practice things did not go as well.  On the second lap my bike didn’t seem like it was running very well.  I thought it would clear out and I kept riding.  When I was going through the rollers my bike bogged and I didn’t clear the jump.  I went head first into the face of the jump and my bike hit me in my back.  I immediately knew that I was pretty hurt, but I wasn’t sure what was wrong.

After going to the hospital, getting advice from some great friends and some new friends, I got transported to a Children’s Hospital.

I was strapped down and they did a lot of tests.  I had and MRI, CT Scan, and X-rays.

The doctors found I had a fractured T1, T2, T3 and T4 vertebrae, a broken T5 vertebrae and pulled ligaments in my neck….. along with a lot of cuts and bruises.  The doctors said I was very lucky that my break did not move any farther at all.  I am so lucky that I was wearing my safety gear.

After a couple of days they finally let me sit up but I still couldn’t get out of bed or walk.  The doctors did more and more tests to make figure out what they needed to do to make sure my back and neck were stable.  Donnie from Yamaha drove for hours just to come and check on me which was very awesome!

The next day I finally got to get out of bed and move around a little.  I was able to go sit in the team room and play video games.

The doctors finally released me to head back to California.  My parents took turns driving but we had to make a few stops along the way for me to rest a little.  I really want to thank everyone for all the get well wishes.  So many people reached out to myself and my parents and it meant a lot to all of us.

Now I am in a back brace and I have to meet with my doctors in California so I can figure out what is next for me.

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Two weeks ago I left for a road trip that included a race weekend in Los Angeles and then off to Texas for two different Amateur National races. texas15 7 HOURS TO ANZA MX TRACK My parents and I drove to The Ranch MX track in Anza, Los Angeles two weeks ago.  We spend the weekend in LA and I raced a South Area Loretta qualifier race.  This race is one of four steps needed to qualify to race at the Loretta Lynn Nationals.  There wasn’t as many people there than I thought would be and the weather was really windy but I was able to qualify with four 1st place wins and was qualified to move on to the next step.

65 Stock 1st place – 65 Mod 1st place – 85 Stock 1st place – 85 Mod 1st place

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My Dad worked with my Mom during the weekend and showed her how to change air filters, oil, pack the gates at the starts etc. because after the race Mom and I were heading to Texas to race. When the race was over my Dad got my bikes ready for Texas and we packed up our truck and our friends trailer.

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My Dad left for home to go to work and Mom and I went with some friends to Texas.  We drove all night and had a little delay with a flat tire.  We were able to get the tire fixed and arrived at the track Monday night.

Texas5 22 HOURS TO OAK HILL RACEWAY INTERNATIONAL MOTOCROSS FINAL The track had really deep sand and was different from sand tracks I have been on before.  It got rough but it didn’t get rutts like I am used to.  The turns were really wide and flat but deep and rough.  I slide out in my first practice and couldn’t get my bike started so didn’t get to ride the track.  My other two practices went well and I was able to get the layout and the jumps pretty well. The next day we started racing and my Mom was my mechanic for the day.  My Dad taught my Mom how to pack my gate for me, but we didn’t know that Oak Hill doesn’t have a dirt start.  I raced two races with my Mom that day and I finished both races in the top five.

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Later that night we drove an hour away to pick up my Dad from the airport.  Although my Mom did good with me and my bikes, I was excited my Dad was there and he would be able to help me with the track and my bikes. Texas2 Throughout the week I struggled on different parts of the track and I had some problems with my bikes.  My 65 Mod bike was not running well and was actually slower than my stock bike and my 85 bike suspension would not work on the track at all.  I struggled to move to the front in my 85 classes and my 65 mod and open classes but I worked really hard and finished on the podium in my stock class and in the top 10 in all classes.  The weather was also very crazy….First it was really hot, then freezing cold, the wind was so strong at times, and then the rain came

65 10-11 Limited 4-3 finishes, 2nd overall                        65 10-11 Mod 5-8 finishes, 6th overall

7-11 Open 18-6 finishes, 10th overall                              85 7-11 Limited 7-5 finishes, 5th overall

2 HOURS TO FREESTONE SPRING CHAMPIONSHIP.  Freestone raceway was a completely different track and the race was ran totally different than any other race I had ever been in.  The first difference was qualifying practice.  During practice our laps were timed and gate picks for race day depended on how well you qualified.  It was a little difficult for people like me that have never been to the track before to go on the track and race as fast as you could without knowing anything about the jumps and condition.  During my practice I not only set fast time of all 65 bikes, but when I was trying to avoid another rider I crashed and got run over.

