Smokin’ on down the trail • E-Street Race
VDR's Editor heads South for the Ahrma Post-Vintage National in Marysville, California • December 8th 2002

CJ's big money saving plan

The rescheduling of this race was a source of tremendous annoyance itself as I had driven all the way to the Bay Area for this race last month only to have them call it off a few hours after a two day drive. “Rained Out”

Actually the more specific (ie different) reason given was that they couldn’t get the equipment there in time to prep the track. We saw lots of giant equipment driving around at Hollister the next day prepping SOMETHING so that also obviously wasn't the real deal. Hmmmm.

I couldn’t decide whether to bother coming down for this race- rescheduled for December 8th, not for Hollister, but for E-Street Bridge track in Marysville, east of I-5 near Sacramento. As it later turned out, the race wasn’t called off because of Rain.

This is a idiotic story, but evidently some cretin on a modern bike with five miles of suspension travel managed to fall OFF his motorcycle when he hit a garden hose (?) on a Wednesday no less, as he roared around a deserted track by himself, and got hurt.

He then had to decide whether to lose his shirt, or ruin the sport for everyone, and he chose B), and he sued the owner of the track.

The track closed, and all the insurance carriers in California had a fit. So it seems that Hollister was canceled about Insurance, not Rain or Equipment.


The Race Date was rescheduling for December 8th, and I couldn’t find anyone going, and I couldn’t bring myself to ask Jonathan again for his truck again- (he’d kindly lent it to me for the November junket) , and so I began to imagine my little car w/the YZ400D in the back.

A few suggested I’d never get it in- but in fact on Thursday night Reg came by, and after having taken the wheels/forks/seat/tank/fenders off the bike, it went right in. I had picked up two new tarps so the car would be protected. Driving through the darkening country, I was happy for my little Honda- which I never have to worry about. The temperature sits on the floor, and stayed there the entire way to California and back. Friday night I was in Corvallis by 7:40pm, and stayed with an old friend there - up at five by myself to start the drive south. It was sharply freezing cold, and quite foggy, and I got lost temporarily in Corvallis even on the familiar route through town because I couldn’t see anything. On the freeway the fog was thick as soup, and I hung on to the tailights of a pickup who was doing about 85 in 40 foot visibility. But he was gone. The dark trees whipping by- FOGGY dew!

But it began to get light. And chasing a white Bronco who was going about 95mph I got up almost to 100. But I was thinking that maybe I should slow down. Then I saw an Oregon State Patrol Car come whipping across the median and zoom away ahead of me. I nipped off the road to hit a rest stop- and once going again I saw the White Bronco sitting by the way with the OSP behind it. Suddenly in Ashland I drove out of the fog into bright sunlight, and before I knew it I was there.

Donny lives just inside the Oregon California border , and he was yanking an RM500 motor or something out of a old frame. He was wearing a tan jumpsuit. A superbly decent guy- we put the YZ together in short order, loaded up and were leaving by elevenish. Donny did all the driving for which I was happy. We drove till the shadows got long which remember it was December so by 3:30 it had started.

The E-Street track was under a long low pair of bridges one a train trestle and we were running alongside a modern race- I had imagined 100 Evolution riders , but there were only about 20 or so. We saw Ric Tipton, the Maico Godfather (is that a true statement?) and the gang- what looked like 29 Maicos all perfect and ready to go. After talking to them Donny & I decided to join their encampment. Donny & I were ready to sleep in Scott Silvia’s large Trailer, but Scott wasn’t coming until Sunday morning. I thought it might be a lot nicer to stay in a motel, but Donny was going to just put up a pair of tents that he had.

I was on the fence- normally I wouldn’t have a problem sleeping outside, but apparently the trains kept a-rollin' through all night, and when I said it IS December Donny said “that is a key factor...” which made me laugh. The Super 8 was $50, and I said hell with the the 25 bucks. Bed & Shower? No problems.

Also there is HUGE theft problem at this track- one fellow we heard about went out to practice, and his trailer was stolen, dragged down to the river- this is in broad daylight- and the wheels were stolen off it! I stole a few things just to fit in! So that was it. And it was great to sleep in a BED.

OK - to the battle. The points situation was as follows. Two years ago there was a fellow named Greg Kendrick who tied me for the Intermediate Open Historic Championship. I’d never seen him- he won the two races alone in California, and I had done the same at Eugene and Madras. The tie breaker was moto wins. But we had the same as we had entered races as the lone entrant in the Class. You may ask why do you care? and the answer is you always strive, even if the particulars are amusing.

