Topic: Squeal'n Pig HS and Ogopogo CC Ride Report
Posted: 05/20/2003 10:31:43 PM
Man am I sore!! But I had an awesome weekend. It went something like this...
Friday- Got off school a little bit early, came home, packed and left for Kelowna at around 3pm. We hit snow from Rossland to Christina Lake (Nancy Greene and Paulson summits) as well as in a few other areas. We finally arrived in Kelowna at around 7pm, went to Costco, then went to our campsite and setup camp. Got to bed at around 10pm.
Saturday- Got up at 8am, had breakfast, loaded my gear and headed to the Squeal'n Pig Harescrambles outside of Vernon. We arrived at the race site at about 10:30am. Man it was cold! It snowed off and on while I registered and then got my bike unloaded and got dressed. Then I preroad the start and first five minutes of the track (including the two grasstracks which were pretty rough). I accidentally fell over at the end of the big mud hole, so I decided to rest until the race. I went back to the truck and put my bike on its stand (plastic 5 gallon bucket). Rider's meeting came at 12:30, and the sun had come out. Part way through the meeting, I heard a loud crash. I looked over and the bucket had collapsed because of the sun warming the plastic, and my bike fell against the side of our vehicle (97 GMC Yukon), the left barkbuster putting a nice dent and scrape in the front fender, near the mirror. My parents told me not to worry about it, but it still shook me up. The rider's meeting ended without further incident.
The race started at 1:00pm with a dead engine start, going class by class. The masters (pro) started, then each class went off a few minutes apart, until finally my class (Junior Under) went last. I got a mid pack start and was probably around 11th or 12th going into the woods. I then passed two more who got tangled up in the last corner of the grasstrack. We then followed the powerline then into the woods. I passed a kid on a YZ125 when he slid out on the many roots. We had received plenty of rain so the roots were especially slippery. I made it to the first log crossing where there was a bottleneck. A girl on a CRF150F was stuck and there was a line up behind her. I looked around a saw another place I could get by without doing too much bush wacking. I crossed the log and gained another few positions. I continued along the course, stalling a few times as well as sliding out on some slippery roots. If you didn’t hit them dead on, your front tire would slide out pretty quickly. At both hillclimbs, there was riders stuck on them, so I took the easy outs to get around the bottlenecks. The course was very tight, with only a few sections of open terrain. The best part of the whole course was a trail called Barstou to Vegas, which was a third to fourth gear trail through the woods. I ended up having some great battles with a few riders, who would pass me on logs (I still have a tough time with them) but I would get them back on the open stuff. I finished my first lap in 51 minutes (cutoff time was 1 hour, 30 minutes) and headed out for the second lap. I started to get tired, so I took it easy on the second lap. It was also snowing, making the trails extremely slippery. I finished my second lap in 1 hour, 10 minutes (approx). So I was a total of two hours. I was pretty much exhausted, so I slowly road back to the truck to get changed and warm. After getting changed and loading the bike, I got some food and waited for the results to be posted. I saw a guy I met last year (powercart aka Matt) at the Ogopogo and on DRN, and went over to talk to him. We talked about the course, then went over to check the results when they finally posted them. I ended up placing 7th in the Junior Under, Matt got 4th. I was stoked about that, my goal was to finish inside the top ten, and I did that. Matt had already finished 2nd at the Main Jet in Merritt, but he was still happy about 4th. I was even happier when we found out that plaques went to 8th in our class. Awards finally started around 5pm or 5:30. I got my plaque, which is pretty cool, first time I’ve won something in dirtbike racing. We stuck around for the other prizes, but I didn’t win anything, oh well, maybe next time.
After the awards I thanked the organizer of the hare scrambles, then we left. We stopped in Vernon to wash the yukon and I decided to was my bike. I was careful using the pressure washer, but I’ll never do it again.
We drove back to our campsite after that, and got some dinner, showered and went to bed.
The next morning I got up around 8am, got breakfast, loaded up everything and headed to the race site. We arrived at the race around 9:30am. I went and registered, got my t-shirt and then went to get my bike out. Half way to the truck I realized I forgot to pay the $40 entry fee, so I ran back to the sign-up and paid. These people spend a lot of time organizing this race for us riders, so I figure it’s the least I can do to make sure they get their expenses covered. My parents were impressed that I went back and paid without thinking twice. After that I went and got my bike out. While getting my bike out, I saw Matt and his family pull up. We gave them directions to sign-up and then continued getting my bike out. Once I got it out I filled up the gas then tried to start it. Nothing. Both my dad and I tried to start it but nothing happened. We then tried bump starting it, but still nothing. I pulled the plug, which was wet and black, but it wasn’t oil or gas on it. That should have been my first clue. I changed the plug and it started first kick. I warmed it up, then got changed into my riding gear. By this time it was probably close to 10am. I rode around a bit just warming myself and the bike up, then I rode up the hill after the start to check out the first minute or two of the trail. It was pretty fast and open, but had some big acceleration bumps. I tried it a second time, but partway up my bike bogged, but only above 1/3 throttle. After a few minutes it went back to normal, so I continued practicing. It happened twice more, so then I went back to the truck to try and fix the problem. My dad thought it may be water in the carb or gas, but we weren’t sure. By this time it was getting close to the rider’s meeting. I went and found a guy I had met online who rode a BBR220 and knows quite a bit about bikes. He also thought it was water, so we went back to the truck to fix it. We pulled off the air filter and got all the water out of it, then dried out the air boot. We also drained the float bowl. I tried riding it again, but it still bogged. My dad blew out the fuel line, and by this time it was race time. The masters and experts had already left, but my line would be a while. I pushed my bike to the starting area and waited. My bike seemed to be running fine now, so I concentrated on getting a good start. My line finally came up. I waited patiently for the starting sound, then started up my bike and was gone when the horn sounded. I was about mid pack around the first turn, heading up the hill into the woods. Half way up the hill my bike bogged, so I waited for everyone to pass then headed to the pits, very disappointed. My parents both knew what was wrong as soon as I pulled up. I figured my day was done, but my dad was determined to get my bike running. My dad didn’t know what else could be wrong, so we tried to find someone who could help. Luckily a guy named Jeff just happened to be walking by and he rides a YZ426F. He thought he knew what the problem was, and what it turned out to be was more water in the carb. We had drained the bowl using the screw, but there’s a nut that comes off the bottom, and it was holding water and a bit of dirt inside. We cleaned that out, and the bike ran fine. I put my helmet back on and headed out onto the course. I was 25 minutes behind everyone else (lap times for the 34km course were around 1:16 minutes or more for the Junior Under 200cc Class).
