Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Fred Yanke has the Walworth BMX field covered in 28+ expert ... is Fred a Grands darkhorse? We'll know Sunday afternoon.
Happy Thanksgiving !!!
Also, good luck to all of our volunteers and friends who have travelled to Tulsa Oklahoma for the ABA Grandnationals.
Right off the top of my head, here are a couple of local stories we'll be watching through the weekend.
Tim Eiring has a great shot at a Nag 1 plate in 28-35 expert, sitting just 13 points behind the ABA's all time leading amateur Brent (Pee-Wee) Lee (who has earned more than 500,000 points in his career !!!). On his cruiser, Tim is currently NAG 3 ... but, the leader, Jacob Hensley, from Folsom, CA, is likely out of Tim's reach. Tim has a couple of national wins this season on both bikes with perhaps the most impressive coming at Rockford's Midwest Nationals, which is one of the premier stops on the ABA national circuit. Guys who win Rockford can pretty much win anywhere.
Randy Behnke and I talked about his chances of a Nag 1 on his cruiser in the super competitive 31-31 cruiser class. He's 48 points out of the top spot, but his first straight pull will definitely put him in the mix come main time. Behnke has also scored a number of national wins this year, including two wins in January in Florida, had solid finishes at Rockford, won twice in Minnesota, won Sunday's Volunteer National in Tennessee and most recently scored a win and third at Brighton in August, the last time he raced a national. Behnke is also likely to have to get around "Pee Wee" Lee if is to earn the NAG #1 plate.
Curt Zizzo gave me a first hand demonstration last weekend at Elkhorn of why he's currently sitting in the #4 spot among the national age group leaders in the tough 36-40 cruiser class. Curt's starts rock and he's got the track skills to turn a holeshot into a national win. And, he's got a bunch of national wins this year. Curt doubled down at Rockford, then followed up with two wins each at St. Cloud, MN and Brighton, IL.
Bryan Dickerson is sitting 3rd in 41-45 cruiser and with the way he's riding at the moment ... it wouldn't suprise us at all if he didn't improve a couple of spots and land a #1 on his plate as well. Bryan's been in this position before, but, unfortunately was dinged up pretty badly at nationals time. This time he's healthy, pulling hard, and riding as well as I've ever seen him. No question, when the gate drops on Sunday's main ... Bryan will be not only in the mix, but a top contender.
This column is beginning to feel a bit like an advertisement for Direct-Link BMX as all four of those guys are on the Direct Link factory team. Together, they won several team trophies this season, but, they'll have their work cut out at the grands because of the massive rider counts in 16, 17, and 18 year old expert classes. Dickerson mentioned running a Direct-Link rider clinic at Milwaukee BMX next season ... we hope they will !!!
Fred Yanke, who's name and image you've seen in this column in the past, and has been absolutely, totally, freaking killing it in 28+ expert at Elkhorn this season, plans to race in 28-35 expert. Fred gave everyone who would notice a glimpse at the possibilities when he made the B-Main for the 30+ BS Stops open at Rockford this year. The BS Stops race typically has 50+ riders of all abilities, from Novice to Pro, vying for 16 spots on the gate through several qualification rounds, in an A-Main B-Main format. If Fred's got the legs to finish the grands track, and we think he does, he'll be on the gate late Sunday afternoon ... against 7 of the other top riders in the nation.
Fred is self-employed and runs a company called Sandpiper Landscaping and is a guy that we owe a lot to. His volunteer efforts helped enormously to buff out the Milwaukee BMX track, taking it from rough layout, to raceable condition, this summer.
Cody Caliendo, I'm sort of bummed that I haven't written about this kid yet. All he does is go to nationals and make just about every main he enters. Caliendo is sitting NAG #9 among 11 year olds and #5 on his cruiser. Caliendo is from Sussex and I imagine we'll see a fair amount of him in 2007.
The Grands track build is coming along well and looking like a really cool layout.
For those of you sticking around Wisconsin for the weekend, there is a single point race Sunday afternoon at Elkhorn. Registration, as always, closes right around noon and racing will begin ASAP after.
As always, keep the knobby side down and we'll see you at the races.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Mike Lundy has had big leads since returning to PRO racing at Walworth BMX in early November. In this image, taken November 19th, he's leading A-Pros James Carter, Nate Schaeffer, Jeremy Kaht and others.
More Donation News ...
