Not too old to learn… Not too old to race…

Discussion in 'Racing' started by Wyobrew, Jan 31, 2011.

  1. Wyobrew

    Wyobrew Missed it by that mu

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Oddometer:
    462
    Location:
    Wyoming
    I am not sure what to call it. Mid-life crisis, adventure, wanna be racer, death wish or just trying to keep life from swallowing me up. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    I read the posts like many of you. A nOOb goes racing, Another noob goes racing, Which way to Baja, and Two noobs and a season of racing&#8230; they are all excellent. They all capture the spirit of many ADV riders. I am not sure where this will fit in to all the other posts, but I do know I have benefited from others telling their stories, so it is only proper that I try to document mine for others. Learn from my mistakes; most likely. Laugh at my attempts; I hope so, without a little laughter, life would be boring. <o:p></o:p>

    Let&#8217;s cut to the chase and set up a short summary.<o:p></o:p>
    Age: 48, 6&#8217;2&#8221; 210lbs of not lean, not mean, sometimes beer drinkin&#8217; machine :1drink
    Riding experience: about 7500 miles of dirt, and 5000 miles of street over the past 3yrs.
    Bikes: KTM 950SE, KTM 450EXC, KTM 250XC<o:p></o:p>

    Racing history: Yah, right, first and only race, 2010 RMEC National at Inyan Kara. 60 miles of very tight single track. I was out of shape, sloppy and lacked speed. I wrecked, got up, wrecked, got up and really didn&#8217;t do anything but finish. I believe last place except those that DNF'd. Finishing was my goal then and that goal still remains today. <o:p></o:p>
    [​IMG]




    As 2011 unfolds, I have found that I am craving competition as well as trail riding. Why not try more events? A harsh reminder of my need for learning came from riding the LAB2V this past Thanksgiving weekend. All the advice tells you the same thing; you will have more fun on a smaller bike than an Adventure bike. Now being a know-it-all novice, I decided to ignore the comments and ride my 950SE, a fantastic bike for most any 500 mile dirt ride. I truly did enjoy the ride and will do it again next year (on my 450). Riding the 950 in the deep sand was my first reality check however. As often mentioned, anyone can ride fast, but riding fast and not crashing is the key. Riding deep, deep sand fast enough to get the big 950SE to plane on the sand requires a certain degree of confidence and ability. I soon found I lacked both. <o:p></o:p>

    Enough of that! I have become committed to &#8220;learning&#8221; how to ride. I will take classes, enter races and spend time in the saddle to accomplish this task. I am not setting out to ride IM Vegas2Reno, Baja 1000 or Dakar, only learning how to ride better, safer and finish the events I enter. Can a 48 year old beginner/novice learn to stand on the pegs and get off his ass? This might define whether I am too old to learn, too old to race. <o:p></o:p>

    Hare & Hound, Desert, Scrambles, Enduros are all on the list. Yes, they are beyond my current ability.<o:p></o:p>

    Initial calendar: Hotlinks to each event commentary will be added should I actually get off my ass&#8230;and on the pegs!

    RMEC National Feb 5-6 Wickenburg, AZ (times a wastin...) DNF, great race however.
    Jimmy Lewis riding school Feb 19-20 Great Class! Learned a great deal from Jimmy.
    BITD Laughlin Hare Scrambles, NV Mar 4-6 Flat broke and busted, racing cost $$$, I need to budget better.
    Shane Watts School Mar 19-20 Another Great Learning experience! These classes really help.
    Montana XC Pipestone April 17th B class, 17th out of 23
    Montana XC Cascade May 1<SUP>st</SUP> Mechanical breakdown DNS
    Montana XC Burnt Timber May 15th Broke 3 ribs, good times, bad luck.
    NHHA Jericho, Utah May 21st No racing for 5 weeks
    National Enduro RMEC Inyan Kara Jun 19th
    out for injury

    Montana XC Elk Basin June 25th still out for injury
    Snowshoe Enduro RMEC Grand Junction Aug 7th DNF
    AMA West Hare Scrambles Big Sky XC Aug 27-28th yep, another DNF
    #1
  2. Wyobrew

    Wyobrew Missed it by that mu

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Oddometer:
    462
    Location:
    Wyoming
    I am running two bikes for my race events. There is absolutely no way I can blame my equipment for lackluster results.
    Both bikes have Rekluse clutches and Christini drives. I may be aging, but not senile; having access to bikes with a Christini drive is the bomb.
    (See, I sound younger already) :puke1

    I have had the 450EXC for a year and love it, the 250XC is new to me. I have no idea if I will like the 2 stroke or not.
    Only 231 lbs with the Christini drive makes it a compelling choice to try. Both bikes have had the suspensions tuned to match the gut and butt.

