ISDE Update - Morelia Mexico

Discussion in 'Racing' started by mknight, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. mknight

    mknight Been here awhile

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    Participating in the ISDE (International Six Days Enduro), or at least spectating it, has always been a dream of mine. Fortunately, having a very good friend that is a whole lot faster than me, has provided the opportunity for me to participate in the ISDE this year in Morelia Mexico as a member of the support team.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    My good friend Cory Pincock received the invitation from the AMA this June, to participate as one of the Team USA riders, representing the US at the 2010 ISDE. This was after he had a great ride at the Idaho City Qualifier this year.<o:p></o:p>
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    (Cory, Idaho City ISDE Qualifier, June 2010, photo credit Nathan Day)

    Not knowing if he would ever get another chance such as this, he decided to jump on the opportunity. In the process, he extended the invitation to me to come along with him as support crew. Eventually, that evolved into a situation where my 15 year old son Josh could come as well. Cory has been very good to Josh, serving as a role model, coach, and mentor for Josh who is an aspiring young off-road racer who has dreams of someday competing in the ISDE himself. <o:p></o:p>
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    (Me and Josh at the Idaho City ISDE Qualifier, June 2010)

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    Cory is also the one who initiated the idea of us forming a racing team for our boys and the boys of our extended friends and group of riding buddies. Together we came up with &#8220;FAST Racing (Fathers and Sons Team Racing) and it has been one of the funnest and most enjoyable things I&#8217;ve ever done in my life. Who can argue with the idea of spending about every other weekend with your family and best friends supporting each other and encouraging each other in this great sport.

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    (Here&#8217;s Cory and part of our FAST Racing team and the Sugarloafers AMA National Hare n&#8217; Hound May 2010).

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    Myself, Josh, and Cory&#8217;s wife Kara leave Friday morning for Morelia. This is the first of what I hope to be daily updates regarding Cory&#8217;s progress, as well as our general experiences supporting Team USA.
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    For those who may be unfamiliar with the ISDE, the simplest way to describe it is that it is basically the oldest ongoing Motorcycle Racing Event in the World (started in 1913) and it is directly equivalent to the Olympics in that riders must qualify or be hand-picked for the team to represent their country. This year&#8217;s race will have representation from over 32 countries and estimated to be over 550 participants.
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    It&#8217;s also important to note a few other items. There will be two other Utah riders participating in the ISDE this year. Shawn Strong and Jarkko &#8220;Jake&#8221; Vainio. Shawn is a young and well-respected force in Utah off-road racing, currently in position to win the overall Utah State desert racing championship, as well as competing for a top-ten finish in the AMA National Hare n&#8217; Hound Series in 2010. Jake is a long time ISDE veteran from Finland who now lives here in Utah (Park City). <o:p></o:p>
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    (Cory and Shawn Strong, Idaho City ISDE, June 2010)
    Jake is the seasoned veteran with lots of maturity and experience. In 1989 he was a member of the Finnish Junior Trophy Team. <o:p></o:p>
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    (Cory, Jake, and Shawn, Snowville Utah, USRA Desert Race, September 2010)

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    (Cory and Shawn strong at the USRA &#8220;Rhino Rally&#8221; desert race, St. George Utah, February 2010)

    To my personal knowledge, there have only ever been two other Utah riders ever to participate in the ISDE, Greg Gillian in 2006 in New Zealand and Bert Bradford in 2007 in Chile. So to have three Utahns participating in the same year is a very unique situation.
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    My plan, assuming schedule and internet connectivity allow me, is to provide nightly updates while the experience is fresh in my memory, and those of you at home can enjoy the updates.

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    One minor side note regarding Cory. Just over 3 weeks ago (October 6th) while training, he had a minor spill that resulted in breaking several bones in his left hand. He was in a cast for a week and a half and then received some special orthopedic devices that were intended to help him hold on to the handlebars. This did benefit him some, but the reality is that he has several small bones floating around in the meaty portion of his left hand (right where your hand rests on the grips below the pinky finger) that are causing him significant pain. This is having a huge impact on his riding, and we won&#8217;t know until next week if he&#8217;s going to be able to ride through the pain. Cory had been training as hard as possible and was at the top of his game:

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    http://www.standard.net/topics/sports/2010/10/03/pleasant-view-man-represent-us-road-motorcycle-event

