Santa Rosa Mile

Turning Left and Climbing Rocks

| 15 August 2015 6:39 pm

CALVMX/AHRMA Exhibition
Camp Lockett Event and Equestrian Facility

Story by Steve Caro
Photos by Kathryn Caro
CAMPO, CA, AUG. 1-2, 2015

It’s an accepted truth that for a sport to remain viable, it must continue to grow and attract new participants while maintaining its core base. For the sport of Vintage motorcycle racing, this is especially true.

The action gets under way at the first CALVMX event ever held at the Camp Lockett Event and Equestrian Facility in Campo, California.

The action gets under way at the first CALVMX event ever held at the Camp Lockett Event and Equestrian Facility in Campo, California.

For Frank Vrettas, president of CALVMX and newly appointed AHRMA Southwest race director for motocross, dirt track and trials, it has been a continual campaign to keep Vintage racing viable in Southern California. The view of CALVMX and AHRMA is that there are literally hundreds of suitable vintage machines stashed away in garages and sheds, forgotten by their owners. The goal of CALVMX and its national partner AHRMA is to persuade the owners to put the machines back into use and to encourage younger generations of riders to give classic racing a chance rather than dismissing the machines from bygone eras as archaic contraptions.

CALVMX president Frank Vrettas (77V) at speed at Camp Lockett.

CALVMX president Frank Vrettas (77V) at speed at Camp Lockett.

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In an effort to increase the attraction of Vintage racing in all its various disciplines, CALVMX and AHRMA staged a weekend of flat-track and trials competition at Camp Lockett Event and Equestrian Facility in Campo, California. A designated historical facility, its history includes use by the Buffalo Calvary Soldiers, World War II German and Italian POWs, and a junior/senior high school. Excellent interaction between the promoters and the facility’s management led to a highly successful first-time event.

Riders young and old came out for this inaugural event.

Riders young and old came out for this inaugural event.

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Saturday’s event was an open-format flat-track race held on a short track laid out within the main horse arena. The open format of the races featured machines ranging from 50cc minicycles, knobby-tire MX bikes, dual-sport machines and rope-start minibikes on up to purpose-built flat-track machinery. Also included in the program were the crowd-pleasing three-wheelers and quads.

…and… they’re off!

…and… they’re off!

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Fourteen heat races were run in rapid succession, followed by main events for each class. Excellent watering by track officials (including volunteers Rudy Gil, Elliot Iverson, Eli Iverson and Brian Bell from the Imperial Valley Flat Track group) kept traction good and dust minimal. Class winners included Yamaha rider Randi Schaller, who topped the Powder Puff Novice class; Penny Bridges and Pat Farmer, who finished first and second, respectively, in Powder Puff Beginner action; and Triumph pilot Geoff Patrick, in Classic 250cc Beginner competition.

Randi Schaller (13) topped the Adult Mini 150cc Novice class on Sunday and the Powder Puff Novice class on both Saturday and Sunday.

Randi Schaller (13) topped the Adult Mini 150cc Novice class on Sunday and the Powder Puff Novice class on both Saturday and Sunday.

Penny Bridges (55) topped the 1970s Two-Stroke Beginner class on Saturday and the Powder Puff Beginner class on both Saturday and Sunday.

Penny Bridges (55) topped the 1970s Two-Stroke Beginner class on Saturday and the Powder Puff Beginner class on both Saturday and Sunday.

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A crowd favorite was Rodney “Bubba” Schaller, the young son of racers Randi and Bob Schaller. The Suzuki-mounted Bubba, having only recently removed his training wheels, rode smoothly and consistently to take the win in the 50cc Beginner (12 and Under) class.

Rodney “Bubba” Schaller (9) won the 50cc Beginner (12 and Under) class.

Rodney “Bubba” Schaller (9) won the 50cc Beginner (12 and Under) class.

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Former factory motocross pro Scott “The Burner” Burnworth made a very impressive first-time showing in oval-track racing by quickly adapting to having only a rear brake and turning left. Burnworth powered his way to three class wins on Ossa and Honda machinery.

In his oval-track debut, Scott Burnworth (8) scored three class victories.

In his oval-track debut, Scott Burnworth (8) scored three class victories.

One of the most spectacular races on Saturday was the duel between Tanner Pies and Tom Decrescente in the Three-Wheeler Expert division. Never more than two or three bikelengths apart, the two aces broad-slid the corners almost completely sideways, throwing huge amounts of roost toward the spectators. Pies’ extreme body lean closely resembled that of a sidecar speedway passenger. At the finish, Pies took the victory, followed by Decrescente. Trailing them was Intermediate-class entrant Mike Dunn, who topped his division.

Tanner Pies (999) took a close victory in the Three-Wheeler Expert division.

Tanner Pies (999) took a close victory in the Three-Wheeler Expert division.

