WEEK #12
JULY 22nd, 2018

So an all-night rain and a very iffy forecast, we still decided to still go for it.
The crowd was again quite small but the racing was sure good once we got going.

As volunteers, led by maintenance man Pete Cooper, worked to get the track as race ready as possible, it was decided to push times back by 30 minutes. This allowed a full hour of practice and the strong wind to work its magic in drying out the track. It proved to be a good decision.

Before we started it was an opportune time to catch up a bit on our Rider-of-the-week awards. Shane “The Hurricane” Upham was honored for his efforts back on July 8th when he nailed down a nice win in a very competitive 5-rider class. With some encouragement, he went with Dave Albert Jr. as a rider he admires.

For last week we chose Noah Hardgrove. Noah has won the last 3 out of 4 times he has raced here. He said the Dominic Chevalier as his favorite. Dom is sitting second in the Novice point standings up at Whip City.
So we started right at 12:30 with 47 riders in only 13 motos. The rain had stopped but was sure threatening.


The Balance Bikes started us off with one 4-year old and two -3year olds. 4-year old Ryder “Hollywood” Champagne easily pushed his way to a 3-round moto sweep. Skylar Hardgrove managed to stay ahead of Dan Demers for the second place award.


The first class where points were awarded was the only Cruiser class racing today. With Leithen McMillian just touching the gate due to an injury, the qualifying rounds would be a free ride into today’s 3-rider main event. With ages ranging from 12 to 17 years old, Factory Yess racer Dave Albert chose to hold back and let the two 12-year olds battle for the win. Kane McMillian, also a factory Yess racer was able to hold off a determined Marissa Lyman from the Overhaul racing stables.


The 5 & Under Novice class was a three rider shootout and one of the most fun to watch at we got to see them in all three rounds of Total Points racing. Only two weeks ago, all three of these kids were racing in the Balance Bike class and now, here they were racing on pedal bikes. 4-year old “Mr. Cool”, Malachi Goggins would do battle with two 3-year olds; Cole Lyman and Logan Barker. It looked like Malachi might nail a perfect as he was definitely the fastest however, he tipped over in the rhythm section and Cole Lyman decided to stop and help out while Logan Barker (Creative Racing Products), pedaled to the finish line in round one. Malachi got up and jumped back on his bike and took off leaving Cole pondering “hmmmm maybe I shouldn’t have stopped?” The second and third rounds were the same order as would be the official standings for the day. Malachi, Logan and Cole in that order.

From Balance Bikes to Pedal Bikes.
Malachi Goggins, Logan Barker, Cole Lyman
(Photo Credit Jen Lyman)

The 8-year old class was also interesting as Jeff “The Dreamweaver” Weaver was the only 8-year old in this 3-rider Total Points race. Jeff has fallen in turn one the last two times here so he was looking to really cash in today by simply keeping the shiny side up and the dirty side down on that bike with the CT State #3 plate on the front. Round one would go to Noah Hardgrove with Jeff second and Liam Garvin a no-show. Liam had just signed up with a trial membership but may have decided it wasn’t for him after practice. Round two it was Jeff winning setting up a one lap dash for today’s 8 Novice title. All the way from the start to turn 4 it was Weaver with Hardgrove right on him no more than a bike length behind. As they came out of turn 4 Jeff slipped a pedal and that’s all it took for Hardgrove to sneak through. At the stripe it was Hardgrove by a bike length and the first place award. Weaver snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. Jeff is so determined and came so close. Maybe next time.

In 10 year old action, there would be one rider eliminated after the qualifying rounds. Unfortunately it was Alex Lacava making his first trip to Foothills one that he would like to forget as he missed the cut. Hopefully he will be back especially after he won the rider raffle which is a free race here. Jayden Jones, also making his first appearance at Foothills probably loves it as he won today’s main event. Toby Schoonmaker continues to look impressive and was a solid second at the stripe while third went to Kenan Borelli who was also making his Foothills debut which was his BMX debut.

It was the same deal in 13 year old action as only 3-riders were racing. This Total point’s race saw Kodie Carlson, wearing some hot looking Bethel Supercross gear win round one. Round two it was Chris Pedersen returning the favor. Vico Titillo was third each of those two rounds. The tie-breaking third round went to Kodie as did the first place award. Chris settled for second while Vico was third.


