Saddlemen

Race Report from the Jackrabbits Hare and Hound

| 2 February 2015 5:56 pm

District 37 Desert Racing
Jackrabbits Hare and Hound at the Spangler Hills OHV

By Brendan Crow
Photo by Grumpy
Courtesy of Blais Racing Services
SPANGLER, CA, JAN. 11, 2015

Race Report by Brendan Crow, Third Overall, First Open Expert
After having a great start to the year at the Adelanto GP, I was excited to race the first desert event on the District 37 calendar. I headed out Saturday to get seat time on my rebuilt motor, as well as make a few adjustments to my Race Tech suspension. It was a beautiful day on Saturday, and I was able to accomplish exactly what I wanted, but I had no idea of the wet race that lay ahead of me.

Brendan Crow (192) at speed at the Jackrabbits Hare and Hound.

Brendan Crow (192) at speed at the Jackrabbits Hare and Hound.

In the middle of the night, I woke up to the sound of rain pelting the top of my van, and it showed no sign of easing up.

Saturday morning, I did my best to do all the regular pre-race preparations while trying to stay as dry and comfortable as possible. I felt I had a great line picked out for the start, and I made my way over with plenty of time to find my spot. Then I waited for the fun to begin.

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I had an amazing jump off the start and was able to sprint down the bomb without seeing anyone else alongside me. I made it to the banners first (there is no doubt my 300 is fast, and my grin was huuuuge!), and I set out to set a good pace. I wasn’t sure how much of a factor the rain would play, and I felt like I was riding tight after the bomb and made a few mistakes, which ended up costing me the lead a few miles in. I only lost one position, and I did my best to stay within striking distance as I warmed up and got more comfortable in the really wet conditions.

Around check two, I finally started to feel more comfortable and loose (I also had [the third-place rider] right on my heels, giving me some motivation to step up my pace!) and I put my head down to try and make a run back to the front.

After a few miles of fast roads and washes, I had closed in enough to take over, and I made my move through a wide-open wash. (No dust makes passing a whole lot easier.) I was feeling amazing!

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The rain kept falling and there were numerous puddles and even flowing water littered through the course. I was able to hold the lead for a good portion of the loop and only felt vulnerable in the first rocky section. I started to ride tight again and wasn’t feeling comfortable. The rain had made all of the rocks very slippery, and I was very timid when it came to navigating and charging through the rocks. In this section I fell back to second again, but I finished the first loop four seconds off the lead, and I after a quick pit, I would realize after 40 miles the top three were only separated by 30 seconds!

I figured the second loop would be much tighter than the first, and I still felt that I had plenty left to run for the front. Unfortunately, I would start losing time through the single-track by riding timid, so I told myself to ride smooth and not ruin a good ride.

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The rain was still falling, and although I tried to stay with the top two (I had fallen back to third a few miles into the second loop), I wasn’t able to keep them in sight. They were simply riding much quicker than I was. Water had gotten through my jacket, my hands were completely soaked, and yet I was having a great time.

I rode the rest of the loop by myself, only seeing other riders as I passed them on the common course near the end. I finished the race in third overall, first place in Open A – my best finish at a District 37 Hare and Hound!

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I am really happy with the way my season is starting out, and I am looking forward to keeping the momentum going into the first National in a few short weeks. I feel I have a good base and will only get stronger as the year goes on!

I want to thank all of the people and sponsors behind me who have given me the opportunity for success like this: Blais Racing Services, Fasst Co., FMF, Kenda, Race Tech, ESR, Dirt Tricks, Motorex, Fastway, AM’E, TLD, Bulletproof Designs, Samco, IMS, RmorFx, BRP, Alpinestars, Eks Brand, Acerbis, and Rekluse.

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

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