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To start each race they had a real 30 second board girl, they didn’t just us the gate guy like at most of my races.

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The rhythm section of the track was also a different than I was used to.  They call it the Texas Twelve Pack and it is a set of whoops with a turn half way through.

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During the week I rode really hard and had great lap times but I was unable to get the starts I needed.   We got my 85 suspension better at this track, but was unable to get my Mod bike running so I ran my stock bike in every class.  The back of the track had a section called the Freeway and it made it tough for me.  I would lose ground in that section and make up time on other parts of the track.  In the picture below you can see how deep some of the rutts were.

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In the morning the track was wet and muddy and in the afternoon it was super dry, rough and deep.  On the last day of racing it started to lightly rain later in the day so the track was rough but also tacky and wet.  I got a chance to race on several different track conditions throughout the week.

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At the track we did have a little drama…..  A few months ago my Dad ordered me a new Stock SXS pipe for my 65.  When we got the pipe in we called our dealer because although the pipe was stamped KTM SXS and was exactly like the other pipe it was plated.  The dealer said that it was the only replacement pipe available.  When we got to the race we asked an AMA official to look at the pipe and asked if it was legal.  The AMA official told us that it was in fact legal.  During my first stock race a different AMA official told me that the pipe was illegal and that I would be disqualified from the race.  After several conversation and confirmation from the first official that he did in fact tell us we could use the pipe…… The pipe is the same as the original pipe and although it has the exact same performance as the original pipe, it is platted and not allowed in the stock class.  The head AMA official had to disqualify us from the race but would not hold it against me because we did ask an official and was told it was OK.  I was allowed to race in the second race but would not be scored for that class for that event.

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65 10-11 Stock   DQ                                               65 10-11 Mod 4-4 finishes, 4th overall

7-11 Open 2-5 finishes, 4th overall                           85 9-11 Limited 12-6 finishes, 8th overall

After two weeks in Texas I had so much fun learning new tracks and meeting new people.  Now that I have moved up into the older class and I am a young rider in my classes it is awesome to get to ride with older kids and push myself to get faster.  I did come home with 11 trophies for my two weeks of racing.

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29 HOURS HOME texas14  I have to thank Mike and Argyll MX for letting us borrow his trailer.  We needed small trailer to use to get our bikes to LA and back and Mike allowed us to use his trailer and keep it for the two weeks we were gone. Texas1 I have to thank Ryan and Americore Mechanical for the help and support to get to the race.  Without you I wouldn’t have been able to have the chance to even go to Texas. texas18 Thank you to Myron and 2x Promotions not only did you watch my races, cheer me on, you went out of your way to help with so many different things and it is really appreciated. texas13 Thank you to Carlos and 51 Fifty Energy Drinks for the support you give me every day, allowing me to #livethemadness. 1 Thank you to Tony and Americore SMX Scooters.  You watched and supported all of my races, let us wash our bikes, and helped us get our bikes home safely.  It is always cool to hang out with you at the races. texas17 Thank you to Nost Suspension.  While I was in Texas racing my 85cc bike suspension was out of control and Pete re-built the suspension and got my bike handling on the really rough tracks. Factory KTM and Factory Yamaha teams both helped me out.  My Yamaha wouldn’t shift at Oak Hill and the factory Yamaha team rebuilt it and had it all ready to go at Freestone.  We found that one of my KTM’s had a cracked frame and the factory team ordered a new frame and the next day they switched my entire bike over to the new frame…..my bike looks so sad in this picture. texas20   Jimmy and FLY Racing Gear has been very supportive, including during my time in Texas.  Jimmy watched my races, cheered me on and even worked with me and gave me some pointers. fly The Gonsalves family helped and shared the experience with us throughout our crazy adventure. texas19   My friends and family that cheered me on from home and continued to check in and support me:  My Sisters Elyssa and Hailey, Grandma and Grandpa, Terry Bostard, Vaccarello Family, Cisneros Family, Palmer Family, Ornellas Family, Wetzel Family, Gary,  Hogge Family ……I know I am missing a ton of people, thank you to you all!