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Sunday’s schedule featured more flat track, along with a 10-section Observed Trials course designed by Matt Parsons. The flat-track portion featured entries by two motocross pioneers (and Baja winners), Bill Silverthorn and Gene Fetty. Aged 74 and 73, respectively, both showed fine form on the track, with the Husqvarna-mounted Silverthorn battling with racers some 20 years younger than he. Even a low-side spill exiting turn three and being bumped by a fellow rider did nothing to slow Silverthorn on his way to taking wins in the Over 60 Sportsman Expert and Open Knobby classes and a well-earned second, behind veteran flat-tracker Steve Kukla, in Open Super Senior Expert competition.

Bill Silverthorn (10) was victorious in the Over 60 Sportsman Expert and Open Knobby classes.

Bill Silverthorn (10) was victorious in the Over 60 Sportsman Expert and Open Knobby classes.

Bill Silverthorn (10) and Steve Kukla (16) skirmish in Open Super Senior Expert action.

Bill Silverthorn (10) and Steve Kukla (16) skirmish in Open Super Senior Expert action.

Steve Kukla (16) came out on top of that battle for the Open Super Senior Expert win.

Steve Kukla (16) came out on top of that battle for the Open Super Senior Expert win.

As for Fetty, he took well-deserved wins in the Open Senior Intermediate and Over 60 Sportsman Intermediate classes.

Gene Fetty (5D) won the Open Senior Intermediate and Over 60 Sportsman Intermediate classes.

Gene Fetty (5D) won the Open Senior Intermediate and Over 60 Sportsman Intermediate classes.

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In a flashback to the late 1960s, rope-start minibikes took to the short track on Sunday. Featuring both home- and factory-built mounts, the riders of the diminutive machines put on a great show. The class winners were Gar Wood, in the Novice class; Ron Wood, in the Beginner ranks; and CALVMX president Frank Vrettas, in the Open Intermediate division.

Frank Vrettas (77V, left), Patrick Hogan (69) and Ron Wood (3) in action.

Frank Vrettas (77V, left), Patrick Hogan (69) and Ron Wood (3) in action.

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Interspersed with the flat-track program, Sunday also included the Observed Trials competition. Scott Burnworth showed his versatility on two wheels by entering his first Observed Trials event. Using an Ossa Mick Andrews Replica supplied by Keith Lynas, “Burner” maneuvered his way through the 10 sections successfully to take the win in the Modern Classic Novice class, followed by Luke Sayer.

Scott Burnworth (foreground) also tried Observed Trials for the first time – and came away with the Modern Classic Novice-class victory.

Scott Burnworth (foreground) also tried Observed Trials for the first time – and came away with the Modern Classic Novice-class victory.

In Modern Classic Expert competition, Yamaha rider Rick Daniel showed he could dominate a challenging trials course as well as he frequently does in Vintage Motocross competition. Ed Lowenberg tallied a second-place finish, behind Daniel.

Rick Daniel won the Modern Classic Expert class.

Rick Daniel won the Modern Classic Expert class.

For a first-time event, the two days of classic racing at the new venue was successful. Crashes and bike damage were minimal, with the most serious injury on the weekend being a minor forearm scrape to one competitor.

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Local residents turned out in healthy numbers and facility managers were highly impressed with the execution of the event. Tentative plans for a race series at the venue for 2016 as well as an old-school scrambles event for pre-1975 machines are now in the works.

For further information on Vintage Motocross racing, please see calvmx.net and ahrma.org.

Camp Lockett Event and Equestrian Facility
Campo, California
Results: August 1-2, 2015

Saturday – Flat Track

POWDER PUFF BEG: 1. Penny Bridges; 2. Pat Farmer.

POWDER PUFF NOV: 1. Randi Schaller.

YOUTH 50 BEG (0-12): 1. Bubba Schaller; 2. Mary Murphy.

YOUTH 100 (0-12): 1. Christian Fry.

ADULT MINI 80 BEG: 1. Shawn Chamlee.

ADULT MINI 80 INT: 1. Tom Decrescente.

ADULT MINI 150 EX: 1. Scott Burnworth.

CLASSIC 250 BEG: 1. Geoff Patrick.

1970s SINGLES NOV: 1. Ken Shilling; 2. Bob Schaller.

1970s SINGLES 50+ NOV: 1. Ken Shilling.

1970s SINGLES 50+EX: 1. Brent Wilkinson.

1970s 2-STROKE BEG: 1. Penny Bridges.

1970s 2-STROKE EX: 1. Gary DeForest.

OPEN BEG: 1. Shawn Chamlee; 2. Chris Osborn.

OPEN NOV: 1. Nick Garcia.

OPEN INT: 1. Keith Lynas.

OPEN EX: 1. Scott Burnworth; 2. Byron Kukla.

50+ SPORTSMAN NOV: 1. Tim Vasquez.

