After you’ve been riding & racing as long as I have, racing sometimes becomes more of a “have to” than a “want to”. During the racing season, I of course, try my best to make every race, & finish every race, and between the sponsors, the points chase, & being an officer of the club, the “have to” feeling gets pretty strong at times. So after the end of our season, there are times when I just want a break, & ( believe it or not ) just don’t feel like riding.
Thus it was, as I headed up to the Brian Storrie Grand Prix just outside of Denton Texas a few weeks ago. In fact, I didn’t even take my race bike, instead just some camera equipment, and the wife’s fourwheeler.
The two day event, was being put on by one of our own local pro riders, Gas Gas dealer, Race-Tech suspension guru, and ISDE veteran, Mr. Brian Storrie. Brian apparently has some land to the east of Denton, & was allowing us ( mostly TCCRA riders ) to come out & abuse it. The land was pretty nice. It had lots of nice green grass, trees, creek crossings, & well, some other stuff, including a small moto section that Brian must use to keep in shape for whippin’ up on the rest of us.
As it had been raining for a day or two before the event, the area was a little moist.
I, with my keen eyesight & sensibilities, decided to park close to the gate so as to be able to get out quickly in the event of another downpour. And so, after paying the modest fee to get in & cover this event, I pulled through the gate, spun the Patman Racing van around to position myself close to said gate…and promptly became stuck in a bog. Oh it looked solid enough, green grass, open, & flat, but in no way solid…right up to the rear axle.
As the van lurched to a stop, I looked over at my friend Bryan Pruner, & said,
“Well then… We’ll park here”.
I off-loaded the fourwheeler, loaded the camera, & took off to find our “buds”.
We found our friends The Pattisons, along with Don, & Marco, & David camped not far from the bog, & headed up to the riders meeting, where Brian was insisting that this was just a fun race. As it turned out, I would have some of the best fun I’d had all year today.
Brian himself, led everyone around the course once before the racing was to start, & from my spectator position, safe on the fourwheeler, it looked to be in excellent condition, certainly no dust, though there was a mudhole or two.
A whole bunch of people said that they would ride the unclassified race as an extra practice lap or two, & sure enough there were about a hundred riders in the unclassified event. Everyone seemed to be having fun, & I even saw a few bike / rider swaps goin’ on in the back woods (apparently so that more than one guy could get some practice in). No big deal though, as the unclassified race was not trophied, & was only for fun.
Over the course of the day, I saw some good racing, and a lot of people smiling.
Later at the buddy race, I even saw a guy crash without being on his motorcycle!
They had a Le Mans style start, where the buddy would hold the bike for the racer, while he ( the racer ) would line up, & race the other competitors ,on foot to the bike, then get on , start it & start racing. Seems one fella wasn’t used to running in his Alpinestars, & went head over heels just before he got to his scooter. Later on it was great fun to go over to the “hand-off area” where the teams were switching riders every lap. Some were kinda nonchalant about it while others could do a bike / rider change in a matter of seconds.
I also witnessed some good mudhole action, some great airtime on the moto section, laughed my ass off ( well not all of it ), and all in all, had a super day. Mr. & Mrs. Pattison fixed up some good food. And while my friend Bryan Pruner was racing I got to ride around on the fourwheeler with his gorgeous wife Monica, pretending to “show her around”.
Pete Storrie ( Brian’s dad ) was nice enough to snatch the Patman Racing van out of the mud with the tractor without much ado, & we got to talk for a few minutes, He’s a pretty good guy.
In the evening, ( though I didn’t stay for it ) there was supposedly a pit-bike race, and that’s always fun to watch.
I went back on Sunday for day two, but it was rainin’ a little, and my friends didn’t show so I ended up leaving early I the day, but I did want to take this opportunity to say “hat’s off the Storries”. To Brian for lettin’ us use his land, & puttin’ on what was a well organized, and truly fun event, and to his dad Pete for getting’ me, and many others I understand out of the mud. Great job guys ! Hope you do it again soon. And to those of you who missed it…don’t do it again !