SCANT REGARD : +40 Post Vintage Main- ahead of me my friend Ric Tipton. thank to Neil Giertsen for taking some photos for me!

There is a quiet calm - as you drive home after Race Day. This weekend was very hot, with furious racing, and not a cloud in sight - so somehow you wouldn’t expect a grey cool dusk & the clouds to roll in. But they did- and I sailed away up the highway.

I slipped in an old compilation tape.

As I looked up, I realized I was overtaking a freight train right next to the old two lane highway. The train was going about 60, and I was going about 70, so I was examining and gazing at each freight-car as I slipped by. Don’t Think Twice, Its Alright was playing- not the Dylan version, but the old Peter Paul & Mary version which is spookier in a way, certainly at dusk rolling on down the road with a dark Freight Train smokin on down the trail next to me. For a few minutes I drank in the scene.

Then all of a sudden I remembered that I had to cross the tracks to get to the Freeway. It was Classic American Scene: trying to beat the Train to the Railroad Crossing ! It was a very long train, and I realized that there was a town coming up- and that I’d have to slow down to 30. Then I began to do the calculations in my head. If I’m going 70- now 75 or so, and the train is going 15 miles an hour slower, how far ahead will I have to be do get across the tracks before it gets there? I had to make a 90 right over to Interstate 5. I was pushing the local speed limit up to about 39 and a half, but I crossed the tracks just as the red lights started to blink. Then I pulled to stop, and got out and stood and watched the train go by, buffeted by the cool wind from the train.

Eugene is a race I always enjoy, but I hate the first part of any trip and the fact that I’ve been driving somewhere every three seconds this month contributed to the fact that I really did NOT want to go. Jonathan loaned me his truck which was totally awesome. There was nothing except changing the air filters to the bikes, so I was ready & I got out of town later than I had planned- but I was on the road about 1pm.

It was angrifyingly hot- and I managed to get sunburned IN the truck! The Gas It N Go Boys had invited me - in fact it was Maico Dave (Dave Whelchel) himself- to a BBQ get-together at his house in Oregon- I drove to the track first to see who was there and say hello to many many friends- some of whom I see only on this weekend each year!
I parked at the bottom of the field next to Marty Karadanis- a fellow from Nevada. and we chatted- a very good guy. I figured two hours of yammering and I'd be ready for bed- but three hours later I was still trying to drag myself away.

Anyway About 9 I hopped in the Truck and roared off to Dave’s place. I looked at the map, and saw that I could turn north right from Cheshire & soon I was whipping along this two lane road I’d never been on. The sun was setting and I asked some local chicks in a small car where I was. Soon I was at the Safeway Gas Station asking them where the road was, and after 20 minutes of searching I rolled up at Dave Whelchel’s house. They leaned towards the truck as though pulled by magnetic force, and the little pause before they realized it was me- CHRISTOPHER ! said three people at once.

The GNG Team is a varied group- and they live all over Washington & Oregon. Dave Whelchel is an awesome guy- Dave has a phenomenal collection of Maicos. If anyone wants to steal them, Dave’s address is 1313 Mockingbird Lane. A special Thanks for putting us all up!

OK- up at 5- breakfast which I couldn’t eat- which is normal for Race Day and on the road early- the sun stretching sideways across the road and me pushing the boundaries of Mephistophelean Physics to GET ME to the track on time- like David Bowie. I was doing 75-80 along this two lane - a lot of two lane action this trip! - I camped right near the track entrance with Bill & Rita Metcalf. There were a MUCH larger contingent of Evolution Bikes and it seemed like parity this time- and Ed Parsons did a great job organizing the day with motos going back & forth between Vintage and Evolution just like VDR.

• my thanks (and many others who’ve said to say) to Ed & everyone who was involved.

+40 Vintage heat (moto 7) • Bill Grubin started on my right & the track turns right, and as we left the line some ran wide, so Bill did too avoiding a crash, and so we all went right off the outside of the track right away! I paused, pulling back onto the track, and Bill held the throttle on and rode along the top of the bank there- which I should have done! Argh! So he got a much better start. I was determined to catch him, and I think I managed to pass a bike or two, but soon I was struggling with a different problem- my CZ shifter was stuck against the case! The shift lever itself gets bent, and soon it’s scraping against the engine case and when I shifted up it would stay there! BOB. So I was trying mid-race to lean to ride it in one gear- because you don’t have time to look down and try to tap it back down without shifting down at the same time! I think I finished 6th....