    <o:p></o:p>
    What a lot of people also don&#8217;t know about Cory is that despite riding motorcycles his entire life, the discipline of off-road riding is actually fairly new to him. Cory has a Trials background and has competed at the National and International level as a Trials rider for many years and was a member of the US Trials des Nations team in 2000 competing with teammate Geoff Aaron in Spain. But, it&#8217;s only been the last 3-4 years that he&#8217;s ridden competitively in off-road.
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    Proper kudos need to also be extended to Rekluse. Cory contacted them this past week and explained his plight and they bent over backwards to get him a new auto-clutch shipped in time to test it. He had about 30 minutes of ride time on it last Saturday and feels that it will be a benefit. It&#8217;s now been yanked from his bike at home, and he took it with him on Tuesday morning of this week and is installing it in his race bike there in Mexico.
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    (Cory gives a high-five to his two youngest boys after taking 1st place overall at a recent USRA desert race)

    I&#8217;m looking forward to this and I hope you are too.<o:p></o:p>
    Mike Knight<o:p></o:p>
    #1
  2. Hayduke

    Hayduke ///SAFETY THIRD/// Super Moderator

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    Definitely looking forward to this! :lurk

    Thanks for taking the time- this will be alot of effort.
    #2
  3. Roostre

    Roostre Discombobulated

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    :lurk
    #3
  4. MSH

    MSH The Salt

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    Hooked... :lurk
    #4
  5. GalacticGS

    GalacticGS 1200 GS Rider

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    Best wishes to Cory and all of the ISDE riders! :thumb

    GO USA!!! and safe riding to all...
    #5
  6. 305racer

    305racer Fossil Rocket Pilot

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    Thanks for taking the time to include us in ya'lls journey:super
    #6
  7. mknight

    mknight Been here awhile

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    We've made it to Morelia. We flew from Salt Lake to Mexico City. Mexico City is a huge sprawling city and looked very much the way I expected it. We then had a short flight from there to Morelia and it was such a contrast. When coming into Morelia there were mountains, covered in trees, and green. There were lots of beautifully groomed fields and it looked like the rolling hills and green pastures of northern California almost.

    Morelia itself seems to have the typical poor areas much like what I expected (the kind you don't want to be walking around alone in), but the area we are in is very cosmopolitan and modern. Our hotel has an Applebee's right next door where we ate dinner tonight, a McDonalds, movie theater, Chili's, and a really nice big supermarket within walking distance. We went there tonight and it was just like walking into a supermarket at home.

    Cory and Shawn have been having a great time here and have already had to impound their bikes. Word on the street is that Destry Abbott's bike still isn't here. Apparently Ricky Dietrich isn't here on the trophy team...not sure why yet, but I believe GNCC racer Jimmy Jarrett has replaced him.

    Wally Palmer (any of you that have been to an EnduroCross probably know Wally as the crazy dude that launches his bike off anything....at least that's what I remember the one time I saw him in Vegas a few years ago) apparently flew in and set his bike up, flew out yesterday and is competing in the EnduroCross this weekend in Denver, and is flying back Saturday or Sunday just in time to start the ISDE on Monday morning.

    The hotel we're in seems to be primarily the USA Club riders and Junior Trophy Team. The Trophy team is at another hotel. But, I have also seen the Swedish team in our hotel and the Israeli team. Shawn and Cory also said some crazy Canucks drove an old motorhome and horse trailer all the way from Canada!!! That takes guts.

    Within minutes of arriving at our hotel, we went to get dinner and found Shawn Strong, his dad Brad and Shawn's girlfriend Trish, in the parking lot practicing tire changes with Jake "Jarkko" Vainio. I am quickly gaining an incredible amount of respect for Jake. I feel like I'm the Karate Kid in the presence of the Great Mr. Miyagi who is full of wisdom and experience. Jake is the man!!!

    Listening to him and watching him is like being in the presence of Roger DeCoster, seriously. He sounds like him, looks like him, and has Cory and Shawn following him around like disciplined pupils eager to please their master. He has taken the fatherly coach role and has them on a strict regimen. (Breakfast at 7:00, Grass Tracks and Note Taking from 9:00-12:00, Tire Changing practice from 1:00-3:00, etc.).

