Race Report from the Ohio Valley Classic

| 6 May 2015 3:58 pm

Ohio Valley Classic
Warren County Fairgrounds

By Stevi Smith
Photos by Kurt Bauer/
LEBANON, OH, MAY 2, 2015

Race Report by Stevi Smith, 450cc
The race in Lebanon had me very excited as we rolled into the gates. I was really nervous as the day began, and I had butterflies like it was my first race all over again; Lebanon was my first race since September 2014, and my first Half Mile back since June of 2014 after my accident at Midland, Michigan. I was extremely excited to get back onto a cushion Half Mile but really bumming that my mechanic – a.k.a. my dad – wasn’t there to help me out or watch me.

Stevi Smith (84) at speed on the Warren County Fairgrounds racetrack, site of the Ohio Valley Classic.

Stevi Smith (84) at speed on the Warren County Fairgrounds racetrack, site of the Ohio Valley Classic.

The first round of practice went pretty well. I felt good but had a few adjustments to make to the bike. The gearing was way off and the front was pushing some. Dropped some teeth and worked on the front end.

Went out for the second round of practice and was feeling even better. The gearing still was not where I wanted it, but the front end was working a lot better. Changed gearing again and waited patiently for the heat races to start.

I had pole for my heat race. I was second into turn one and ran in second place for a few laps. Going into turn three, I made the pass for the lead and never looked back. Winning my heat race made me feel extremely good. I was so pumped and excited for the main event!

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I had pole for the main. Lined up and just knew I had to get the holeshot in this 12-lap main event.

I got the holeshot but was side by side with Kyle McGrane coming out of turn two. Going down the back straightaway, I passed him. As the laps started to wind down, I ran into some lappers and was worried it would play a factor on my lead, but a few laps later, when the checkered flag flew, I then had realized I had just led all 12 laps of the main event! I was so excited, I couldn’t even control my excitement, instantly calling my dad after I came into the pits, just smiling ear to ear, realizing I had just performed the “perfect” day – winning my heat race and winning the main event.

Stevi Smith (84) on her way to winning the 450cc contest.

Stevi Smith (84) on her way to winning the 450cc contest.

Going into the 2015 season, I didn’t even plan on racing but a handful of races, and this one was not even on my plans to do. But now I am so happy that I decided to do it! I must say, the coolest part about winning this race was the fans hanging over the fence on the front straightaway and the back straightaway!

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I cannot thank my boyfriend J.R. and his dad, Roy, enough for helping me all day long. Roy pulled double-duty while helping J.R. and also helping me out a ton! Also, a huge thank-you to Cody Johncox for also helping me throughout the day! Another huge thank-you to the Blain family, along with Marc Walters, for their donations at the beginning of this year to pay for entry fees at the races that I decided to do. Thanks to my mom and dad for all the moral support all day long via text messages or phone calls, and to my boyfriend’s mom, Kim, for keeping me hydrated all day long and being there for me after my races were over! I want to thank Tim Humphries for putting the race on at the beautiful racetrack and for the wonderful job he did maintaining the track all day. I really hope there will be another race at the Lebanon Half Mile! I know I enjoyed it, and I hope all the fans enjoyed it just as much as I did!
– Stevi Smith #84

[For more from this event, including race coverage, results and more photos, please see “Flat Track Racing Returns to Lebanon with the Ohio Valley Classic!” by Kurt Bauer… Editor]

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Category: Flat Track, POV, Regional, Riders, Riders All, Riders' POV, Riders' Race Reports

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