So the crown was decided by who was OLDER - and Greg is 10 months older than me! So he won the title. This year I could see it coming all over again- most guys race bikes 79-84, depending on make. So in the Ahrma System as you may remember the period after 1974 is divided into three segment, the first of which is Historic 75-77. And as such there are fewer entrants, which makes it easier to win a championship.
So now today Greg Kendrick had shown up and I finally met him. On the entry sheets I saw that he’d entered +40 Evo, but not Open Historic. Not that it made a difference as long as I completed a moto and got at least one point.

Race 1 • Intermediate Open Historic - heat (moto 4) • We went over early, me following Donny’s lead, and we waited at the gate to the grid- a smaller area, even though there was piles of space. Bikes all waiting some running pointed into a funnel. As I sat on my YZ400 I looked down and saw that the fork seal has gone completely by the wayside, and fork oil is pouring all over the stanchion like a child who has spilled the entire bowl of soup down his jumper.

And I felt like that too- and of course immediately riders began to point to warn me (that I was a cretin) and I covered the sight with my hands making the old “don’t look at that” signal. Mario Andreini leaned over and said RIDE IT and I nodded yep.

A young man with a clipboard read our names off and let us in one by one. Then as I looked down I saw that my chain was bizarrely loose, and THEN to my astonishment I saw that the lower motor mount rattling loose, with no nut. WHY do you always see these things on the line?

The gate went down with me shifting into second right as it did: my clutch drags like a piglet and I’d rather not be trying to hold it back with the brakes- The fast guys roared away and the slower guys- (I say slower- slower than I seemed to be going) receded behind me. I was simply trying to ride smoothly without dropping the ball. Me alone between groups.

Race 2 • Plus 40 Post Vintage - heat (moto 4) • I think it was this race that I was chasing someone- and I hounded him until a proper moment to pass. It was Tracy Kehoe - a quiet guy on one of the Maicos. As I went by we almost came together- me going around the outside , and him drifting out. It was as much the looseness of both of us trying to control our bikes as the track was very very choppy with potholes and ruts. Of course it makes me appreciate Woodland a great deal all over again.

Race 3 • Intermediate Open Historic - main (moto 4) • On the line I imagined the holeshot to see if I could will it to happen. But then strangely the bike began to falter and no matter what I did the revs got lower and lower... I now think the engine was loaded up but at the time all I could think was that it was the plug fouling. In desperation I tried revving it, babying it, but to no avail, and the gate went down- I putted slowly to the first corner and pulled off and managed to get it back to the truck at 58rpm, and changed the plug right quick. I roared back out and chased Greg Kendrick for a bit passed him and finished of course 3 laps behind him. Unbeknownst to me Greg wins- he had entered Open Historic after all. Christy Bliss as I said who was taking pics probably wondered where the hell I was... Afterwards I apologized for dispatching her to take photos of me when I wasn’t on the track but ignominiously changing plugs back at the pits.

scroll to the right here to see your editor shine briefly...

Race 4• Intermediate Open Historic - main (moto 4) moto 4 • Now nervously revving the bike, I now again imagined the holeshot, and amazing but dumb I almost got it! I got an incredible launch off the startline, and arrived at the first corner along with Keith Geddis and Mario Andreini.

Woodland is all about flat cornering, so this was familiar territory for me, and again I got an awesome drive out of that corner, and found myself slipping right through the two men ahead of me. Wow! I pass the leaders Mario and Keith, and lead for 4 corners - and as I did I thought this isn’t going to last, but hey! and I let out a long whoohooo inside my helmet. It was so NICE!!!

Anyway back to earth- This lasted for 4 corners I think before the swarm came by on both sides, and when we got to the double I let them go.
I was trying to hold on the the last man but just where I’d been leading the previous lap the bike landed sideways in the weird soft stuff, and I went wiggly strangely all over the place, and then down against the side of a bank of dirt- I yanked the bike up, and did get going again.
Now having been down, I found myself strangely exhausted. I was chasing one man- and I can’t remember who it was- either Russ Held #35R on the CR or Keith on the big Grey Maico- and it scarcely mattered. I was on a high about leading even if it was brief.

