Some y00per Fun!

Well this past weekend was spent re-energizing my riding batteries. A lot of time spent on the bike, in a non-competitive, non-race situation. Granted I still pushed myself while tooling around, but in a way that just puts a big ol smile on my face. Me & 2 other riding friends loaded up the toy-hauler and drove due North to the great y00per (The Upper Peninsula of Michigan). The plan was to ride some fun 2-track loops based around our camp & if we were up for it, hit up some of the local singletrack. Some\most of the pics courtesy JZEE

The 3 bike crew:


JZEE on the KTM 530xcw
Jburroughs12 on the Honda XR350R
Me on the Husky WR250

We were all having a blast out there. Essentially all of the 300ish miles we rode, we didn’t pass a single other dirtbike\4×4\ATV\UTV\ORV\Car\Truck\Bus\Logging operation. It was just some good pure fun. I realized immediately I shoulda re-geared my Husky. The OEM 13/48 gearing left a lot to be desired in the speed department. On these same trails on my 450, I could cruise 10-15mph faster and not feel like I was revving the snot out of the bike. My fault for not gearing up for the ride properly. Not the end of the world, but in some of the more open riding (and sandy areas), I really like to open the bikes up, and being topped out around 65-70mph, just wasn’t enough.

On the 2nd day of riding, just after a rockier section….followed by a high speed whoop section, I was flagged down, with John & Joe pointing at the rear of my bike. I thought I had some deadly animal attacking me, but soon found the problem.

A rock (presumably) shot up a hole through the center of the rear fender, and the following whoop section sealed the deal and that rear fender was toast. No biggy. First some duct tape, which was the replaced by just looping the thing onto my Nomad Rider pack. Initial repairs took place at the local Ace Hardware:

After that, we continued riding, and remembered part way through the 2nd day that the loop we were on, was one of our least favorite. It had a few road sections & way too much gravel road for our liking. It wasn’t much, but more than we’d care for. There were a couple more spirited sections, but nothing overwhelming. It’d be a better loop if you’re worn out on harder riding & just looking to have a more relaxing final day of riding. When we got back, Joe had the look of “I need some singletrack”, so we tossed our gear back on, filled up the camelbak & around 6:30pm rolled out to go hit up the Bass Lake singletrack loop (videos earlier in thread).

I started out on the Husky and Joe on the XR. I figured I’d offer up the Husky to him, since he’s more used to a 250 2T. He gladly swapped, and I gotta say I was quite happy to really ride the bike on some more aggressive trails. What a blast. That bike was so much fun. I was able to maintain a 15-20mph speed on the loop without trying too hard and was just having a blast while doing it. The only downer with the bike was the rear drum brake. I may have overshot a few turns and ended up in the weeds, but what a blast. I’m really loving that little bike.

Day 3 was our last, and unfortunately cut short. Before we rolled out, I pulled the Rekluse autoclutch from the bike. I didn’t miss it on the XR the day before and figured it’d be a good chance to really test the bike out without it in there. Things started out really well, but unfortunately about 20 miles into the loop, I came down from a roller, and noticed when I got on the gas, that it felt like the rear wheel was spinning. Odd, but it seemed to grab again, so I figured it popped out of gear. Again, another roller and this time it felt out of gear for good. I pulled the clutch cover and immediately saw the problem. My primary gear (on the crank), the nut had backed off and was somewhere in the engine.

I tore things down mid trail and found that the nut thankfully fell in an area where it caused NO damage, but then found that the keyway on the crank\primary gear had sheered itself. I also destroyed my clutch cover gasket in the process of all this, but knew at this point, I wasn’t riding that bike under it’s own power back to camp:

With that we figured the weekend was done. We just had to get back to camp. Luckily we were only a couple miles from a paved road, and luckily I had a tow strap in my kit, so we were off…….and with that I have the pic of shame:

Stuff happens, I’m just glad nothing more went wrong. A 2$ keyway, and 10$ in gaskets and the husky will be back in action for another day. I learned a lot though on the trip. For one, I immediately listed my Rekluse for sale. I just don’t need it. Shane Watts was spot on with his assessment on how it affects the bike. I just had to see\feel it for myself. I found I also learned to ride wheelies on the WR really well. Apparently all the tooling around on the XR translated over, as I can now click through all 5 gears and just rest at the balance point for as long as I want.

I also feel I need to do some work to my suspension. Higher speed stuff, the Husky is pretty good. Low speed stuff, the XR feels so confidence inspiring, and feels like you’re riding on pillows. Low speed the WR feels like it’s being jarred like mad. High speed on the XR…..well you just don’t. lol I’m really looking forward to my next race, whenever it may be. I’m just gonna go have fun with it. I found while riding the singletrack loop, that yes I could push myself super fast right off the bat, but I lose energy too quickly, and overshoot things. If I tone it back to 80-90%, I overall end up much faster. Heck, we rode the loop in 1:35. Not bad at all, considering the last time I rode it, I finished in 1:45.

I’m ready for riding.

Andrew

Not quite a noob, Not quite a Pro, Not quite old man, Not quite boy racer……

I am at a point in my life finding myself making up for lost\missed time.  Doing my best to get in as much racing before I feel I’m “too old”.  I suppose it’s best to back things up a bit and give some back story.  My name is Andrew Gore.  I’m 26 years old and I race dirtbikes.  I’ve got a lovely wife, slightly spastic dog, and officially work as a Mold Designer\Machinist at my Fathers Injection Molding\Mold Making company.  I have one goal ahead of me: to race national pro enduro by 2015 (or by the time I’m 30).