I took off as fast as I could, I knew from the day before that I was close to the same speed as the top people in my class, so I just had to ride at around 150% if I wanted to catch them. Around 5 minutes into my race, I hit a bump or something that knocked my right foot and side of the bike into a rock (or stump, something hard). It bent my rear brake pedal under the case, against the frame, so I no longer had a rear brake. I decided if I wanted to keep it on two wheels I should slow down a bit. I was still moving fast, but had to be careful coming up to corners. After around 15-25 minutes, I caught a glimpse of a rider on a CRF150F. I caught her and passed her relatively quickly. Next it was onto a logging road, where I spotted two more riders ahead of me. I was riding along the road topped out in 6th, determined to catch them. The two wouldn’t move over when I caught them, and then they got stuck going around a downed tree. I got very frustrated waiting for them, then finally blew by them once they got going again. I also stopped and helped a kid on a TTR125 who was stuck in a tree. He had been waiting about 10 minutes and was so happy when I pulled his bike out for him. I continued along the trail, riding as hard as I could. I knew I might still be able to catch 6th or 5th place. I was riding well, making good time, when I finally came to the worst part of the trail, the uphills. They weren’t that steep, just extremely slick from the rain/snow we had gotten in the past few days. I got stuck just past a woman on another CRF150F, but got going a few minutes later. The next hill proved to be even more of a challenge, so I waited for the masters (who had finally caught up to me (lapping me)) to go by then just pinned it up the hill. I made it, then continued on. I made it up the next few hills, then got stuck on a nasty hill with no dirt left on it. A girl on a KX125 was also stuck. She was pretty much ready to give up because she had been leading the women’s class, then she got stuck and watched all her competition ride by. I waited for some more masters and experts to go by, then pinned it up the hill. The trail got easier now, not quite so slippery, but I somehow torn something in my ankle, so I couldn’t stand up for the rest of the race. I tried to go fast, but I had to be careful not to wash out and put my left foot out. All that was left was some road sections, some fairly open trails, and some pretty steep downhills. I had to ride all the downhills in first because I had no rear brake to use, which made it tough. I managed to keep the bike upright, and road out the rest of the race sitting down but not stopping. When I finally reached the finish line, my ankle was on fire. I couldn’t move it, so my parents took me to first aid right away. The attendants figured that I had just pulled or torn something, and to just ice it for now. If it was worse tomorrow then I should go to a hospital. We went back to our truck, which was right near the finish line, and watched the other riders come in. Kelly (the guy with the BBR220) came in a short while after I had finished, and came over to see how I was doing. We talked for awhile and he offered me a chance to ride his bike. I wanted to but my ankle was too sore. Maybe another time. Matt arrived around 25 minutes after I got in, and it looked like he was in first! We waited for the results to be posted and tried to stay warm in between snow storms. The results were posted, and Matt did get first! I ended up in 8th place with a time of 2 hours, 5 minutes. Matt’s was 1 hour 16 minutes for his first lap, total time around 2 hours, 27 minutes. I was stoked to actually have finished above dead last. I learned a ton from the race, and I know that I can run the same pace as the leaders, even though my time says differently. I checked the other times and figure without the many problems I had, I would have placed either 4th or 5th. It ended up that 7th place was only 4 minutes ahead of me. We stayed for the awards ceremony, then went back to camp, showered, had dinner and relaxed. We drove home on Monday.
This weekend was a great weekend, even though I had an interesting race on Sunday and had my bike fall over on our truck. I learned a lot, met a lot of great people, and my parents were already talking about coming over to Kelowna for some hare scrambles in June! I’m thrilled with this!
Kelly- thanks for the advice. It was great meeting you.
Reply by MotoVet on 05/25/2003 10:52:24 PM
Sounds like ya had Blast ! I love Racing! Its sounds a bit different from our Desert Races in the Southern California Mohave Desert. Full length of our Hare&Hound Races generally average +80 miles. We start at 9-10 am, and average 400 entries. The AMA National H&H races are pretty tough, and often the last riders may finish at Sun Set. Its also Hot, boulders instead of trees, and alot of hairy mountain terrain. GLAD YOU HAD FUN !!!
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