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My 1st practice @ Evansville!

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http://www.evansvilleraceway.com/

So I had my 1st practice at Evansville this past Saturday and it wasn't what I expected. After not racing for 25 years and being on and off a bike for so long I was eager to get back into the scene, but what little did I know.

I was off to a bad start on Friday night when I discovered my newly rebuilt shock was leaking oil and had to borrow a buddies bike to ride Saturdays practice. (Thanks John) A well maintained 01' yz 250 set up for woods riding was my ride for the day. I'm always weary of borrowing other peoples bikes in fear of wrecking them and also for the shear fact that I can never get too comfortable on them. We got to the track early and walked it and just checking everything out and by looking at it I thought I could handle almost all of it, but once I got behind the bars again and headed out onto the course it was a different story. The bike felt decent into the 1st left turn and down into the gully with a left at the bottom and back out again up over the top right hander that throws you into another downhill with a 90 degree left at the bottom. A short some what off camber straight follows that brings you to very odd jump. Narrow and peaked it kicks you into a drop off. The drop off itself isn't bad but having to jump it the way they have it set up is dangerous to say the least and I only saw 3 or 4 guys do it at all. Following that there is another left hander that brings you to a decent table top that I can jump, but flat land just befor the downside. following that there is a double-double. These are scary as well due to the down side of the double being so peaked. Not undo-able, but with the landing side being so peaked ,I rolled them all day. A left hander into an uphill hairpin right follows this into another lefthander that shoots you up a hill that is at a 60 degree angle and about a 400' climb with a kicker on top. Not bad and alot of fun as well. I felt OK at this point in the track, so what if I roll everything, I made it up the hill, right? Wrong!

Following the hill climb there is another double, but you can't see the landing. I thought I could do it, but couldn't muster the courage do do so even if the landing looked forgiving, at this point I am now realizing I'm in over my head and some anxiety is starting to build up. After the DOUBLE there is a left hand that tosses you into a rhythme section that I thought I could handle once again, but left me swapping and bouncing and praying to God. I eventually was able to get through this section unscathed and be some what comfortable by the end of the day though. Immediatly after that there is the what they call the ski jump. A 4-5 foot high kicker that throws you down the side of a mountain. At 1st I pulled off to the side and just staired at the down hill. I was there about 20 minutes just looking down the hill that whips you int 180 right hander. I was scared and unsure if I could do it and the whole time asking myself "what did you get yourself into?". Then I remembered doing stuff like this as a kid and eventually rolled down the hill nervously at a speed that seemed like a 100 mph (actually about 25) into the turn with no problem. Again, by the end of the day I was flat landing that jump before the down hill and making it down with no problem and at a decent speed. After the bottom turn a long up hill sweeper is presented that throws you into a sharp left at the top. This section is a lot of fun because it teaches you throttle control and body position at the same time, a great section to have on any course. Immediatly after the sharp left, a gradual downhill left into a sharp right that drives you to the finish line jump, a short distance away from the turn. This jump plays the mind game as well. Steep and tall with a deep gully on the other side. While it isn't an extensive gap the other side or opposing face is a wall of dirt. The thought of plowing into this "wall" while coming up short played head games with me even though I knew I had cleared gaps like this before. So I rolled this all day as well. This is Evansville in a nutshell through my eyes. The YZ I rode all day handled well and powered thorough it all great. It's a bit top heavy for me, but I could get comfortable on it. At the end of the day, I can say I had a great time and was glad I went even if I ended up with monkey butt. I still have that anxiety of racing Evansville next Sunday, but that's another issue I'll have to overcome. I look forward to it , but I just wish they had a 30+ E class for the slow and weary.

Happy riding and thanks for reading,

Mike

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Great report Mike.....It'll get better with seat time thats for sure...and thats the key to most of your worries!Once your on your own steed...you will probably double your speed and ability.Good luck next weekend!

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Im sure you'll do better than you think, once the adrenaline starts flowing during the race. What class are you racing in?

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THanks guys,

I'll be in the 30+ c class I'm not sure if I'll race the open class or the 250 class since I'll be on a 2t.

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after not racing for such a long time, why dont you try a few of D6 harescrambles.

They run them well and you will get alot of seat time. I cant begin to tell you how much fun you will have.

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Great report. I hope to make it to a practice this year. My wife's family has a house right off the RT 80 Buckhorn exit near there.

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Hey Mike, any word on Bruces track this year?

tony

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We'll be opening on 4/5 if it dries up. We had so much rain it all turned to soup. We did install some drainage, but not enough. Sorry no SX style jumps yet, we are still waiting for some epa approval.

Mike

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You did great buddy!! From what I saw you rode in the zone by the end of the day..My hats off to you. :confused: Can't wait to join you. Get your shock done, break it in on Sat and kick Monkey Butt on Sunday..LOL

Great write up. I love how well you put every emotion. I feel you, every knob of the way..That track was SICK. :excuseme: .LOL

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We'll be opening on 4/5 if it dries up. We had so much rain it all turned to soup. We did install some drainage, but not enough. Sorry no SX style jumps yet, we are still waiting for some epa approval.

Mike

ok thanks, keep me posted.....

I rode for the 1st time over the weekend at a privet SX track and cased a jump after about a half hour of riding....I hyper extended my right ankle...not a good way to start the year.....

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thanks for the update on the track...I have a race there on April 26th.

How were the track conditions and how has the weather been?

Junior

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Tony, I'll keep you posted and sorry to hear about your ankle. you have my email add... You still using the same one?

Junior- the track was decent, some mud holes and once the sun went behind the clouds it got cold. by the end of april it should be decent. I wore my thermals.....

Yamadude- Thanks for your help and support bro now put your bike back together there is a race Sunday!

THanks to everyone else that posted...........

Mike

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