The 8-year old class was yet another Total Points race. Jackson Murphy, who we have only seen once this year, was sitting on 19 win, kinda. There was an apparent scoring error at another track recently that caused him to be awarded a second place finish instead of a first. It was thought that once the finish report went to USABMX it would get straightened out. Therefore, I assumed that he had 19 wins where, unofficially he had 18. So being a Total point’s race Jackson would easily win all three rounds. As he crossed the stripe I declared him the newest Expert in the Country. Hopefully, it really was. Brody Kesl, making his first Foothills appearance as an Intermediate had an interesting day also. While running in the second spot in round one as they headed down the short chute to the finish line, Brody let up and was probably surprised as Kevin Torres flew by him at the stripe for the second spot. Brody learned to stay on the gas and managed a second place finish in round two just ahead of Kevin Torres. In round three, again after Murphy had already crossed the stripe, Brody was fighting hard to hold off another late charge from Torres. As they were about one foot from the finish line Brody crashed but landed right on the line as Torres went by. But all the scorers agreed that Brody’s body and bike had actually crossed the finish line as he lay sprawled on the stripe. It was like pro football where a touchdown is determined when you “break the plane.” Officially the order for the day was Murphy, Kesl and Torres. Sounds like a Law firm.

Jackson Murphy earns
Move-up to the Expert Ranks

The 10 year old class would require qualifying motos to determine who gets into the three rider main event but with Leithan “Rocky” McMillian just touching the gate, the rounds were really meaningless other than track time as all three would eventually qualify. Evan “Lemon Drop” Sauer, the only Expert in the mix, would easily win the main. Second place finisher Mikey Roy and third place finisher Kayla Barker (Creative Racing Products) would both earn “Expert Points” for their efforts.

The 11 year old class was also a four rider group with one Expert in the mix. After the three qualifying rounds it would be Nick Tirendi the tough luck rider who didn’t qualify. In the main, it was Intermediate rider Shane “The Hurricane” Upham who would upset the Expert Wes Hamel (Family Pride) for the win. Hamel was a close second with Cole Barker (Creative Racing Products) third.

The 12 year old class was another repeat of the previous two class as it also included an Expert. Every time this happens all riders who make the main earn Expert points. In this one it was Danny Calarco who would miss the cut as he continues to work to find the skills that he left about 5 years ago when he “retired” from racing. Kane McMillian, one of the two Northeast factory YESS riders here today was the Intermediate that beat the Expert. Kane stayed just in front of Noah Andersen after some really good handlebar to handlebar racing action. Noah was second with Marissa Lyman settling into the third spot.


The 13 year old class was a three rider shootout and it would be a different order of finish in every round. In round one it was Former Track Champion Aidan Biello beating current Track Champion Trevor Cooper. Dylan Barker was third. In round two Trevor claimed the win with Aidan and Dylan tangling a bit down in turn four with Dylan sliding out and finishing third again. With Biello and Cooper tied for points going into the final round it would be all Trevor Cooper, starting from the inside gate leading from start to finish. Barker (Creative Racing Products) managed a second place finish in this final round but would finish third overall.

The last class was kind of a potpourri of ages and proficiencies. With five riders registered, the class was titled “17-20 Expert” but was actually “14-20 Expert, Novice, Intermediate and Girl”. 19 year old Novice Devin Murphy was the only Novice ranked rider in this group and, despite a great effort, would miss the transfer. Northeast Factory YESS racer Dave Albert Jr. blasted his way to the front and never looked back in the main event. Hunter Zeiner gave him all he could handle but Hunter was torn between trying to catch Dave and trying to stay in front of a very fast and skilled rider Jena Sagendorf. Afterward Hunter said he almost wrecked chasing Dave but felt he would never hear the end of it if he got passed by a girl! Well Hunter, if you were passed by Jena Sagendorf, you would simply be one of many who suffered that fate over the years. He did say “She is really fast”. Good observation there Captain Obvious! A Special “Thank you” goes out to Jena as she announced the second round of motos so that I could vacate the tower and get some pictures. Jena is currently living in Phoenix Arizona and teaching school there. She is originally from Schenectady New York.