Saddlemen

Race Report from NHHA Round 10, Take One: Harry Lyles

| 12 November 2014 1:20 pm

NHHA National Hare & Hound Association Championship Series
Round 10: 100s MC H&H at Johnson Valley OHV Area

By Harry Lyles
Photos by Mark Kariya
Courtesy of Blais Racing Services
LUCERNE, CA, OCT. 26, 2014

Race Report by Harry Lyles, 250cc A
Coming into the final round of the 2014 NHHA Series, I was really excited to get out into the desert to hang with my friends and family, as well as get some much-needed seat time. I got out to Lucerne around 9 a.m. on Saturday to do some jetting and suspension testing with the team.

Chris Blais and Harry Lyles dressed up for Halloween. (Hopefully.)

Chris Blais and Harry Lyles dressed up for Halloween. (Hopefully.)

After we got our bikes dialed, we all threw on our Halloween costumes and got ready for the autograph signing. I was having fun being dressed up as Han Solo (a.k.a. “Har Solo”) and throwing down my favorite one-liners from the Star Wars movies.

Just as we got the pit dialed for the signing, the desert decided to kick up a nasty windstorm that left everyone running after their EZ-Ups and into their trailers. We decided to call the signing early and ended the night with a team meeting.

The Bangerts sheltered me for the night, and thanks to them I got the full night’s rest to pound the whoops and rocks for Sunday. Luckily, the race didn’t start until 11, so I was able to sleep in until 7 a.m.

Harry Lyles at speed at the final round of the NHHA Championship Series.

Harry Lyles at speed at the final round of the NHHA Championship Series.

I ran the bomb multiple times, and I found a sweet line going up the right side.

The banner dropped, and thanks to my Blais Racing machine, I was first to my line, with only one of the Beta riders on my right. I grabbed sixth and held it on ’til the end of the bomb.

After the bomb, the course made an abrupt left, which turned my awesome start into a bad one. I couldn’t find the ribbon, and people were scattered everywhere! After a few frustrating miles, I actually found the ribbon and settled in the dust behind a few riders. I ended up battling with a few older guys and finally making the passes stick when we got into the moon rocks.

I came into the pits right behind my teammate Brendan [Crow], and with a quick pit from my dad and Don Meza, I grabbed a handful and charged after Brendan. The 100s put us in a long, smooth valley, and after a sketchy-fast pass in the rocks, I was able to get around Brendan.

The second and third loops is where I usually ride and flow the best, so I turned up my intensity and I started to pick off riders, getting into 25th overall by the end of the second loop.

I knew the third loop was going to be tough both physically and mentally, so I purposely saved a little more energy than I normally would. I got a splash from my team, and off I went for the two riders just ahead of me. I was able to get around one just before the rock steps, and I now had Brett Klingner in my sights. We jumped on the nasty jeep road above the steps, which I have ridden numerous times, knowing you can end your day if you go too fast on that particular trail, and just as I thought I should back it off, Brett went yard-sailing through the Mars-like terrain. I rolled up to him [and found him] curled in the fetal position, moaning and groaning, and it looked like he was in bad shape. When I asked if he was all right, he turned to me and I saw there was an alarming amount of blood inside his goggles. I immediately threw down my bike and helped him get his goggles off. His face was covered in blood, but he started to calm down after I helped him get his helmet and other gear off. I made sure he wasn’t concussed and helped him and his bike off the trail. I knew exactly where we were, and I knew I couldn’t leave Brett, so I decided to call it a day and help my fellow racer back to the pits.

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Even though I didn’t finish, it still was an amazing weekend with my family, friends and team. Special thanks to the 100s MC for an awesome course, even though I didn’t finish the third loop. Thanks again to the Bangerts for a place to stay and cooking me food, and another special thanks to all of the amazing people behind me – my mom, my dad, Chris and Patty Blais – and the rest of my amazing sponsors: Blais Racing Services, Fasst Co., Race Tech, ESR, Troy Lee Designs, Muscle Milk, Cytomax, VonZipper, Dirt Tricks, No Toil, Kenda, and FMF. Without you, I wouldn’t be dicing it up with my buddies! Thank you! See you at the races!

[Harry has announced that he will be participating in the full NHHA Series for 2015! – Chris Blais]

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[Stay tuned for more Race Reports from this event to be posted soon on Today’s Cycle Coverage… Editor]

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Category: Hare and Hound, National, POV, Regional, Riders, Riders All, Riders' POV, Riders' Race Reports

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