50+ SPORTSMAN EX: 1. Gary DeForest; 2. Jeff Apple.

OPEN SUPER SR 60+ BEG: 1. Dave Doll.

OPEN SUPER SR 60+ NOV: 1. Mike Wilder.

OPEN SUPER SR 60+ EX: 1. Steve Kukla.

OPEN KNOBBIE BEG: 1. Shawn Chamlee; 2. John Farmer; 3. Dave Doll; 4. Mike Doll.

OPEN KNOBBIE NOV: 1. Ted Kukla.

OPEN KNOBBIE INT: 1. Jerrett King; 2. Ray Zuchowski.

OPEN KNOBBIE EX: 1. Scott Burnworth; 2. Brent Wilkinson.

SPORTSMAN 250 NOV: 1. Tim Vasquez.

SPORTSMAN 250 INT: 1. Tom Fergusen.

SPORTSMAN 250 EX: 1. Scott Burnworth; 2. Gary DeForest.

VET 35+ BEG: 1. Chris Osborn.

VET 35+ INT: 1. Ray Zuchowski.

POST-VINTAGE 600 BEG: 1. Chris Osborn.

POST-VINTAGE 600 EX: 1. Jeff Apple.

3-WHEEL EX: 1. Tanner Pies; 2. Tom Decrescente.

3-WHEEL INT: 1. Mike Dunn.

QUAD NOV: 1. Kyle Baker; 2. Myles Fry.

QUAD EX: 1. Eric Hartell.

Sunday – Flat Track

PULL-START BEG: 1. Ron Wood.

PULL-START NOV: 1. Gar Wood; 2. Patrick Hogan.

PULL-START OPEN INT: 1. Frank Vrettas.

POWDER PUFF BEG: 1. Penny Bridges.

POWDER PUFF NOV: 1. Randi Schaller.

JR MINI 100 NOV: 1. Aidan Omelina.

YOUTH 50 BEG (0-12): 1. Bubba Schaller.

YOUTH 50 NOV (0-12): 1. Aidan Omelina.

ADULT MINI 80 BEG: 1. Shawn Chamlee.

ADULT MINI 80 INT: 1. Tom Decrescente.

ADULT MINI 100 BEG: 1. Aidan Omelina; 2. Penny Bridges.

ADULT MINI 150 BEG: 1. Kevin Henderson.

ADULT MINI 150 NOV: 1. Randi Schaller.

ADULT MINI 150 PRO: 1. Scott Burnworth.

1970s SINGLES NOV: 1. Ken Shilling; 2. Bob Schaller.

1970s SINGLES 50+ NOV: 1. Ken Shilling.

OPEN KNOBBIE BEG: 1. Shawn Chamlee; 2. John Farmer; 3. David Leach.

OPEN KNOBBIE NOV: 1. Mark Dreas.

OPEN KNOBBIE EX: 1. Bill Silverthorn; 2. Ray Zuchowski; 3. Brent Wilkinson.

OPEN KNOBBIE PRO: 1. Scott Burnworth.

OPEN BEG: 1. Shawn Chamlee; 2. Chris Osborn.

OPEN NOV: 1. Andy Pappas.

OPEN INT: 1. John Garcia; 2. Darrin Dwyer; 3. Ray Zuchowski; 4. Nick Garcia.

VET 35+ BEG: 1. Chris Osborn.

VET 35+ EX: 1. Jim Medlin.

50+ SPORTSMAN NOV: 1. Tim Vasquez.

50+ SPORTSMAN INT: 1. John Garcia.

50+ SPORTSMAN EX: 1. Jim Medlin; 2. Jeff Apple; 3. Brent Wilkinson.

60+ SPORTSMAN INT: 1. Gene Fetty.

60+ SPORTSMAN EX: 1. Bill Silverthorn.

OPEN SUPER SR 60+ BEG: 1. R.H. Rattaazzi.

OPEN SUPER SR 60+ INT: 1. Gene Fetty.

OPEN SUPER SR 60+ EX: 1. Steve Kukla; 2. Bill Silverthorn.

POST-VINTAGE 600 BEG: 1. Chris Osborn.

POST-VINTAGE 600 NOV: 1. Bob Schaller.

POST-VINTAGE EX: 1. Jeff Apple.

3-WHEEL INT: 1. Mike Dunn.

3-WHEEL EX: 1. Tanner Pies.

QUAD NOV: 1. Kyle Baker.

QUAD EX: 1. Eric Hartell.

Sunday – Vintage Trials

TWIN SHOCK: 1. Ben Shepard.

MODERN CLASSIC NOV: 1. Scott Burnworth; 2. Luke Sayer.

MODERN CLASSIC EX: 1. Rick Daniel; 2. Ed Lowenberg.

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Category: ATV, Flat Track, Regional, Trials, Vintage, Vintage Flat Track, Vintage Off-Road

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