    We walked out to the parking lot and he had a tire changer, a few tires, and Metzeler foam inserts, and he was coaching them on the way "world champions change foam inserts". It was amazing!! I'm a moto geek and I know it, but seriously watching him coach and tell them how to do it was awesome and my son Josh was just soaking it all up like a sponge (only moto geeks could get excited about such a thing). His technique was so much better. It was very precise, methodical, and effortless. The first time I saw Cory practicing bib insert changes in his garage this summer, he had it down to about a 3-4 minute routine, but it was brute force and he was sweating like crazy. Tonight, he was doing it with a broken hand, hardly even breathing, and looked like he was changing a bicycle tire. His twenty plus years of experience and the great tradition of the Finnish team in the ISDE is directly benefiting the Utah riders and Team USA. Jake seems to be loving having a couple of new pupils as well, and this is an absolutely incredible experience for my son Josh to observe all this.

    I haven't had an opportunity to take any pictures, but Shawn's girlfriend Trish McGuire has been here since Monday and has shared a few good ones with me.

    Here's Cory Pincock prepping his 2011 300 EXC:
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    Remember my comment about being a Moto Geek. Check out this container! This is Billy Burns from Vermont. Shawn and Cory have been groveling over his bike and setup. He's on the Masters Club Team with Jeff Fredette. Jeff Fredette is competing in his 30th ISDE by the way!
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    Shawn lubing up the inserts (This was before Shawn and Cory had been schooled in some of the finer points of wheel prep by Jake. One of the things he did very distinctly different was use no lube on the bead of the tire, and installed them "dry", with exception to Mousse gel on the inside of the tire).
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    Apparently all the Metzeler inserts were too big and had everybody freaking out. Something in the manufacturing process was bad and they were too big for the tires.....so the solution was to just cut out about a 7 inch section to make them fit. Here's Shawn's tire when he first discovered this.

    [​IMG]


    Jake, "The Man" Vainio from Park City prepping his bike, "The Way World Champions Prep Bikes" :)

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    Cory doing some more bike prep. Check out the six million dollar man device on his left hand. Cory seems to be doing a whole lot better, but I don't think he's letting on just yet how much it still bothers him. It will be very interesting to see if he can ride.

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    Trish McGuire on the right, with two of the US Women's Trophy Team, Nicole Bradford, and I'm sorry but I can't remember the name of other gal, but I'll know by the end of the week.

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    I'm really looking forward to tomorrow. Jake's got a strict schedule for Cory and and Shawn tomorrow and we'll be walking special tests and doing more tire changing drills and tomorrow night is the opening ceremonies which should be cool.

    Good night.
    #7
  8. doogin

    doogin Adventurer

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    Subscribed!

    I'm about three hours away and was planning to shoot the whole event until work got completely in the way... hopin to see at least one/two days.

    Please eat some local grub, you won't be dissapointed! The other restaurants are just as safe as those chains and the experience will enrich your trip... I'd even say go for some tacos on the streets (they tend to be the best) but only if you've got a travelers stomach.

    Logistics question... how are you getting from town to the pits/race course? Is it at all accessible by public transport or are there parking areas if I take my car?

    thanks. Good luck and have a blast!
    #8
  9. MSH

    MSH The Salt

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    Man, I need a tool chest like this!
    #9
  10. frog

    frog Long timer

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    Awesome so far cant wait for more. Sounds like you guys are in moto heaven.:clap

    Can't believe the bibs, how did they just add 7 inches and miss it.:eek1 I'm going need a bib changing lesson when you get back.:D
    #10
  11. dickosaurus

    dickosaurus Seasoned Noob

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    Thanks for the pics and news updates will be appreciated. We sent a girl from Oklahoma to ride with the Womens' USA cup team. Her name is Kerrie Swartz, her number is 203, and she's pretty quick. She's also very good in 'technical quick.' I think the Women's team is Nicole Bradford, Amanda Mastin, and Kerrie.

    Attached Files:

    #11
  12. azbrown

    azbrown Been here awhile

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    awesome thread- I'll be reading all week. I agree w/the above comment, find a few people to go with and hit the local hangouts and restaurants- the locals typically know where the best grub is to be found. Once you're 75 miles south of the border, Mexico is a wonderful country.
    Thx. for making the effort with the regular updates.
    #12
  13. mknight

    mknight Been here awhile

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    We have a rental car. We spent the entire day today driving to the tests. I'll post a report for the day in a little while with pictures.