John Wethall from Lake Mills who races in the OM cruiser classes (and, don't forget, this column is written by a guy who occassionally races in the OM cruiser classes) passed along a brand new multi-channel mixer for the public address system. This is not an inexpensive piece of equipment that John passed along. As I wrote John earlier today to relay how grateful we are that he made this donation, it occurred to me how totally in awe I am at the number and types of donations we've received ... many from folks we're meeting for the very first time.
MilwaukeeBMX.com jersey's -- the sequel
We've got a couple folks interested in a few more jerseys ... so we're going to try and get together a second run. Fly's suggested retail on the jerseys is $21.95 ... which is what we'll sell them for. 100% of the profit from Jersey sales will go to support Milwaukee BMX. These would make kind of cool Holiday gifts, but, I need a minimum order of a dozen by Thanksgiving to make it happen. e-mail me at email@example.com with your size, prefered color (red/black black/silver) and contact information if you are interested.
Walworth Indoor Observations
Having finally made it out to somebody else's track on an event day, I got a chance to run into a bunch of people I hadn't seen since working on the Milwaukee BMX track this summer ... or, from even further back than that. Always super cool to feel welcome at the track ... whether as competitor, as "Dane's dad" ... or as some crazy dude with a website who likes to take a lot of practice laps. Only thing I regret is that I didn't bring a camera yesterday. If anybody's got pictures to share here ... I'll be happy to post 'em.
It was rad to see Mike Lundy racing pro again yesterday. Mike was going super fast and his leads reminded a few of us of his amatuer days racing at Elkhorn ... when he could pretty much goof off down the third and fourth straights and still win by four bike lengths. Lundy had a bad wreck earlier this summer and had to have a kidney removed as a result. So, it's a major achievement, in my mind, that he not only got back on a bike, but got back out on track ... and, got back out in front. Amazing. ISTV has a Mike Lundy interview online that was written shortly before he turned pro at Rockford's Midwest National in 2005 ... where he didn't lose a lap all weekend !!!
It was likewise good seeing Nathan Labecki killing it with his brand spankin new MilwaukeeBMX.com jersey on. Mark Kluth's son was also dudded up in our threads. We're stoked that you guys were flyin' the MilwaukeeBMX colors ... we hope you like the jerseys.
That's all for now ... we'll see 'ya at the track.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Walworth BMX is running a single / double weekend this Saturday and Sunday. Saturday practice and registration begins at about 2 and registration closes at 4 ... racing begins ASAP. Sunday registration is from 10 to noon with racing ASAP after registration closes.
2007 Milwaukee BMX Schedule
We are very close to submitting our schedule to the ABA. We are taking a very careful look at running a majority of our races on Weeknights, like the Metro Mountain Bikers. A handful of multi-point (state championship) races and other special event races would be held on weekends. Feedback is, of course, welcome ... but, the way things look ... we're looking closely at racing Thursdays and having track gates on Tuesdays ... that would run through June, July and August. There are two weekend races in both September and October. And, the schedule kicks off with one or two new rider clinics in May.
That's it for now ... c-ya at the races.
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Thanks to the generosity of a few key individuals and organizations, here are the items that have been donated to Milwaukee BMX to date.
* Sun Ringle (Corporate donation) - lots of swag and goodies to help support the cause
* Kuwahara Bicycles (Corporate donation) - donating an upcoming BMX Skills clinic with all proceeds going to Milwaukee BMX ... Matt Pohlkamp, Jeff Upshaw and Natarsha Williams will be the primary instructors
* Sandpiper Landscaping - Fred Yanke (individual Donation) - time and expertise with final track design
* Bill Rupp (individual donation) - Laptop Computers (2)
* Sentry Fence, Waukesha (corporate donation) - 500' - Chain Link Fence
* LF George Equipment Supply, Oconomowoc (corporate donation) - Use of Professional Landscaping Equipment
* Mark Kluth (individual donation) - Heavy Timbers for landscaping + Posts and Cable for Staging
* John Wethall (individual donation) - 4 channel mixing board and cables for public address system
* Dayton BMX (Bob Bruns) (individual donation) - complete starting gate
* Milwaukee County Zoological Society - unused ticket booth now used as start hill structure
* Zimmerman Architectural Studios - (individual donations) - cash donations for air compressor
* Pro Electric (electrical run from Chalet to Milwaukee BMX start hill ... installation of two 20 amp circuits trackside)
Items in the works:
Items we can still use:
- T-Posts (I'm going to be donating a bunch ... but, I figure you can never have to many of these)
- equipment shed
- chalk liner
- outdoor lighting
- grass seed (fescue would be best as it's hearty and will practically grow in concrete)
- public address equipment - amplifier, speakers, microphone ... what have you got sitting your attic?