Vintage MX, vintage body and bike

Discussion in 'Racing' started by pvangel, Mar 24, 2011.

  1. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    The story of a man and machine and his love for dirt bikes....
    Ok... 1st race of the season in 8 days, alot to do to get ready! A Little background first.
    I raced in District 34 in the 70's and quit in about 77? I didn't see a motorcycle for about 20 years while I grew my family and business but the love for the sport never left my mind. As my kids got a little older and had a bit of money I bought a BMW K75 from Q in Thornwood NY and although I loved it my heart was in the dirt. So I had a few GS's after that and did a bit of touring but could never stay off the dirt roads and my eye's were always on the woods....
    I bought a Husky TE 400? figuring that some time in the woods would quench my motocross thirst but it only made me want to race again even more, so i did what any muture responsible person would do and purchased a KTM 520 mx bike because I always enjoyed the open class. Not a great bike to come back to the sport on but I did have fun on it and I started to learn MX which had changed quite a bit since the 70's....There were jumps! big ones!
    I told my older brother that we were going to race again and that if his wife had a problem with it I would be happy to talk to here about it!
    Well we both did start to ride again but those jumps were so intimedating that we just couldn't do them because in our minds the bikes still had 4" travel and we would certainely die if we came up short! So we took a lesson from a local pro who promptly told me I was way to fat to be doing MX and basically we were pussies for not doing them. There was a small double on the kids track that was maybe 8' apart that I just could not do so he stood on top of it and screamed at me until I did.
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  2. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    So now I am to fat(220?), to old (45 or so) and a pussy so how was I gonna do this? Well what little testoterone I had in me kicked in and I started to ride a lot more, work out and lose weight.
    I also figured out that a smaller bike like a 250 fourstroke would make it easier than rastlin a 520 KTM and I started racing AMA dist 34 in NY,that was about 2004. I didn't know anybody at the track, I wanted to throw up all day long because I was so nervous but I just kept doing it and getting faster and losing weight.
    I was racing a +40 novice class and I would see the same people at the finish line either right in back or front of me so I started to remember faces as we all were about the same speed. I would see the same guys at the open practices on Wednesday and wait on the side of the track and try to "engage" some competition so I could measure my speed against there's. I started to get comfortable on the bike and I started to get back in shape....
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  3. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    There is a quote from somebody that says:
    I'd rather be a racer for a day than a spectator for life....

    While the racing was starting to get good in Dist 34 NY at the time there were 7-800 riders in a day while racing only one class you stood around for hours waiting for your races, I wasn't comfortable enough to race the +30 class as they were all "kids" and who would want to race kids? But ther was a vintage class that looked pretty cool so I started to ask around about that.

    My brother and I raced Bultaco's in the 70's so my research lead my back to Hugh's Bultaco that was still in business and in the same upstate NY location. Hugh and Tim Weaver are some of the nicest people you will meet in your life and know EVERYTHING Bultaco.... so a few grand later I was vintage racing.
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  4. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    This is a pic that Flug took a couple years ago after I learned to jump and say no to a second slice of pizzia

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  5. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    The Vintage racing is great!
    After becoming somewhat unhappy with the AMA racing I found a racing series called ACRMX (www.ACRMX.com)
    which is a spin off from AHRMA but is more about racing than having the perfect "period correct" bike and the racing just being fun! Kinda like when we raced in the 70's.
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  6. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    My current Vintage bike ready to go!
    1980 RM 125

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  7. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    I lovingly restored 2 Bultaco's and actually have them in the book "The History of Bultaco" by Jeff Conboy. One pic is with me riding and the other is with Gary Jones on one at Southwick in the ACR "Running of the Buls" race. And although they are beutiful bikes I had the same problems in the 2000's with them that I did in the 70's....But I did love them just wanted something with a bit less hassle.

    I did have RM 125's as well as a kid so I started looking for one of those and whats nore fun than a 125...NOTHING!

    Here's the last race of last year, 125 FUN
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  8. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    On the modern bikes I started big and kept going smaller, KTM 525 then a couple Honda 450f's KTM 200sx Than a couple Honda 250f's threw a KTM 144 in between those and now am on a 09 KTM 150. The 250f's are easier to ride at speed without a doubt but for a grin from ear to ear the fun factor is all about small bore two stroke. After really learning how to ride one and learning to keep it pegged at all times, I can't believe how fun they are. A bunch of my friends ride 450's and in some places they have the advantage but all in all I can out brake,out jump, out corner them and..... it pisses them off so much it makes it even more fun if thats possible!

