Fox Valley’s Greatest Hits
Wedron, Illinois 10/8/2006
By Joe Lanute
When a successful music group has made the charts for four straight years it is time for a “Greatest Hits” album. When an off road riding park has put out four straight years of successful hare scrambles it is time for a greatest hits run.
And one was had on Sunday.
Team Fox Valley / Megacross laid out a tract reminiscent of four years of being on the top of the charts.
Sunday morning weather was perfect for a day at the studio, slight overcast, light breeze, and no humidity.
The technicians had once again worked long into Saturday night to fine tune Sunday’s main events. Headlights, Flashlights, even some innovative spot/flood lights mounted on quads made scurrying through the timber putting up the final markings a job not as difficult as it could have been.
The twenty-two quads had the stage first and they entertained us for an hour with the A duet of Pavelonis and Johnson and the B team of Burkitt and Herring topping the charts. Forest Burkitt had the overall win with a blistering average speed of 16.75 mph through trees, ruts, whoops and logs.
4 wheel C had a two “Bill” finish: Hammond and Lewallen.
Plus 35 had another Burkitt winner. The mini quads hit the road with a 50 solo by Dakota Marti and 90 finish of Ross Gaunt Mike Block.
Mason Schuhler and Shea Hymers took the little stage for 50 Injected followed by Joe Voegtle and Jarred Hall wrestling in 50cc.
These two would run again in 65 Jr. but Jarred would be on top and Cole Evans would be singing back up. Two classes of 50's were the order of the day, 20 some riders on a small course would have been a traffic night mare, with the separation, all had good races with plenty of room.
In music, racing and in life, everything has a category.
Even Thumpers. The Bunny Boys were at it again, cotton tails, streamers, floppy ears and even a devil’s pitch fork couldn’t get these guys to miss a beat. They had to wait a little while as we dropped 30 minutes with the extra 50 class, however Caleb Russell, John Conley, and Jeremy Petoski got to "wait" just a tad longer. After 4 events of domination, these three were recipients of another 30 second wait! Thumper class roared off into the timber, then the three speedsters where in hot pursuit. Needless to say, they caught and passed there way to the front. Next year we will have to figure out how to get this class into the transponder age, have to see how fast these "A" class motoheads really are.......or how creative their line choices are? :)
The 85’s, 65’s and Woman headlined the next set.
The course was set up with some of the Greatest Hits from the past four seasons and last years Championship tract. A few tough up and down hills produced a jam up every now and then and the FVOR Roadies worked up a sweat a time or two keeping the bikes moving. A well placed log here and there and devoted FVOR thumper rider who missed his event to make sure all the big mini classes made it over the log. That's Dedication, thanks Ken!
85cc had a Schmidt Sandwich finish. Ben and Keagan 1 and 3 with Dave Brackney in the middle. Keagan holeshot would be short lived as he caught the uphill rooted hill wrong and did his patented "muscle it" down the hill. He remounted and pushed hard but couldn't reel in Brackney. David, and Benjamin are in a heated battle for the points lead in the 85 class, this weekend was tipped to Ben, but Dave is still leading by a mere 11 points. Racing is the finest when two good riders push to the end of the season.
65cc had Travis Ward doing his Tina Turner Proud Mary impression, starting out nice and easy and finishing rough. Jake Seibert and Blake Bradford both stepped it up. Seibert hounded Ward for better part of the race. Usually Travis comes off the course refreshed and not breaking a sweat no matter what place he finishes. Today, he was dirty, sweaty and wound up, stating "I fell 4 TIMES!" Jake Seibert did a great job in pushing the limits of his little 80cc thumper & Ward, but his fall in the last lap let Ward win by a couple of minutes. Bradford was on the same lap but had trouble in the middle of the race and finished a strong third.
Theresa Lanute finished on top in her first set of the day, Women's class, but later she would be booed off the stage in 86-200C. One thing to note, this young lady doesn't give up, course marshal and promoter Ward stated, "hey Joe, that kid of yours falls a bunch but one thing she always does, that is with a little help she gets back on the trail and keeps going!". Racing an hour in the morning and an hour and half in the afternoon makes for a full day. Cyndi Siebert took home a well run second, as Steffani Spizzirri took a hard fall down the rooted up hill and had to call it a day.
The big bikes provided the big finish. They too had the FVOR Greatest Hits to contend with. Riding through some new stuff and some areas not played in a while. Little loop out front, some new off camber never been road on path by the access road made for some interesting line choices.
Jeremy Smith should get his own class: AAA. Once again he topped everyone, 9 laps, 19.25 miles per hour average. Jay Hall accompanied Jeremy in AA finishing second.
A Class produced the finish of Carl Bruch and Trye Verardo and 86-200 B was a tight finish with Jake Lynn and Josh Rhodes.
40A finished with Ron Peterson and Tom Burtle running near identical lap times. SO identical that it truly was a "Tie", of course someone has to win, and transponders do great, except in a race to the barrels. Ron got the nod this race and Tom will be there to get him next time. Good race guys!! James Schmidt, stayed on the 40A lead lap but a couple of hiccups is all it takes to lose site of the leaders.
Jeff Snedecor grabbed the win in 30 A, Clint (always smiling) Pherigo, second, with Will "401" taking the third. All three were less then 50 seconds apart.
201/B was a mosh pit of activity with Bret Swantek fighting his way from fifth to first
Si Keith and Bob Schnathorst traded licks for a Plus 50 hit. In the end it was Bob who grabbed the Grammy. On this day Si actually got his bike dirty!
201C had an orchestra of fourteen veterans and one new comer. I invited him out to try his luck at hare scrambles because he was having some success racing stadium at Joliet and his head was staring to swell. He would have had a pretty good finish had he not started the day out with a broken hot-start lever, those things can come in handy when you kill an over heated four stroke on your fifth lap. He will be back next season and we will get him to Megacross next year to show him real stadium competition.
As for the rest of the field, they had working hot-start levers and John Seikmann, John Horn and Greg Harrah brought them in 1,2,3. Mr. Seikmann is well on his way to B class, going 5 wins will do that to a rider! John Horn showing some improvement
The 900 numbers came up Bob Johnson, Danny Brackney and Nick Unold.
The Beatles had their White Album, Pink Floyd had Dark Side of the Moon and now Fox Valley had it's first playlist of Greatest Hits.
We look forward to seeing you on tour next year. Have a safe winter, get your bikes all tuned up because April comes around pretty fast.
I can’t leave with out taking one last shot at Bob Mitchell. Near the end of the race I looked over at FVOR's Spectator Log and did a double take. I thought I saw Bob jump that KTM over the log. Nah, I must have taken in too much exhaust fumes.
Don't forget we burn that spectator log at the Rider Appreciation Day on November 12th, along with great food, thousands of dollars of door prizes (thanks MSR, Pro Taper, ANSWER, Tucker Rocky), open ride on groomed tracks, barrel races (2 types). Not to mention the overall award presentations its a real fun day and a good way to head into winter! See ya there!