    I do want to hit some of the "local" eateries, but time and logistics are a challenge, but after today, we've had some pretty great cultural experiences :)
    #13
  14. mknight

    mknight Been here awhile

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    I remember reading Kerrie's website before I came. I just couldn't rememer everyone's name. I've got some pictures of Kerrie from the parade tonight. I walked right down the parade route with her and she seemed to be having a great time.
    #14
  15. wrk2surf

    wrk2surf on the gas or brakes

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    Ok... back to the Mousse.. so they are cutting it and taping it?? seems like it would seperate..and cause issues.. do they have back up tubes...
    might be a good idea..

    post lots of photos!
    #15
  16. Sportakus

    Sportakus Been here awhile

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    I want more...:lurk :lurk :lurk
    #16
  17. maple1

    maple1 Been here awhile

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    we know you're busy, but this stuff is fantastic, send us as much as you can. A big thanks from all of us at home...and dont drink the water:rofl
    #17
  18. Blur

    Blur 3MTA3

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    :lurk
    #18
  19. mknight

    mknight Been here awhile

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    I'm writing this Sunday morning, because by the time I got back last night and everything downloaded, I was admittedly too tired to get a report for Saturday put together. This is an accounting of our experiences and observations yesterday (Saturday).
    **************
    Yesterday (Friday) I commented on our initial observations of the city. Yes, we ate at an American restaurant and there were lots of nice shops around. I was hoping to see a little more of the real Morelia today, and we definitely did!

    The plan today was to get up early and go in search of the rest of the special tests. Cory, Shawn, and Jake had already been to a few of them on the days preceding our arrival, but today we were able to drive to three of the special tests and walk them, as well as see two of the other that are right near the Parc Ferme (the impound or the "paddock").

    We all loaded into three separate cars and headed out with a very basic map of the city and surrounding area. The riders all ride directly from the Impound area (just like Idaho City), but from there, it's absolutely nothing like you've experienced (unless you've been to a real ISDE before). The tests are out in the countryside. The riders will be riding a lot of dirt roads and even a lot of pavement in some areas to get to the tests. I've really seen very little trail, but we weren't riding course so I'll be curious to hear from Cory what the actual course is like.

    My previous comments about the city being "modern" are a probably a bit of a stretch. Yes, it is definitely modern in some areas. I've seen a Home Depot, Walmart, Costco, McDonalds, and some nice gas stations and supermarkets. But, immediately next to such modern stores will be complete poverty and slummy areas that wreak of sewage.

    As we extended out into the countryside, this was even more true. We saw people living in shacks and surviving on a year, what I probably bring home in a week. It was humbling and consistent with what I've seen the few other times I've been to Mexico. The neat thing though was that in our efforts to find these remote tests we saw a ton of the countryside and drove into tiny little villages and spoke to people who were very humble and kind.

    Our piece of junk Rental Car survived it all as well (but not with an exhaust that has fallen off). In our effort to find some of the special tests, we had to drive through some remote areas:

    [​IMG]

    But we eventually found one of them. This place was amazing and nothing like I expected at all. It was in this stand of what appeared to be Ponderosa Pines. It was mostly flat but just seeing miles and miles or ribbon through the forest reminded me of Idaho City. It was pure grass underneath as well.

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    Shawn was all smiles when he saw this:
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    Not how I pictured Mexico.
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    Brad Strong (Shawn's Dad) and my son Josh:
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    The deceptive thing about this area and what we found with other special tests is that the lush grash is deceiving. Underneath it is pure bedrock. This is going to make for very interesting racing conditions.
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    We drove back and found another special test. This was was near a lake and on a side hill covered in eucalyptus trees. This one had a lot more elevation changes and off-camber corners and it looked to be more technical.

    Cory and Josh walking the grass track.
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    This one had lots of little natural erosion areas with big square-edge drop offs.
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    Another of the drop offs exposing the "dirt' underneath. That isn't dirt. That is pure rock.
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    This picture doesn't reveal it, but this a 180 degree turn on the test with a total drop off and off-camber turn.
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    I gotta run, but I've got tons more of the rest of the days experiences and the parade. Here's a teaser pic:
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    #19
  20. Roostre

    Roostre Discombobulated

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    :clap

    Keep the reports coming!
    #20