E-Street • Christopher on December 8th 2002 • bike • 1977 YZ400 •
practice: track modern with hard parts- bike good- a little loose feeling- (normal)

Open Historic heat Decent Race with me between the packs, which seals the Open Historic Championship for me. • 1st
Open Historic main bike loads up like mad on the line- I change plugs, Greg wins MF 2nd = 2nd overall, Greg beating me fair & square

+40 Historic heat - uneventful Race - 1st
+40 Historic main • brief glory with angry charge to the front, then problems with mephistofolean Physics, Gravity & finally entropy • 1st = WIN

E-Street Gang: John Gulliford, Tracy Kehoe, Brett Foster, Scott Silvia, Ric Tipton, Russ Held, Ed Sims
Al Wenzal, Donny Garner, Matt Itamura, Mario Andreini, Russ Wyant, Keith Geddis
and Siege on the floor •
photo by Sam Tipton

Everyone was incredibly sweet- one huge family- I've rarely met as decent a gang of racers- and here is what we looked like afterwards.

Northwest Maico & CZ Western Region Post-Vintage MX Series • Round 8 of 8 • Dec. 8, 2002 • "E" Street Track, Marysville, CA
Historic 125--Exp: 1. Scott Lawson, HON (1,1) Historic 500--Int: 1. Greg Kendrick, BUL (2,1); 2. Christopher James, YAM (1,2);
GP125--Exp: 1. Russell Held, SUZ (1,1 GP250--Exp: 1. Russell Held, SUZ (1,1) GP250--Int: 1. Mario Andreini, YAM (1,1);
GP250--Nov: 1. Paul Bellomini, HON (1,1) GP500--Int: 1. Matt Itamura, MAI (1,1); 2. Don Garner, SUZ (3,2); 3. Joseph Gonzalez, MAI (2,5); 4. Steve Jerko, YAM (5,3); 5. Mario Andreini, YAM (4,4) GP 500--Nov: 1. Brett Foster, HUS (1,1); 2. Luke Warmwater, MAI (2,3); 3. Ric Tipton, MAI (4,2); 4. Andy Shaffer, MAI (3,4) Ultima 125--Exp: 1. Russ Wyant, SUZ (1,1) Ultima 250--Nov: 1. Mark Bliss, KAW (1,1) Ultima 500--Exp: 1. Ed Sims, SUZ (2,1); 2. Scott Silvia, KAW (1,2) Ultima 500--Int: 1. Keith Geddis, MAI (1,1) Open Age--Exp: 1. Scott Silvia, KAW (1,1) Open Age--Int: 1. Don Garner, SUZ (1,1) +40--Int: 1. Christopher James, YAM (1,1) +50--Exp: 1. Russ Wyant, SUZ (1,1) +50--Nov: 1. Richard Myers, HUS (1,1); 2. John Gulliford, MON (2,2)

(After 9 of 9 Events) rev. 12-9-02 all events scored, minimum 2 events to qualify
Hist 125 -- Exp: 1. Russ Wyant, 80. Int: 1. Scott Lawson, 120.
Hist 500 -- Int: 1. Christopher James, 116; 2. Gregory Kendrick, 76. Nov: 1. Howard Sutton, 268; 2. Guy Coulston, 172.
Hist 4-Strk -- Nov: 1. Scott Knauf, 800.
GP 250 -- Int: 1. Mario Andreini, 276; 2. Don Matthews, 105; 3. Christopher James, 65; 4. William Grubin, 58. Nov: 1. Paul Belluomini, 196; 2. John Gulliford, 116.
GP 500 -- Int: 1. Matt Itamura, 294; 2. Mario Andreini, 228; 3. Don Garner, 126; 4. Syd Jones, 112; 5. Steve Jerko, 62; 6. Marvin Newton, 60; 7. Donnie Wilson, 52. Nov: 1. Ric Tipton, 339; 2. Andy Shaffer, 279; 3. Tracy Kehoe,90.
Ultima 250 -- Int: 1. Greg Kendrick, 80. Nov: 1. Harold Bliss, 196; 2. Barry Reinoehl, 116.
Ultima 500 -- Exp: 1. Scott Silvia, 96. Int: 1. Keith Geddis, 196; 2. Donnie Wilson, 108. Nov: 1. Kenneth Geddis, 144; 2. Willie Patterson, 60.
Open Age -- Exp: 1. Scott Silvia, 80. Nov: 1. Barry Reinoehl, 120.
+40 -- Exp: 1. Scott Silvia, 80. Int; 1. Greg Kendrick, 132; 2. Doug MacDuffee, 52. Nov: 1. Paul Belluomini, 140; 2. Dale Stephens, 80.
+50 -- Exp: 1. Bill Row, 80. Nov: 1. John Gulliford, 200; 2. Dan Glenn, 104; 3. Dave Myklebust, 64.

©2002 Siege t


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