Day 3-5 of 33: May 29th-31st
Photos: Erek Kudla, Ryan Kudla, Greg McGrath
Written from a Fred Meyers Parking Lot
After spending the morning dealing with a dead battery in the van – can’t plug the computer and tv into the cigarette lighter and not think it will die – getting the gardener for the duplex complex I was parked next to to give me a jump, I headed up to the race site. Great drive I must say! Crossing a damn up the mountain and following the river into Idaho City. Little town with everything right in the center. Pits on the right by the gas station, sign ups up the street, “welcome racers” signs at all the places in town and even a riding bull set up out front of one shop.
Went up a bit early to get a little bit of time on the Dirtbiketest.com YZ250FX since I had just put it all back together and had a new chain, new bars, new radiator guards, grips and everything. Unloaded and took it for a spin on the “jetting loop” and already I was looking forward to the terrain and the test loop was “the crappy stuff” as I was told by some workers. Had moved the bar mounts to the front position and it really made the bike fit me better and made riding a bit easier.
Set the bike in my brothers pits and headed back to Boise to pick up my new Bell helmet that just arrived at a friend in town’s house that I was using as a mailing address. Thanks Ashley Childers. Lame part is nothing else came in that was supposed to but oh well. Old gear and no graphics it is. Headed back up to Idaho City to get signed up, get my bike in impound and get ready for the 2 day. It was really cool going through the whole process of the whole LOI deal.
The sun doesn’t go down until after 9:30 in Idaho, plus it’s an hour ahead so I had a really hard time actually going to bed. After Greg McGrath fed the hell out of us, as usual, I listened to my new book on tape until I fell asleep. Woke up really early, 3:45 or so, and couldn’t get back to sleep. Was super nervous and was nauseous like I haven’t been since I was a little kid racing, I really don’t know why. Once we got our bikes out of impound it went away and I was ready to go. There were 7 total E1 riders – Jubal Brown, Dustin Welcher and Dillon Sheppard (who was on my minute) were the only ones I knew I had to worry about, but I didn’t know the other dudes so who knows.
Once we were off it was through town and into the mountains and onto the first single track right away. Had a great time riding most of the day with Dillon until I got tired later on. Had a blast in all the tests bu the last 2 transfers were a bear. I fell a bunch of times and took the wind right out of my sails before the finish. In the finial transfer we were all riding the regular pace all day but the check just never came and I ended up being 5 minutes late! They had messed up the mileage so the check was thrown out so I was safe. Ryan, my brother, was one of only a few people that made the check so he was bummed but either way that’s what they did.
The end of Day 1 I finished 4th E1. I had a few good tests but rode conservatively to try and save energy. When we came into the pits I pulled off the air filter, tightened the chain and adjusted my clutch and took the bike into impound. Parked as close as I could to Jubal’s bike so he had a hard time getting his bike int he morning. He did and it was funny.
The morning of Day 2 I was wrecked. My butt hurt, my wrists hurt, my everything hurt. I was over it. I wasn’t going to race. I was thinking about the rest of my trip. The next weekend was the Utah National Hare and Hound that I have to work whether I’m injured or not. Everyone convinced me otherwise and I lined up to go as far as I could. Once I got started I felt okay but a few miles in it started getting me again. Did 4 of the tests but had jammed my wrist a few times – the one I’ve broken a bunch – and couldn’t hold on so by the 50 mile mark I called it a day. I still had a lot of fun though and learned a bunch of valuable lessons going into the next ISDE Qualifier.
On a GOOD note my brother qualified!!! He’ll be going to the Slovakia ISDE to represent the USA on a club team this September!!! WHOO HOO!! That means I’ll be designing T-Shirts for him (and Reid Brown who also qualified and anyone else that hits me up) while on the road!!! That will be cool.
Also congratulations to Josh Knight who took the overall win (even though the results have me womping on him in the grass track today haha!) and Alex Dorsey taking 2nd overall. Both E2 and both not going apparently? So looks like Brian Garrahan and Michael Pillar going for E2 (if they want to), and Jubal Brown with Dillon Sheppard for E1!!! Going to be a great team this year!