    Two strokes rule!!!!

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    Southwick!

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    Shorty

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  9. hardwaregrrl

    hardwaregrrl ignore list

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    Very cool story!!! I hope someday to get up the nerve and just try one race, and go from there. Got 2 girlfriends that race vintage, they're members here, suchesrider and porkchop 316. They constantly are pushing me to race, but at 38 I didn't think it was such a good idea till I got health ins. I got health insurance!!!!!! So, hoping to get my 2 smoker runnin' and gunnin' and drop in on a CC event. I want to see some more pics!!!!
    #9
  10. ADK

    ADK ____

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    Remember that double jump ( about 8ft like you're talking about) on the main straight at Claverack? In the 70s nobody jumped it. not even Pat Moroney, who dominated the expert classes at the time.
    #10
  11. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    Hardwaregrrl, I'm 51 now and riding better than ever..... 38, I have underware thats 38... what are you waiting for?
    #11
  12. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    I remember Pat Moroney well,Stewert Anderson, Mike Boucher,Jeff Conboy. And the jumps at Claverack! the old bikes did not jump well thats for sure and it's hard to get that out of you mind...
    #12
  13. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    The problem with MX in the Northeast is there just isn't a lot of places to ride without a long drive and $$$$, There is a club in Ct. which has a private track that is open year round, it is fully lit for night riding as well as a computerized watering system and track crew that grooms it daily.
    To be able to ride whenever you want on a perfect track is like winning the MX lottery! There is a few year waiting list to get in but once you do:clap

    This is from 09

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  14. Euromad

    Euromad Been here awhile

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    Very cool! Similar circumstances here. I moto'd in the 70's on a Honda 125. got back into woods riding , HS and enduros in the 90's. Same age as you, still doing the enduros but trying to get into the vintage scene. Love the Buls!:clap
    #14
  15. ADK

    ADK ____

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    I never understood why most motorcycle tracks don't run on a weekly basis. If stock car tracks can do it, why can't bikes?
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  16. LC Garage

    LC Garage On Any Sunday

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    Great story and inspirational! I have raced motorcycles & cars since '72. I left bike racing in my late 30's and raced cars for 12 years and recently (2006) came back to occasionally race vintage MX. The cameraderie of the motorcycle racers is so far beyond the car guys there is no comparison. I wonder now why I ever left (I think it might have been the broken knees). Anyway I love your story, the comeback overcoming obstacles and the pictures, you are on the gas! I encourage anyone to try the vintage racing, there is a class for every age and talent level, just go have fun and enjoy the whole experience.
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  17. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    I could not agree more....
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  18. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    There are some places to go on a weekly basis, Rocky Hill in Ct is a great track when the river goes down, Englishtown NJ but I hate the ride, LIMX in Long Island but again it can be tough to get to.
    There use to be Wed. open practices at the dist 34 tracks that had a race on Sunday wich were great! Now Ace is gone (ithink) AK farms still has them but have not been to impressed by anything the new owner has done and Walden which now does them on the Saturday before the race and although the track is the best around it gets so crowded that you get 15 min of track time and then have to wait an hour before you can ride again.... My knees are so old that I am froze up by then....

    I have to go to work, Chapter 2 coming soon.
    #18
  19. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    First race of the year is April 2-3 in Budds Creek Md. I usually race a modern bike class as well as a vintage class but think I am going to concentrate on 2 vintage classes, +40 Evo and than the Evo 125 GP. My son has moved up to a 125 (99 yz 125) so he can race vintage 90's and then the 125 GP class as well. Thats 4 classes a day which should be more than enough track time for the two of us. I might ride my modern bike at select races like Southwick or Broome?

    In order to get back in shape we have been riding at least once a week to try and get back in shape, here is some Blackberry pics from our seceret test track that we purposely keep blurry so as not to reveal the location....

    My son,

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    #19
  20. pvangel

    pvangel Team AARP

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    Me hammering some laps trying to get some winter weight off,

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    #20