George Eadie turned up despite his having sworn Racing off.. and we looked at the shifter. I had the idea that if we put something between the shift lever and the cases it wouldn’t be able to be get stuck- and I wandered about looking and found an old Bic® Pen and tried that- and it held the lever away, but it was still stuck- only now with a plastic pen added to the stuck situation! Luckily George Eadie had three spare CZ levers in his truck!!! What a Hero!
others run wide- we go off the track, I let off lose time, then the CZ shifter stuck • 6th


"-the strategy was simple: pass the Porsches & Win..."
-extra tough line from an old film about the 1970 Sebring 12 Hours

+40 PV heat (moto 13) • In some ways this was High Point of the day. I got a good start, and found myself chasing Ric Tipton for a while before I thought this is Ric in front of me. I also will say that most of the passes that mattered I administered the old coop-D-grace at the top of the hill at the left hander. In the morning the run all the way from the bottom right to the top right was mucky thick and ridiculous and we sat there with the throttle pinned redistributing 60-80 pounds of muddy clay for each bike up the hill. At first there was no good line, and then the left hand side- way on the outside - there developed a nice line with no muck that you could whip right up. Any rider there will have noticed this- but but but then an alternate line developed on the far right side. This provided a perfect place to simply outdrag guys up the hill and pass them in the right hander. So I passed Ric in this way and set off after the next man. I had in fact looked at the sheet and knew who I had to beat- and I suddenly realized with a start inside my helmet that it was him- and he wasn’t behind me. So I began to push and got by him in the same way in the same place. There were precious few places to pass so I made the most of this top spot. So that it- I had won the race! Good Stuff.
• Moto Win #124

TRACK The track while mucky in practice was really nice despite some dust and some hard pack later when the clay dried out. The first corner was loose, but fine and there was always the bank to berm against. Then a little hump- which I got wild on once on the CZ- not by choice--the bowl- which the fast line seemed to be low this time.

There was a little lift along the top there and once on the YZ465 I got way out of shape there-landing on my nose almost falling forward! The last corner before the flag had some good traction, as Mark Studebaker mentioned, so I railed through there- but I never got off the top much which I remember doing past the flag in previous years... then the very high speed jump- and then the sharp table top. I went off this cautiously at first and moderately the rest of the day- a few time almost clearing it on the YZ. The right down the hill had a berm on the inside, which I hit a few times - many time actually- different riders finding different ways to be fast through that section. At the bottom of the loop there was a tiny berm in the middle and I’d try to get the power on as early as possible. As the track straightened out up there was a further berm much larger which you could use if you were chasing someone, but mostly I tried to drift wide, use all the track and hit the outside. Up over the table top, and into the left hander. This left had a wide line with a high bank you could hit, or a sharp square-off berm inside. A few times I tried to use that inside line to pass a rider, and once I think I did- but it was a slower rider I think- and I was going 300 times faster than him, and I didn’t want to slow down and ruin my momentum.

At the right hander as you entered the woods bit, you’d cross the track in the middle and then pick your line: far left or far right up. Going up that hill the YZ would just RIPPP up the hill like a huge animal lunging- it was the most beautiful experience I think of the whole weekend- the CZ too- both bikes were perfect- but that one place- it was fantastic. On both bikes I’d shift up right as I was about one quarter of the way up, and then wind the engine out, downshifting and braking with all the arms legs and tentacles I could squeeze with. Then carefully left and over that little sharp hump- some tough guys treating it like a double- and the loops.

Here’s where I can’t remember the order- but it was something like this: the first inside loop was the one with loose dirt the next had the little sharp hump, the next was the very sculpted right past the inside table where if you were going fast you had to left your leg not to catch your toe on the dirt banking if you were using all the track as (I believe) one should not to lose momentum. Then there was the choppy approach to the very lovely bermed left. Here you could WHIP through, leaning the bike over. The last right was a double right and led back up to the start gate, and it was off camber and boy if you came in too hard you waste a lot of time getting all out of shape in the soft dirt. The best way seemed to be to square it off, sit way forward and gas it smoothly up past the waiting next men. Then you were in turn one again, but after the first time there was a slight berm on the inside which worked nicely to keep the bike going around the corner.