    [​IMG]



    I will do my best to take some helmet cam of my best/worst moments as well as picture documentary along the way. I have hocked about everything to give this a shot. Might be the shortest racing thread in ADV history.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>

    Beyond the aforementioned Noob racers, I must give a quick shout out to a few others on ADV. Most of these people I have never met, nor talked to, only read their posts and tried to learn what they have to offer.
    Neduro, Frog, Trey650, wrk2surf, azduster, hilslamer, bajaboundmoto, Strongbad, and Chilly, to name just a few. Thanks for sharing information and knowledge online.
    I hope to ride with you sometime in the future and I promise not to hold any of you liable for my results or my actions. :deal

    There are many more ADV members and others I will add to the list.
    #2
  3. wrk2surf

    wrk2surf on the gas or brakes

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    7,782
    Location:
    THE exact center of California/Bass lake/Yosemite
    Subscribed and good luck... Make it your goal to finish not only the day race no matter what, also your schedule! Prep early cause race days sneak up on ya..
    #3
  4. Gotlabs

    Gotlabs Killing with kindness

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Oddometer:
    654
    Location:
    Locust Grove, VA
    Sweet! Even if you are old and fat, you are riding Christini's so you'll be sexy! :freaky
    #4
  5. Southest US Thumper

    Southest US Thumper Extreme n00b

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,212
    Location:
    As Far South and West as you can get in the USA
    Do it Brewski!!!

    Looks like you got the season planned out, stick with it! Good Luck this Weekend!

    Subscribed.
    #5
  6. Drif10

    Drif10 Accredited Jackass

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2003
    Oddometer:
    48,305
    Location:
    Gates of Moscow
    Remember: At our age, we don't heal so fast. :lol3

    So this leads to a point for you: One of the hardest things to learn is path selection. Get it right, and you will literally expend half the energy of when you get it wrong. If there's one thing you can work on by practice, practice, practice, this is the one I would focus on. If you can consistently take the smooth lines of least resistance, you'll finish better, and less fatigued.

    Looking at a rise or descent? Think of mercury on that slope, gravity will help it find the path. This helps a lot. Understanding how to borrow energy to dodge an obstacle (just remember, gotta pay that one back), and making that instinctive, will make a big difference in your day.

    Old racer saying: Go slow, to go fast. At our age, we beat the kids because we think our way through, as opposed to gas it and relying upon our youth to recover from the mistakes.

    To improve this judgment, is simple. Find a good climb. Sit at the bottom, pick your line. Ride up it, note where and what changed your intended path. Assess. Do the same for the ride back down it. Now read that climb again. Adjust fire. Write the plan, ride the plan. How does reality alter the plan? Adjust. Do it again. Until you've got it figured out.

    Then pick a different hill, and do it again. :lol3 And again. This isn't out riding with your buddies, this is training, treat it as such. Hell, pick an area where your truck can be close by, get the SO to come and read a book (safety valve in case you dump it bad), and just practice, practice, practice.

    You wanna do it safely, and have doing it, then proper prep is the key. The above will also help you train physically too. I used to beat guys because of having thought my way through, not because I had any talent riding. I'm just of average talent, at best. But I had good teachers.

    Good luck!
    #6
  7. M.A.G.

    M.A.G. I heart Penalties

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,010
    Location:
    George-uh.
    Give 'em Hell, Wyobrew.

    Since we were all little kids, this is what it has been all about. We rode around then on our little bikes, pretending to be racing some epic race. Here you stand now, with that little kid looking at you, and the guts to actually do what many have not, and only talked about.
    #7
  8. DolphinJohn

    DolphinJohn Caveman

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    Oddometer:
    4,014
    Location:
    Nature Coast, Florida
    Much respect, Mr. Wyobrew.

    :freaky


    .
    #8
  9. bgoodwin

    bgoodwin Got Parelli?

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,173
    Location:
    Eva, Alabamer
    Sounds like you're gonna have loads o' fun. I was a frequent racer in my twenties then strayed away from it. Just started again last year at age 39. Funny thing is....I'm faster now than I ever was before, just don't have the lungs for it. Conditioning is now my main focus.

