That ranked as the hardest and least fun that I have ever had on a motorcycle.
We knew it was going to be hard, yesterday when we watched the quad race. It was muddy when we first got here, then it rained big while we were watching the quad race. It rained during the night. It rained a “gates of hell” cats and dogs kind of rain thunderstorm lightning kind of deal for over an hour before the what should have been the morning race start. There was water standing everywhere. There was a complete river across the motocross track.
The morning race almost didn’t happen. We went to a riders meeting, where they discussed running the morning and the afternoon race together at 1pm. They decided against that, as that would have just been too much in the way for the pro’s. They ran the morning race for 1 hour at 11:30. They ran our race at 1:40 for 2 hours.
The start area was on the MX track, and was an almost impossible hill to get up to get to the first turn. In the morning race, there were riders that never made it to the 1st turn. I should have put my bike back in the van at that point and gone home.
It was crazy just getting off the MX track in our race. When we left the MX track, there was a grassy sidehill to get to the woods. I turned completely around backwards in that grassy sidehill. That was the first of many times that would happen to me. The open areas of the course were just as hard as the woods. They were so sloppy and slippery, that you would just spin out with no advanced warning. I tried them slow, I tried them fast, I tried clearing the tires out by going a bit fast, then slow – nada. Nothing worked. You just had to be prepared to be on the ground at any time.
I know I was on the ground at least 10 times in that 1st lap. I was stuck in ruts more times than I can remember. Sometimes you could get out on your own, other times you needed help from a spectator. The woods were one big long super slippery rut. My legs are toasted from paddling through the ruts. Your legs are just outriggers.
Every rut in the woods was full of water and clay as hard as cement. I think that Ohio is just one big pile of clay. It sticks to everything and becomes hard. I cannot wait to clean my bike! It is going to be epic.
– all the plastic is trashed.
– The decals are all torn and coming off.
– The brake pads are shot.
– The tires are almost torn off.
– The chain and sprockets are completely trashed.
– The bearings on the wheels and the suspension linkages will be toasted.
– The grips are worn through
This will have been an expensive endeavor. 2 hours of racing will equal 8+ hours of cleaning and working on the bike.
In spite of everything above, I was having maybe my best GNCC race. Ya, go figure eh? Normal GNCC laps will take me between 25 and 35 minutes, depending on the course and conditions. (The pros are usually about 20-25 minutes). My first lap was 1+ hour. The fist lap for the pro’s were 29 minutes. Cory Buttricks last lap (race winner) was nearly 50 minutes. The whole course got really really bad as the race went on. In spite of that, I was in 3rd at the end of the 1st lap – unfortunately I did not finish a 2nd lap. I could not. I am completely chuffed.
I do not think I will come back to Ohio to do another race. GNCC regulars hate the place. I understand it is always raining there, and the whole state seems to be made of clay. Ohio is just one big pile of clay.
So this was not a fun GNCC race. But, I was still racing my motorcycle. That is a better day than not racing a motorcycle. Now for the long drive home and then tomorrow starting the cleanup.
Hard to imagine that it was that bad, but it was.