NHHA National Hare and Hound Association Series
Round 4: Vikings Virgin Voyage at Johnson Valley OHV
By Brendan Crow
Photos by Mark Kariya
Courtesy of Blais Racing Services
LUCERNE VALLEY, CA, APR. 25-26, 2015
Race Report by Brendan Crow, Open A
I was confident heading into round four of the NHHA National Series, mainly due to my recent success in the local AMA District 37 races, and I would be riding my brand-new bike. I spent a few hours setting up the bike and was really happy with the way everything felt. My ESR-tuned Race Tech suspension felt amazingly smooth, my new Kendas were gripping fantastic, and my Blais Racing motor was very strong. I rode a few laps on the mini course while running sweep on Saturday, and made a few more adjustments before relaxing and having a good dinner. I relaxed in the crazy wind and headed to bed early.
I woke up early to have breakfast, then headed to the start to practice the bomb. I was able to find a line I wanted quickly, and headed back to the van for my final preparations before race time.
I had a good jump off the start but had to funnel behind David Kamo, who ended up jumping on the same trail. I spent about 15 seconds getting absolutely drilled by his roost and finally decided to peel off to the side and take a different line. This line was slower than I wanted, but I made it to the end of the bomb without any issues.
The first loop was tight and didn’t have a lot of passing room, so I was patient and rode my pace while taking any chances I had to to get around people. I was having a really fun time on the new bike and felt that I was able to ride loose and effortlessly. I wasn’t making any crazy mistakes, and finally started to feel confident in the rocks. My speed wasn’t quite where it needs to be, but I am happy that the new bike is a step in the right direction.
The first part of the second loop, I had a really good battle with Cody Patten, and I was able to edge him out before we hit the crazy powder across the lakebed. From there, I was able to pull away, and I rode by myself for the rest of the loop. I was still having a great time and was getting ready to finish the last loop on a good note.
I went out on the third loop ready, but I started to have a bit of fitness problems. My side cramped up in the first few miles. Then, once I was able to get that to go away, my hips cramped in the technical rock sections. Then my back started cramping towards the end of the loop. I pushed through to finish 20th overall and third Open A.
Although I didn’t get the finish I was hoping for, I am excited to push forward and can see good things to come. I am really happy with my bike setup, and I will be working on a few things and gaining more fitness once I get out of school for the summer.
Thanks to everyone that helps keep my race program going: Blais Racing, Fasst Co., Costa Rica Unlimited, FMF, Kenda, Race Tech, ESR, Dirt Tricks, Motorex, Fastway, A’ME, TLD, Bullet Proof Designs, Maxilube, Samco, IMS, RmorFX, BRP, Alpinestars, X Brand Goggles, Acerbis, and Rekluse.
[For more from this event, please see “Race Report from NHHA Series Round Four, Take One: Skyler Howes”… Editor]