    Sent from my SCH-I500 using Tapatalk
    #9
  10. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad n00balicious

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,149
    Location:
    Santa Susana, CA
    Good Luck!!!!

    Oh and BTW, you're not old!!!! You are only old enough to race the Senior Class!! Jajajajaja!!!! Wait 'till you are old enough to race Magnum then you can be considered old!!!! I'm 57 and the Catalina GP was my last race!

    One of the things I've found as I've aged over the years is that many of those bastards that were faster than me when I was 20 something are still faster than me now!!! What's up with that??? Jajajajajaja!

    BTW, where in Wyoming are you???
    #10
  11. lonepeakracer

    lonepeakracer Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    Oddometer:
    17
    Can't wait to hear how you like the Christini drive at our race, the KLIM Big Sky XC. Have a great summer and make sure to say hi at the Montana races!

    Joe Miller
    Montana XC Series
    KLIM Big Sky XC
    #11
  12. Wyobrew

    Wyobrew Missed it by that mu

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Oddometer:
    462
    Location:
    Wyoming
    Thank guys, I am heading out to Phoenix a bit early as I found out my dad just had a heart attack (lives in Mesa). I will try to keep this updated between events.

    Thanks Strong Bad, I don't consider myself old, just older than some. I doubt I will ever be considered fast. I am located in Sheridan, Wyoming and the high today is -2 with a low tonight of -20. (not counting wind chill) No practice time here so I will be going in cold. (no pun intended)

    The Big Sky XC is very high on the target list. It is going to become bigger every year from what I see.
    #12
  13. wrk2surf

    wrk2surf on the gas or brakes

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    7,782
    Location:
    THE exact center of California/Bass lake/Yosemite
    Thanks for being a Promoter lonepeakracer!
    #13
  14. javahead

    javahead Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2008
    Oddometer:
    44
    Nothing feels better than surviving an offroad race as an old noob; even finishing at the back of the field is so much better than wondering if you can do it.
    2 years ago, like you, after reading about others on here, I returned to cross-country racing after 23 years off. Yes, old bodies break easier and take a bit longer to heal, so managing risk and accepting you'll be passed a lot might be part of it for a while. I usually finish and rarely get injured, but I'm now in better shape and can ride more competently than ever before. I'm loving every second of it.
    Good to see you've got riding schools in your schedule. Technique and setup will save you so much energy.
    In 2 years when you join the 50+ class you'll have an age advantage again!
    #14
  15. eatpasta

    eatpasta Lawnmower Target

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2006
    Oddometer:
    11,742
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, Ca
    ahhh so many noobs! cant keep em all straight....

    :lol3

    first off let me say bravo for getting out there and allowing your ass to be kicked!

    :clap

    its amazing that so many people new to racing are getting out there and having at it!!!

    :thumb

    ill certainly be watching to see how it goes with all that super fancy-ass bike gear. What the hell is a Christini drive anyways?

    :scratch

    also - TWO HUNDRED and THIRTY pound bike?!?

    :huh

    isnt there a law about weighing more than your bike?
    #15
  16. Wyobrew

    Wyobrew Missed it by that mu

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Oddometer:
    462
    Location:
    Wyoming

    Ouch, that will leave a mark...:cry

    Ok, I admit I weigh more than 230 with full gear. But the fact is I "look" like I weigh 210. :wink:

    As far as Christini drives... http://www.christini.com/


    And remember, be more careful of what you post and write on your racing adventures. Some Jackwagon might read it and think they can do it too... :deal
    #16
  17. Gotlabs

    Gotlabs Killing with kindness

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Oddometer:
    654
    Location:
    Locust Grove, VA

    Shit dude, I hope everything is ok.
    #17
  18. Wyobrew

    Wyobrew Missed it by that mu

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Oddometer:
    462
    Location:
    Wyoming
    So far no news good or bad. I am hoping to get my bikes loaded and head south asap.

    Doug

    Sent from my DROID PRO using Tapatalk
    #18
  19. M.A.G.

    M.A.G. I heart Penalties

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,010
    Location:
    George-uh.
    Prayers for your Dad, Wyobrew.
    #19
  20. eatpasta

    eatpasta Lawnmower Target

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2006
    Oddometer:
    11,742
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, Ca

    no news is good news, no? I hope for the best for you family
    #20