Sportsman 500 Vintage heat (moto 16) • John and Gabi Morgan showed up- this is now the only race he bothers with and in order to race against me entered Open Vintage- (called Sportsman 500 in Ahrma) I was ready for a battle, but in fact I got a good start, and the battle didn’t develop at all- I leave town beating everyone in my class but Tyrus Wilson. I could see him ahead but I wasn’t close enough.
At lunch I lay on my pad. I’d been dragging all morning- with the heat, and wondering if I was falling apart. I actually slept a short time and dreamed something. It had been hideously hot Saturday and everyone was talking about the heat, but it was cooler Sunday and there was a very welcome breeze cooling things off.
+40 Sportsman main • OK- now the mains: this time I got purposely did not start next to my very great friend Bill Grubin- and I got a great start: only two bikes ahead as I rounded the first corner- bikes on my left going wide and coming back down to the middle- and touching me- but I was ahead and I felt contact, but just behind- my left foot almost got caught in something- and I powered out of the whole thing. That sounds romantic to say- I might as well say I was lucky not to go down, and found myself being pulled out of trouble by the CZ400 under me- the end of my toes I could feel get pulled, even pulling off the steel Boot End ! I had the throttle open, and did a huge wheelie over that little hump- the most out of shape I was on the CZ all day. (that I got myself into) Bill Grubin who I expected to battle with wasn’t close, so that’s good- he’s a yardstick for me.
+40 Post Vintage main • Again I got a VERY hot start: and found myself 3rd behind Studebaker ahead of me, and 245 Steve Parker leading. I hounded Mark, with full confidence for a lap or so before I passed him up the hill. He went left, I went right, and to be fair at the top he got out of shape and went off the track. Now I was ahead of both men I had to be and just trying to be smooth. But I let my guard down, and for some inexplicable reason stalled in the nice berm left down near the bottom! With acute desperation I tried to restart the bike- but the YZ465 is so tall- it took three kicks and by that time Ric had caught up and was just going by. All credit to the man- he didn’t stall him bike. I chased him believing I could take him, but he was pushing, and I got close a bunch of times and then he pushed even harder and began to pull away. I saw this and resolved to pull all the stops, but then all of a sudden there was the checkered flag and it was too late! He won the Main, and rightly so. Still the trophy went to me, but you know clearly when you could have done better. Oh well, my two competitors were very much up to the job, and it was close, and we each led during the day. To Mark & Ric ; Cheers Gentleman!
Sportsman 500 Vintage main • Rita Metcalf kept saying you going out AGAIN??? I’d sigh and say yeah- I wanted to skip the afternoon motos like a big woosie- just because all I wanted to do was sleep. But I had a nice conversation with Daniel Lynde, a very nice fellow from California next to me on the grid.

But in turn one someone took him out and we all went down - or so I thought! In fact I went down and he didn’t - I think someone else did- but I couldn’t have said who it was- Later he apologized 5 times- but it wasn’t his fault and I know because I saw it happen as I went down. The CZ didn’t die, and I pulled in the clutch and picked it up and set off again. Now relieved from duty so to speak I simply sailed along to see what it was like in the Oregon countryside. But then I saw Mark Baer ahead, and chased him down. Then later I saw Donnie Wilson who seemed to not be going fast at all- I don’t know why, and he offered no resistance when I went by. And that was that.
My very good friend George Eadie and I had a quiet dinner at the Viking Inn in Junction City. Actually we had breakfast- he had a Denver Omelet, and I had Corned Beef Hash. I asked the lady was in canned or fresh, and she said they made it fresh. It was obviously canned, and I didn’t even care. It was food, and I was a hungry bear.

George & I were musing over the day- partly the many Post Vintage Bikes that showed up. The classes were staggered: a Vintage Grid, then a Post-Vintage Grid. This is as it should be. We had separate trophy awards- still fighting elements of the old idiotic idea that we are two different camps- and so to receive my PV trophy I had to miss receiving my Vintage trophy because I couldn’t be in two places at once, but maybe that will get better.

And thats it- Sunday evening in the country - The racers were scattered to the wind- clouds were slipping in- the air was getting cooler. Dinner was done- and I shook George’s hand and away home I went.

And so these were the thoughts rolling in slow motion through my mind, as I drove.

The sky was grey- the was sun leaving town, faraway out of sight on my left, the Freight Train smokin on my right as I sailed along.
PS: here is the Vintage Motocross compliation tape set:
this’ll fit an 90 minutes tape, and I recommend it- it’ll make you faster.

side 1
t Smart Theme
Devils Radio (George Harrison)
Money (Pink Floyd)
Lady with a Fan (the Grateful Dead)
SWLABR (Cream)
Jessica (Allman Bros)
Til the Next Time (the Rolling Stones)
Darkness (the Police)
Don’t Think Twice (Dylan)
Polly Von (Peter Paul & Mary)
the Main Thing (Roxy Music)
Manna Machine (the Stranglers)
side 2
SOS (Abba)
Don’t Think Twice (Peter Paul & Mary)
Time Waits for No One (the Rolling Stones)
Tangled Up in Blue (Dylan)
Take it Back (Cream)
1 Bourbon, 1 Scotch & 1 Beer LIVE in Cincinnati (George Thorogood)
Truckin/Epilogue LIVE from Europe ‘72 (the Grateful Dead)