ATV Motocross

Site Lap: Looking Forward!

Friday, December 7, 2012 | 5:30 PM

Welcome back to‚ Site Lap!‚ It has really been a busy time for me lately with Thanksgiving, the awards banquet and of course the approaching Christmas celebration. As hard as it is to believe the 2013 season will be here and finally the schedule has been released. Click‚ here‚ to find out for yourself what the new year holds.

A quick look at things shows that we will return to a couple of venues that we haven't been to for a year or two and a brand new venue in the ATV hot bed of Indiana. Even with those changes things will be about the same as far as scheduling goes. We will begin in the season the weekend of March 23rd and 24th and end it all at Loretta Lynn's with another hopefully exciting finale.

The return to Danville, Virginia's Birch Creek Motorsports for round 6 in early June will be an exciting return. It has been a couple of seasons since we have been there with promoters Carl Reynolds and Ken Farrell moving the event to Budd's Creek to change things up for the riders. However, they decided this year to keep things home and focus all their efforts on enhancing things for the ATV Racin' Nation's return.

The new venue is at Wildcat Creek MX located in Rossville, Indiana. Rossville is a rural community with a population of 1,513. We are located at the intersection of State Roads 26 and 39 in the northwest corner of Clinton County. The Town is within short driving distances of Lafayette, Frankfort, Delphi, Kokomo, and Indianapolis, which allows area residents easy access to employment, entertainment, education, and‚ health care services.

I don't know why but for some reason I did a little reading up on this community and found out that this place may be a lot like home for a number of the participants that will be attending this one. It seems many of the early settlers to inhabit this area originally came from Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Virginia. Rossville was dense wilderness until March 1828 and at that time a tribe of Miami Indians inhabited the area. Their leader was Chief Little Turtle (Meshekunnoghquoh). I realize useless information for the purpose of ATV motocross racing, yet interesting none-the-less.

One may take note that the heart of the season presents a back-to-back weekends of racing at Steel City and Unadilla. Two of the premier tracks on the schedule will test not only skills but also the dedication it will take to be able to have yourself and equipment ready to go so quickly for national competition.

Even though it may seem like such an obstacle to go back to back like that, there was a lot of consideration in making these decisions. It honestly should work out better financially and travel wise in the end. You ask how? Simple answering is that a number of folks will be traveling from the Midwest and Southlands of America and since Steel City is located somewhat in the middle of it all it will make the trip shorter to New York and save miles, fuel and wear and tear on the teams transporters.

Another thought about the back to back weekends is that somewhere in the middle of there has to be a place we can all congregate for fun family times. I mean someone has to have a track with plenty of parking or a facility that will open its doors and make a special week out of it for us. Being basically the middle of vacation season for most of America this could become an event itself.

One last positive of having back to back weekends is that if there happens to be someone from out of country or even across the country that has limited time and wants to maximize their experiences they can visit two of the most world renowned motocross racing facilities in only a few days.

As plans can now be finalized for the 2013 season, I expect to hear a lot more of what teams have planned. If you happened to be at the banquet then you know that things are really looking positive with Mt. Dew announced as the new title sponsor of the series. That was exciting to say the least.

I am not sure people realize the actual impact the news of the sponsorship means to our industry. The recognition just from the association with such a business will be a boost the sport may just need now more than ever. It's the first step hopefully to creating something better. If you want to hear more about it, I spoke with Rich Gillette who helped make it all possible. Rich is the team owner for Root River Racing who won this year's 2012 AMA ATV Motocross Team of the Year.‚ Click here to listen.

I can be positive and remain positive not only because of the recent announcements of sponsorship and the schedule but also because of the feedback that I get on nearly a daily basis about ATV motocross racing.

I have a number of friends on the popular social network Facebook, quite a number that continues to grow each day. I have friends from every aspect of the industry to friends completely out of the industry. Some I know, most I don't. Some I have met face to face and don't recall and others I have met face to face and do recall. Interestingly enough I happened to chat this past evening with a young man that actually breathed even more life into my passion for this sport.

Last night I happened to be online and received an inbox message from Brandon Laabs. I don't know Brandon but the name rang a bell. I knew he raced ATV MX but for the life of me couldn't recall from where. Then he told me he met me in Ohio at Sunday Creek this past season. He said‚ "it was right after practice when it was really muddy and it was after I did the big step up jump and the only other guy to do it during practice was John Natalie, and you just came up to me an gave me a pat on the back and said good job." And then it dawned on me why he was familiar.

Brandon said he will be racing the nationals in 2013 and that he was busy working out and working to save money. He said a lot of time and hours are spent at work laying tile right now just so he can realize a dream that he has had for a while now. Brandon told me, "I been working my butt off all winter to save enough money for all the nationals this year and been training very hard in the gym and staying focused on the set goals I want this year."


My little motto for this year is just simply "BELIEVE!"


It seems that he had hoped to make the dream a reality in 2012 but had a horrible incident at the end of 2011 nearly ended it all for him. Brandon was racing locally when his quad stalled after finish line jump where he was landed on breaking his C6 and C7 vertebrae in his neck. When we first met in Ohio he said that was his first race back since the incident.

Brandon is 20 years old from Manitowoc, Wisconsin. He plans on riding the new YFZ450R in the Production A and 450A classes with hopes of stepping up to a Pro Am class at some point in the season. Brandon says right now he will be doing it on his own with some support from FLY Racing, Fox Shox and his family. Good luck Brandon and it will be exciting to see how your dream plays out.

On a programming note, be sure and catch AMA Pro ATV Motocross from Red Bud this Sunday at 5:00pm eastern on NBC Sports.

That's it for now. Till next time, God Bless Your Heart and All Your Vital Organs.