Life is starting to get back to normal after spending the month of April promoting the God's Country and Bone Bender events. That is the last time I ever try promoting two big events back-to-back. Still not fully recovered yet so I decided to take a little break from my normal routine and headed over to Big Springs, KS for round #4 of the Forward Motion Hare Scrambles.
Heck, I didn't even know you had a motorcycle you ask. Well I didn't last week, but borrowed Ashley's old XR400 for a little spin and decided that I would go ahead and get one again to play around on. After a near death experience on the beast climbing one of the steeper hills out behind my house I decided that I really did not need a tractor and instead found a gently used KTM 300 EXC.
I had two choices today. Head over to Perry to ride the OHV trails or head to the Hare Scrambles and try a virgin HR course. Everyone on the FMHSC forum was talking up the Big Springs course so the decision was made. With no seat time on the ole' KTM I was unsure how it would run. It ended up handling well, but sputtered really bad if I got on it. Check out the leakage after the event was over. I ended up having to short shift the bike which can make it rather hard when you have to navigate all the crazy obstacles that they threw at us.
One such set of obstacles was a stupid ass EnduroCross section. I signed up for a Hare Scrambles not an EndroCross. My last name is not Dowd and I really did not like seeing all the crashes in this section. It was really stupid for them to put this in. But when you think about it, the really stupid thing was that we all decided to race anyway. On the way home I decided that the Big Springs promoter would not be getting any of my hard earned cash anymore. Check out the below pictures of some poor guy who ate it big time over the tires. He was out for a couple of minutes.
The rest of the course was o.k. It was virgin alright. Tight, tight, tight. Barely any room to ride, let alone pass. I am glad my bike came with BarkBusters. They saved my hands dozens of times.
Short recap of my event. Lined up with 25 sport riders. I was going to race the Advanced Veterans class, but decided I needed to get some saddle time in before I race with some really fast guys. I got DFL off the start. I miss my old electric start CRF230. Great! 8 miles of virgin, slimy, muddy single track and I am stuck in 25th place. To top it all off my bike is running way to rich and I have to short shift it just so it runs half way decent. I started to make some good passes mainly just waiting until someone else made a mistake, but I have always had a knack for passing. There were several mud holes/creek crossing on the course which at times had 20+ riders backed up trying to find a good line. I quickly learned that this is where you could make up a lot of time or loose a dozen places at the blink of an eye. The end of the first lap came quickly and after I navigated the Endurocross section I found myself in 4th place. Not bad for the first time on a new bike and one that you can only give 1/4 throttle to..... Second lap did not start well as I went down past the mud pit when I got T-boned by a crazy rider who tried to jump the mud pit. Later on in the lap at one of the muddy creek crossings I stopped to help a mini rider who was getting run over by everyone. Heck, I did not even know they let the juniors on the same course as the adults. The kid was in a dangerous position and I helped him get out of the way. I would rather help a young kid out than worry about my placing and would hope someone would do the same for my son if he ever participated in these events again. I got going again and passed back up to 5th by the end of 2nd lap. The mud holes were getting really backed up by this time as there were 200 riders out on the course. It was insane at times as guys would just cut through the trees trying to find new lines. 1/2 of them would get stuck. This is were the "Fun" leaves and you end up just trying to make it back to the finish. While just making it back to the finish I ended up cutting a corner a little too close and got a sharp stick stuck (which was trimmed incorrectly) in my throat - just a small puncture, but one none the less. Stuff like that makes you stop and think twice. This was getting a little too dangerous for me and I decided to call it a day at the end of the 3rd lap. I guess I was just having a little too much fun but that quickly came to an end.