There it was, the moment we had all been waiting for, the 2nd Round of the Rocky Mountain Showdown series at the famed Sweney Cycle Park in Brush, on Memorial Day. Anticipation was particularly heavy because, as we had alluded to in our preview, the 1st Round of the series was impeded by some sh*tty weather. Unfortunately, mother nature reared her sometimes ugly face this weekend as well, and as a result, a lot of the 2nd motos were cancelled. However, there were still plenty of epic battles and some stellar performances across the board. So, before I ramble on any further about weather and sh*t, let’s get into some coverage.
It’s a pretty beautiful thing when you peer across the starting line of a local pro race, and there are no empty gates. In both 450 and Open Pro, there were well over 30 entries (Open Pro / Non-Pro had over 40 entries) and there was talent for miles. The likes of Mitchell Gifford, Cody Gray, Joey Olson, John Citrola, Todd Bannister and the king of Coors Light, Connor Olson all showed up to rail ruts and nail… triples. As you can imagine, there were great battles to be had all over the track on Monday. In the first Open Pro moto, Todd got out to a nice holey and did his best to hold off a fierce attack from Mitchell Gifford. Eventually, Todd would relent the position to Mitchell, and from there Mitchell wouldn’t look back. There was defintiely a hero ride that moto, as Connor Olson went from wayyyyy back in the pack, and diced his way through to a pretty decisive 2nd place. The best battle of the day came in the 2nd 450 Moto, though, when Cody Gray & Mitchell Gifford jostled for the top spot. Mitchell ripped a holey, and Cody came around in 2nd. Cody just continued to put pressure on him, and he was eventually able to sneak by him. Cody led for a few laps, while Mitchell worked to regain his flow. Eventually, Mitchell was able to labor his way back around Cody and check out a bit. Although the performances from the top dawgs were impressive, perhaps the most impressive ride of the day was from Kyle Summers. After taking a few years off, the Colorado Springs product is back to his old ways of being too good at dirtbikes. We got a chance to ask him a few questions about the weekend and here’s what he had to say:
EM: So, how’d your weekend go?
KS: (It was a) pretty disappointing performance after doing decent at Lakewood. I just haven’t been able to practice and arm pump got the best of me. By the time the motos end I’m not even warmed up. It’s frustrating to say the least, as I know I have a lot more in the tank than a lot of other local pros. I wish they would run 30 minutes plus two for the pros to see who has a pair.
EM: Has your perspective about racing changed since you took some time off? Did you miss it quite a bit?
KS: My perspective has absolutely changed. Now, I race for fun and not a paycheck. I’ll get better as the season goes on, and usually it’s the other way around. But, yeah I missed it for sure. It’s different when you do it as a hobby instead of a job.
Well, one thing’s for sure, Kyle Summers is simply a gifted motocross racer. After spending a couple of years away from racing, Kyle came back and snagged a win at Lakewood, then he proceeded to run pace with several of Colorado Motocross’ best and brightest. Maybe his sprint game was a little amiss, but his raw speed certainly wasn’t.
The 80s were kind of a weird class on the weekend. A lot of the action was pretty spread out, but of course there was some rad stuff to come out of it. In the first 12-15 moto, Brody Propernick came out rippin’ and was able to snag a win, with Jaxon Pascal & Jagger Koch in pursuit. However, the second moto in that class had some of the best action of the day, as Jagger Koch got out to a quick holeshot, it appeared like he was going to run away with the moto win. However, a young and fired up Logan Lessar simply wasn’t going down without a fight. Logan must’ve been within 2 seconds of Jagger for pretty much the whole race, pressuring him all around the rugged course. Jagger proved up to the challenge, though, as he was able to hold him off and snag the overall. We got the chance to grab a couple of words from the new kid to the class, Logan Lessar, and here’s what he had to say.
EM: So, overall, how’d you feel about the weekend?
LL: It was a very fun weekend for sure, the track was amazing all weekend! But I definitely feel like I didn’t ride to my true potential, so I feel I could have done much better. The track was extremely rough and very technical all weekend. I always like the challenge though!
EM: What has the transition been like moving up to the bigger bike?
LL: Since I am a smaller kid for my age, the transition to the 80s at first was definitely challenging. The bike is much bigger and faster, so there has been a huge learning curve. Although the change has been challenging, I am loving the bike and I feel that I am riding it good!
EM: What about that battle with Jagger?
LL: The battle with Jagger was a lot of fun and intense! Him and I are very good buddies and he is a great rider so battling with him was really fun and brought my riding to another level. After the first moto, when I crashed, I was having a hard time getting back in my groove, but then that battle with Jagger got me back on track. While battling with Jagger, my focus was where it needed to be!
Heck yeah dude. You, Brody, Jack and the rest of the newcomers are poised to keep making noise for years to come.
Man, what else is there to say about young Jeremy Roe? The kid was a force in the 50 class last year, as him and Kalvin Valdez were going at each other all year for Ws. This year, quite similarly to Logan, Jeremy made the leap from the automatic trannies to one that makes entirely more sense. Jeremy has made quite the splash since trading up to the bigger displacement. Not only has he been a formidable shredder in his age group class, but he’s also been battling up front in the open class as well. It was kind of a bummer, because none of the 60 classes got a second moto yesterday, but we still saw some great rides put in by Ryker Leaneagh, Ryan Boutilier, Jeremiah Willoughby and Aden Finley.
As we sat there on the side of the track, we marveled out how these little grommets, barely getting into their times tables, are able to maneuver the massive bumps and deep ruts on those little machines. Well, however they are able to manage it, they certainly impress the heck out of us. One of the best battles we saw all day (not joking, it was epic), was in Class 4. Mason Brown shot out to a nice holeshot, and began to dictate the race. It wasn’t until around lap 3, that young Brody McCue was able to track down his foe, and rip around him for the W. Great rides from those little dudes all afternoon long. We do have to say, though, hats off to Colby Lessar (Logan’s little bro) as he was able to cruise his way to a 2-3 for 2nd overall in that class.
We’d definitely be remiss if we didn’t give some significant credit to the Colorado Motocross Medics as they were running around all day, and doing a great job while they were at it. Additionally, Samantha Peters had one hell of an afternoon as she was able to navigate her orange machine to a 1-1 in Women’s Pro. Samantha has actually yet to lose this year, at least not in SRAC competition. We’d also like to give a warm welcome back to the Paris family, as they had a nearly tragic scare a few months back and have now returned to racing. Awesome to see them overcome that miserable adversity. Finally, to the flagger, Davey Gonzales, Rob Imondi and anyone else we missed: well wishes, and heal up quick.
That’s all folks, see y’all this weekend at the THUNDER VALLEY NATIONAL, MERICA!