I began riding bikes when I was in elementary school.  First ride I took, was on a 1974 Kawasaki 175.  From then, I went into racing MX at a local track on a 1985 Yamaha YZ125 that was nothing but issues.  At the same time I was dealing with that bike, I was also forced to deal with the reality that the area I had to practice\ride was being shut down.  It was 1999, I was entering high school & found myself using any free time I had to go skateboarding, with the YZ sitting dormant in my basement.  Through high school I went full blown into skateboarding, was shooting video non stop, and gained a great board sponsor out of Pennsylvania, and even managed my own signature board by the end of high school in 2003.

Unfortunately from there, the board company was going under, and I found myself in a position of owning a paintball company with my brother.  From that point on, I just didn’t get competitive in much of anything.  We had separated ourselves from our fathers manufacturing business to venture out on our own, we were both immersed in work, and at the time I just didn’t feel any draw back to competition or even motorcycles.  This slowly began to change when I moved back in with my parents & back to work with my father.

Summer of 2004 (or maybe 2005?), I don’t remember exactly, but suffice to say, I got the bug to ride again.  I picked up a 1974 RD350 & had all sorts of fun fogging the area on the thing.  One thing led to another, and I found myself road racing a 2004 Yamaha R6.  With the help of my brother coaching me, I was picking up speed at a great pace.  Unfortunately, as my speed increased, as did the spending from my wallet.  A weekend of racing was using up every bit of money I had, especially so after a triple digit crash sent me sliding directly towards my entire family there at the race to watch.  I knew something had to give.  My funds were essentially non-existent, but the desire to compete was extremely high.

At this point, my dad had seen some trials events, and inquired if I’d be interested in giving that a go.  We made a deal that he’d front the money for a trials bike until I sold the R6.  I found a bike (1994 GasGas JT25), and a week or so later, had the R6 sold.  I entered my first event and was sucked in.  The slow methodical approach to riding, with a delicacy that just drew me in.  After my first event, I knew I needed some schooling and in the fall of 2008, I went down to the Trials Training Center in TN.  The following year, I competed in the D-17 Advanced class, and won the overall for the season.

The following year had me feeling the need for a bit more speed.  Early 2010, I competed in a couple trials events at the Sportsmen level, but I was feeling the need for some speed.  Maybe it was me knowing I was getting married in a few months, I don’t really know.  I do know that I needed some speed or change of pace from trials and began giving HareScrambles a go.  I had tried a Harescramble in May of 2009.  I made it 45 minutes into the event on a bone stock DRZ400S (yes, lights blinkers, everything).  I wanted to die, and I was barely half way into the race.  Things weren’t much different when I entered another event on a KTM 300.  I got stuck in a terrible rut, sunk the bike down to its rear axle and just about lost my brain.  It wasn’t until I entered my 3rd race that I even managed to finish.

I’ve spent the past 2 years competing in Harescrambles, dabbled into supermoto (finding I needed to be in the dirt), and finally giving an enduro a go this past fall (2011).  I’ve made a HUGE mistake the past couple years, which has been not focusing on an ultimate goal for each season.  This season is different.  I aim to win the D-17 Open B Enduro class.  I’ll be racing local Harescrambles as well to help keep my brain in race mode, but won’t be so focused on taking the “overall” for that.  Something to keep me in shape and in the spirit of racing.

I’m stoked for what’s to come this year.  I’m on a phenomenal bike (2006 Husqvarna WR250).  I’ve got myself on a tasty diet, and have a workout plan going on.  I’ll post as more comes up here.

-Andrew

 

Getting antsy is quite the understatement.

Just last week I posted up how I was feeling better, getting exercise, eating better.  Go figure that a couple days after that, I get taken down and out for almost a week with a cold\sinus situation.  Blame the weather, blame whatever, I dunno.  It’s only added to my growing desire to get back out on my bike and ride.

Typically during the spring\summer\fall I’m logging several hours every weekend.  I haven’t really ridden a bike since late November.  I realize that I’m not the only one in this predicament, and really it’s not a predicament per se.  It’s just annoying.  We’ve had one of the mildest winters that I can personally remember, and I have yet to log a single minute on a bike.  The more I contemplate that, the increasingly stupid it seems to be.  In all this time, the least I coulda done was gone to some empty field somewhere and worked on some basic techniques.

Thankfully the natural outdoor lighting has been staying on just a little longer each day.  The weather is steadily improving (for now?), and my bike is ready for action.  I’m just absolutely ready to get out and back on a bike.  I’m going to be at the equivalent of a rusty box of nails when I get back on the bike.  My only hope is that I have happen what I have had in the past.  Extended period off the bike has helped focus myself and I somehow return almost better at riding than where I was before I took the time off.

-Andrew

AMA D17 Enduro Season 4 Months Away

     Just over 4 months away, the AMA District 17 Enduro Season will be underway. Last season I had the initial goal of competing in the complete D17 HareScramble series, though after the initial excitement, it seemed an unattainable goal due to the sheer number of events throughout the year. Along the way, I managed to sidetrack myself with a brief (yet exciting) stint in the world of supermoto. I continued on with a couple more HareScrambles with mediocre success (bike changes, failures, etc) , before finally giving in and going out to try racing in an Enduro. I quickly realized what I should have been doing all along.

So here we are, January of 2012 with just a few short months to be completely prepped for the upcoming season. I’ve decided to set some short(er) term goals in concrete here. Without a clear goal in mind, I’ll never formulate a clear plan of attack. I’ll never win anything, without a plan. So here is my simple 2012 goal:

Top 5 Overall B D17 Enduro

 

That’s it.  I KNOW I have what it takes to get myself there.  I’ll have to push myself & machine for sure, but I am confident in what I can do.  It’s time for me to attack.  I’m taking the year off from swapping bikes.  I’ll campaign the BMW G450X for 2012.  That is final.  I’m excited.  You should be too.

 

We’ll see you on the trails.

Andrew –